Back pain is probably the most common medical problem, with which almost everyone met. In most cases, the cause of pain in the back and lower back is the pathology and deformation of the musculoskeletal system, which can be caused by various factors: hypodynamia, obesity, excessive stress on the spine, disturbance of sleep hygiene, sedentary or standing work, etc. Timely correction of these causes can reduce the effect of these factors on back pain.
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The most popular and effective treatment for such pain is physiotherapy and massage. Increasingly popular is the use for this purpose of yoga, which essentially accumulated in itself all the positive qualities of physiotherapy treatment. Various specialized asanas or poses, used in yoga, can relieve the spine, relieve pain and muscle spasm, adjust posture, etc. It is very important to use those postures or exercises that do not harm or worsen the clinical manifestations of the pathology of the musculoskeletal system. In the article, we selected the optimal set of yoga exercises with a minimum burden on the back, which can be most effective in treating back pain.
How is the back and why pain treatment can be tried with yoga?
Pain in the lower back or lower parts of the spine is one of the most frequent patient appeals to doctors. With problems in the back, at least once in life, everyone faces. Anatomically, the loin consists of a bone base represented by the spine, a ligament apparatus and muscles. The presence of intervertebral cartilaginous discs provides a kind of cushion between the two vertebrae. Ligaments are responsible for the stability and stability of the intervertebral joints, as well as the flexibility of the spine. Muscular tissues, which in the lumbar region abound, provide motor activity.
Fig.1 Anatomy of the back
Traumatic injury or acquired disease of any of the components of this single anatomical system can lead to back pain. Certainly, in some people, the risk of pathology of the musculo skeletal system can be significantly higher and depend on the lifestyle, the mode of work and rest, habits, posture, nutrition, etc. For example, in obese patients, due to excess weight, posture may be impaired, the muscles of the back and abdomen can be weakened, which ultimately leads to deformation (distortion) in the lumbar spine.
Fig.2 Influence of excess weight on the spine
Yoga, in fact, is a set of exercises, poses (asanas), respiratory gymnastics, mental settings and nutrition, which can favorably affect back pain. Since yoga uses weight of its own weight and energy of physiological movements, there is no risk of additional stress on the spine and surrounding tissues. On the contrary, a series of physical exercises and postures used in yoga, allows to relieve the lumbar spine, relax the strained muscles, create optimal conditions for a gradual decrease in the intensity of the pain syndrome. That is why yoga can be used as the first step of stopping pain in the back. However, it is important to remember that starting yoga exercises under such conditions is best accompanied by an experienced teacher.
What is usually associated with the appearance of back pain?
The causes of back pain can be more than 15, but the most common is the pathology of the musculoskeletal system, and most often this is a stretching of the ligamentous-muscular component. Pain can be both acute and chronic. Here it is necessary to warn our readers from active studies in the acute period. Yoga can be effective only with some stagnation of the pain syndrome, moreover, in an acute period, the incorrect and uncontrolled use of certain exercises can only do harm. Other causes of back pain include irritation and inflammation of the intercostal or lumbar nerves (radiculitis or radiculopathy), pinching of the nerve of the intervertebral hernia, affecting the surrounding tissues and the vertebrae directly of the bony outgrowths (spurs), various bone-joint pathologies (fibromyalgia, osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, spinal canal stenosis, ankylosing spondylitis and others). A certain problem with the spine can cause pregnancy, in which due to excessive body weight and relative immobility, it is possible to squeeze the spinal nerves and curvature of the spine.
Virtually any of these conditions for the relief of the pain syndrome requires the unloading and stretching of the spine, and the creation of optimal conditions.
How can you determine when yoga will be effective?
In addition to the above reasons, a number of conditions are known in which back pain arises from the innervation of the lumbar region or the anatomical proximity of adjacent organs to the spine. Such conditions include: kidney pathology ( urolithiasis , urinary tract infections , etc.), diseases of the uterus and ovaries, lung diseases, tumors, etc. A distinctive feature of the pains arising in these states is the lack of interrelation with the motor activity, that is, when they move, they are often not amplified or vice versa. When such pains appear, additional examination is necessary, identification of the underlying cause and, before its determination, the conduct of yoga is undesirable.
The best correction is usually amenable to the so-called muscle and joint pain in the back. A series of poses in yoga is used to relieve muscle spasm and spinal distension, accompanied by an increase in the intervertebral space. Such exercises are effective for the treatment of sciatica or the entrapment of the sciatic or other spinal cord nerve. They also help to strengthen the back muscles and prevent the re-emergence of pain. It is very important to realize that in the absence of the effect of yoga exercises and treatment, you must always seek help from a doctor.
How often can yoga be done with back pain?
Yoga is a universal treatment for pain in the spine. It does not require any additional adaptations and can be performed daily without restrictions. It is optimal to perform various poses or exercises for 20-30, a maximum of 1 hour. Usually this time is enough for a full-fledged spinal extension and prevent the recurrence of pain. It is very important that the classes have a regular regularity, because only methodical work on strengthening the spine will achieve the desired results. Correct and controlled execution of postures and exercises will help to correct posture, strengthen the muscles of the back and abdomen, correctly redistribute the load, increase the mobility of the joints of the spine, etc.
