Sunday, 3 June 2012

Yoga enables ‘Stroke Patients Recover Better’

Written by Anil Singh

The findings of a latest study say that "Yoga helps Stroke patients Recover Better".

The study thus recommends the inclusion of yoga in the in-patient or out-patient rehabilitation programmes people receive after a stroke.

The Study:

The study, involving researchers from the Richard L. Roudebush VA Medical Center in Indianapolis, Indiana University-Purdue UniversityIndianapolis and IU Bloomington, exposed older veterans recovering from stroke to yoga.

Study Findings:

A study looking into the value of adapted yoga for stroke rehabilitation found that after an eight-week program, study participants demonstrated improved balance and flexibility, a stronger and faster gait (the pace and balance while walking), and increased strength and endurance.

The study informs that the participants, men and women both, had completed their post-stroke occupational and physical therapy before the study but continued to have impairments. The researchers were thus keen to know whether an Adapted Yoga can decrease the intensity of the impairments in the participants.

During the course of the study, the researchers examined gains in functional strength, flexibility and endurance as a result of the yoga and found significant improvements in all areas. The yoga activities, may have "improved neuromuscular control, likely allowing for strength improvements in affected limbs, sides or areas of disuse", said the lead researcher.

The researchers found that the participants managed to walk better after the program. After the yoga program, the study participants showed improved balance and faster gait speeds with longer steps or strides. Overall, after the adapted Yoga program, the study found improved gait speeds and overall functional strength, flexibility in the participants.

A Ray of Hope:

Researchers are optimistic that Yoga can help Stroke patients recover better during their post stroke rehabilitation programmes. This is a big hope for both the stroke patients and their loved ones as the loss of functional strength, flexibility and endurance is common after a stroke, which can lead to long-term disability.

The findings from two new analyses of the study were presented a couple of days ago at the annual meeting of the American College of Sports Medicine in San Francisco.


My Stroke of Insight: A Brain Scientist's Personal Journey

Stronger After Stroke: Your Roadmap to Recovery

Yoga for Movement Disorders DVD - Author's Release

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