Yoga May Improve Balance in Stroke Patients
June 6, 2011
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(CBSNews.com) Practicing yoga after a stroke may help rebuild balance and prevent potentially disabling falls among the elderly, a study shows.
The study shows stroke survivors who participated in a specialized post-stroke yoga class improved their balance by up to 34%.
Researchers say the participants also experienced a big boost in their own self-confidence after their yoga practice and became more physically active in their communities.
"It also was interesting to see how much the men liked it," says researcher Arlene A. Schmid, assistant professor of occupational therapy in the School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences at Indiana University-Purdue University, Indianapolis, in a news release.
Schmid says many of the participants wanted to continue their yoga practice at home after the study ended.
"They enjoyed it so much partly because they weren't getting any other treatment. They had already completed their rehabilitation but felt there still was room for improvement," Schmid says.
Previous research shows the risk of falls and breaking a hip increase significantly after a stroke and also increase with age.