Primary Care for Low Back Pain: We Don’t Know the Half of It

Author: Frank M. Painter

Evidence-based medicine helps health care professionals and patients decide best care, drawing on research about effectiveness and safety of interventions. Systematic reviews summarise the evidence; guidelines report consensus between experts (including patients) on interpreting it for everyday practice. Although guideline recommendations are only one component of shared decisions that will vary patient-to-patient, the hoped-for outcome is health benefit for each individual. Guidelines also inform starker decisions by policymakers and health care leaders — for example, when to withdraw approval or funding for a poorly evidenced or harmful intervention. To assess whether all this research-driven activity is useful, 2 questions need answering: how well are guidelines followed in real-life practice and do patients benefit in the long-term?

In a new systematic review, Kamper et al. tackle the first question in relation to first-contact care for patients with low back pain provided by family practice and emergency department physicians. As the authors state, low back pain has major significance for the international pain community. It is the leading single cause of years lost to disability globally, and there is good evidence for what constitutes best first-contact treatment. The review selected best-quality studies of routine health care data to investigate whether first-contact physicians are putting back pain guidelines into practice (“usual care”). The results paint a bleak picture: only a minority of patients apparently receive simple positive messages to stay active and exercise, while inappropriate use of analgesia and imaging persists. The review adds to evidence that the care doctors give patients with low back pain is dominated by guideline-discordant interventions that are unnecessary, expensive, and “low-value” (ie, harm is more likely than benefit).

These findings are not entirely unexpected nor, as the authors point out, should blame be placed entirely at the door of front-line physicians. Qualitative studies reveal family practitioners agreeing with guideline conclusions but frustrated in implementing them by factors such as patients with complex needs or lack of resources for behavioural interventions and rehabilitation.

Furthermore, physicians will point to the nuances of individual patients who do not neatly fit the template for guideline recommendations. The review’s authors acknowledge this when discussing the difficulty of measuring “appropriateness” of physician requests for imaging.

The review did not study nonphysician primary care providers. Many such practitioners deliver care aligned with guidelines, such as advice about activity and exercise. More allocation of first-contact low back pain care to professionals such as physical therapists [AND chiropractors] could help to address the problem of inappropriate care. However, although some back care, such as imaging requests by physical therapists, may be more guideline-concordant, a recent systematic review indicated physical therapists have low adherence generally to guidelines for musculoskeletal pain, and a comparison of nurse practitioners and physicians in primary care revealed similar rates of unnecessary imaging requests.

It is increasingly clear that simply expecting individual clinicians to adhere more closely to guidelines is not going to close the evidence-practice gap. Recent articles have argued that effective “high-value” care for patients with low back pain (“benefit more likely than harm”) will only be achieved through large-scale top-down changes across health and social systems (“system strengthening”).

Such changes include engaging policymakers, politicians, and profession leaders to change laws and reimbursement practices; addressing counterproductive commercial pressures; creating incentives for optimal care; providing adequate resources for delivery of guideline care (including digital innovation); shifting professional education and training toward high-value care, including nonpharmacological approaches; dissolving boundaries between health care professions to create unified programmes of care; and changing culture and pain literacy among patients and populations to encourage prevention and positive health activity. The success of such innovations, however, cannot be taken for granted and will need evidence that they bring long-term patient benefit.

There is a second important issue highlighted by the authors of the review — the scarcity of relevant information to answer their question “how well are back pain guidelines implemented?” The review focused on studies reporting actual clinical care because it was recorded in health care or insurance databases. A challenge for data collection systems, particularly in family practice and emergency departments, is how to ensure such records include all aspects of care. Prescription medicines, imaging requests, and referrals to other services tend to be routinely recorded, whereas the nature and detail of patient assessment, and the content of advice and information given, often go unrecorded. Absence of data may mean either care has not been delivered — or it has been delivered but not recorded. Thirty years after randomised controlled trials reassured patients that an average low back pain episode did not require a week in bed, there is no high-quality data on what primary care physicians have been advising about bed rest.

This absence of information about relevant areas of the primary care consultation should concern us as much as the size of the evidence-practice gap or how to close it. Having the right information will itself help change policy and training and behaviour about guideline treatments, for example, by easing the path to audit as a means to improve practice. The “finely grained” information the review calls for (such as linking prescription records with the indications for prescribing) would address concerns that health care databases do not currently convey all the nuances of decision-making — not all imaging requests are wrong, not all opioid prescriptions are wrong-headed.

