Effects of 8-months yoga training on shaping the spine in people over 55
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Study aim: The aim of this study was to evaluate the influence of hatha yoga practices on the shaping of the anteroposterior (AP) spinal curvatures in students of the University of the Third Age, who participated in hatha yoga classes.Material and methods: 20 women and 5 men took part in the study. Hatha yoga classes were held once a week for 90 minutes over a period of 8 months along with additional exercises including basic positions of hatha yoga in home conditions 1-2 times a week for about 30 minutes. The inclination of the AP curvatures of the spine was measured twice, before and after the end of the classes. A Rippstein plurimeter was used for the measurements. Results: Measurements of the angle of thoracic kyphosis before starting the series of hatha yoga classes and after finishing them showed a decrease in thoracic curvature in female (p < 0.01). In case of the angle of lumbar lordosis, a reduction in this curvature as a result of yoga techniques has been observed in women (p < 0.01) too. Amounts of AP curvatures of the spine, measured after completing the series of hatha yoga classes, fluctuated around correct values better than before taking them up. Conclusion: This study has shown that yoga training leads to an improvement in the habitual body posture in case of aggravating (excessive) AP curvatures of the spine.
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