Yoga poses for Herniated Disc
Yoga is a great source for healing but this is achieved through a person’s own will to continue practicing and make the most of the benefits that yoga provides. Spinal problems are one example of such a concern. There are much yoga poses for herniated disc that can help improve a patient’s spine. The spine is connected with our brain and nervous system, anything that causes a problem there can mean a host of other issues in the rest of the body.
Before jumping straight into any kind of therapy, it is vital to first research and understands what it is that you are dealing with it and how you can heal in the best way possible for you. This is why today we will be explaining the best yoga poses for a herniated disc and also covering information about the condition, so you can understand the condition and take your first steps toward healing your body, mind, and spirit.
Yoga has a whole range of benefits, healing is one of them. It promotes the body’s own natural functions to do what they do best. One of the main things you learn in yoga is to be present at the moment. Another is to learn to embrace yourself. The best way yoga helps is by guiding you to be patient with yourself as you practice. When suffering from a medical condition, it is important to not rush the recovery and take your time through the process.
Table of Contents
What is a Herniated Disc?
This is a medical condition which is also known as a “Slipped Disc”, “Ruptured Disc”. This condition occurs in the spine, usually, in the lower region but it is possible for the discs in the upper regions to “Slip” as well. When there is a slipped disc in the spine, it can press on the nerves around it and this will lead to weakness, pain, or numbness in other body parts.
The bones in your spine are stacked on top of one another. Between these bones is a rubber-like disk (Annulus) and in the center of it is a jelly-like substance (Nucleus). A herniated disc is said to occur when the rubber disk or annulus becomes weakened (usually due to age) and the nucleus slips out and presses on other parts around it, usually, it presses on a nerve.
What are the symptoms of a Herniated Disc?
The following are some symptoms of the condition:
- Lower back pain
- Numbness or Tingling in the limbs
- Neck pain
- Difficulty in bending or straitening the back
- Weakness in limbs
It is also important to note that while these are symptoms, it isn’t necessary that there will all be notable. Always consult your physician if you have reason to believe you are experiencing a slipped disc.
Treatment for a Herniated Disc
Yoga as Treatment for Herniated Discs
Since physical therapy is a form of treatment for herniated discs, yoga is an excellent candidate for treatment. Yoga requires practitioners to move in slow, mindful movements that involve stretching and strengthening the muscles in the body. This is the exact requirement in the treatment of a herniated disc. This is why yoga can act as a great treatment for conditions of back pain.
Yoga will have the following benefits for people suffering from herniated discs:
The core muscles in the abdomen region and the back are important for holding the spine upright. There are certain yoga styles and postures that are ideal for improving the strength of all the relevant muscles, which can help alleviate the pain caused by the condition.
One of the most reoccurring causes that doctors note for this condition is when a person improperly lifts a heavy object. By extension, it can be noted that putting stress on the body without proper alignment is what helps create the condition in the first place. Practicing yoga requires mindful adjustment of your posture and hence reduces the chances of the problem getting worse.
Practicing yoga improves mindful awareness of the body. This means that a person becomes more sensitive and aware of their bodies. The improved focus in the present allows for better coordination when using your body and also helps the body focus on the areas with pain for healing.
Yoga helps alleviates stress whether it takes physical or mental forms. This also adds to the body’s natural ability to heal itself. This is because practicing yoga and mindfulness, allow the muscles to relax. The body feels renewed and the relaxation allows for movements that feel smoother. Yoga also improves sleep which again allows the body to heal more effectively and relieve stress.
Yoga poses for Herniated Disc
Following is a list of yoga poses recommended for alleviating back pain and known to help with the slipped disc condition:
1. Salabhasana / Locust
The Salabhasana pose or Locust is a very simple pose but strengthens your back muscles. It utilizes them all, from your neck down to your feet. It has a wide range of benefits which range from back pain, posture alignment, and weakness in the muscles on the backside of your body. Because the bending isn’t stressful on the wrists or body in general, it is ideal for someone suffering from a slipped disc.
2. Bhujangasana / Cobra
The Bhujangasana or Cobra pose extends your full spine backward and also strengthens the pelvic muscles. Due to the gentle extension of this pose, the spine is stretched and extended in an alignment that promotes healing. This might be a little challenging for some but it can be modified to be less stressful on the body. You can always consult your yoga teacher for guidance on how you can adjust the posture for your benefit.
3. Adho Mukha Svanasana / Downward Dog
Adho Mukha Svanasana or the Downward Dog pose is great for your spine. It depressurizes the spine, alleviating the pressure of carrying the whole body. It also helps in strengthening the upper body and stretching the hamstrings muscles. This allows the legs muscles to become stronger too which reduces the stress placed on the spine. The forward bend in this posture can have relaxing effects and be rejuvenating for the body.
4. Ustrasana / Camel Pose
The Ustrasana or Camel pose is perfect for making the muscles on the back stronger, especially in the lower back. It promotes the natural curve of the lower back and the motions involved invigorate the blood circulation in the area. It also improves the alignment of the lower back muscles. With stronger muscles on the lower back, further inflammation of the pain and future pain in the back region can be reduced significantly.
5. Trikonasana / Triangle
The Trikonasana or Triangle pose improves the alignment of the body while stretching the hamstrings and calves. The twists and bends involved in this posture strengthen the spine, legs, chest, and shoulder muscles. It is possible to make this posture easier by using pillows or cushions in a way that provides support for the head. This posture might seem intimidating when your back hurts, but you can take this opportunity to consult your yoga teacher on modifications that feel more comfortable for you.
Precautions and Tips
If you prefer attending yoga in a gym or studio, find one where the teacher can provide you some personal attention. There are yoga studios where a session includes 50 members at a time, such a class is not suitable for someone recovering from a herniated disc. The teacher will be unable to provide you with the attention and support that you need to recover. There a lot of studios available which offer smaller classes, these will be the ideal choice.
Postures are important but only half the picture. You can opt to try Restorative Yoga which is also an excellent option for people suffering from back pain conditions. It is a slow form of yoga that is intended to promote rest and comfort. It also includes the use of props which can make the process of performing your asanas easier. Additionally, another benefit of this practice is that it is done while sitting or lying down. If you are dealing with bad back pain, it can be wise to start with Restorative yoga before jumping to the asanas.
In the article above we mentioned a few yoga poses for herniated disc. But you should know that when healing from an injury, surgery, or chronic pain it is important to take things at a pace more conducive for healing. It is vital to pay attention to your body and listen to what it is trying to communicate. Do not push yourself to achieve proper alignment in your posture if it is causing you pain. It is important to consult your physician and yoga teacher before starting your practice so that they can both assist you in generating modifications and tips that will be easier on your body and help you heal.