The authors of the review could find no high-quality studies using actual practice data from first-contact low back pain care in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). This is of particular concern because LMIC populations are being exposed to technology and treatments for low back pain (such as opioids) that high-income countries have popularised and made profitable but that are often inappropriate and harmful. Low- and middle-income countries need appropriately strong systems to support delivery of high-value care, including guideline-concordant approaches to low back pain prevention and care that align with local practices and cultures of health and wellbeing. Achieving data collection systems and routine analysis to document low back care is a plausible investment target for LMIC populations such as Nepal that are digitally equipped even when geographically remote11 but will be hindered while pain research has no priority and remains focused on low-value items of care.

It is a strange situation to contemplate. In an information-dominated world where people’s purchasing actions are instantly known, retrievable, linked to other data, and acted upon, the [medical or “usual”] care that most people are receiving for the world’s leading cause of long-term disability is not known because it is either not recorded or the data are not accessible or reported. The challenge to digital science and modern informatics is how to record and retrieve this information without overloading already busy clinicians or saturating patients with data collection. But, along with the challenges and the risks, there is the potential for new technology to change and improve delivery of health care globally for conditions such as back pain.

The case revealed by Kamper et al. for having more accessible, better organised, well-resourced, easily collectable information about the daily content and outcomes of consultations for this most common of disabling pain conditions is clear. The international pain community, in collaboration with health care data scientists, should get behind it.

What Can I Expect from My Acupuncture Treatment?

Although it is been done for thousands of years in Asia, some people are still very nervous about going to an acupuncturist for treatment. As the practice becomes more accepted, however, and the use of acupuncture is becoming more prevalent, many individuals will find themselves getting this treatment for the first time. If you are a little bit nervous about your acupuncture treatment, you are in good company but that doesn’t mean that you have a need for alarm. Here is what you can expect from your visit to the acupuncturist.

The first visit will actually be a question-and-answer session and may or may not include acupuncture at all. Your doctor will want to know almost everything about your medical condition, and the underlying issues and anything else that may help him in his treatment of your condition. Once the proper treatment is discerned, however, your treatments will start, perhaps even on the first visit.

This is where most people get nervous because they are unsure about the dangers that may exist from acupuncture. Let me put your mind at ease. It is very rare for there to be any problems from acupuncture treatment and, as long as you’re acupuncturist is using clean needles and knows what they are doing, you have little to worry about at all. It is possible for infection to set in or for an organ to be punctured but this is very rare if you’re acupuncturist is qualified.

Each session will last about one half hour and your doctor will insert very tiny needles into the acupuncture points and may manipulate them somewhat with his hands, induce a very light electrical pulse or even warm them with moxa. The needles will remain in your body for anywhere from five to 20 minutes. Most people do not feel any discomfort at all from having these needles inserted and actually may feel invigorated in some cases or perhaps very relaxed.

After your first time of receiving acupuncture, you will find that it is not an unpleasant situation at all. As a matter of fact, you may leave the acupuncturist feeling very good, relaxed and with an overall sense of well-being. In fact, once you begin with your acupuncture treatments you will probably wonder why you waited so long to begin them in the first place. It’s an ancient medical practice but it can still take care of many things for us today.

Relaxing Muscles Can Be the Key to Reducing Stress

Perhaps you’re an airline pilot who’s just spent hours in the cockpit. It seems like every muscle in your body is tense and you need relief. Or perhaps you’re a stay-at- home mom who’s spent the better part of your day cleaning your house. You feel as if your nerves are shot and you desperately want to feel better.

In both instances, the key to relieving stress may be progressive muscle relaxation. It’s a technique that began in the 1930s, but still has relevance today. With this technique, muscle groups are flexed and then relaxed in short order. The foundation of this technique is the concept that physical relaxation leads to mental repose. While the method does involve activating the muscles, you don’t have to be a weightlifter to try it. That’s because it requires no special training. In fact, virtually anyone can master the technique.

In general, you’ll want to practice the method ten to 20 minutes a day. But don’t blame yourself if you don’t master it on the first try. It’s best to take a gradual approach, improving your muscle flexing capabilities over time. You’ll need to rehearse the technique again and again in order to obtain maximum benefit. You’ll also need to be patient because you might not be able to pick it up in a single afternoon. But, in the long run, it will be well worth the effort.

Progressive muscle relaxation is referred to as a deep relaxation technique. This means that it can not only reduce stress, but also help alleviate chronic pain and sleeplessness. Doctors often use the technique in an effort to treat migraines and cancer. Usually, the relaxation technique begins with the feet and the legs, then gradually moves up the body to the chest, neck, and face. However, some physicians may try to relax muscle groups in a different order.

