Yoga treatment for arthritis

Yoga can beneficially influence the different joints and organs of the body. Though it seems very simple, it has subtle effects on the practitioner. Sukshma vjajama in Sanskrit, meaning the ‘subtle exercise’ is a beneficial yoga asan in arthritis treamtment.

This series of exercises should be performed at the beginning of the daily asana session to loosen the joints and make the muscles supple. They are also intended for beginners and for those who are weak or sick, as well as for people with heart problems or high blood pressure or stiffness in the body.

Yoga for arthritis

Before starting the asanas practise shavasana to relax physically and mentally. Lie flat on your back, legs separated with hands beside you, palms facing upwards. Try to loosen all your muscles and joints. Become free of every kind of tension. Feel your body; become aware of your breath. You are relaxing. Watch your breath; see that it is natural and spontaneous, without force. Count your breaths.
During the practice of counting the breaths don’t suppress any thoughts. Watch them as a witness, without being emotionally involved with them. Your main concern is to relax the whole mind and body. For the time being forget all your worries, anxieties and worldly problems. After a few minutes slowly move your arms and feet and sit up. Now you are mentally and physically prepared to start pawanmuktasana.

Toe bending

  • Assume the base posture with legs stretched directly in front of the body. i.e. Danda asana
  • Place the hands on the floor by the side of the trunk. Lean backward taking support on the straight arms- Become aware of the toes.
  • Move the toes of both feet slowly backward and forward, keeping the feet rigid.
  • Repeat 10 times.

Ankle bending

  • Remain in the base position as in exercise 1.
  • Move both feet backward and forward as much as possible, betiding them from the ankle joints.
  • Repeat 10 times.

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