Yoga for Arthritis – Guide for Effective Arthritis Pain relief

Yoga for Arthritis is a guide for those who want to feel the benefits of Yoga but are Unsure if it is an Appropriate Exercise. 

Arthritis is systemic muscle pain and inflammation. It affects the skeletal structure in the upper body and some lower body areas. 

Pain and inflammation are the symptoms that cause difficulty with daily activities, slowed movement, pain, and stiffness. 

According to a study, Yoga is found effective in easing osteoarthritis hands symptoms.[1]

Yoga for Arthritis can be a safe and effective form of physical activity, but as with any new activity, it is important to take proper precautions. 

Talk with your rheumatologist or orthopedist first and ask specifically if there should be any limitations or restrictions your doctor wants you to observe. 

What is arthritis?

Arthritis may be defined as the inflammation or degeneration (breakdown) of the joints. 

It can be in one or multiple joints. 

Arthritis is an umbrella term for more than 100 related conditions that cause inflammation of the joints. 

Additionally, all these conditions have different causes and treatment methods.

Some most common types of arthritis include:

Gout: is a condition causing hard crystals of uric acid to form in your joints.

Osteoarthritis: “wear and tear” arthritis, the most common form of arthritis, and is developed when joint cartilage breaks down from repeated stress.

Rheumatoid arthritis: Is a condition that causes the immune system to attack synovial membranes in your joints

Ankylosing spondylitis: Is the arthritis of the spine (usually your lower back).

Juvenile arthritis: Is the type of arthritis typically affects children of age 16 or younger and is a condition where the immune system attacks the tissue around joints. 

Psoriatic arthritis: This is a condition, joint inflammation develops in people with psoriasis(an autoimmune disorder that causes skin irritation). 

However, osteoarthritis (OA) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA) are the two most common of all.

Moreover, arthritis is the most common cause of disability in the U.S. About 50 million adults and 300,000 children manage some form of arthritis.

Symptoms of arthritis?

As all different types of arthritis have different symptoms. 

Moreover, it can be mild in some people and severe in others.

Joint pain, stiffness, tenderness, and swelling are the most common symptoms of arthritis. 

Additionally, decreased motion range and redness of the skin around the joint may also be experienced.

Many people with arthritis experience that their symptoms are worse in the morning.

In the case of Rheumatoid arthritis, you may also feel tired or experience a loss of appetite due to the inflammation the immune system’s activity causes. 

In some people RA can also lead to red blood cell count decreases or mild fever is also experienced. 

Additionally, severe cases of RA can cause joint deformity if left untreated.

Causes of arthritis?

All types of arthritis have different causes, for example:

Gout can be caused as a result of too much uric acid in your body.

Reduction in the usual amount of cartilage tissue causes some forms of arthritis.

Now, cartilage is a firm yet flexible connective tissue in the joints. And it is responsible for protecting the joints by absorbing the pressure and shock created when you move and put stress on them. 

In case of its normal wear and tear, Osteoarthritis is caused, one of the most common forms of arthritis. 

Infection/injury to the joints can exacerbate this natural breakdown of cartilage tissue. Note that you are at higher risk of developing OA if you have a family history of the disease.

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disorder, another commonly known arthritis occurs when your body’s immune system attacks the tissues of the body. 

Where synovium (soft tissue in your joints) produces a fluid that nitrifies the cartilage and lubricates the joints is attacked by your immune system.

Additionally, Rheumatoid arthritis may invade and destroy a joint and can eventually lead to the destruction of both bone and cartilage inside the joint.

However, the exact cause of the immune system’s attacks is unknown. 

But scientists suggest its genetic markers that may increase your risk of developing RA fivefold.

Also, See… Yoga poses for back pain

Arthritis diagnosed

Seeing your health care provider is a good first step if you’re unsure who to see for an arthritis diagnosis and It goes with a physical examination:

Assessing mobility and range of motion in your joints.

Checking for areas of tenderness or swelling around your joints.

Evaluating your overall health to determine if a different condition could be causing your symptoms.

Yoga for Arthritis

Before you dig into the poses of Yoga for Arthritis.

You would be curious to know, does yoga work for arthritis. 

Does yoga for arthritis work?

Yoga is a good option for people with arthritis and a wide range of other medical conditions. 

Because of its ability to strengthen muscles. This increases strength and stamina, improves sleep, and is healthy for the mind. 

Yoga for Arthritis improves the flexibility of joints and improves movement abilities. 

Yoga also creates an environment in which pain, stiffness, and depression are eliminated. 

Because the spine is always working, injuries are prevented as muscles are relaxed and strengthened when yoga has been practiced long enough.

It does not matter what kind of arthritis you’re suffering from, practicing yoga for arthritis can work wonders for you.

Also, See…Yoga poses for hormonal balance

6 Yoga poses for Arthritis

Here is the list of best Yoga for Arthritis

1. Vrikshasana or Tree pose

This yoga for Arthritis Strengthens the legs and back and also improves balance. 

However, this posture is not recommended for those with migraines.

Yoga instruction

  • Stand straight, take some breaths, your breath eases a bit.
  • Now, balance firmly on your left leg and lift your right leg and bend it at the knee.
  • Then, place your right foot against the inside of your left thigh and the right foot faces downward.
  • By Joining your palms in prayer mudra at your chest level, lift your arms over your head till your hands are stretched upward.
  • Hold the position for 60-90 seconds while breathing deeply. 
  • Lower your arms, straighten your right leg and stand erect again. 
  • Repeat the pose with your other leg also.

2. Virabhadrasana or Warrior pose

This yogasana strengthens the arms, legs, and lower back and is extremely beneficial for frozen shoulders.

