I have a tight back and a friend tells me to try yoga, is this a good idea?

Yoga can be beneficial, but be cautious with any general group training. Supervision is limited and the curriculum is often "one size fits all." Sometimes what works for one person will not work for another. A one-on-one consultation is always more beneficial for an injury, nagging strain, or muscle tightness. However, if the yoga class is in your future, do these two things to attempt to alleviate your major symptoms:

  1. Stop when you feel pain during class - listen to your body and don't rush through the exercises. Stay within your exercise level and remain comfortable so that you can gain the benefits of the stretch while allowing the increased range of motion to come slowly; and
  2. Document your symptoms and what you do in class. As time passes, you can start drawing some correlations between the various stretches and poses and what helps (or hurts) your body.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.