Are you interested in a safe, effective and relaxing form of exercise that can improve your joint health? Yoga may be the answer. There is a growing body of research to suggest that yoga is very beneficial for physical and mental health. It has also been shown to improve joint health specifically.
In this post, our Ealing chiropractor at The Spine & Joint Centre is going to explain what yoga is all about, before sharing some of the benefits that regular yoga practice provides.
What is Yoga?
Yoga is an ancient practice first developed in India several thousand years ago. It uses a holistic approach that involves physical, spiritual and mental elements. Yoga practitioners will use a combination of meditation, exercise, breathing techniques, and mantras in order to improve their health, develop a sense of inner peace and achieve spiritual enlightenment.
The individual physical movements of yoga are called postures or asanas. They can be performed individually or as a part of an extended routine, like the Sun Salutation (Suryanamaskar), which includes 12 asanas.
The simplest asanas can be performed by anyone. Positions like child’s pose simply involving resting on the ground in a relaxed position. However, yoga asanas gradually become more challenging and will test the balance, strength and flexibility of even the fittest person.
There are several types of yoga practice. The most common is Hatha Yoga, which has a fairly equal focus on breathing, meditation, and physical postures. Other yoga types have a stronger focus on meditation and spiritualism, breathing, or the physical act of yoga.
Yoga is a mindful practice, where participants focus their mind on their breathing and the movements of their body. This has a calming effect on the mind, relieving stress and providing many of the benefits that mindfulness is known for.
What Are The Benefits Of Yoga For Joint Health?
Improved joint flexibility
Yoga postures put the body’s joints through their full range of motion. This stretches and strengthens all of the components within the joints, eventually leading to greater joint flexibility.
People new to yoga quickly discover that they gain mobility in their joints and can perform day-to-day tasks like bending or reaching for objects far more easily. When combined with chiropractic treatment from one of our experienced chiropractors in Ealing, can lead to dramatic improvements in flexibility in a short amount of time.
Reduced Joint Pain
Many people visit our chiropractic clinic in Ealing with debilitating joint pain each year. In most cases, regular exercise can help to reduce the joint pain that the patient experiences as it improves the condition of the tendons, cartilage and ligaments within the joint.
Yoga is a particularly effective form of exercise for mitigating joint pain because it is low impact and low risk. It also strrengthens the muscles surrounding the joints, which can take pressure off the joint.
Additional Benefits of Yoga
After completing a yoga session, you will immediately notice a feeling of calmness and serenity. This is a result of the physical, mental and spiritual aspects of yoga practice.
Several studies have also found that yoga decreases the levels of cortisol in the body — the primary hormone associated with the stress response. This means that regular yoga practice can help you avoid the many negative physical and mental issues associated with stress.
Inflammation is the body’s natural response to disease or injury. However, if you often suffer from inflammation due to a chronic illness or lifestyle factors, it can severely damage your health.
Research has shown Yoga may reduce the amount of inflammation in the body by lowering inflammatory markers.
Yoga asanas often test a participants ability to balance. It is inevitable that you will begin to enjoy improved balance as you practice these poses regularly. This can reduce your risk of a fall and may improve your sporting performance.
Reduced chronic pain
Many people visit our chiropractors in Ealing to obtain help for a condition that is causing chronic pain. Studies have concluded that yoga can reduce pain and improve joint function in people with conditions like osteoarthritis.
Yoga strengthens important muscles in the neck and back which help you maintain good posture. After a few months of regular yoga practice, you will discover that you naturally stand taller and experience less pain.
It is advisable to seek advice from a suitably qualified health care professional before starting on a new form of exercise regime, especially if you suffer from a preexisting health condition.
Our experienced team chiropractors at The Spine & Joint Centre are here to help and advise you. To book an appointment with one of our team call us on 020 8900 9004.