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Yoga for Arthritis

How does Yoga help Osteo Arthritis?

The physical yoga practices provide a systematically graded training in gradually increasing the range of movements when practiced with deep internal awareness. This not only helps to mobilize the stiff joints but can prevent further aging process. Although the damaged cartilage may not get replaced, further deterioration and wearing out can be arrested.

In chronically damaged joints with pain and deformities, the surrounding muscles would be very weak because of long standing inactivity. Similar to physiotherapy many yoga practices when practiced with deep internal awareness and repeated, can help you to strengthen the muscles around. Sakti vikasaka Suksma vyayamas are specific practices that provide the non-weight bearing isometric as well as isotonic exercises that strengthen the muscles.Which provides the weight bearing support to the damaged joints. The additional contribution of yogic suksma Vyayama is the deep relaxation, which takes away the muscle fatigue.

In addition the inner equipoise, contentment, absolute fearlessness and confidence to accept all ups and downs of life would almost arrest the process of further aging. It would give you a re-changed refreshed life with a total change in your world view, moving towards positive outlook. Stress reduction at this deep level of notional correction is the one that can revert the programmed gene function to a normal rate of cell repair in the cartilage.



Sthiti: Dandasana


  • Bend the right leg and place the right foot as far up on the left thigh as possible with right heel touching the groin.

  • Place the right hand on top of the right knee.

  • Stabilize the position of the right foot throughout the practice with the help of the left hand.

  • Gently move the right knee up towards the chest and then gently push it down and try to touch the ground with the knee.

  • Repeat this up and down movement of the right knee 10 times.

  • Inhale while the knee goes up and exhale while the knee comes down.

  • Repeat the same with the left leg.


  • Keep the leg muscles as relaxed as possible.

  • The leg muscles should be passive, the movement being achieved by the use of the arm only.

  • Do not force this movement .

  • The trunk should not move.

This article has been written by Dr. R. Nagarathna, Dean, Division of Yoga & Life-sciences, SVYASA
This article is published online courtesy
and Arogyadhama

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