After some time, the amount of muscle tension attempted is increased in order to maximize the work of the muscles. You can engage in this exercise while seated, or you can do it lying in bed. Make sure, however, that you attempt it only in a place that is quiet and tranquil. Otherwise, you might find it difficult to complete the exercise. To begin with, tighten the muscles for about eight seconds and then release. Relax for about 30 seconds, then move onto another set of muscles. You might use progressive muscle relaxation in conjunction with imagery. In other words, you might imagine that you are like a wave of the ocean unleashing your power by flexing your muscles.

Through progressive muscle relaxation, you can learn to interpret your body’s cues. In this way, you can identify signs of tension within your body and determine ways to correct it. As a result, you should feel much less stress and may even feel as if you have more energy. Because progressive muscle relaxation has been around for decades, it is proven effective. Therefore, it is not a fad, but a legitimate relaxation technique.

Your initial relaxation session should last about an hour. You will engage in such activities as making a fist, bending your arms, raising your eyebrows, clenching your teeth, pulling up your shoulders, tightening your abdominal muscles, and lifting your heels. In time, such exercises will become second-nature to you. However, you should not try to speed up your exercises—the point is to remain relaxed, not to quicken your pace. The exercises may be a perfect activity on a Saturday morning or Sunday afternoon—whenever you’re ready to relax.

Progressive muscle relaxation is for anyone. Whether you work at a construction site or a classroom, in a music hall or in a meat market, you can benefit from the relaxation exercises. Granted, it may be hard for you to relax at first, especially if you are a Type A personality. But, chances are, you’ll quickly master the technique and learn to enjoy your exercises. In time, such relaxation exercises should become a natural part of life. You’ll feel healthier, more energetic, and less stressed. Chances are your attitude will brighten, since the weight of the world has been taken from your shoulders. You’ll find that time relaxing is truly time well-spent.

How the Skeletal Muscles cause Back Pain

The skeletal bones make up more than 200 short, long, irregular, and flat structures. Inside the bones is calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, and RBCs, or marrow, which produces and generate red blood cells. The bones work along side the muscles. The muscles and bones afford support, defense for the internal organs, and locomotion.

The skeletal muscles are our source of mobility, which supports the posture. The muscles work alongside the posture by shortens and tighten it. The bones attach to the muscles via tendons. The muscle then starts to contract with stimulus of muscle fibers via a motor nerve cell, or neuron. The neurons consist of axon, cell bodies, and dendrites, which transport to the nerve impulses and are the essential makeup of our functional components within the larger system of nerves. (Central Nervous System-CNS) CNS is a network or system of nerve cells, fibers, etc, that conveys and transmits sensations to the brain, which carries on to the “motor impulses” and onto the organs and muscles.

Skeletal muscles supply movement for the body and the posture; as well, the skeletal muscles also submit energies to create contractions that form from ATP or adenosine Triphosphate and hydrolysis, ADP or adenosine Diphosphate and finally phosphate.

The skeletal muscles also preserve muscle tone. What happen are the skeletal acts as a retainer by holding back a degree of contractions and breaking down acetylcholine by cholinesterase to relax the muscles? Muscles are made up of ligaments.

Ligaments are robust bands combined with collagen threads or fiber that connect to the bones. The bands, fiber, and bones join to encircle the joints, which gives one a source of strength. Body weight requires cartilages, joints, ligaments, bones, muscles, etc to hold its weight. Next to ligaments are tendons. Tendons are ligaments and muscles combined, since it connects to the muscles and are made of connective proteins, or collagen. Tendons however do not possess the same flexibility as the ligaments do. Tendons make up fiber proteins that are found in cartilages, bones, skin, tendons, and related connective tissues.

Joints are the connective articulated junctions between the bones. Joints connect to two bones and its plane and provide stability as well as locomotion. ROM is the degree of joint mobility, which if ROM is interrupted, the joints swell, ache, and cause pain. The pain often affects various parts of the body, including the back. Joints connect with the knees, elbow, skull, bones, etc, and work between the synovium. Synovium is a membrane. The membrane lines the inner plane of the joints. Synovium is essential since it supplies antibodies. The antibodies combined with this membrane create fluids that reach the cartilages. The fluids help to decrease resistance, especially in the joints. Synovium works in conjunction with the cartilages and joints.

