Acu-Yoga:Two Ancient Techniques Merge to Relieve Back Pain

Among the latest alternative treatments for back pain is acu-yoga. Acu-yoga is a blend of acupressure and yoga that work to restore vital energy. Acupressure is form of acupuncture that uses pressure points instead of needles. The yoga poses target acupressure points which helps to stimulate the blocked energy more. You can do these poses at home.

Warm-up

Warm up muscles before doing yoga. Warming up the muscles with the following exercises will help prevent injuries:

Arm circles. Hold arms out to the sides with the palms down. Circle arms backward several times then forward.

Neck stretch. Drop your ear to the shoulder. Place hand on top and gently pull. Hold several seconds and repeat on the other side.

Shoulder shrugs. This exercise can be done standing or sitting. Lift the shoulder and hold about ten seconds. Release.

Pelvic tilts. Lie on your back with your knees bent. Gently press the lower back to the floor and release.

Bridge Pose

The bridge pose stretches the neck, spine, and hips. Do this exercise several times daily.

1. Lie on a mat with knees bent. Place arms at your side or fold them across your chest.

2. Apply pressure with hands and feet while you lift the hips.

3. Hold the pose six to thirty seconds and release.

4. Keeping your head on your chin, lift chest, hands, and legs.

5. Stay in this position for five to ten seconds and release.

Boat Pose

The boat pose works the core muscles of the body. The boat pose is the bridge pose in reverse.

1. Rest on your abdomen with hands in front and feet together.

2. Stretch the arms in front of you.

3. Arch the back while lifting the head, neck, chest, and legs off the floor.

4. Hold the pose as long as you can, but work up to one minute.

Knee to Chest

This pose is great for the lower back. Lie on the floor and bring the knees to the chest. Be certain the back stays flat on the floor. Grasp the knees and hold for thirty seconds to one minute. Return to starting position and repeat several times.

Cool Down

Cooling down after yoga brings the heart rate back to normal and prevent soreness later. Cool down with these exercises:

Raise your arms and lace your fingers together above your head.

Grab your right ankle and pull it toward the buttocks.

Repeat the neck and shoulder stretches in the warm up.

Hold the stretches for at least ten seconds.

You may find the exercises difficult and first, but your flexibility and stamina will increase with more practice. Acu-yoga can be intense so it is ideal to see a doctor before you begin if you have injuries or certain conditions.

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