Yoga And Chronic Back Pain Relief

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So what about chronic back pain? Maybe yoga is good for minor aches and pains that are part of the wear and tear of the aging process and the challenges in living on our modern society, but what about serious chronic pain? I’ve lived with occasional lower back pain for the last 10 years or more. And I’ll say that its always disheartening when something sets off that old and unfortunately familiar pain. But I can’t imagine suffering from that kind of pain every day, like. Some people, even friends of mine, walk around every day with constant pain in their neck or back.

I have a neighbor with chronic back pain in her upper back and shoulders area. She works in a high-pressure time-sensitive field and is on-call practically 7 days a week. She is ambitious and conscientious, and takes her job seriously. I might call her a “Type A Personality.” I’m not sure if she would say that her back pain is caused by stress or not. At this point its so much a part of her life, she can’t remember a time that it wasn’t there.

She is a runner, and tells me that when she first tried yoga she found it too slow, not challenging, and frankly boring. However, she was curious about yoga and thought the stretching and relaxation would do her some good. She has come over to practice with me from time to time over the last year, and finds that she gets immediate relief from her chronic back pain from doing yoga. This was a pleasant surprise to me. I expected yoga to help her, and tailored our sessions to poses that I thought would stretch her upper back/shoulder area, but I was amazed by the immediate relief she experienced. I think she was too.

She finds that when she does practice yoga, not only does she feel immediate relief, but she often has a day or even two free from the chronic back pain. Though she is still not practicing yoga regularly, I know when she is having a bad day and the upper back pain is getting to her, because she sends me a text message asking whether we can do yoga together soon. So that’s just one example, but added to my personal experience and all the other information I have found over the years on this topic, it was a powerful demonstration on how effective yoga is in relieving this kind of pain.

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