Fibromyalgia and the positive effects of yoga

Fibromyalgia and the positive effects of yoga

A recent new study involving 53 women with an average age of 54 found that participants in weekly 2 hour yoga classes showed significant improvement after 8 weeks of participation.  Participants in the study had fibromyalgia for an average of 12 years, and were assigned to participate in a yoga class designed especially for people with the condition, or put on a waiting list for the classes.

The yoga classes included gentle poses, meditation, breathing exercises, coping instruction and group discussion.  Those taking the classes were also urged to have a daily practice at home. After eight weeks, standardized scales showed greater declines in pain, tenderness, fatigue, stiffness and depression, and bigger improvements in sleep, memory, balance, strength and vigor among those practicing yoga.

91 percent of the yoga practitioners, compared with 19 percent of the waiting list group, reported being better at the end of the study than they were at the beginning.

Reported by Linda Searing, The Washington Post Nov. 2, 2010, in the Health section’s “Quick Study”.

This study can be found in the November 2010 issue of Pain.

Pain is the Journal of the International Association for the Study of Pain