July 13, 2024

F1000 Scientist

Health to Life

Managing Back Pain With Yoga

3 min read

Back pain is a very common occurrence for a number of people today and even with the help of pain blockers and relievers, it proves to be bothersome. Most back problems are related to weak back muscles and absence of flexibility from the body, which causes even the smallest amount if pressure or strain on the back to cause pain in the area. In order to lead a healthy and pain free life, people suffering from either acute or mild back pain should learn to manage it with the help of yoga. Currently there are many forms of yoga practice that are easily available in all Western countries, so it is quite simple to change your lifestyle to incorporate yoga into it for a healthier life.

Yoga is not just for meditation purposes; in fact the western cultures perceive it as a form of exercise used to the strengthening of muscles and improving the overall flexibility of the body. All forms practiced in the USA and Europe are more oriented towards movement rather than meditation. Hot yoga, Iyengar, Anusara, Ashtanga are all great examples of yoga forms that promote physical fitness as well as mental wellbeing. Most of the basic postures in all these types of yoga are the same, with few specialized changes in each.

Apart from injury invoked back pain, the most frequent causes of back related problems include bad posture, utilization of incorrect bending and lifting techniques, excessive weight gain, weak back muscles and stress which causes the neck and shoulders to spasm resulting in pain shooting throughout the back. As yoga practice helps to overcome all of these problems, it in turn is very effective in reducing pain associated by these factors. When a proper yoga exercise routine is followed, it gradually aids in achieving a good posture, strengthens the muscles, assists weight loss and relives stress.

It is important to know that not all postures are beneficial for back pain patients. When suffering from severe pain, it is best to consult a doctor before beginning a new regime. For people who already follow a yoga system, they can substantially reduce and eventually eliminate back pain by incorporating the following asanas into your regular practice:

Corpse: As this pose relaxes the entire body it is beneficial in reducing stress and tension which causes back pain.

Cobra Pose: This is an important pose used for stretching and strengthening the entire length of the spine. It is very useful in developing back muscles and reducing pain.

Cat Pose: This posture helps improve blood flow trough the spine, which could be a cause of the pain. Once the blood flow increases, it will reduce the pain in turn.

Wind Releasing Pose: This loosens the lower back muscles and hamstrings, which when taught can put a strain on the lower back specifically.

Fish Pose: Strengthens the back and improves posture which is improves back problems.

Forward Bend: This posture is helpful in relieving stress from the back and reduces back pain as well.

These are just a few poses that are beneficial for improving the back, but like all forms of exercise, caution should be used while practicing them and the body should not be pushed beyond its limits, in order to reap the maximum benefit of yoga for managing the back pain.

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