To begin with we must understand what pain is and what the purpose of pain is. Pain is a defense mechanism used by the body to warn it that an injury is occurring, or has occurred, and to keep it alert to the injured to the injured area to avoid re-injuring it. Pain is not caused by the injury but is caused by the nerves reacting to the injury. The science of acupuncture and acupressure has developed techniques to stop the nerves from transmitting pain to the brain and thereby stop the brain from feeling the sensation of pain. Pain must therefore be interpreted by and felt in the brain. Even though it seems as though the injury is being felt in the area of the damage, what is in fact happening is the pain is being sent to the brain via the nerves, translated and interpreted in the brain and sent back to the affected area. A cycle is thus formed with the nerves and the brain. Not with the injury and the brain. It is not necessary to experience pain unless the pain is being experienced by the actual injury occurring. So we have developed drugs in America to stop the pain from being interpreted in the brain. The aspirin is the most popular, and all the way up to Heroin which is so strong that you can have surgery without any pain being experienced during the operation.
So you can also learn techniques for avoiding the sensation of pain or preventing and removing the pain syndrome. These techniques are not new and have been used by the Orientals for thousands of years and by many American athletes and individuals who perhaps may not have been aware exactly what they were doing.
When you were young you used a similar technique for the removal of pain. Remember when you would fall down and hurt your knee. You would grab your knee and take a deep breath, squeeze your muscles, then limp home and your mother would kiss it and make it well. Usually you really did feel better and most of the pain was gone. What was happening was the use of three techniques for the removal or avoidance of pain that we will use. You were using breath control, muscle control and mind control. You used your breath to draw your body's healing powers to the area and to stop the nerve movement. You used your muscle to tighten the area and draw extra blood into it and relieve some of the pain. You used your mother's kiss as a mental affirmation that you no longer hurt.
Let us see some techniques that can be applied to slight injuries that often occur in sports. Note: you can use these techniques for major injuries such as a broken bone or wounds, but we are concerned with injuries that you have that are minor and that if you were not affected by the pain you could continue to play and perform at top level.
Joint Injuries: Slight sprains and jams.
1. Take a deep breath and tighten the muscles that have been hurt. Now hold your breath while directing your mind to send your breath to the area that is hurt. (Of course you can't send air to the area, only suggest to your mind that you are sending your breath with its healing properties to the injured area.)
2. Make circles, pointing away from the heart, around the affected area, not on the affected area. Rub around it about 5-10 times then mentally take the pain into your finger tips and throw it away with a flick of your fingers - away from the body. (You can't actually throw away the pain, but you can give your mind and your body the autosuggestion that you are throwing away the pain.)
3. Forget that you are injured and pay no more attention to any pain that may still be coming to the brain. Begin to concentrate very hard on the task or game at hand. Do not let the mind wander to the sensation of pain. Forget it, do not notice it. (Just like a man that works in a noisy factory learns not to notice the noise after he has been there a while.) Don't worry that you may re-injure the area or that if you do your mind control may not let you notice the pain, just like the man in the factory who does not notice the noise, he immediately notices something going wrong, or a strange sound, so you will too notice any further injury.
Jammed thumb or sprained finger:
a. rub around the area b. take a deep breath c. tighten the muscles for a few seconds d. throw away the pain e. forget the pain
Slightly sprained ankle a. rub around the ankle b. take a deep breath c. tighten the muscles for a few seconds d. throw away the pain e. forget the pain
Throwing away the pain and forgetting the pain or techniques that take practice and that take concentration and belief in ones mind control. But more importantly it takes the desire of the athlete not to let an injury affect his performance or stop his performance. A great athlete is usually playing with some kind of pain and to get to be the best
Throwing away the pain in the ribs you have to undergo much pain and trial with pain to perfect your game and technique. Believe you can stop the pain, desire to stop the pain and to go on playing and you will certainly develop this technique.
Perhaps no other and more obvious aspect of injuries that can be prevented is being taught less or understood less by the coaches and players in America than the proper method to fall on the ground without being injured. I am not talking about rolling forward, which is what most people think falling is. I am referring to getting your feet knocked out from under you and going 4 feet in the air and landing on your shoulder or neck, or being tackled or knocked down sideways and breaking your wrist, or slipping on the snow or ice and falling on your butt and injuring your tail bone or neck. These are examples of falls that athletes are constantly being exposed to, and that they are usually not at all prepared to negotiate or execute without receiving injury. For too long players, coaches, and fans have expected that if a players feet are taken out from under him, or he is thrown into the air, he will be injured, and if he isn't it is a miracle. There are proven, easy to learn and practice, techniques from Judo that will enable you to greatly reduce the chances of your being injured by a fall.
There are only three basic ways a person can fall: forward, backwards and sideways. Let us examine and practice techniques for each of these types of falls.
The Forward Fall: this particular fall has two basic techniques to it. One, when the athlete has enough momentum or room to do a forward roll; two, when he must fall straight down.
The Forward Roll: Practice methods. In this roll it is important to roll the shoulder over so that it does not hit the ground, and to have the same foot and same shoulder forward, i.e. your right foot and right shoulder. Tuck the chin, avoid supporting your weight with your wrist, keep the body in a ball, and continue your rolling momentum till your are standing up again.
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A pool of fresh water is special. It's special as it’s a bit like our consciousness. If you try hard you may be able to see really little waves or ripples in the water. They’re really slight. The surface of the water is like the surface of your consciousness. The part that you're cognizant of.