We’ve stumbled across another study on yoga’s benefits, this time one that suggest yoga can help older veterans who are recovering from strokes.
A release about the Indiana University study is right here. Its findings were presented on Wednesday.
You won’t be surprised that the eight-week intro to yoga helped veterans with their balance, flexibility and the strength of their gait. But, as we’ve said before, it takes proving what often seems obvious to move things forward.
Here’s more from the release:
Arlene Schmid, rehabilitation research scientist at the Roudebush VA Medical Center and principle investigator of the VA-funded study, said loss of functional strength, flexibility and endurance is common after a stroke, which can lead to long-term disability. She said 5 million Americans are living with the consequences of stroke, which can alter patients’ lifestyles through decreased independence in activities of daily living, limited mobility and reduced participation in society.
Clinicians need methods to manage and improve these post-stroke physical impairments, said Schmid, also an assistant professor of occupational therapy in the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences at IUPUI.
Her analysis, Physical Improvements After Yoga for People With Chronic Stroke, examined gains in functional strength, flexibility and endurance as a result of the yoga and found significant improvements in all areas. The yoga activities, she said in her report, might have improved neuromuscular control, likely allowing for strength improvements in affected limbs, sides or areas of disuse.
A second focus of the study was specifically on participants’ gait; it wasn’t an intended focus of the yoga, but the researchers wanted to see if there was any side benefit. Balance and speed improved, but there was one missing element: endurance.
I’d wonder if that’s where a more Ashtanga-based (dare I “slum” enough to say even a power yoga?) might add that benefit? The release doesn’t specific the yoga, but I would suspect something more passive than active. Perhaps in this scenario that’s all that can be expected; but I wonder how much things could build up as people improved?
Posted by Steve