Cartilage is the smooth plane between the bones of a joint. The cartilage will deteriorate with restricted ROM or lack of resistance in the weight bearing joints. This brings in the bursa. Bursa is a sac filled with fluid. Bursa assists the joints, cartilages, bones, and synovium by reducing friction. Bursa also works by minimizing the risks of joints rubbing against the other. In short, bursa is padding.

If fluids increase, it can cause swelling, and inflammation in turn causing body pain, and including back pain. Sometimes the pain starts at the lower back, yet it could work around various areas of the body. The assessments in this situation revolve around symptoms, including pain, fatigue, numbness, limited mobility, joint stiffness, fevers, swelling, and so on. The results of skeletal muscle difficulties can lead to muscle spasms, poor posture, skeletal deformity, edema, inflammation, and so on. As you see from the medical versions of the skeletal muscles, back pain results from limited ROM, joint stiffness, etc.

Natural Healing through Acupuncture

Many people are concerned when it comes to their health and rightly so. Your good health can have a positive influence on all areas of your life. Most people realize that there is some benefit to taking care of yourself naturally and trying to bring your body into a balanced state. Acupuncture is one way that you’re able to do this and if administered properly, it can help you to gain an overall health to your body that you may have been trying to reach through other methods, such as supplementation. Of course other natural health methods have their place, as any reliable acupuncturist will let you know but acupuncture can play a major part in your overall health.

The practice itself has been around for thousands of years, being established in ancient China. After it was used in China successfully for quite some time, the medical practice spread throughout other Asian areas and their own flair was added to the original practice. Many thousands of years later, it has now become popular in the United States, especially since the 1980s. As people become more aware of the benefits of taking care of themselves naturally, acupuncture can play a part.

It actually has to do with the balance that is in our body and the energy that flows through all of us. This is really an indisputable fact but thousands of years ago it was referred to as Chi. Although it had some religious connotations, they were fairly close to the fact that this energy played an important role in all of our lives and health. As long as the energy was balanced and free-flowing, we enjoy good health. If it was blocked or imbalanced in some way, we have difficulties.

What acupuncture actually does is to send the energy into an area of our body that is affected in one way or another. This has actually been proven through tests which monitor blood flow and energy throughout the body. By building on the ancient Chinese art of acupuncture, many modern-day doctors have been able to help individuals to overcome problems that range from headaches to depression.

If you have been holding off trying acupuncture, you would probably be very surprised at how easy the procedure actually is. Why not try it out for yourself and see how far this natural medical practice can take you with your health?

Back Pain and Backers

Did you know when pain acts out that your backers will kick in? The backers are your emotions. The devilish radicals of our human makeup can lead us to consequences we ordinarily would not accept. Sometimes the radicals are angels that work as guiders to back our every step.

Back pain and emotions go hand in hand, since when one experiences pain it causes threat to the emotions. When the emotions are threatened, “Look out Henry,” John Doe is in the house. Back pain has symptoms, which include depression, irritation and hopelessness, which starts with back pain and ends with emotions. The person will often accept the proposal that the emotions deliver, leaving them to believe that no help is present. In most back pain instances however, help is sitting in front of you.

The rule of thumb is to listen, learn, and take action. When you learn all you can about your condition, you can move to accept its symptoms and take action to resolve your problem. In fact, the information you gain can work in your favor, since you may learn strategies that relieve your pain without costing you a fortune.

Most back conditions are treated with Rest, Ice Packs, Compression, and Elevation. (R.I.C.E.) Remember this rule and apply it as needed. Unless your back is broken, most back conditions are treated with basic common sense and non-costly remedies. Take action!

Tell John Doe to move it on over, since Henry is taking control. The emotions are lethal injections if you allow them to take over your life.

Fact: About 33% of the patients who visit common medical practitioners do not receive relief from back pain.

Fact: Chiropractors specialize in back pain. Chiropractors overall has lowered back pain up to a percentage higher than ordinary physicians have. Acupuncture and massage therapy has helped more patients than standard medical treatment.

FACT: Back surgeries can lead to further complications.

Physical therapy is a great way to minimize back pain. In the worst case scenarios people have trained in weights and aerobics, thus reducing pain.

Back pain is relieved when one uses practical reason. Aspirin for instance can relieve most states of back pain with the exceptions of severe aching. Practical reasoning should tell you that the muscles are stressed, which basic stretch workouts can resolve the problem. Stretch those muscles!

Understanding your condition is the first step to taking action. In addition, when you know your condition you can relax. Pushing the muscles is overexertion that leads to back pain. If you are weight training and notice pain in the back, change your actions and perform other types of workouts.