Which 10 poses or asanas can be used for back pain?
1.Extension and lengthening of the back
You should sit in the most comfortable and comfortable position. Place the rug on the floor and sit with your legs crossed like in a Lotus pose (alternatively you can sit, for example, on a bed). It is necessary to straighten your back and relax your shoulders. It is advisable to perform this pose in a good mood and smiling. You can also perform this posture in a standing position, while maintaining a parallel position of the legs. During a slow inspiration, start slowly lifting your arms anteriorly and cross your fingers, gently touching your thumbs.
Further, slowly raise your arms in a crossed state above your head. Try to stretch as far as possible without tension of the muscle. Make sure that the elbows are completely straightened and that the biceps touch the ears. In this position, you need to hold on for 20 seconds (optimal for 3-4 long deep breaths). In addition to this, in order to feel the maximum elongation, you can deeply draw the stomach to the spine.
2. Sprain of the spine
This pose or exercise is designed to stretch the lumbar spine after it lengthens. Continue with the linked fingers. Hands should be stretched over their heads, as in the first pose. Slowly exhale and turn the body around its axis to the right and perform in this position 4-5 deep breaths. On inhalation it is necessary to return to the central starting position. Next, it is necessary to turn left with the same principles and return to the initial posture on inhalation. For a deeper stretching, it is necessary to pull the stomach in addition to the spine.
3. Sprain of the spine forward and backward
Fingers of the hands are also in the coupling. To perform this asana you need to breathe out and stretch your arms forward. You can exhale during the turn to the right. Be sure to make sure that both hands are parallel to each other and stretch equally. On inhalation, return to the original central position. Exhale when turning left, then back to the center for inspiration. Unlock your fingers and relax. Put your hands on the ground and push your chest up.
4. Spinning of the spine
This position assumes the performance of a gentle soothing massage of the lower back. To do this, put your left hand on the right knee, which can be bent beforehand. Take a deep breath and slowly turn the body along the axis to the right. Alternatively, you can place your right hand on the floor near the right hip and stretch to the left, pushing away from the floor. Try to keep your back as straight as possible. Inhale and return to the starting position. Repeat the same steps as turning to the left. Try to again pull in the belly at the height of the maximum turn.
5. Back stretching forward
Now you can return to the standing position. It is necessary to put the feet on the width of the shoulders and slightly bend them at the knees. Next, try to bend the torso above your legs as far as possible, before the hips come in contact with the stomach. Cross (twist) your hands, taking your elbows in the palm of your hand or grasping the humerus with a brush. Relax all the muscles of the body and hold such a hitch tightly. In this position, take 10 deep breaths, with each of them you should feel how the tension is removed from the back. Interestingly, such breathing exercises are also very useful in terms of getting rid of fat on the stomach.
6. Pose of a dog with a lowered head – ArdhaMudha Shanasana
This position allows you to stretch almost the entire spine, and especially to relieve the load from the lower back. With this asana, you need to lie on the floor with your face and put your hands in front of your body. Next, you need to reduce your palms on the floor and gradually lift your hips from the ground, balancing the body between your legs and hands. Try to lift the hips maximum high from the ground until you feel a soothing stretch in the back area. Fixing the body in this position, make 5-10 breaths.
7. Plank against the wall
To perform this exercise, you must stand in front of the wall. Maximally straighten your hands and touch them with walls, while the palms should be brought together or completely touch the surface of the wall. Perform the inclination of the trunk with the head as low as possible, stretching and lengthening the spine as much as possible. The pose will be correct in the form of an inverted Latin letter “L”. When bending the legs in the knee joints, you can feel some discomfort in the lower parts of the spine. Try to stay in this position for at least 2 minutes. It is advisable to do deep respiratory movements during this period of time.
8. The Pose of a Dove
It is better to begin the exercise lying on the ground, putting your hands in front of you. Gradually lift the trunk off the ground. Place the right knee behind the right wrist. Stretch the left leg as far back as possible, with the cup of the knee joint facing the floor. Straighten your hands on the palms, pressing them into the floor. Pull your legs back, and lift your arched back up. Pull in the stomach and pull the abdominal muscles towards the spine. Holding in this position, take 5-10 deep breaths.
9. The Pose of a Child
To perform this asana you need to sit on the shins. Stretch the body and place the head on the ground. Hands can be placed behind your back, and stretch over your head. Within 2 minutes it is necessary to breathe deeply, additionally drawing the stomach to the spine.
10. Sprain of the back lying on the hips or abdomen
Lying on your stomach, stretch your arms above your head. Gradually use your hands to lift the trunk above the floor and straighten the head. In this position, try to breathe deeply for 3 minutes. Stretch your back until there is little discomfort and without straining your muscles. After this pose you will feel the muscles as relaxed as possible.