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Yoga (alternative medicine)

From Academic Kids

Yoga when used as a form of alternative medicine is a combination of breathing exercises, physical postures, and meditation, practiced for over 5,000 years.

Yoga
This article is part of the branches of CAM series.
CAM Classifications
NCCAM:Mind-Body Intervention
Modality:Usually Group, but sometimes Self-care
Culture:Eastern

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In India, yoga is a daily part of life. It is common to see people performing yoga in the morning or speaking about food diets and body therapy entirely based on Yoga or the Hindu healing system of Ayurveda.

A survey released in May 2004 (http://nccam.nih.gov/news/2004/052704.htm) by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine focused on who used complementary and alternative medicine (CAM), what was used, and why it was used in the United States by adults age 18 years and over during 2002. According to this recent survey, Yoga was the 5th most commonly used CAM therapy (2.8%) in the United States during 2002 (See CDC Advance Data Report #343 below, table 1 on page 8) when all use of prayer was excluded. Yoga is considered a mind-body intervention that is used to reduce the health effects of generalized stress.

Contents

Overview

Yoga is believed to calm the nervous system and balance the body, mind, and spirit. It is thought by its practitioners to prevent specific diseases and maladies by keeping the energy meridians (see acupuncture) open and life energy (qi) flowing. Yoga is usually performed in classes, sessions are conducted at least once a week and for approximately 45 minutes. Yoga has been used to lower blood pressure, reduce stress, and improve coordination, flexibility, concentration, sleep, and digestion. It has also been used as supplementary therapy for such diverse conditions as cancer, diabetes, asthma, and AIDS. (See CDC Advance Data Report #343 below, page 19.)

Hatha yoga

In The West, hatha yoga has become popular as a purely physical exercise regimen divorced of its original purpose. Currently, it is estimated that about 30 million Americans practice hatha yoga. But it is still followed in a manner consistent with tradition throughout the Indian subcontinent. The traditional guru-student relationship that exists without sanction from organized institutions, and which gave rise to all the great yogins who made way into international consciousness in the 20th century, has been maintained in Indian, Nepalese and some Tibetan circles.

See also

References

  • Barnes P, Powell-Griner E, McFann K, Nahin R. CDC Advance Data Report #343. Complementary and Alternative Medicine Use Among Adults: United States, 2002. May 27, 2004. Online (http://nccam.nih.gov/news/report.pdf)
    • On page 20 this report states: "All material appearing in this report is in the public domain and may be reproduced or copied without permission; citation as to source,however, is appreciated."
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