Yoga is a physical, mental and spiritual discipline which was first practiced in ancient India. There are various schools or types of yoga with different goals. Certain aspects of yoga in the form of low-impact physical exercise, meditation and other instructions have been shown to have numerous physical and mental benefits. These methods have been organized into a therapeutic system and are usually taught by a trained expert. Yoga can help improve spine health in many ways by relieving pain, improving posture and preventing injury by keeping your spine strong and flexible. A well-designed yoga program has helped many with chronic back pain.
Yoga exercises to improve spine health basically involve holding various postures or poses for a specified amount of time while controlling your breathing and practicing meditation. This may be enhanced by mental imagery, music, aroma therapy and heat. The postures usually involve stretching and can help relieve tight muscles and areas under compression.
Your yoga therapist will consider your physical condition and limitations before designing a program that is ideal for you. Certain postures are difficult for beginners and can be adapted or gradually introduced. Wedges and supports along with pose alteration may be recommended to accommodate any physical limitations.
Yoga can benefit those suffering from various conditions such as low back pain, sciatica and joint degeneration, as well as those recovering from orthopedic injuries or surgery. It promotes relaxation, pain relief and healing and improves balance, movement and stamina. Yoga can help relieve stress and other ill effects of a sedentary lifestyle. Those with chronic pain who practice yoga often have reduced need for pain medication. Scientists have also discovered that yoga alters brain tissue improving the ability to tolerate pain.