How Does Yoga Strengthen Wrists & Arms
Weakness in the muscles and joints is now recognized as a major causative factor in several chronic diseases. The inflammation seen in arthritis and carpal tunnel syndrome, for instance, was long thought to merely contribute to muscle atrophy, yet these conditions are now understood to result in part from atrophy.
Whether or not you receive treatment from a carpal tunnel surgery specialist for tennis elbow, carpal tunnel, or other inflammatory joint conditions, yoga provides an opportunity to safely strengthen all the arm muscles. Studies have found patients with such painful disorders as rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia can exercise to increase tolerance of physical activity.
The problem for current sufferers is the painful beginning. Gentle styles of yoga have further been proven by research to allow for a less painful beginning. This topic is well worth further exploration for the following enormous benefits to joint health.
Improving Flexibility to Stimulate Circulation
Joint flexibility is defined as the actual versus the possible range of motion. As inflammatory disorders progress, flexibility decreases. This causes a cascading series of physiological changes. The muscles begin to atrophy from lack of use. Blood is propelled only in part by the heart's action. Muscle contraction plays a large role in blood flow in the extremities. As muscles atrophy, this limits the circulation.
The first step to rebuilding muscle is to increase flexibility. Pain may make this seem scary. However, it is entirely possible to gain flexibility and control pain without medication.
Promoting Anti-inflammatory Hormones
Gentle styles of yoga, such as Raj yoga, use more relaxed movements with a strong focus on awareness of movement. The mindfulness aspect of this and other styles promotes the the alpha brainwave state observed by Harvard research of meditators.
The effect of alpha waves is to enhance awareness of pain while allowing detachment from it. It works by stimulating the production of anti-inflammatory hormones, which turns out to be exactly what those with chronic inflammatory diseases need most. Lamaze breathing taught in pregnancy classes actually has the same effect, but the focus is not on increasing joint flexibility.
Strengthening Muscles for Long-term Relief
Many people now rely upon pain medication for long-term wrist treatment and elbow treatment. It is understood that this medication has damaging side effects on the liver and other organs. This is accepted by people who perceive no other option.
As can be seen now, there is another option. Yoga offers a way to self-manage pain while increasing flexibility. Once this is accomplished, more advanced yoga positions can be used to strengthen the arms and joint muscles. This will promote better circulation, so the anti-inflammatory hormones produced during yoga meditations can be delivered to joint tissues more efficiently. Long-term relief is possible through traditional exercise.