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Yoga for Cervical Spondylosis
Neck pain is an extremely common malady in adults and seniors. When the discs between the cervical vertebrae in the neck degenerate with age and wear, the vertebrae can become misshapen and grinding, and the muscles surrounding the vertebrae of the neck can become inflamed and painful in response. Age can cause this, as can improper posture and a lack of exercise. There is stiffness, pain, numbness, and a decrease in circulation to the area. As common as this condition is, there are many options available for treating and managing cervical spondylosis. One of the most successful and least-taxing methods of managing this condition is through the use of regular yoga routines discussed with a trusted physician.
Increasing flexibility in the neck, shoulders, and upper back is extremely important when using yoga to manage cervical spondylosis. One of the most notable signs of this condition is an incredibly stiff neck that cannot be extended fully. Relaxing the trapezius muscles of the back can lead to an increased ability to extend the neck upwards, decreasing the tension associated with keeping the neck in one position for a long period of time. Lengthening the trapezius muscles with poses such as back bends and halasana lead to decreased tension and pain around the cervical spine by increasing the space between the vertebrae.
Adjusting the sleeping position to relieve pain associated with cervical spondylosis can be achieved through regular practice of yoga. Achieving a sense of balance through yoga leads to better posture and less muscle tension, which makes relaxation during the sleeping hours easier and more comfortable. Keeping the cervical spine straight during the night is important, and it can be achieved through using a firm, low pillow; thick, fluffy pillows hold the neck at an awkward angle that can lead to pain and stiffness during the day.
Poses that can be the most beneficial to patients with cervical spondylosis are those that focus on the neck and shoulders, as well as the upper back. The cobra pose, locust pose, and shoulder stand pose are three poses that specifically target the cervical spine to relieve tension and pain there. Neck and shoulder rolls can be helpful in expanding flexibility in those regions. Arm lifts and chest-expanding poses can also be used to ease the pain of this condition by widening the flexibility of the upper body, which leads to less muscle inflammation and pain.
Yoga for Thoracic Scoliosis
The thoracic portion of the spine is the length of vertebrae most closely associated with the rib cage, extending from the cervical vertebrae of the neck to the lumbar vertebrae of the lower back. When this thoracic portion of the spine is curved or bent, it is referred to as thoracic scoliosis. Thoracic scoliosis can be more detrimental than other forms of scoliosis, as it can cause respiratory issues in chronic cases. The causes for thoracic scoliosis can vary widely, and can include congenital, hereditary, and pathogenic disease processes. Treatment includes a variety of options, including physical therapy in early stages and surgery in more extreme cases, but yoga can be extremely beneficial in easing the pain associated with a curved spine.
Yoga focuses on proper alignment of the body and achieving a level of balance, and this can assist in straightening the spine with regular, dedicated practice. The release of tension in the muscles around the thoracic spine relaxes them, leading to increased flexibility and decreased muscle fasciculations, which can lead to less pain in the upper back. By relieving the tension of the muscles, the nerves surrounding the thoracic spine also experience less compression, and the pain associated with pinched nerves will decrease noticeably.
Using yoga to treat thoracic scoliosis is a whole-body experience. Focusing only on the spine will not achieve the pain release that sufferers of thoracic scoliosis are looking for. Areas of importance to focus on include the thoracic spine, naturally, as well as the supporting muscles of the back, neck, shoulders, legs, hips, and chest. Holding poses for extended lengths of time and focusing on steady, even breathing will lead to better spine health and decreased pain associated with scoliosis of the thoracic spine.
Poses that should be avoided are those that bend the spine backwards, such as the cobra, scorpion, or half moon poses. These can irritate the curvature of the spine and lead to an increase in experiencing pain. Poses that force the spine to twist against its natural formation, such as the commonly used spinal twist, should be avoided, because they can exacerbate the issues caused by the curve of the spine and can lead to larger and more dramatic curves of the spine. Spine-strengthening poses are desired and ideal, but those that twist the spine should be avoided at all costs, as they can lead to increased pain and problems with functioning.
About Yoga for Thoracic Outlet Syndrome
Those who suffer from thoracic outlet syndrome often find that relief from the pain that this condition is seemingly impossible. This syndrome occurs when there is pressure on the superior thoracic outlet that causes compression of the nerve bundles and blood vessels that pass through the chest and arms, causing intense pain and decreased blood flow. The causes of thoracic outlet syndrome vary, though the most common ways for it to occur is as a result of trauma from a motor vehicle accident or repeated strain injuries, usually related to the position most often held in the workplace.
