Micro yoga is such a good tool for managing chronic pain and fatigue. The benefits of yoga are continually being proven in research, especially for chronic symptoms. I want to share what micro yoga is, how micro yoga helps me as a mama with chronic pain, fatigue and insomnia and tiny children and how you can use the tools too.
What is micro yoga?
It is simply yoga that is not a traditional length or what we typically (in the west) think of as “yoga”.
I literally do 5-30 minute snippets at a time. As a person with chronic symptoms I find it much better to do 10 minutes regularly than one hour once a week.
I’d take it one step further and call my yoga super accessible micro yoga. When done right, yoga is super accessible for us and what we need.
What does this look like?
- Five minutes of asana (stretches) when I am getting dressed.
- A random pose to help my back when it is feeling tight during the day.
- Five minutes of breathing when I am feeling overwhelmed.
- 30 minute meditation after lunch.
- 10 minute body scan relaxation before bed.
- A restorative yoga pose on my bed during a flare.
How can we use it?
Micro yoga can be one or two poses that you use as needed. Or a more formal practice on the mat for 5-45 minutes. It could even be a breathing break or rest guided meditation.
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Rachel Scott is a yoga teacher who gets it. In her book Little Book of Yoga Practices: Daily Relaxation, One Asana at a Time (2019) she talks about micro practice:
“By weaving micro practices into your everyday life, you will:
Cultivate a consistent yoga routine that won’t overwhelm your busy schedule
Have the tools to reset your mood and energy with just a few breaths
Feel empowered by the quality of your self-care
Recognize that small acts can make a major difference in your physical and
I use micro yoga as part of my toolkit for managing pain and fatigue.
Where do we learn it?
Rachel’s cute book has some great micro practices to try. I was given a complimentary copy by the author. I also got a copy of her latest book Yoga to Stay Young: Simple Poses to Keep You Flexible, Strong and Pain-Free – which I absolutely adore. Both are great guidebooks to keep on hand.
You might like the targeted stretches section starting pg 65. The best part of The Little Book of Yoga Practices is the succinctly described pose section. You can see what resonates and try one or two at a time.
The one minute miracles section is a gold mine! Pg 82
Rachel might not specialise in yoga for chronic pain and fatigue but her books are great resources when you are trying to build a micro yoga practice. And the size of The Little Book of Yoga Practices means it isn’t going to be hard on the old brain fog to get through, it is succinct and easy to follow.
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