Getting to know your curve

A spine assessment helps you understand how your spine is reacting to your specific curvature. You cannot "see" your back at all times, so it is possible you are clueless as to how the muscles and bones of the spine are adjusting themselves to your curves. In order to empower yourself, you will need to understand your curvature so you will know how to work with your curves in class. This will be mapped on a chart and photographed for you to visualize your spine.


How a Spine Assessment Works

Adams Forward Bend Test

Adams Forward Bend Test

The assessment starts by discussing the history of your scoliosis and any surgeries, injuries or illnesses you may have. I will photograph your body while standing and using the Adams Forward Bend Test, in four views. I will palpate the bones of your spine in the forward bend test to fine the direction and location of the curve(s). From that, I draw a chart of your curve(s) from the back view with notations of rotations, compensating curves, level of hips and shoulders and head.

Finding Your Scoliosis Curve

There are four general classifications for the most common scoliosis curves: Thoracic, Lumbar, Thoraco/Lumbar and Double Major curves. Not all students come to me knowing this pattern or their degree of curvature. I will assign a classification to your curvature. If you have copies of your x-rays and any reports from your doctor, you can bring those for us to study together to confirm what I am seeing in your body. You will receive copies of all these documents to study so you know how to work with your specific curvatures in my classes and privates.

In the assessment, I will be able to discern your ability to take a class, or whether you will need to begin with private classes first. If you are in a great amount of pain, if it is difficult to work on the floor, or if you have a specific injury, I will recommend starting with private sessions to get you ready for a group class. Trying to work with these conditions in a group class may aggravate your situation.

What to Wear During Your Spine Assessment

Do not wear baggy clothes, which hide the shape of your body. Form fitting leggings, capris or shorts, form fitting t-shirts, or yoga tops are best. Do not wear a black or dark colored top as the spine and curves disappear in the photos. Light colors and solid colors are best. 

Assessments can be scheduled at my private studio at Garden of Yoga, 140 N. LaGrange Road, suite 17, LaGrange, IL, 60525. Also at Yoga Circle, 401 W. Ontario, Suite 207, Chicago, IL 60654. LaGrange privates are available Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays during the day with occasional Tuesday and Thursday evenings. Chicago privates scheduled on Wednesday mornings and Saturday afternoons. Contact Nancy to schedule your session. Privates cost $120 for an hour session (check or charge). Prices are subject to change. Please give 48 hours notice for all cancellations, or a fee of $50 will be charged. Payment of fee is due before rescheduling. Email me to schedule an appointment.  

Cost for assessments and private classes are $120 for an hour session (check or charge). Prices are subject to change.

Nancy, thank you so much for helping with my scoliosis. My doctor wanted to do surgery on my curves and I looked elsewhere! I found you and you have taught me so much through the path of yoga. I am now pain free most days, I sit, stand and work with better posture. Your voice is always in my mind reminding me to counter-pose my curves always! I look taller, feel taller and I am taller! Thank you!
— S.H.