Yoga Q&A: Yoga poses for Rheumatoid Arthritis

Yoga expert, Vipul Ijari answers Sify readers’ questions on yoga for health. Get your doubts cleared and see them featured on our FAQ page every Wednesday.

This week’s answer:

Hi, i am suffering from rheumatoid arthritis since 4 months.this disease started from my finger joints when i ws in seventh month of my pregnancy. after delivery it spread to other joints my baby is 2 months old and i am on breast feeding.kindly suggest some yogasana for my condition.i shall be very thankful to you.
Manjeet Kaur
Dear Manjeet,
Long term and sustained maintenance of a positive frame of mind is absolutely crucial.

Involve mind and body in routines, activities, hobbies and work.

Medication should be administered without any lethargy, as from the onset of the disease there is a therapeutic window of 2 to 3 years, which allows medicines to act more effectively. In absence of adequate medication in first 4 to 5 years irreversible joint damage sets in.

Remain active, mobile flexible in sub- acute and remission stage. Rest in acute phase.

The types of asanas that can be done depend completely on the joints affected.

It is important not to confuse asanas recommended for those with osteoarthritis and those with RA. Multiple joints are not affected in osteoarthritis, nor does it entail ongoing joint damage from inflammatory processes. Holding poses for increased lengths of time should be avoided for RA

Asanas involving pressure on the neck should be avoided, while poses like Dandasana or the Butterfly may be beneficial. Pranayama and smooth motions are well suited to Yoga practitioners with RA. Carefully evaluate whether symptoms are in remission or actively inflamed before practice.

Here are the basic Asanas which can help with Rheumatoid Arthritis:

Sukhasana – Meditative posture
Shoulder Stretches (Talasana)
Neck Exercises
Standing Side Stretch Pose (Konasana)
Hand Clenching
Wrist Bending
Ankle Bending
Ankle Rotation
Shavasana – Relaxation
Pl find a teacher or yoga therapist and under his/her guidance do the practices.

All the best and God bless.

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