Yin Yoga and shingles

From time to time teachers and even students write some very interesting stories and thoughts about their Yin Yoga experiences. If you have a Blog you wish to share, please post a link to it here.
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Laura Hahn
Posts: 10
Joined: Wed Mar 28, 2012 2:57 pm
Location: Stanwood, WA

Yin Yoga and shingles

Post by Laura Hahn »

Dear Forum,
I am an instructor of Yin Yoga and am currently having some nerve
pain due to shingles and was looking to know if there is anyone out
there that has any experience with the Yin Yoga practice and shingles,
and the pain that often comes with a shingle outbreak.

Most grateful,

Laura
Bernie
Posts: 1228
Joined: Sat Sep 23, 2006 2:25 am
Location: Vancouver

Post by Bernie »

Hi Laura. I am sorry to hear about your shingles outbreak. (BTW: you posted this in a blog section of the Forum, so in a while I will move it to a more appropriate section where you may get better input.)

As you probably already know, shingles is a viral infection by the chicken pox virus (aka the varicella-zoster virus) and usually people will only get this once in a lifetime. Symptoms can vary from tingling to severe pain and numbness. It can also be accompanied by fever and fatigue. I hope your situation is on the milder side. You should see your doctor, especially if you are older (>70) or have a rash near the eyes, or if the symptoms become quite severe.

There is some evidence that the meditative aspect of yoga can assist with treating the symptoms of shingles, but nothing will cure the virus (except the body over time.) Since Yin Yoga allows a lot of time for quiet meditation, it should be beneficial to you. Here is a post on one person's anecdotal experiences.

Again, I wish you good luck!
Bernie
michelleh
Posts: 1
Joined: Sun Sep 03, 2017 2:48 am
Location: Portland, Oregon

yin and shingles pain

Post by michelleh »

Hi Laura,

I've also experienced shingles outbreak nerve pain, and yin yoga is an important part of my life. It sounds like you're asking for suggestions of yin postures/inspirations/techniques/methodology/pedagogy to support with the pain experience? While I haven't found a specific go-to posture when I practice, supine poses with the focus is on the hips and heart space feel appropriate.

What Bernie mentioned about the meditative aspect has been one important piece of my acceptance and recovery: by taking time to slow down, listen in, and feel. The biggest impact for me has been exploring how pain and illness act as indicators and protectors of past trauma's repressed emotions such as anger and grief - through the TMS lens and intersection of Buddhist and western psychology, psychoneuroimmunology, and in general the mindbody connection.

If you're interested in the emotional connection piece I'd recommend the TMSwiki website, any and all books by Dr. John Sarno, Radical Acceptance by Tara Brach, Peace, Love, and Healing by Bernie Siegel, Unlearn Your Pain by Howard Schubiner, and if any of this resonates, that all leads to learning about what role your illness or pain (presented as shingles) plays to keep you safe and meet your needs. If this doesn't resonate I hope you find your own way through the experience that brings you healing and joy.

I know the virus and the pain and other symptoms are real and can be excruciating, debilitating, and have a huge impact on the life experience. Thanks for reaching out to the community and for sharing, I'm grateful to be able to write a bit about my experience in hopes of helping others :) I'm open to suggested resources as well!

May we be free from suffering. May we be healthy. May we be happy. May we find peace and joy.

~Michelle
Laura Hahn
Posts: 10
Joined: Wed Mar 28, 2012 2:57 pm
Location: Stanwood, WA

Post by Laura Hahn »

Thank you Michelle for your response to my concerns about shingles and Yin Yoga.
With warmest regards,
Laura
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