Discomfiture (Oh no, not John Doe again) can cause a person to feel pity, instead of taking action. Don’t let John Doe out of the bag, rather get into the grove and stretch, relax, and rest.

Fact: Ecotrin is a painkiller that is sold over the counter. If you have back pain and take this medicine four times daily with a meal, you can reduce back pain. Take Ecotrin if you have overexerted the muscles to relieve pain.

Fact: Over the counter medications, such as Ecotrin will reduce pain caused from sprains and osteoarthritis.

Over the counter meds, such as Ecotrin has proven to reduce inflammation and swelling, which is the leading cause of pain.

Fact: If you take, Ecotrin prior to working out, you can reduce the odds of back pain.

Do not take over the counter medications if you have acute back conditions. The remedies are designed for short-term relief. Overusing the remedies can damage the kidneys and cause ulcers to develop.

Fact: Tylenol is linked to liver damage, yet if you use Tylenol in short-term regimens to relieve pain, the painkiller works alongside the central nerves to reduce pain.

Acupuncture: A Benefit to the Well Individual?

Before we begin a discussion about the benefits of acupuncture, let’s talk about the origins of acupuncture. It was first used in China over 2000 years ago, and is one of the oldest medical procedures in the world. It is a family of procedures that stimulates the anatomy of the body and helps to balance the energy flow throughout the body. It is this kind of acupuncture that is practiced in the United Sates today, through the use of tiny, metallic needles placed in affected areas and manipulated by hand or by electrical stimulation.

Acupuncture is the basic foundation for Traditional Chinese Medicine and is based on the belief that there are two opposing and inseparable forces within our body. They are known as the Yin and Yang of the entire person. The Yin is representative of the cold, slow, or passive principle, and yang represents the hot, excited or active principle. A healthy state is achieved by maintaining a balance state of the yin and yang. This is done through vital pathways or meridians that allow for the flow of Qi, or vital energy. The vital energy flow occurs along pathways known as meridians. These meridians connect over 2,000 acupuncture points along the body. There are 12 main meridians, and 8 secondary meridians. Although traditional western medicine does not completely understand how acupuncture works, the proof that it does work has been shown in several studies conducted by western medical facilities.

Now, let’s move to the question of does it work? According to the National Institute of Health, the answer would be yes. Acupuncture has been shown to be effective in many areas of health care. Areas such as postoperative nausea, chemotherapy side effects, osteoarthritis, low-back pain, headache, menstrual cramps, addiction, carpal tunnel syndrome, and asthma, just to name a few. The study revealed that acupuncture was able to provide pain relief, improve function and mobility of joints due to arthritis inflammation, and served to complement standard care.

Although there are many who would doubt the effectiveness of acupuncture, once they are a patient, they are believers. It has been proposed that acupuncture works and produces its effects through regulating the nervous system. The theory proposes that since acupuncture produces its effect through regulation of the nervous system, it induces the release of endorphins and immune system cells at specific sites on the body. There is also the theory that acupuncture alters the brain chemistry by the changing the neurotransmitters in the brain.

Without doubt acupuncture was a benefit in the study, and as a patient myself, I can vouch for the wonderful effect it has had on my back. Although acupuncture is classified as an alternative medicine therapy, and there is still much to be understood about the way it works, it is a proven aid in maintaining optimal health.

But what about the well individual, can acupuncture provide a benefit to them? Absolutely. Because acupuncture works off the belief that we must maintain balance of our vital energy flow in order to remain healthy, acupuncture serves as the tool for realignment. Our vital energy flow can be out of balance, and we still feel and appear quite healthy. It is in this capacity that acupuncture serves as a sort of preventive medicine. Checking and balancing the flow of energy on the meridian points in your body is like your car receiving a tune-up before it is in need of a repair.

Fibromyalgia Treatment: Acupuncture

Did you know that Fibromyalgia is a disorder that had affected thousands of people and still there is no cure for the disorder? There are only treatments to offer you some temporary pain relief. With the plain in your muscles, you will find that there is pain in your joints that will cause you to have many problems like stiffness, sleeping problems, and even fatigue. Even though you may be eager to try some alternative medicine, you will find that the Chinese Acupuncture will help you the best. There are many with the disorder who have found success with the acupuncture and other traditional treatments. If you are someone who you love happens to suffer from fibromyalgia to help relieve the symptoms.

