By Jenny Park
When you are young, you might be lucky enough to live without joint pain. You might not understand why skeletal health is such a big part of a yoga teacher training course. Anyone who has suffered joint pain knows what an important role the joints play in overall body function and a healthy, happy lifestyle. When the joints are uncared for, the pain can make it unbearable to accomplish everyday tasks. Whether you currently suffer from joint pain in the form of things like arthritis and other rheumatic conditions, or you don’t suffer at all, yoga is great for prevention, reduction or elimination of pain.
A joint is the connection between two bones that allows the body to move freely in several manners. Our bodies are amazing structures that bend and twist in ways that over time we may not be appreciative of, until it is too late. That is why exercise is so important; we need to keep our bodies in a physical state that allows for a good quality of life.
Yoga has proven to be a key element in keeping ourselves fit, and functional. Not only does it increase flexibility, improve joint health, and keep us a healthy weight; it supports a healthy mental being as well. Yoga training is an exercise choice that is gentle on the joints, and increases the heart rate in order to reduce any possible swelling. It also builds muscle through poses being held for some time. Strong muscles support the joints and relieve extra pressure on them.
There are many asanas that target the joints of the body, and anything therapeutic will help reduce pain. Some of the more well known Yoga exercises for joints are listed below.
• Forward Fold – This simple pose does so much. It releases tension in the back, legs, arms, and neck. Gently nod and turn the head right to left in the pose, and stretch the arms behind the back with the fingers interlaced for an added benefit.
• Sun Salutation – This sequence of poses is perfect for an allover joint benefit. There’s a reason it is often used as the very first sequence of a routine. It is best for the lower back and calves, though it can be strain on ankles and wrists.
• Warrior Poses – Work the hips by opening and stretching them. Incorporate a triangle pose for a flow of postures, and work the back and arms as well.
Tips for Students
Just thirty minutes of a slow and gentle style of yoga such as restorative, 3-4 times a week will alleviate joint pain, or keep the joints in tip-top shape. It is a small commitment for a huge benefit! Any person who has joint pain should research potential yoga schools carefully to find an instructor with specific knowledge of therapeutic practices to reduce pain. Look for yoga therapy or restorative sessions taught by a certified yoga teacher or therapist.
© Copyright 2012 – Aura Wellness Center – Publications Division
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