Good to the Bone is a Yoga Journal article about using yoga and diet to help with the prevention and treatment of bone loss (osteopenia – osteoporosis). The article describes the yoga postures listed in the table below that increased bone strength in 85% of the study participants with a 10-minute sequence that was practiced for a 2-year period. Each posture was held for only 20-30 seconds each. The article, Good to the Bone, is worth the read. Here is the pilot study detailed in the article.
The Twelve-Minute Daily Yoga Regimen Reverses Bone Loss is the full study that was published in Topics of Geriatric Rehabilitation, a peer-reviewed journal. It followed 741 patients over a 10 year period. It showed that yoga improved bone mineral density (BMD) in every-two-year follow-up study that followed. Impressive, eh? Watch the video below to get instructions on what to do along with more info on Dr Fishman’s book and CD.
The posture sequence below flows nicely and incorporates the recommended postures in the pilot study. It’s very important to practice a combination of balancing postures and ones to strengthen bones and muscles. The sequence can also be done in reverse order, beginning with the standing poses, ending lying down in the supine poses and Shavasana. As always, remember to b-r-e-a-t-h-e fully and completely, slowly and deeply. Get all the details here.
|English Name||Sanskrit Name||Purpose|
|Bridge Pose||Setu Bandha Sarvangasana||Bone strength|
|Cobra Pose||Bhujangasana with arms at the sides||Bone and muscle strength|
|Sunbird (Alternate and hold arm and leg lifts from the Table Pose)|
Try substituting the Plank Pose (or variation) if your knees are not up to Sunbird.
|Bone strength and balance|
|Downward Facing Dog||Adho Mukha Svanasana||Bone and muscle strength|
|Mountain Pose||Tadasana||Bone strength and balance|
|Chair Pose||Utkatasana||Bone strength|
|Tree Pose||Vrksasana||Bone strength and balance|
|Warrior Pose I||Virabhadrasana I||Muscle strength|
|Warrior Pose II||Virabhadrasana II||Muscle strength|
|Relaxation Pose||Shavasana||Strengthen bones, muscles, balance, and focus.|
As usual, please consult your health care provider and a qualified yoga educator for their recommendations for your needs. This is not intended to be a substitute for appropriate medical care.
Have fun and good luck!