Monday, August 28, 2006

Sympathetic/parasympathetic - balancing act

Life is bliss! Most days I walk along our pristine beach looking across to Cape Byron lighthouse where whales display, breach and whack their huge pectoral fins playfully as they journey south.
Thursdays we go to the growers' market in Byron where we replenish our stocks of fresh organic fruits, nuts, vegies, meat, fish and my personal favourite, sourdough fruit and nut bread. When I work out how to post photos I'll share this with you. A trip to Byron, 15 minutes from home, is never complete without a visit to the Cape, Australia's most easterly point. The Cape has a special feel which draws people there again and again. Sometimes we drop in to Wategoes or The Pass before heading back to town for a coffee. Friday we are back in Byron, this time for yoga exercises and breathing with a very special physiotherapist. This lady's taught me something which has helped greatly. In essence, if you breathe out twice as long as you breath in you'll support the parasympathetic nervous system. This has a calming effect both emotionally and physically. I can reduce my blood pressure by 20 points in 15 minutes of breathing this way. She also understands that crps needs a whole body balanced therapy approach. I've learned that a little often allows my body to become comfortable with movement. I'll give you an example.
For at least 2 years I've had reduced movement in my left shoulder. It was suggested I lay flat on the ground with my arms at my side. I raised my right arm up and over my head to the ground whilst breathing in, and then lowered the arm breathing out more slowly than in. I did this on alternate sides with the left arm going as far as comfortable. I did this 15 times once a day. After 3 weeks I could move my arm as freely on the left side as the right. I need to keep doing this as my left side takes the strain of my inability to use my right hand properly (due to stiffness post fracture). Of course after yoga exercises we are drawn again to the Cape. Then, when we get home the four legged human guilt trips us till we take him to the dog off leash beach where he rounds up the waves. Picture coming.

This works for me. Seek the advice of treating professionals.
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