How Yoga and Chiropractic Work Together for Wellness
There’s a deep connection between regular chiropractic care and yoga. For one, both improve your posture, flexibility and range of motion.
“Chiropractic aims to enhance neurological function by improving the functional relationships of the spine and related structures. Once functional relationships (subluxations) are improved, yoga helps to strengthen the supporting muscles through a series of poses (called ‘asanas’), designed to improve posture and strength,” according to an article on the American Chiropractic Association (ACA) website.
Indeed, chiropractic care is a safe, non-invasive and effective alternative pain management technique and chiropractic adjustments are designed to be gentle and realign your body to alleviate pain and eliminate the underlying causes of conditions ranging from joint pain to ear infections, sans medication and surgery.
In fact, ACA defines chiropractic as “a health care profession that focuses on disorders of the musculoskeletal system and the nervous system, and the effects of these disorders on general health. Chiropractic care is used most often to treat neuromusculoskeletal complaints, including, but not limited to, back pain, neck pain, pain in the joints of the arms or legs, and headaches.”
Meanwhile, although massage, weight training and exercise overall are great ways to enhance the chiropractic care you receive, yoga is by far the most ideal complement to a chiropractic regimen because it’s a calm, gentle form of exercise that strengthens your body and the muscles surrounding the joints and muscles being adjusted.
In the same article on the ACA website, several examples of the best asanas or yoga poses to help align body, mind and spirit are given: downward-facing dog, folding poses such as uttanasana, garudasana or eagle, and reverse Namaste. All help open up the spine, build strength and improve range of motion.
Yoga and Chiropractic Go Hand in Hand
Experts agree yoga poses like these and others help maintain the progress chiropractic patients achieve with each visit. They also agree yoga and chiropractic work together for wellness and help patients on a path to better overall health that they might not have been able to reach otherwise.
Experts also say yoga is a great way to relieve daily stress and anxiety and stave off depression. We can relieve stress when “we learn ways to not only cope with the stress, but [instead] change our attitude toward it and make changes to keep it at bay. Many find that a regular yoga practice can be of benefit in the process,” according to an article about yoga as a stress reliever on the ACA website.
In the same article, ACA recommends that when seeking and selecting a yoga teacher or class you make sure it matches your personality and approach to handling stress. Among the types of yoga the article suggests include yin yoga (focuses on holding poses for a longer period of time); restorative yoga (typically uses props to ensure comfort, relaxation and release); and yang yoga (moves more quickly through poses and is better as a release for excess energy).
No matter what type of yoga you choose, it will surely benefit you and bolster the efforts of your chiropractor so you can get the most out of your visits and heal faster. However, always check with your doctor first to make sure it’s safe for you. More specifically, a chiropractor can advise you what yoga stretches will best pair with the chiropractic care you receive from him or her.
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