Did you know it’s important to take care of the fascia—or connective tissue—in your body? The health of connective tissue is a serious concern for older people, as movement restrictions can make it hard for them to perform simple activities of daily living. The condition of our connective tissue depends on two factors—how old we are and what we have done in our lives to keep our tissue healthy, hydrated and flexible.
Encouraging news for those with scoliosis, and valuable information for yoga and Pilates instructors who have clients with scoliosis: Regularly performing a yoga side-plank pose on the convex side of the primary curve can significantly reduce the curve’s angle in people with scoliosis, according to research published in Global Advances in Health and Medicine (2014; 3 , 16–21; doi: 10.7453/gahmj.2013.064).
Mind-body techniques that can help with chronic-pain management may be valuable for former military personnel. Forty-four percent of all American veterans returning from Afghanistan or Iraq suffer from chronic pain (pain lasting 90 days or more), meaning it is twice as common among vets as it is among nonmilitary personnel, according to research published in JAMA Internal Medicine (2014; 174 ; 1400–1401; doi: 10.1001/jamainternmed.2014.2726).
If you’re working with clients with chronic neck pain, let them know that a consistent mat-based Pilates program may offer hope of pain relief and improved functionality. The incidence of chronic neck pain is on the rise, especially among older women. Currently, clinicians lack general consensus on what type of exercise program manages this condition most effectively.
Tai chi offers short-term improvement of pain, physical function and stiffness for people with knee osteoarthritis, according to a research review published in Complementary Therapies in Medicine (2013; 21 , 396-406).
Scientists from University of Duisburg-Essen in Essen, Germany, reviewed five randomized, controlled trials with a total of 252 patients to assess the short- and long-term effectiveness of tai chi for people with this type of arthritis.