People often ask us why does Yoga have so many strange positions, why can’t I just stretch the way others do in the local gym, what’s the difference?
To answer this question let’s start by taking a look at the world of fascia according to Tom Myers – Anatomy Trains.
Did you know that all of the muscles in your body are connected via fascia?
If we were to dissect your body we would find that the muscles connect to long lines of connective tissue called fascia. These myofascial lines run up, down and around your body connecting muscles to other muscles via fascia – there are in fact 7 main “Fascial Lines” in your body.
A good example would be when you try to touch your toes – you would usually do this to stretch your hamstrings, right? So why then might you also feel the stretch in your lower back or calves as well as your hamstrings – this is because it is all connected through the Fascial Lines.
This is why in Yoga we don’t just look at stretching isolated muscles we take the stretches one step further into “Postures” that stretch through the entire Fascial Line – more bang for your buck if you like!
Now you may ask, why is it important to stretch through the Fascial Lines rather than just individual muscles? The Fascial Lines are affected by our everyday activities – sitting at a desk, driving in the car, our walking patterns, sports we play, repetitive movements – on and on the list goes. These everyday activities can shorten or weaken our Fascial Lines, creating poor posture or muscle aches and pains – the advantage of a good Yoga class is that you will be stretching through all of your Fascial Lines helping to create more balance and harmony in your body.