Staying Safe While Practicing Yoga

Yoga has been practiced for more than 5,000 years, and currently, close to 11 million Americans are enjoying its health benefits. Yoga can hardly be called a trend.

Most Westernized yoga classes focus on learning physical poses, which are called asanas. They also usually include some form of breathing technique and possibly a meditation technique as well. Some yoga classes are designed purely for relaxation. But there are styles of yoga that teach you how to move your body in new ways. Choosing one of these styles offers the greatest health benefits by enabling you to develop your flexibility, strength, and balance.

images Even though for most healthy people yoga is a safe non-aerobic form of exercise, it is not without its risks. According to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, the yoga injuries most commonly treated  in emergency rooms involve overstretching and strain from repetition to the:
neck
shoulders
spine
legs
knees

Also, certain poses can increase your risk of injury if you have conditions such as:
severe osteoporosis
high or low blood pressure
ear problems
problems with your spine
pregnancy (including risks to your unborn child)

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