Stretch Away Rheumatoid Arthritis and Fibromyalgia

Rheumatoid Arthritis and fibromyalgia patients live better with yoga

/ Author:  / Reviewed by: Joseph V. Madia, MD

(RxWiki News) You probably think exercising is expending energy. After all that's what running and aerobics require. But yoga, which involves the opposite, has been shown to be healthy for people. Breathing, meditating, and stretching don't seem like hard work, much less exercise.

Yet new research shows that yoga is the perfect physical activity for people living with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and fibromyalgia. It's important for people with RA to stay physically active. Otherwise, their joints can become stiffer and lose mobility. And it turns out that people living with RA who practiced yoga on a regular basis felt better and saw improvements in their disease.

"Yoga helps with rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia."

This new study included 47 patients, where 26 practiced yoga and the remaining people had not. Those who participated in the 12-session yoga study showed better scores in disease activity and health assessments than those who did not practice yoga.

Humeira Badsha, M.D., a rheumatologist and founder of the Emirates Arthritis Foundation says he believes "that practicing yoga longer term could in fact result in further significant improvements".

A separate study evaluating the impact yoga had on patients with fibromyalgia also showed measurable improvements.

There are a number of types of yoga that offer therapeutic benefits. Learning gentle yoga postures, breathing techniques and practicing quiet meditation on a regular basis can help just about anyone.

Reviewed by: 
Review Date: 
May 27, 2011
Last Updated:
September 16, 2011