Yoga is a gentle practice that is ideal for maintaining back strength and flexibility. It's also one of the more effective tools for helping reduce low back pain, the most common source of pain and disability among older adults.
A review of studies by experts from the University of Maryland, United States, has called into question the supposed benefits of yoga in treating pain, since, although it seems to be better than physical inactivity, there is little evidence that it is preferable to other back exercises to relieve these discomforts.
The analysis, published in the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, evaluated those cases of back pain that persisted for at least 3 months and had an unknown cause. In total, the authors analyzed data from 1,080 participants from 7 clinical trials in the United States, three in India, and two in the United Kingdom. In each trial, yoga classes were specifically tailored for relieving back pains and were conducted by qualified teachers.