The Best Yoga Poses for Chronic Pain

Yoga's roots are ancient, reaching back thousands of years. Today, people around the globe use yoga to relax, get in shape, or help relieve symptoms of chronic pain. Studies show that yoga can effectively relieve pain associated with chronic conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia, without the need for medications or more invasive forms of treatment.

You can do yoga from the comfort of your own home. Whether you practice yoga for an hour, 20 minutes, or just five minutes, a little stretching can reduce your pain, inflammation, and proneness to flare-ups. Yoga can also help calm your mind and soothe your emotions. When you relax, you can start to heal from chronic pain.

At RehabOne Medical Group, with locations in Los Gatos, San Jose, Gilroy, and Salinas, California, our care team recommends yoga to patients who want to achieve and maintain overall health and wellness. If you want to relieve pain symptoms, relax, or restore your energy levels, yoga may be just the thing to help you.

Just breathe

Practicing yoga starts with your breath, and many of the medical benefits of yoga relate to deep breathing as well. If you're in pain, it may help to start by just focusing on your breathing. Slowing your breathing can let your entire nervous system take a break and rest.

To get started, position yourself is a comfortable, neutral posture, either seated or lying down on your back with your hands at your sides. Close your eyes and breath slowly and evenly for at least 3-5 minutes. Focus your attention on the ebb and flow of your breathing.

Yoga poses to try

Depending on the location of your pain symptoms, different yoga postures may aid in stretching or relaxing troublesome parts of your body. The RehabOne Medical Group team can help you put together a list of potentially helpful postures. Here are some poses you may benefit from:

Butterfly pose

To get into this pose, seat yourself on a level surface and place the soles of your feet together. This posture stretches your knees and hips.

Bridge pose

Begin by lying on your back with your knees bent. Use your core muscles to raise your lower back into an arch, leaving your shoulders resting on the ground. If you need to, you can use low back support in this posture, which stretches your chest and quad muscles.

Standing side stretch

Stand with your arms raised above your head, palms together. Gently extend your arms in one direction, and your hips in the other. When you’re done with this pose, spend the same amount of time stretching in the other direction. This pose stretches the muscles in your arms and core and helps with balance.

Legs-up-the-wall pose

Lie flat with your bottom flush against a wall. Then raise your feet up to form an “L” shape, and rest there for as long as is comfortable. This posture elevates your feet to gently soothe pain in your lower back. 

To learn more about how a consistent yoga practice could help with your chronic pain, contact RehabOne Medical Group. Our experienced and compassionate staff can help treat a variety of chronic pain issues. To learn more, book an appointment over the phone today.

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