Prac­tice yoga to ease back pain

Hindustan Times (Patna) - Live - - LIFESTYLE -

Anew study has uncovered yet an­other ben­e­fit of prac­tic­ing yoga, find­ing that the an­cient prac­tice could help ease lower back pain, at least on a short-term ba­sis.

Car­ried out by re­searchers at the Univer­sity of Mary­land School of Medicine (UM SOM) along with sci­en­tists from the Univer­sity of Portsmouth in the UK and the Univer­sity Hos­pi­tal of Cologne in Ger­many, the team re­viewed 12 sep­a­rate stud­ies, which all looked at the ef­fect of yoga on low back pain. The study in­cluded more than 1080 par­tic­i­pants and looked at the ef­fect of yoga, mainly Iyen­gar, Hatha, or Viniyoga, as well as the ef­fect of a min­i­mal in­ter­ven­tion, such as ed­u­ca­tion or phys­i­cal ther­apy.

The team found that there was low to mod­er­ate qual­ity ev­i­dence that at three and six months pa­tients, who prac­ticed yoga, ben­e­fit­ted from small to mod­er­ate im­prove­ments in back­re­lated func­tion, as well as small im­prove­ments in pain.

How­ever, be­cause par­tic­i­pants knew whether or not they were prac­tic­ing yoga, their re­ports of any change in pain and func­tion­ing could have been af­fected by this knowl­edge, with sel­f­re­port­ing also sub­ject to er­rors. There­fore, the re­searcher’s cer­tainty was graded with mod­er­ate at best in an ef­fort to re­duce bias. When com­pared to non-yoga ex­er­cise, yoga per­formed around the same in terms of im­prov­ing back func­tion at three and six months, al­though there were very few stud­ies to pro­vide ev­i­dence on the ef­fect of yoga com­pared to other ex­er­cise.

Per­haps un­sur­pris­ingly the team also found that per­form­ing yoga is as­so­ci­ated with more ad­verse events than non-ex­er­cise meth­ods, how­ever it is not as­so­ci­ated with se­ri­ous ad­verse events.

The team con­cluded that al­though ad­di­tional re­search is needed to build on the re­sults of the study and pro­vide more in­for­ma­tion on the long-term out­comes of yoga, the prac­tice is still worth con­sid­er­ing as a form of treat­ment for those with chronic non-spe­cific low back pain.

The study can be found pub­lished in the on­line jour­nal Cochrane Li­brary.

The study in­cluded more than 1080 par­tic­i­pants and looked at the ef­fect of yoga, mainly Iyen­gar, Hatha, or Viniyoga

PHOTO: IS­TOCK

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