MS and Yoga: How Ancient Discipline Can Help MS Patients
Mindy Eisenberg is the author of the book “Adaptive Yoga Moves Any Body” and Multiple Sclerosis News Today had the chance to hear exclusively and in person all about the benefits of yoga for multiple sclerosis (MS) patients at the Consortium of Multiple Sclerosis Centers (CMSC) 2016 Annual Meeting held this June.
According to the website Yoga Moves MS, “Yoga is an art and science that connects the mind, body, and spirit through the practice of physical postures (asanas), partnered with the breath (pranayama), and meditation practices. Adaptive yoga modifies these postures for persons with MS and other neuromuscular condition.”
Eisenberg, a yoga instructor and therapist since 2004, and founder and director of the growing Yoga Moves MS program and community, proudly presented her “little baby” — her inclusive 400-page book, with plenty of photos as well as instructions — which took her five years, seven photo shoots, and a lot of dedication. Eisenberg explained that adaptive yoga — especially good for MS patients — consists of “taking one pose and varying it in several different ways.” That could mean making the pose easier using blocks, bands, and other tools.
Yoga is not a cure for MS. But Eisenberg said it has the potential to lessen some physical symptoms of the disease, helping patients feel improvements in strength, flexibility, posture, balance, focus, circulation, and digestion. MS yoga practitioners generally also find a decrease in tension, fatigue, spasticity, and some of the aches and pains associated with the disease. In addition, overall coping skills tend to improve with practice and a regular yoga regimen.
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