Advice on Yoga after surgery

(September 3, 2010)

I recently broke my back in an accident, I have pins and bone implants in L1 vertebra. Can I do Yoga???

Performing yoga after back surgery is not advisable. However, understanding your injury and realizing your limitations are important if you decide to pursue doing yoga after your surgery. Even then your body must be given time to recover its strength and flexibility. Always remember to consult your doctor before performing any postures. Sometimes props are used to perform the yoga positions. Certain postures and forward bends that extensively use the back should not be attempted during the early stages.
Practicing yoga after surgery can be an excellent way to speed up the healing process. But as with doing any other exercises after surgery, you must remember to start off slow and gradually increase the intensity. The practice of Hatha yoga after surgery is considered to be the most effective. This form of yoga focuses on certain asanas that are done slowly while breathing deeply. If done in a proper way, practicing Hatha yoga after surgery won’t cause any harm.
If you want to practice yoga after heart surgery it’s important that only mild breathing and physical exercises are performed that doesn’t put stress on the heart. You can practice simple postures like the Shavasana to begin with. This posture soothes the nerves and improves the function of muscles to promote a relaxed state. Practicing the Uttanasana, which is done by bending forward with unbent knees, improves the blood circulation by pumping more blood and making the heart stronger. Performing breathing exercises like Anulom-Vilom in which you inhale through one nostril and breathe out through the other increases the oxygen flow to your heart.
You must refrain from any jumping that is involved in any form of yoga after knee surgery. Instead, practice standing poses that help in strengthening the knees. While practicing the standing positions you must see that the feet and knees are properly aligned. When you practice yoga after abdominal surgery you must make sure that you don’t perform any positions that are stressful to the abdominal area. You must also remember to breathe correctly.
Before doing any form of yoga after surgery you must first consult your doctor regarding the time that must be given for healing. You may be given advice as to the intensity at which you should perform the exercises. It is essential that you listen to your body and refrain from exercises that cause pain at the site of the surgery. If you follow the advice of your doctor and have patience you will see yourself gradually being able to perform the yoga exercises normally and may even go further.

Submitted by A on September 3, 2010 at 06:52

Yoga Benefits After Surgery  

Before starting any yoga exercise for your back you should confirm with your specialist first. Once he/she gives you an approval nod then you can go ahead with some simple yoga exercises for back. If you have back pain then like many others with this complain you can also find relief with some yoga asana. Yoga can increase the strength and flexibility of the back muscles making them much stronger and tight. Simplicity will be the mantra when you first start the back exercises for a simple reason that you don't want to hurt your back further. Before starting any of the mentioned poses below please get a confirmation fro your specialist first.

  • Pelvic tilts – this exercise involves subtle movements which strengthens and supports the back muscles. This will also give you light back massage and help relieve the back pain. To perform this pose lie on a yoga mat on your back and bend your legs at knees to place the feet on the ground near the buttocks. Do 5 pelvic tilts to warm up the back.
  • Supported bridge pose – sleep on a yoga mat on your back. Fold your legs at knees and place the feet on the ground little far from the buttocks. Now press the soles of your feet and lift your hips taking the support of feet and hands. Keep a yoga block handy and place this block under your back near the sacrum (you can even use a 3 inch hard cushion instead of a yoga block). Hold in this pose for some time till you feel comfortable, if you have any pain while doing this pose then remove the cushion or yoga block immediately and relax on your back flat. If you feel comfortable then place the yoga block or cushion for few minutes. When you want to remove the block then slowly lift your sacrum using the support of your feet and hands and remove it. Relax. 

Submitted by S M on June 18, 2008 at 07:33

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