Yoga beneficial for osteo-arthritis and other joints problems, opine experts

The world celebrated International Yoga Day (IYD) yesterday. Yoga, no doubt, has immense benefits. Not only can keep your body sound and active, it will also help relieve people suffering from arthritis.

The osteo-arthritis experts say the multifactorial approach of yoga therapy includes physical postures (asanas), breathing practices (pranayama), meditation (dhyana), spiritual and emotional culture, which helps ameliorate osteoarthritis symptoms.

In his research paper “Lifestyle Modification for the Management of Knee OsteoArthritis,” author Dr. Vivek Kumar Shrivastava said that yoga therapy intervention might increase cartilage proteoglycan content and prevent cartilage degeneration.

As per himn, it is helpful for the strengthening of particular muscles (i.e., quadriceps and hamstrings) that normally contract to stabilize the knee joint pain.

Dr. Raju Vaishya, the editor of the book “Knee osteoarthritis-clinical update”, said that yoga has gained immense popularity nationally and internationally as a tool for health promotion, especially after the UN declared June 21 as international Yoga Day.

“However, modern-day medicine demands evidence of benefit for interventions for its wider acceptance, especially amongst the medical research community. This chapter is a step in that direction. I hope that this study spurs several such large rigorously performed trials in other diseases where Yoga can be potentially beneficial.”

Ex-president of Indian Cartilage Society, Prof. (Dr.) Vaishya told this book contains scientific literature on various aspects of osteoarthritis (OA) of the knee, along with citations of many illustrative and exciting cases.

This book will be released during the annual conference of British Indian Orthopaedic Society at Leicester, the UK on 28th of this month, by Professor AA Shetty (a world-renowned Orthopaedic surgeon).

As says Dr. Shrivastava, yoga practice may prevent synovial fluid volume deterioration by stretching and strengthening different parts of the body, massaging and bringing fresh blood to the internal organs while rejuvenating the nervous system and lubricating the joints, muscles and ligaments.

It is purported to have deferent effects on the nervous and circulating systems, coordination and concentration and calming effect on the body.

It also suggests that yoga helps in reducing several psychological factors such as stress, anxiety, depression, mood disturbances and enhance self-esteem and quality of life in individuals with chronic pain and arthritic conditions

The experts, however, warned against wrong yoga practice, as it may cause muscle strain, torn ligaments or more severe spine injuries.

“Practicing yoga daily can help build bone mass and prevent many musculoskeletal problems, including arthritis, osteoporosis. However, serious muscle damage and related injuries can result if they do not take the proper precautions, especially for people with pre-existing musculoskeletal ailments or conditions,” said Dr. Vaishya.

Regular practice of yoga makes bones stronger and healthier. It improves physical posture and helps in keeping the spinal cord healthy. Yoga helps relieve back pain and makes muscles flexible. Yoga helps improve blood circulation in the bones and helps maintain the Calcium Homeostasis, thus preventing Osteoporosis.

Derived from Sanskrit, the word ‘YOGA’ means to join or to unite, symbolizing the union of body and consciousness. While it originated in ancient India, yoga is today widely practiced in various forms around the world and continues to grow in popularity. In 2014, The United Nations recognized the universal appeal of Yoga and declared 21 June as the International Yoga Day.

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