Yoga or Physical Therapy for Back Pain?

By: | Tags: , | Comments: 0 | August 14th, 2017

With nearly 10 percent of adults in the United States are affected by chronic lower back pain. A greater percentage is found in racial or ethnic minorities and those with lower socioeconomic status. With this many people being affected more and more doctors are looking at other ways besides opioids to help reduce the pain for the patients. Two of those ways are the tried and true physical therapy programs or the up and coming yoga trend. Let’s take a look at both of these alternatives.

According to Wikipedia, Physical Therapy is a primary care specialty in western medicine that, by using mechanical force and movement, Manual therapy, exercise therapy, electrotherapy and various physical therapies who practice evidence based treatments, remediates impairments and promotes mobility, function, and quality of life through examination, diagnosis, prognosis, and physical intervention. Physical Therapy is performed by trained and licensed physical therapists.

Yoga is a group of physicalmental, and spiritual practices or disciplines. In the 1980s, yoga became popular as a system of physical exercise across the Western world. Anyone can teach a yoga class and at this time there is no certification required to teach.

A new study was conducted that randomized participants in the following groups

  • 12 weekly yoga classes
  • 15 physical therapy visits
  • Reading materials and newsletters about ways to reduce chronic lower back pain

The results found that over a 1 year extended maintenance that yoga was just as effective. Although these results would conclude that yoga is just as effective as yoga there are a few things to take into consideration.

  1. 15 physical therapy visits is on average more than what is needed
  2. Physical therapists evaluate patients along with teach exercises
  3. Performing yoga can run the risk of overstretching the unstable region in the spine that often creates low back pain

THE RESULT: Yoga should be a compliment to physical therapy.

At Oklahoma Physical Therapy we work with you to create a customized plan to help reduce back pain and to restore and effectively improve mobility. Our trained therapists will address the instability of your vertebrate by hand guided stability exercises and perform mobilization techniques to help restore proper motion of the spine.  This improved mobility will enable you to perform yoga poses more effectively. Give us a call today to schedule your appointment so you can enjoy life with reduced or eliminated low back pain.

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