Usually, weakening of the bones is a common problem that comes with aging. Bone mass starts declining once a person enters their 30s and this process hastens in women during the initial 10 years after they hit menopause. Usually, this is the time a majority of women develops osteoporosis – weak, brittle bones – since they don’t take measures to prevent this from occurring. Osteoporosis increases the risk of fractures, leading to loss of independence, immobility and chronic pain.
You can maintain healthy bones by eating nutritious food. If you have a tendency to consume more processed foods, it will result in certain biochemical reactions and conditions that have an adverse effect on your bone density. Hence, avoid processed foods. Also, look at consuming foods that are rich in Omega-3 essential acids, calcium, magnesium, and vitamins D and K2. These nutrients are needed to keep your bones strong and healthy.
Besides a healthy diet, it has been found that doing exercise can strengthen bones and keep osteoporosis at bay. Yoga is a good option for people who do not want to get into weight-bearing exercises.
Researchers state that yoga exerts more pressure on bones compared to gravity and by pushing one group of muscles against another group, it stimulates the cells that make bones or osteocytes.
[ Read: How To Keep Your Bones Healthy With Yoga ]
So here are five yoga poses that can help you beat osteoporosis.
1. Warrior Pose
The Warrior pose is a stretching yoga posture that regulates the functioning of the adrenal glands. These glands are part of the endocrine system and responsible for secreting and maintaining the right levels of estrogen and androgen that the body requires to keep bones healthy and strong.
The pose strengthens knees, arms, spines, elbows and shoulders, and also increases the range of motion of joints.
How to Perform Warrior Pose:
Here are the steps that will teach you how to do the Warrior pose correctly.
- Stand upright, with your back erect, arms at your side and feet together
- Keep your left foot firmly on the floor, while lunging forward with your right leg while stretching your arms over your head
- Lift the left heel slightly off the floor and try and lunge further with your right leg
- Hold the position till you breathe five times
- Repeat the lunging with the left foot
2. Triangle Pose
This yoga pose stretches your entire body and also helps make your bones strong. It even makes your body more flexible, thereby preventing it from sustaining injuries.
How to Perform Triangle Pose:
Use the following steps to do the Triangle pose correctly.
- Stand straight on the floor, with your back erect
- Spread your legs and position one foot outward in such a manner that your toes are sideways, away from your body. Turn the other foot a little bit inwards
- Lift and stretch your arms sideways
- Bend at the hips and lower your arm to touch the foot that is pushed outward
- Trying reaching your knees, shin or ankle with your hand while making sure your hip is straight
- Hold this position for about 15 seconds and assume the start position
- Repeat the posture the other side
3. Bridge Pose
This yoga posture requires you to bend backward and is extremely helpful for people already diagnosed with osteoporosis. It strengthens the hip and makes your spine stronger.
How to Perform Bridge Pose:
Here are the steps to perform this yoga posture.
- Lie flat on your yoga mat with your arms at your sides
- Bend your knees while keep the feet flat on the floor
- Place your hands on either side of your head and use your palms to push your pelvic region off the floor
- Continue using your arms until your entire torso is lifted off the floor while your back and neck are positioned flat on the floor
- Hold the elevated position for about five breaths and assume the starting position
- Do this posture five to 10 times
4. Downward Dog Pose
This yoga asana works your spine, abdomen, glutes and legs. It provides relief from pain that comes with osteoporosis. Bending the back helps strengthen the spine and decompresses vertebrae. It can reduce back pain brought on by osteoporosis and also improve your posture.
How to Perform Downward Dog Pose:
Follow these steps to perform this yoga pose the right way.
- Lie flat on your stomach and position your palms at the side of your head, on the floor
- While breathing out, push your hands to elevate your buttocks. At this point your toes should be touching the floor and your legs should be straight
- Hold this position for about 30 seconds
- Return to the starting position
5. Half Spinal Twist While Sitting Pose
This twisting yoga pose strengthens your spine and muscles around it. It can improve the range of motion of your back
How to Perform Half Spinal Twist While Sitting:
Use the following steps to do this yoga posture correctly.
- Sit on the floor and stretch your legs in front of you
- Bend your left leg and take it over the right
- Position the left foot next to the right side of your hip
- Gently wrap your right hand across the left knee
- Position your left hand as a support behind your back, on the floor
- Look at your left shoulder by twisting your waist, neck and shoulders
- Keep your back completely erect
- Hold the position for 30 seconds and assume the start position
- Repeat the other side
While you cannot control the genetic risk factors for osteoporosis, you can take measures to beat this debilitating disease. By eating healthy and nutritious food and doing these five yoga poses on a regular basis, you can beat osteoporosis and make your bones healthy and strong. If you already have osteoporosis, you too can benefit from incorporating yoga into your fitness routine. It will help you immensely.
Before you start doing these yoga asanas, make sure you consult your doctor first.