WAWADIA update #9 /// Pain and Performance in Dance (and Asana): a conversation

One of the unexpected pleasures of the research I’ve been doing into yoga injuries is that I’ve been drawn into conversations with many types of movement and bodywork folks. I’ve spoken to contact improv people, movement trainers, Rolfers, osteopaths, and dancers. They often have marginal relationships to asana, and I’ve found that their lack of investment in the practice often gives them some startling insight.

I recently spoke with Andréa de Keijzer, a 28 year-old dancer and visual artist living in Montreal. In November 2013, after 4 years of hip pain, she underwent debridement surgery for a labral tear in her left hip. (Photo above by Jeannette Ulate.) She expects to be diagnosed with the same injury on the right side, where she has been feeling an identical pain over the past few months. What I find really valuable about her thoughts on asana is that she approached the practice through this awakened lens of injury, and immediately saw that she was being asked to do similar movements — perhaps embodying similar ideals — to those that had been asked to do in dance, which mixed in with anatomical factors such as FAI (femoroacetabular impingement), probably contributed to the development of her condition. Continue reading “WAWADIA update #9 /// Pain and Performance in Dance (and Asana): a conversation”