Last Updated on September 2, 2021 by melissanreynolds
How do you start a yoga for fibromyalgia/chronic pain/chronic fatigue practice? How do you figure out what may suit your body and your preferences?
If you are still wondering about the benefits, why you should even start a yoga for fibromyalgia practice, then check out this post.
But if you know that it can help, if you choose a practice that suits your current needs, then read on for the how to start your yoga for fibromyalgia practice guide!
Before You Start
You do need to check in with your medical team to ensure you are cleared for movement. Yoga is mindful and gentle but it is still movement. Ask your doctor if there are any types of movements that you shouldn’t do and ask them about the idea of yoga.
Then remember that you are in charge of your body, so during your practice, assess how it feels and be mindful of what works for you.
There are many options, so you will most likely find a practice that suits you. In the Yoga for the Chronic Life virtual yoga studio we offer bed yoga, chair yoga, mat yoga, meditation and breathing practices and more.
Yoga for Fibromyalgia Practice Props
You don’t need a whole lot to start your practice but you may like the following to start you off.
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This is one of the only necessities to get your practice started, though you can practice anywhere, anytime.
A bolster is not strictly necessary. If you have watched any of my videos, I have couch cushions that function like bolsters and use those to show you that you don’t need fancy supplies to start your practice. But this is the closest to the style that I use in my classes.
I love blocks for supporting and bringing the ground up to meet us – they are the first level of props I recommend.
The Key Principles of Yoga for Fibromyalgia Practice
These principles come from my post Yoga for Chronic Pain and Fatigue: What it is, isn’t, how I use it and you can too post.
1. Listen to your body. This is absolutely key, in a world where we are trained to push through and ignore our cues, you must listen in yoga. If you are feeling particularly fatigued then perhaps breathing, meditation or a restorative posture might be best for today.
2. Pay attention to your body. How does a movement feel? Should you pull back? Is a certain posture for you right now?
3. Start slow.
4. Frame practice with breathing and rest. After all my research and practice, I would say the ideal practice for fibromyalgia is gentle breathing, gentle poses, followed by a restorative pose and a good yoga nidra meditation.
5. It’s not linear. You won’t necessarily do five minutes today, seven minutes tomorrow, 30 minutes in six months. You may do 10 minutes of physical practice today, meditation tomorrow, 5 minutes of physical practice the next day and then 20 minutes of restorative postures the next. We are on a journey with our body not with our type or length of practice.
6. It should not hurt.
Types of Yoga Tools
Yoga tools come in all types. We can do yoga when we are feeling more well, in a flare, before bed, in the morning, as a rest and as exercise.
- Slow flow/gentle flow yoga
- Restorative yoga
- Bed yoga
- Chair yoga
- Mat/floor yoga
- Meditation – Yoga Nidra included
- Breathing practices
- One off poses that help us
Resources I’ve Created for You
If you need more information the following posts may help you.
Yoga for Fibromyalgia Poses – this post shares some of my favourite poses for us.
Yoga Nidra for Fibromyalgia – here we learn my all time favourite yoga tool for us.
Restorative Yoga – in this article we go through the central nervous system, fibromyalgia and a style of yoga called restorative.
Yoga is Not a Cure for Chronic Pain: But it Can Help – this was a live training I did that goes through some key misconceptions about yoga.
Quickstart Your Yoga for Fibromyalgia Practice
So, we have the basics down, how do we actually get started? There are some options below.
You can keep it simple with the FREE five pose challenge, Yoga for Fibromyalgia: Five Minutes a Day for Five Days. Simply sign up here. You will get one pose a day for five days to get you started in your practice.
If you are completely new or would like to go over the foundations, then The Foundations of Yoga for Fibromyalgia course is for you. This course will take you from “can I do yoga?” to “I am equipped to use the tools of yoga for the rest of my life”.
It is self-study so there is no rush and it’s there to come back to again and again. This is my most popular offering, it was the first program I released and over 200 students have enrolled in this program.
All three of these, plus other series and classes are available inside the very special Yoga for the Chronic Life virtual yoga studio. This is how I am making the most accessible yoga possible for us. There are all sorts of classes designed especially for people with fibromyalgia (bed, yoga, chair, floor, standing, breathing, meditation and more). You can also try the first seven days free to ensure you like it.
Would you like some community as you explore yoga for fibromyalgia? Come and join us in Yoga for Fibromyalgia with Melissa Facebook group.