International Day of Yoga

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Yoga is a 5,000-year-old physical, mental and spiritual practice, with its origin in India, which aims to transform both body and mind.

international-yoga-day-logo-300x429On December 11 in 2014, the United Nations General Assembly declared June 21 as the International Day of Yoga. The declaration came after the call for the adoption of 21 June as International Day of Yoga by Honourable Indian Prime Minister, Mr. Narendra Modi during his address to the UN General Assembly on September 27, 2014 wherein he stated: “Yoga is an invaluable gift of India’s ancient tradition. It embodies unity of mind and body; thought and action; restraint and fulfilment; harmony between man and nature; a holistic approach to health and well-being. It is not about exercise but to discover the sense of oneness with yourself, the world and the nature.” In suggesting June 21, which is the Summer Solstice, as the International Day of Yoga, Mr. Narendra Modi had said that, “the date is the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere and has special significance in many parts of the world.”

Yogi and mystic, Sadhguru notes the importance of this day in the yogic tradition: “On the day of the summer solstice, Adiyogi [the first yogi] turned south and first set his eyes on the Saptarishis or Seven Sages, who were his first disciples to carry the science of yoga to many parts of the world. It is wonderful that June 21 marks this momentous event in the history of humanity.”

FYI: 175 nations, including USA, Canada and China co-sponsored the resolution. It had the highest number of co-sponsors ever for any UNGA Resolution of such a nature.

95. yogaWhat better reason to do you need to give yoga a try? Tomorrow?

As most of us know (whether we do it or not!), exercise is an important part of managing fibromyalgia symptoms. Staying physically active can relieve pain, stress, and anxiety. The key is to start slowly. Begin with stretching and low-impact activities, such as walking, swimming or other water exercises, or bicycling. Low-impact aerobic exercises such as yoga can also be helpful. (Remember: prior to starting any exercise routine, or if you want to increase the intensity of your exercise, talk with your doctor.)

Now, yoga isn’t for everyone but exercise is! So why is exercise important for fibromyalgia?

  • Studies show that exercise helps restore the body’s neuro-chemical balance and triggers a positive emotional state. Not only does regular exercise slow down the heart-racing adrenaline associated with stress, but it also boosts levels of natural endorphins. Endorphins help to reduce anxiety, stress, and depression.
  • Exercise acts as nature’s tranquilizer by helping to boost serotonin in the brain. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter in the brain that scientists have found to be related to fibromyalgia. While only a small percentage of all serotonin is located in the brain, this neurotransmitter is believed to play a vital role in mediating moods. For those who feel stressed out frequently, exercise will help to desensitize your body to stress, as an increased level of serotonin in the brain is associated with a calming, anxiety-reducing effect. In some cases it’s also associated with drowsiness. A stable serotonin level in the brain is associated with a positive mood state or feeling good over a period of time. Lack of exercise and inactivity can aggravate low serotonin levels.
  • A study, at the Georgetown University Medical Centre in Washington, D.C., suggests that exercise may improve memory in women with FM. Decreased brain activity, due to aerobic exercise, suggests that the brain is working more efficiently. The researchers suggest that one of the benefits of exercise for fibromyalgia patients is that it may streamline brain functioning. It may help free up brain resources involved in perceiving pain and improve its ability to hold on to new information. The findings may help explain why regular exercise decreases pain and tenderness and improves brain function in people with fibromyalgia. (These findings were presented at a medical conference. They should be considered preliminary as they have not yet undergone the “peer review” process, in which outside experts scrutinize the data prior to publication in a medical journal.)

What Are Other Benefits of Exercise for Those With Fibromyalgia?

chronic comic 163Regular exercise benefits people with fibromyalgia by doing the following:

  • burning calories and making weight control easier
  • giving range-of-motion to painful muscles and joints
  • improving a person’s outlook on life
  • improving quality of sleep
  • improving one’s sense of well-being
  • increasing aerobic capacity
  • improving cardiovascular health
  • increasing energy
  • placing the responsibility of healing in the hands of the patient
  • reducing anxiety levels and depression
  • relieving stress associated with a chronic disease
  • stimulating growth hormone secretion
  • stimulating the secretion of endorphins or “happy hormones”
  • strengthening bones
  • strengthening muscles
  • relieving pain

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2 Comments

  1. Correct. Iyengar yoga is designed for the chronically ill – not by being easier, but by use of props such as blocks or ropes. The medicine is written on further at fnmyalgia.com/2014/06

  2. Getting going is the battle! As a fibro/ degenerative disc disease, cervical bones spurs, IBS, diverticulitis, inoperable heart condition, carpel tunnel, plantar fasciitis, arthritis, auto immune disorder and years of physical and mental abuse victim beginning from birth, I feel I am worth listening to. Why? Because I’m a living through it and I am living in the victory! I am 59 years old with a 70 year old body. To look at me, you won’t see that at all. I would include a picture but I’m not sure how to attach a picture to this.

    I would love to see the image inside the head of anyone who even tries to wonder what I must look like! LOL!

