Yoga and Rheumatoid Arthritis
Yoga For Special Populations
What is yoga good for? While yoga is good for many conditions and life challenges one particular condition that benefits from a regular daily yoga practice is Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA).
Rheumatoid Arthritis | Medicine Net, 2014
- Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disorder that causes chronic
- The cause is unknown and it can affect people of any age, but is more common in
adults 40-60 years old
- People suffering from RA go through periods of inflammation and periods of remission
- Inflammation with RA affects the joints by swelling, redness, stiffness and pain, but can also occur in tendons, ligaments and muscles.
Yoga and Rheumatoid Arthritis | (Robinson, 2013)
- Creates strong muscles to support joints and improve mobility
- Reduces stresses and improve mood which is especially important for people experiencing chronic pain
- RA is linked with diabetes and heart disease and yoga benefits the healing of both of those diseases
Safety (Robinson, 2013)
- Speak to rheumatologist about any exercises to avoid
- Promote listening to your body
- Gentle is best, typically recommended to avoid Ashtanga or power flow classes
- Make modifications, shorten practice, or practice another day when there is a flare-up
- Remember the importance of pranayama and stress relieving techniques for this population
Instructors (Robinson, 2013)
- Study the condition before taking on clients with this condition and make careful observations when working with RA clients to ensure that the asanas, pranayamas, mudras and bandhas that you are recommending are right for each individual.
- Ask questions regularly for clear open communication.
- Encourage clients to ask questions and communicate all felt senses that arise.
- Limit movement during period of inflammation to a range of motion that is comfortable for clients.
While researching the benefits of yoga for arthritis one supplement that came up repeatedly is Tumeric Curcumin. I found a great article that explains the benefits of this terrific plant. A great natural way to reduce inflammation, relieve pain and even lose weight to reduce the stress on joints, ligaments, tendons and muscles. (Cognitune)
- Robinson, K, M. (2013). Why yoga can be good for rheumatoid. WebMD. Reviewed by: Brunilda Nazario, MD.Retrieved from http://www.webmd.com/rheumatoidarthritis/features/yoga-good-rheumatoid-arthritis
- Medicine Net. (2014). Rheumatoid arthritis pictures slideshow: Joint-friendly exercises & fitness routines. Retrieved from http://www.medicinenet.com/rheumatoid_arthritis_exercises_slideshow/article.htm
- Iyengar, B., K., S. (2001) Light on yoga. Thorson. London, England.
- Yoga Wiz. (2014). Yoga for healing rheumatoid arthritis. Retrieved from http://www.yogawiz.com/healing-yoga/yoga-for-healing-rheumatoid-arthritis.html#continued