Journal of Obesity and Therapeutics

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Obesity Fitness Expo 2017: Modern musculoskeletal problems: Is yoga based wholistic approach the answer?- John Ebnezar- Orthopedic Surgeon, India

Modern musculoskeletal problems (MMSP’s), that includes Life Style Orthopedic Problems (<50 years age group) and Geriatric Orthopedic Problems (>50 year age group), is steadily on the rise globally and encompasses a wide spectrum of conditions like neck pain, low back pain, RSI, arthritis, fibromyalgia, rheumatic diseases, osteoporosis etc. MMS problems are not only known to cause varying degrees of physical pain but causes mental and emotional disturbances leading to stress, anxiety and depression. This could adversely affect the quality of life and can be a great source of socio-economic burden to the society. Conventional treatment methods like drugs, physiotherapy and surgery cannot provide an effective answer as it fails to address the associated peculiar challenges of MMSP’s. Yoga, an ancient Indian art, is known for its holistic healing. Unlike other exercises which most of the times is one-dimensional, yoga provides a multidimensional approach which improves the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual well-being of a person. It also helps in controlling the accompanying co-morbidities, co-musculoskeletal and co-mental conditions and reduces stress which enhances healing. 3 research publications of my clinical trial on the role of add-on yoga therapy, in osteoarthritis knees was chosen by AAOS in framing the 2013 Non-arthroplasty guidelines with a strong recommendation. Similarly my research has proved that yoga is a great value addition in the treatment of low back pain, common neck pain and osteoporosis. A first time path breaking research on fractures also showed that advanced yoga therapy accelerates fracture healing and reduces the rehabilitation time. So the need for a paradigm shift from the uni-dimensional conventional approach to a multidimensional evidence based wholistic approach, is certainly need of the hour in treating the MMSP’s and needs to be embraced globally.

The objective of this study is to assess the results of certain articles regarding the therapeutic effects of yoga and to provide a comprehensive review of the benefits of regular yoga practice. As participation rates in mind-body fitness programs like yoga continue to increase, it is important that health care professionals are made aware of the nature of yoga and the evidence for its many therapeutic effects. Therapeutic yoga is defined as the application of yoga postures and practices to the treatment of health conditions and involves teaching yogic practices and teachings to avoid reducing or alleviating pain, suffering or structural limitations, physiological, emotional and spiritual. The results of this study show that yogic practices improve muscle strength and flexibility of the body, promote and improve respiratory and cardiovascular function, promote recovery and treatment of drug addiction, reduce stress, anxiety, depression and chronic pain, improve sleep habits and improve overall well-being and quality of life.

Rapidly emerging in the Western world as a discipline to integrate mind and body into union and harmony, when adopted as a lifestyle, yoga improves physical, mental, intellectual and spiritual health. Yoga offers an effective method of managing and reducing stress, anxiety and depression, and many studies demonstrate the effectiveness of yoga on mood disorders.

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