Just like most things in life that are worth having, it is going to take a lot of hard work and persistence to find relief from your chronic low back pain. Yoga is not a quick fix for your pain, but it is the most natural way to relieve lower back pain. Starting a regular yoga practice will slowly release years of aches and pains caused by any number of conditions in your body and is proven to heal chronic lower back pain overtime. So how long does it take to heal lower back pain with yoga?
Why Practice Yoga for Lower Back Pain?
When I first started practicing yoga regularly my low back pain was as bad as it had ever been. I was suffering from sciatica that would cause numbness and pain to radiate down my entire left leg and my muscles and joints had become extremely stiff due to years of inactivity after playing sports my entire life.
I could barely bend over to tie my shoes and couldn’t go on long road trips without extreme pain in my lower back. Even though I wasn’t overweight, my body felt like it was aging 10 times faster than it should be.
Everything just hurt.
So you can imagine when it was suggested to me that I should do yoga I was a little hesitant. Virtually every type of exercise I had previously tried doing just made the pain in my lower back worse and would cause even more issues and injuries.
But I figured it couldn’t get any worse than it already was, and I had tried everything else, so I joined a yoga studio and started practicing 3 times a week.
How Long Does it Take to Heal Lower Back Pain?
The first few classes that I took were kind of brutal. I had a little experience with yoga from the P90X DVDs I had done a few years prior so I had an idea of what I was doing, but it was still one of the most challenging workouts I had ever done.
Although I started out trying a few different classes, the one that seemed to work for me the most at the time due to it focusing solely on rehabilitating sports injuries and other types of chronic pains was the DDP Yoga class.
The first real change that I could notice in my body started after about 3 months of regular practice. I couldn’t really tell if anything was happening the first 3 months because of how sore my muscles were in every part of my body all of the time. My back felt loose, and I was able to release tension in places that I’d never been able to before, but after 3 months I really started to see and feel my body, as well as my attitude, starting to change.
Once I could actually see and feel proof of yoga starting to affect my health, I knew that it was possible and that I just needed to stick with it if I wanted to finally be free from years of chronic low back pain.
And as many of you know, sticking with a workout routine, especially one you just started, is the hardest thing to do. If you can manage to get past the first few hurdles without giving up then it is just a matter of time before you are able to form a habit that will make working out come second nature to you.
More than Just a Workout
Fortunately, if your workout means you are practicing yoga for an hour 3 times a week then that also means your low back pain is getting 3 hours of physical therapy each week. On top of all of the other health benefits that a regular yoga practice provides, your practice is healing your low back pain in the process. It’s a win-win!
When you decide that you are going to practice yoga for the long-haul then it really is just a matter of showing up to your mat, over and over, for the foreseeable future. If you start looking for an end to your practice, where your back pain is completely healed, you’re going to drive yourself crazy and it’s going to feel like relief will never come.
If you can accept that your body is different, and the experiences that brought you to having low back pain are also different from everyone else’s, you can focus on your practice and healing your body one day at a time rather than how long it’s going to take until the end.
Once you start practicing yoga, and if you enjoy it like most people who give it a real chance, then you’ll realize it is something that you are going to want to do for the rest of your life because of how much it improves all aspects of your life. It doesn’t matter how long it takes to completely heal your low back pain because it will happen eventually, as long as you stick with it.
Make a Lasting Change
From the third month when I started feeling changes in my back and body I decided that I was in it for the long-haul. For the next 6 months I focused all of my efforts on my practice and was dedicated to making real change in my body.
I’m not going to lie, the path to finding relief from your low back pain with yoga is not going to be easy, or happen overnight, but I can tell you from experience that it is worth it.
I’ve been practicing yoga regularly, 3 to 5 times a week, for about a year and a half and I still have pain in my lower back. However, the pain is a fraction of what it was when I started practicing yoga and I am in the best shape I’ve been since I was a teenager. I can see myself advance in my practice and I can feel my body changing each time that I practice.
I have more control over my muscles than I ever thought possible and, even though there is still pain in my lower back, I know exactly which exercises and postures to put my body in to relieve the pain. I’m confident that overtime I will be completely free from low back pain but know that it doesn’t matter how long it takes because I’m just enjoying the ride getting there.
What can you start doing today to heal your lower back pain?
Stick With It!