Acupuncture is well tolerated with minimal side effects, so patients who participate in this medical treatment will at least leave the doctor’s office no worse than when they arrived. With needles with the thickness of hair, acupuncturists will use the needles to stimulate the body You may feel a slight pinch as they are inserted, but when done properly, acupuncture is both safe and painless. That is why you are going to need a professional.

Fibromyalgia patients receive treatment specifically to help their condition. Not only will the acupuncturist use the needles, but they will also use cupping and warming techniques to help the energies that cause the joint pain. This process takes a relatively short amount of time, and many patients have said that they feel instantly relieved of pain after a treatment. Others, however, seem to feel no relief at all. It can be expensive for you to have acupuncture so you will want to make sure that it is something that will be right for you. Many patients have said that this technique works best with repeated treatments, so realize this could be an expense that you must include in your weekly budget.

Acupuncture is something that could help you with fibromyalgia, however, there is little proof other than the opinions of the patients who have tried it. The studies are simply just difficult to carry out because it can be a mind over matter thing. There are people who have believed that it works to relieve the pain and that is the reason why they have been able to find the relief. Before you go out finding an acupuncturist, you may want to speak with your family doctor and see what they think about the acupuncture. They will give you all the information that you need to find a certified acupuncture practitioner, but also about all the procedures.

Breathing and Meditation

Breathing is an integral part of meditation. Proper breathing is required in many practices of meditation and is therefore an important tool to be possessed by people who wish to perform this activity.

The practice of proper breathing while meditating helps a person relax while doing the exercise. Proper breathing is achieved by inhaling through the nose, letting the diaphragm (not the chest) expand and exhaling through the mouth.

Doing this slows down a person’s heart rate which leads to a relaxed mood.

Breathing also plays a significant role when a person aims to improve his/her concentration. This is done by focusing the mind on the act of taking in air and feeling it pass through the nostrils until the air is finally exhaled through the mouth.

While this may sound easy, it can be quite challenging when done for the first time.

Then there’s the method for increasing a person’s awareness. Just like the concentration technique mentioned above, it involves putting one’s attention to his/her breathing.

But instead of focusing on the act of inhaling and exhaling air, it is the sensation of breathing where the person trains his/her thoughts. The feeling of the air passing through the nose, filling the lungs and expanding the diaphragm is the sensation that a person should look for.

It helps him/her feel how it is to be truly alive.

This article has shown how important breathing is in the practice of meditation. It is no wonder, therefore, that the two are inseparable activities that a student of meditation should learn.

About Yoga

Yoga is a system of philosophy that originated in India 5000 years ago that is focused on the attainment of enlightenment and the liberation of one’s self from those burdens that can have negative effects on the mind, body, and spirit. The practice of yoga was brought to the Western countries, like the United States, after it gained popularity because of the many touted benefits. However, most teachers of the philosophy place the most emphasis on the physical poses and less on the meditation aspect. Yoga and Pilates have both become very popular additions to the fitness routines of many people around the world, and for good reason, which is why people are learning about yoga and its many benefits for the mind and body.

To find a comprehensive introduction to yoga basics, including a glossary of yoga terms and an introduction to popular types of yoga and basic poses visit http://www.yoga.about.com. There is a also a number of other sites that feature a compilation of essays and articles about yoga including information about yoga, exercise, mind-body workouts, healthy eating, and exercise tips. Learn about yoga from a beginner’s perspective about meditation, yoga cleansing methods, pregnancy yoga, and other yoga techniques to improve your health at http://www.healthandyoga.com. The first impression many people have about yoga, is that in order to practice it, one must contort their body into impossible uncomfortable positions, but this simply isn’t true. Yoga focuses on the breath with each posture, which is an essential component of the healing applications of yoga, and yoga as an alternative therapy.

To learn more about yoga, from its origin to how to benefit from it, visit http://www.hinduism.about.com. Beginners can also find a wealth of yoga information such as frequently asked questions and answers about yoga practice, including the mysterious chakras, or primary energy centers in the body, and what yoga postures activate them at http://www.yogabasics.com. In addition to yoga exercises for body and mind, many online retailers like http://www.yoga.com, carry products for yoga, massage, homeopathic medicine, meditation, and exercise, as well as demonstrations of stretches and strategies to help you strike the perfect pose. The benefits of yoga are many, and if you haven’t tried it already, you owe it to yourself to liberate your soul and reach the next level of enlightenment, physically, mentally, and spiritually. Anyone can do yoga, at any age, and in most any physical condition. Vinyasa – move with the breath.