The pain associated with thoracic outlet syndrome is generally sharp and burning, often with a pinching sensation on the nerves. It is a persistent pain, present at all or most times. Pain is found in the hands or arms, and it may be only a part of the hand or arm as opposed to the entire limb. There may be temperature-loss sensations in the hands or arms, tingling, or discoloration, and these signs may be unilateral or asymmetrical. Weakness in the muscles is very common with this condition. The chest, neck, shoulders, and upper back are also commonly affected areas when this condition is present.
Yoga helps to improve the flexibility of muscles, and simple stretches of the neck and shoulders can begin this process when the pain is great. Shoulder and neck rolls, as well as simple arm stretches, will assist in bringing flexibility back to the region affected by thoracic outlet syndrome. Poses that require upward extension of the arms for a prolonged period of time may cause more pain in those who feel the pain of this syndrome in their arms specifically, and as with any medical condition, the consultation of a physician is important before beginning a yoga routine designed to ease the pain of this syndrome to prevent the worsening of the condition and pain.
Manipulating the muscles around the thoracic outlet through the use of yoga routines can ultimately relieve the compression on the thoracic outlet. The ease of pressure improves blood flow, which is more oxygenated when yoga is practiced and overall circulation in the body is improved. The release of this compression on the nerves leads to less intense pain and the eventual diminishing of pain entirely. Spine-twisting poses and thoracic-bending poses can assist in relieving tension of the muscles here, as do neck-bending poses.
August 13, 2014
Is Yoga helpful for curing spinal compression? The spinal cord is a vital organ of our body and plays a key part in mental and physical wellness of a human being because it is a fact that spinal health is related to vertebral compression. According to medical experts a healthy vertebral column is erect, flexible and supports in keeping right posture of body while standing, walking and sitting. It is a main component of our central nervous system that regulates major functions of body.
Backbone problems are commonly found among people of all age group especially in older people due to aging process. Spinal cord is a bony frame work that goes across through our back bone and comprises of vertebrae, nervous system, tissues, muscles, tendons and ligaments. The main cause of problem in our vertebral column is due to compression, spinal compression is distinguished as extra strain on the disks that provide cushioning between vertebrae of spine. The common symptoms of vertebral compression include back pain, stiffness and nerves issues responsible for emotional and cognitive procedures.
Yoga therapy for healing of spinal compression:
It is proven that practicing several exercises of yoga regularly is helpful for attaining good, flexible and stable vertebral column postures and alignment. These techniques are also favorable in releasing nerve compression and strengthening muscles of spine. The earlier practitioners of yoga gave keen interest for the development, strengthening, flexibility and protection of spinal cord. They designed some specific asanas or poses to carry out comfortable movements of spine, to maintain inter vertebral spaces, blood circulation and supply of nutrients to vertebrae that increase muscular strength also helpful in protecting and keeping vertebral column healthy.
Bikram or hot yoga techniques are very much popular in recent times; this form of exercises especially focuses on increasing strength and flexibility of spinal cord also helpful in treating the problem of compression. Practicing poses like dancer pose, back bends, camel and bow pose are beneficial for increasing the space between disks and nerves by decompressing front vertebrae. It is also suggested by expert yogis that back bending technique is good for spinal cord because as we bend backward we compress the posterior part of backbone by pushing disks away from nerves. To alleviate spinal compression some postures in yoga are highly favorable like upward stretch, forward bend, side ward bend and twist. These asanas are very much common but some other poses or techniques for treating vertebral compression are describe as, Cat pose or stretch: This pose is really helpful in relaxing spinal cord and back muscles. The posture is performed by sitting on knees and elbows with head bowing in downward direction. After that lower down the back and hold the pose for 20 to 15 seconds.
Back arch: This posture is necessary for enhancing strength and lengthening of lower back muscles and vertebral column. The pose is attempted by lying on the back, breathe heavily then curve your back and lift up hips, hold the position for at least 20 seconds. The back arch pose should be performed regularly for having better outcomes.
Child pose: This is the simple and hassle free posture in which you have to stretch the backbone by elongating your lower body and bending head in downward direction. The position should be hold for 15 to 20 seconds. The posture is beneficial in reducing compression from vertebrae.
Cobra pose: The pose is helpful in lengthening and strengthening of backbone also provide ease and comfort from spinal pain. The cobra pose should perform daily for about 20 seconds.
Bridge pose: This posture is recommended as the essential pose for curing the vertebral problems as it elongates and strengthens the lower back muscles of body by stretching technique and grant useful effects when perform daily.
September 20, 2014
April 27, 2015
April 27, 2015
I totally agree Sandy. Yoga is used as an adjunct therapy to other medical management cause it is scientifically proven to help patients heal in a faster rate than those who has the same medical management but does not practice yoga. It is a common thinking of all non practitioners about yoga. we must not confuse it as a magic elixir of some kind but rather a way of life that can be better than the sedentary lifestyle of today's generation
April 27, 2015
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