Can yoga can provide positive results for asthma sufferers?

In 2013, Sheffield  University produced a report for the British Wheel of Yoga on the therapeutic effects of yoga for health and well-being.  The research showed that yoga can “improve some subjective symptoms in asthma sufferers”.

Reducing tension through a sensory, approach to yoga, rather than striving to achieve certain shape, helps us to balance the nervous system.  By encouraging students to move towards poses, to investigate movement patterns, we heighten our awareness of movement through the whole body and areas where that movement is less fluid – where “we get stuck”.  We can, of course get stuck in many ways and the effects upon our emotions, the way we hold ourselves the imbalances that we may feel or nor feel, is different in each and every one of us..

The subjective symptoms of asthma, for example, were discussed in a report featured in The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology.   Females reported experiencing panic symptoms and fatigue more frequently than men. Patients who subsequently had higher steroid regimes prescribed after discharge reported more panic symptoms. Those patients with an infectious component in their asthma , reported symptoms of panic-fear, fatigue and airway obstruction somewhat more frequently than those classified as having no infectious component in their asthma.  The results suggest that subjective symptomatology may provide important clues concerning the nature of emotional factors in asthma and response to treatment.

The Sheffield University report suggested that further study is required to find out whether pranayama on it’s own is the most appropriate yogic intervention; how long yoga sessions should last and how many sessions should be given in a week.

So, much still to learn.  Meanwhile, with seasonal allergies affecting many of us and as a follow up to last week’s mention of the Buteyko Breathing Method – some Nose clearing exercises published by the Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust.

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