HYDERABAD: Have you ever wondered where does all that stress in your body go? Where is it stored after a point of time? What are the ways to reduce it?
This might sound absurd, but the stress that our bodies go through every day gets stored in the hips. And, it can be relieved by following a few simple yoga exercises. Sanjana Taneja Dixit, a yoga Acharya, says: “Many of us tend to store our emotions in the hip region. This is a natural part of the ‘fight or flight’ stress response. Each time we feel threatened or have a stress reaction, we physically respond by tensing the hip region, by drawing ourselves in or running away to protect ourselves.
However, even after the threat has passed, there is still the emotional scar of the situation. When we don’t process these emotions, they stay stagnant and hinder us from moving on.” Referring to the Adam and Eve theory, she says, the space between the hips and our relationship with people, which are often the source of difficult emotions – feelings of abandonment, resentment or loss — are interconnected. “In this context, yoga is not merely an athletic system; it is a spiritual system.
The asanas are designed to affect the subtle body for the purpose of spiritual transformation. People practise yoga asanas for physical fitness and health, or even because they’ve heard it helps them relax. But the ultimate purpose of yoga is spiritual development. This depends on breaking through places in the subtle body, which are blocked with unresolved issues and energy,” she explains.
When we work with our body, we are also working with the mind and energy system, which is the bridge between the mind and body. This holds true for trauma too. “The body comes to the defence of the whole being. In defending it, the body does things to stop us from experiencing the pain,” she says. Kamal Maliramani, founder of Energizer Yoga, says, “When you are under stress, the first thing that gets affected is your breath, it becomes shorter. If you are threatened by a situation, your body freezes.
Similarly, in case of stress, the fears and insecurities with relation to future or past traumas stiffen up the body. This reflects in the organs and the joints. It is most prominent in the hips and shoulders. The blood vessels become tighter and the heart a little stiffer. With yoga, as most asanas are done on the floor and focus on the hip, this can be addressed.”