Year : 2022  |  Volume : 54  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 4-11

Integrated effect of yoga and mindfulness meditation on pain, functional disability, and spinal flexibility in computer users with chronic low back pain: A prospective randomized active control trial

1 Department of Yoga and Life Sciences, Swami Vivekananda Yoga Anusandhana Samsthana, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India
2 Department of Yoga and Humanity, Swami Vivekananda Yoga Anusandhana Samsthana, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India
3 Department of Integrative Medicine, National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India
4 Department of Rehabilitation, Narayana Institute of Cardiac Sciences, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India

Correspondence Address:
Satya Prakash Purohit
Department of Yoga and Humanity, Swami Vivekananda Yoga Anusandhana Samsthana, Prashanti Kutiram, Vivekananda Road, Kalluballu Post, Jigani, Anekal, Bengaluru - 560 105, Karnataka
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ym.ym_51_22

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Introduction: Chronic low back pain (CLBP) is two and a half times more prevalent in the working population than in nonworking population. The 1-year prevalence of low back pain (LBP) in working population ranges from 23% to 38%. However, the 1-year prevalence in computer professionals was found to be 31%–54%. Studies have demonstrated the vast mental and physiological health advantages associated with yoga. Objective: We planned to investigate the effect of yoga and mindfulness meditation in computer users with CLBP. Methods: Eighty computer users (42.6 ± 8.45 years of age; suffering from CLBP for 5.20 ± 3.01 years; 51 males and 29 females) were recruited from Bengaluru, Karnataka, India. Subjects were randomized into two groups; yoga and mindfulness meditation/YM group (n = 40) and physical exercise/PE group (n = 40). YM group practiced an integrated module comprising yoga practices and mindfulness meditation, while PE group practiced physical exercises designed for LBP (1 h per day, 3 days per week for 16 weeks). Assessments were done at baseline, after 8 weeks, and after 16 weeks. Results: Seventy-seven participants (39 in YM and 38 in PE) completed the study. Oswestry Disability Index (ODI) scores and Numerical Rating Scale (NRS) scores decreased significantly, and the Sit and Reach Test (SRT) scores improved significantly in both groups after intervention (p < 0.001). Between-group analyses demonstrated that there was a significant difference in ODI scores (YM = 7.28 ± 5.68, PE = 15.53 ± 8.13, P < 0.001), NRS scores (YM = 1.00 ± 0.89, PE = 1.82 ± 0.73, P < 0.001), and SRT scores (YM = 26.41 ± 5.03, PE = 22.82 ± 4.96, P = 0.002) between the YM group and PE group at 16 weeks, favoring the YM group. Conclusion: A 16-week yoga & mindfulness meditation program appeared to be effective in reducing pain and functional disability, and in improving spinal flexibility in computer users with CLBP.

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