Can You Break A Rib Doing Yoga? Is Yoga Bad For You?

Do you practice yoga every day? Learn how intense yoga sessions can affect your body. We will also answer the question: “can you break a rib doing yoga.”

Are you thinking about trying yoga? Don’t hesitate as it is a great way to stay fit and healthy. But you might have some concerns about hurting yourself while doing yoga. If you are worried about severe injuries like rib fractures, read on. 

Break a Rib While Doing Yoga
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Can You Break a Rib While Doing Yoga?

Yoga can be of different types. If you are just trying out a few postures and taking breaks in between, you should not feel any discomfort or soreness after the session. 

So when can you break a rib? Intense yoga sessions, especially for new or amateur practitioners, can lead to injuries. You are still very unlikely to break a rib, though. 

You might end up bruising your rib. At the time, you might feel that excess stretching is good for your body. But once you’ve had a chance to relax, you will feel the pain. 

How Will I Know If I Break A Rib?

The pain of a broken rib or a similar injury is very different from bruising. 

It is very sharp and usually focused in a specific area. Every time you try a posture or twist your body, you will feel the pain. When you start to feel the pain, you should stop your practice and immediately consult a doctor. 

Here are a few symptoms of a broken rib. 

Can You Break A Rib Doing Yoga
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Hearing a Pop Sound

If you break a rib while exercising, then you might hear a pop sound. It is the sound of the crack. This sound occurs when there is excessive strain, and it is very distinct at the time of injury. Consult your trainer and then visit the doctor to avoid any more pain. 

Sudden Chest Pain

Chest pain when you are breathing in is an indication of broken ribs. Sometimes your ribs sustain injuries, but you don’t realize that at the time of exercise. If you think you’ve injured your ribs, you can take deep breaths to check. There will be acute pain when you breathe in. If you are having sudden chest pains while exercising, stop immediately.  

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Tenderness Around the Ribs

In case of severe injuries, the area around your ribs will feel tender. There might even be swelling. Gently touch your ribs to check if the site is swollen. Avoid stretching with injured ribs. Take a break from exercising, consult your doctor and allow your ribs to heal before doing yoga again. 

Heavy Bruising 

If you have broken your ribs, you might notice bruises in that area. If you have visible bruising, you need to treat the site and check for broken ribs immediately. You will also experience severe pain. 

Can You Break A Rib Doing Yoga
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How Can I Avoid Breaking My Rib During Yoga?

Broken ribs during yoga occur due to overstretching or trying out postures incorrectly. If you are doing yoga for the first time, give yourself some time to adjust to the various asanas. Your body needs to become flexible before it can try advanced yoga routines. 

Ribs can also break if you try using new yoga accessories before your body is ready. For instance, you might lose your balance if your trying to perform an asana on a yoga wheel and fall or twist the upper part of your body. In the beginning, try out a few simple exercise routines and yoga postures. 

Soon you will feel confident and comfortable to try more intense sessions. To avoid injuries, work with a yoga instructor who can guide you at each step. 

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Should You Do Yoga With a Broken Rib?

You will feel extreme pain due to broken ribs. You might even face difficulty in breathing. So it is crucial to completely recover before trying any form of yoga, basic or advanced.

If you continue with your practice, it could worsen your fractures leading to several complications, including punctured lungs. 

Even after recovery, before you start doing yoga again, consult your doctor. If your doctor agrees, then you can go ahead and try basic postures. Make sure that your practice is not too intense, and don’t push yourself while working out. 

Can You Break A Rib Doing Yoga
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Yoga Exercises For Recovering From A Broken Rib

Deep Breathing

Yoga with deep breathing exercises can help in faster recovery. It would help if you tried breathing in deeply and then exhaling. Try these deep breaths every 2 hours for about a couple of days after the fracture. This would help in avoiding the risk of a lung collapsing. 

It would be more effective if you did this at least 2 or 3 times a day. After completing a round of breathing exercises, cough slightly and then start again. If you feel acute pain while inhaling, you can keep a comfortable pillow or roll a towel and hold it to your chest. 

Cardiovascular Exercises

Cardiovascular exercises may seem too difficult when you try them for the first time after breaking a rib. Cardio yoga can keep your heart healthy but also increase the rate of breathing. After a rib fracture, this may cause pain. 

You should start with simple walking. This would help gently pick up the breathing rate and is not too intense. Remember to keep it light in the beginning and not overdo it.

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It would be best if you were very careful while stretching. Several yoga postures like the Surya Namaskara or Uttanasana can become too painful. Surya Namaskara stretches the entire body, while Uttanasana requires you to bend from the waist and touch the floor. 

Such a pose might put a lot of pressure on your ribs. Instead, you can stretch your arms and legs. Your muscles will benefit from these stretching exercises and lose stiffness. Do remember to tell your instructor that you have a broken rib.

Can You Break A Rib Doing Yoga
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Can You Break a Rib by Stretching?

Overstretching can cause rib pain, but it is unlikely to lead to fractures. But if you put a lot of pressure on your ribs or lose balance, you might break a rib. Yoga stretches that involve you lying face down or pressing your ribcage to your thighs can cause pain. 

When you try yoga poses that require you to bend over or stretch your body while lying face down, you might shift your entire weight. It will increase the pressure on your ribcage, causing a fracture. Such injuries usually happen when you are out of practice or are trying more advanced postures than your body allows. 

If you are doing yoga after a long time, start slowly. Since your body is not used to intense exercise, doing advanced yoga can cause you to overstretch and bruise or even break your ribs. 

Stretching could cause a rib fracture if there were already some injuries. You might have bruised your ribs from some activity beforehand, and doing yoga might increase the damage. If you feel any pain in your ribs before starting the session, talk to the trainer and seek your doctor’s advice. 

Can You Break A Rib Doing Yoga
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How Easily Can You Break A Rib?

Ribs don’t break easily. They may be bruised, but only severe pressure can cause a fracture. If you take precautions and only do the exercises that your body can handle, you won’t be at any risk of breaking a rib. 

But certain bone conditions cause people to experience fractures frequently. If you have osteoporosis, the bone density decreases. Your bones will become vulnerable and can break easily. Ribs with cancerous lesions are also very brittle. 

Apart from these medical conditions, ribs can break easily for those who play contact sports. If you box or play football, constant blows to your chest and back can cause rib fractures. 

Can You Break A Rib Doing Yoga
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You Will Never Break A Rib Doing Yoga If You Do It Right.

Now, this brings us to the end of this article. If you do yoga carefully, by following all the instructions, the chances of you hurting yourself are very low. You also need to be aware of the limits of your body. While, its good to challenge yourself, ensure that you aren’t overdoing it.

Keeping in mind these basics, you will be able to avoid any form of injuries, be it a twisted ankle or a rib fracture.

Let me know your yoga experiences in the comments below, and don’t forget to share this with others. 

Enjoy your yoga experience!