Yoga eases backache – GHRI study certifies


Yoga is a physical, mental, and spiritual discipline, originated in ancient India. The goals of yoga are varied and range from improving health to achieving moksha, which is liberation from all worldly suffering and the cycle of birth and death. A US study showed that yoga ease out moderate lower back pain.

Benefits of Yoga
Not only does yoga affect the physical aspect of the body, it addresses the mind and spirit as well. Daily exercises are a great way to help relieve the stress of the day and can bring a sense of well-being to life. Here are some of the benefits of yoga:

Stress relief, Pain relief, Better breathing, Flexibility of body, Increased strength level, Body weight management, Improved blood circulation, Cardiovascular conditioning, Improved concentration skills and most important – Inner Peace

Many important personalities, executives and busy professionals, all over the world practice yoga in one form or the other. Some of the glaring examples are from Hollywood as below:

  • Eva Longoria Incorporates Yoga into Her Fitness Routine
  • Naomi Watts Uses Yoga To Help Get Rid of Baby Weight
  • Jessica Biel Stays Fit With Her Yoga Routine
  • Jennifer Lopez Practices Yoga For Fitness
  • Sarah Jessica Parker Uses Yoga to Balance a Crazy Lifestyle, and
  • Brad Pitt practices yoga to maintain a balance of the crazy and serene.

Studies on yoga certifies that it does ease chronic back pain
Karen J. Sherman, senior investigator at Group Health Research Institute (GHRI) and his team conducted one of the largest US studies on yoga, certifies that it does ease chronic back pain and other associated symptoms.

The researchers selected 228 adults in six cities who were randomly assigned to 12 weekly 75-minute classes of either yoga or stretching exercises or a comprehensive self-care book. Back-related function was better...

and symptoms diminished with yoga at 12 weeks with benefits, including less use of painkillers. It lasted at least six months for both yoga and stretching, with a thorough follow-up.

Participants in the trial typically had moderate, not severe, back pain and relatively good mental health. Interviewers, who didn’t know the patients’ treatment assignments,  assessed their back-related function and pain symptoms at six weeks, 12 weeks and six months.

The type of yoga used in the trial was Viniyoga which adapts the principles of yoga for each individual’s physical condition, with modifications for people with physical limitations. The yoga classes also used breathing exercises, with deep relaxation at the end.

Sherman concluded, “Our results suggest that both yoga and stretching can be good, safe options for people who are willing to try physical activity to relieve their moderate low back pain.”

Yoga is beneficial for many health ailments and to prove out one of those benefits like lower back pain in actual study is quite compelling.  Well if you are willing to take up some regular exercise, you can start thinking about yoga for mental and physical health benefits.


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