Yoga instruction

  • Stand straight and take a deep breath and step your legs 4-5 feet apart.
  • Now, raise your arms upwards and join both palms right over your head.
  • Breathe out and turn the right foot outwards 90 degrees to the right; also turn the left foot slightly inwards 45-60 degrees to the right.
  • Make sure your right heel must be aligned with the arch of the left heel.
  • Now, Rotate your torso to the right keeping the arms straight.
  • Again, breath out and bend the right knee until the right thigh becomes parallel to the floor and keep the right shin perpendicular to the floor.
  • By now, your alignment will form a 90-degree angle between your right thigh and right shin.
  • Your bent knee must not extend beyond the ankle and must be aligned right over the heel.
  • Then the left leg must remain stretched out and tighten at the knee throughout the practice.
  • Now, move your face upward and look at the joined palms. 
  • Remain in this final position from 30-90 seconds and breathe normally.
  • To release the posture, reverse the movements in the same reverse manner.
  • Repeat the pose for the other leg and for the same duration.

3. Trikonasana or Triangle pose

This yoga for arthritis is also very effective for back pain and sciatica; it stretches and strengthens the spine, arms, and chest. 

It also improves your physical equilibrium.

Yoga instruction

  • Stand straight and keep your legs apart, this distance between your legs should be a little more than your shoulders width.
  • Now, Inhale as well as raise your right hand straight above your head and make sure your right arm should be parallel to the right ear. 
  • Breath out and bend your torso at the waist, to your left side.
  • Now, simultaneously, slide your left arm down along your left leg till your fingers are at your ankle.
  • By now, your right arm must be horizontal as your head is tilted left.
  • Hold the pose with your knees and elbows straight and be in this position for 30-90 seconds. 
  • Repeat the posture for the other side also.

4. Marjariasana or Cat pose

This Yogasan is a complete posture that brings flexibility and strength to the entire body including the spine, wrists, and shoulders. 

Additionally, it also improves blood circulation.

Yoga instruction

  • Start with a tabletop position make sure that your arms are exactly beneath your shoulder and your legs are exactly beneath your hips. 
  • Now, look ahead straight such that your spine goes a little down towards the floor.
  • Breath out, and press gently the middle of your spine backward towards the ceiling, and firmly press down with your hands. 
  • Now curl your head inwards and look at the distance between your knees note not to bend your hands.
  • While inhaling, come back to the table position and again curl your spine backward.
  • Repeat this motion 10-20 times.

5. Bridge pose or Setubandhasana 

This yoga for arthritis strengthens the back muscles, stretches the neck, chest, and spine, helps relieve back pain instantly, and is very good for treating symptoms of osteoporosis.

Yoga instruction

  • At first, Start with lying down on your back.
  • Now, bend or fold your knees and keep your feet and hip-distance apart on the floor.
  • This distance should be 10-12 inches from your pelvis, along with your knees and ankles in a straight line.
  • Now, keep your arms beside your body, and your palms should facing down.
  • Breathe in and slowly lift your lower back, middle back, and upper back off the floor.
  • Now, roll in the shoulders gently and touch the chest to the chin without bringing the chin down, supporting your weight with your shoulders, arms, and feet.
  • Make your bottom firm up in this pose and keep your thighs parallel to each other and to the floor.
  • At this point, you may interlace the fingers and push the hands on the floor to lift the torso a little more up, or you could support your back with your palms.
  • Keep your breathing normal and hold the pose for 30-90 seconds

Also, See… Yoga Poses to Improve your Digestion

6. Corpse pose or Shavasana

This yogasana brings complete relaxation to the body, repairs tissues and cells, and helps to release stress.

Additionally, this is ideal to get rid of Vata (air element) that aggravates joint pain and also creates an imbalance in the body.

Yoga instruction

  • Start by lying flat on your back, like your sleeping posture, legs should be different.
  • Now, keep your hands by your side, face your palms up and take a rest.
  • Close your eyes and breathe in and out deeply and slowly through the nose.
  • Now, start focusing from your head to your feet. By this, we mean you deliberately rest each part of the body.
  • With each breath, your body is completely resting and you are exhaling your stress, stress, depression, and anxiety.
  • Be in this pose for 3-6 minutes.

What lifestyle changes can help people with arthritis?

  • There is no cure for arthritis, but some treatments and lifestyle changes can help control symptoms and slow their progression.
  • Maintaining a healthy weight reduces your risk of developing OA and can reduce symptoms if you already have it.
  • Eating a healthy diet is important for weight management. 
  • And choosing a proper diet with lots of antioxidants, such as fresh fruits, vegetables, and herbs, can help reduce inflammation. 
  • You can also have fish and nuts as these are some inflammation-reducing foods.  
  • Some foods that you need to minimize or avoid if you have arthritis include fried foods, processed foods, dairy products, and high intakes of meat.
  • Additionally, research also suggests that gluten antibodies may be present in people with RA. So, a gluten-free diet may improve symptoms and disease progression.
  • Exercising regularly will keep your joints flexible and staying active is important, note avoids overexerting yourself.
  • Swimming is one of the best exercises for people with arthritis because it doesn’t put pressure on your joints the way running and walking do. 

Conclusion

Yoga for Arthritis is designed to provide flexibility and strength-building exercises that can be performed by people with arthritis. 

Moreover, people who do not have arthritis also find this practice beneficial.

This condition is caused by degeneration of the joints, which can lead to stiffness and pain. 

Using yoga for arthritis as the treatment option for arthritis is a very good option.

Always seek medical advice before starting any health-related practice.