    I agree with movement! You know that commercial, “A body I motion stays in motion. A body at rest stays at rest”. There are certainly times when I MUST REST! But not to be used as an escape! If you start using sleep and rest for that, it will only bring about more problems!

    There have been times we I could not move. Times when I have been wheelchair bound! Then there are times when you will find me out mowing the entire lawn by push mower, playing water volleyball, and hiking in the mountains!

    Doctors tried every fibromyalgia medication on me. NONE of them worked. In fact, they made me worse and caused rest of my life side effects! I have chemical sensitivities! I don’t think there is a medication you could mention that they haven’t tried on me! I finally said ‘NO MORE’!

    The number one thing that helped me is God! …25Whom have I in heaven but You? And besides You, I desire nothing on earth. 26My flesh and my heart may fail, But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. Psalm 73! AMEN! Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all that is in them, saying: “To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honor and glory and power, for ever and ever!” Revelation 5

    I have always found joy in God’s creation, nature. Being outdoors, I receive healing, comfort, amazement, joy, rest, and I stand in awe when I go for walks with Jesus. I am an amateur photographer. I have seen things and experienced such encounters with nature, animal and weather, and floral and fauna, and the waters, in the skies, stars, moon, clouds, that it is no wonder that there is a Bible verse that says why I cannot keep quiet at these miraculous wonders I have seen and witnessed and have a lifetime of photos of! But Jesus answered, “I tell you, if these become silent, the stones will cry out!” Luke 19

    This is free to everyone! You just have to open your eyes! If someone is blind, they can hear. If someone cannot hear, they can see. If someone can do neither, it is inside them because God lives inside all of us with His Holy Spirit!

    Secondly, movement. Relearning how to move, I should say! I was always a strong, physical, active person. Then entered fibromyalgia. It has taken me almost 10 years to learn this! It doesn’t have to take that long! But if it does, keep trying!

    Yoga is a wonderful way to start. But you cannot overdo it. You only stretch until you feel the stretch. Go any farther, you will hurt afterwards. You will gradually be able to do more.

    Walking. It probably will always be a painful start. Stretching the ‘right way’, warming your muscles and joints up is an absolute must! Forget about the manicure and pedicures and expensive jewelry and clothes! Spend your money on good shoes! This is VITAL, CRUCIAL!! You want to keep walking don’t you? Throw away those high heels and flip flops! You may even need to get special, very expensive orthotics fitted for your feet!! What is more important to you?!

    Stretching. I have a ball that has bumps on it. Got it for $1. I roll myself over that ball, carefully, and stretch! This stimulates and gets those good endorphins pumping!

    Take it slowly! If you have severe balance issues like I do because of the pain and all the other stuff, I need a good walking stick. I need to always carry a phone. I often have to go it alone because let’s face it, it is sadly true, but most people do not understand us and it is hard to find ‘walking buddies’. Heck! It’s hard to find a buddy at all! LOL! I pray a prayer of protection over myself.

    Swimming or floating……just get in the water! It removes the heaviness of the pain! For awhile, you can just float. Can’t swim? Wear a life jacket. Or just lie in your bathtub! It can’t be cold water for very long. Sometimes cold helps. But usually, the warmer water is what is needed. Depends on each individual’s body.

    Tai Chi. Good all around helpful especially to help with balance and relaxation. Learning to rest your mind by ‘stretching like the lion’. Let go and allow yourself to quit bracing and gritting your teeth and tensing up from the pain! This take practice! You have to WANT TO! BREATHE!!!! Sounds silly. I know. But IT WORKS! Deep breath in through the nose, hold, blow it all out through the mouth! Start from the top of your head and work down to the tip of your aching toenails! Oh yes! My toenails even hurt on some days! Start relaxing each part. Ask God to bind each part of your body to the body of Christ and to the healing blood He shed for us. “He himself bore our sins” in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; “by his wounds you have been healed.” I Peter 2:24

    Massage Therapy – The Right Kind. MFR helps me a lot.

    Chiropractic – Keeping your body in the correct alignment is essential.

    NO. I AM NOT WEALTHY! So, I have had to really take my time and discover all of this that I am sharing with you! My insurance does not cover those two things nor acupuncture!

    BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU EAT AND DRINK! YOU HAVE TO START EATING SMART! Many of the foods and drinks we eat only contribute to fibromyalgia! That is why the world wants to stigmatize us as, ‘obese whiners’. In fact, most all of the fibromyalgia medication pack the pounds on and also raises your cholesterol and glucose and triglycerides! Remember, I’ve been journaling for over 10 years to discover these things! This isn’t just random talking out my butt stuff here!

    Most of this I have had to do ON MY OWN! There were times I thought of just putting an end to all of this! But God would not allow it! He is not punishing me. He is helping me to live the best of my life I possibly can!

    My life? It’s all about Jesus. Saved by Jesus. Still alive because of Jesus.

    “I will never leave you” in the Bible: Hebrews 13:5 What could possibly be more comforting than God’s promise here to never leave or abandon us? It’s a promise that no person could make to another, but when God makes a pledge like this, we can be assured that He will keep it.

    “but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”

    – Isaiah 40:31

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