Our last post looked at a new study that pointed to tai chi as a source of relief for fibromyalgia sufferers. Tai chi allowed study participants to reduce pain and improve their quality of life through slow, meditative, and controlled martial arts movements.
Today, this post will look at new studies that point to big benefits from certain yoga practices. Among other benefits, yoga helped participants reduce the effects of chronic joint pain from fibromyalgia.
The first study randomly assigned fibromyalgia sufferers into two groups. One group participated in a standard fibromyalgia pain management program while the other joined a yoga practice. The yoga group spent time practicing meditation and gentle poses.
Yoga participants demonstrated a 24 percent pain improvement, 30 percent less fatigue-related symptoms, and 42 percent less depression.
A similar study looked at yoga's ability to stimulate cortisol production in fibromyalgia patients. Lower cortisol levels contribute to fibromyalgia-related pain. This study found that hatha yoga practices increased cortisol levels in all 22 female participants over eight weeks, leading to less pain and better quality of life.
While neither yoga nor tai chi can completely alleviate the frequently disabling pain and frustration that fibromyalgia patients endure, these studies do point to significant benefits.
Source: Huffington Post Healthy Living, "Two Ways to Help Relieve Fibromyalgia," Elaine Gavalas, Oct. 9, 2012
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