Preventing Osteoporotic Fractures with Yoga

Osteoporosis is a leading cause of death and disability in both older women and men, though the stage may be set decades earlier with diet, lifestyle and exercise habits. In this training, we’ll view the problem through the lens of modern medicine as well as bringing in perspectives from yoga and Ayurveda.

Timothy Mc Call
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Hosted in conjunction with The Minded Institute

Workshop Content

Osteoporosis is a leading cause of death and disability in both older women and men, though the stage may be set decades earlier with diet, lifestyle and exercise habits. In this training, we’ll view the problem through the lens of modern medicine as well as bringing in perspectives from yoga and Ayurveda. Yoga has been shown in scientific studies to improve bone mineral density, but this is just one of several ways that the practice can help prevent fractures — and fractures are what really matters. In this training we’ll explore how use asana to not only increase bone mineral density, but to improve Ayurvedic balance, balance in the autonomic nervous system as well as physical balance, all crucial in preventing fractures.

For those, already diagnosed with osteoporosis and its less serious version osteopenia, we’ll discuss how to modify yoga practices to make them safer, yet still challenging and satisfying.

Workshop Structure

Each session will include lectures, experiential exercises and Q+As. We’ll explore postural alignment in gentle, slow-flowing, breath-based practices designed to deepen proprioceptive (felt-sense) awareness — especially of the feet — and mindfulness, two more tools to help keep us upright and healthy. Finally, we’ll experiment with dynamic balance in asana, which I suspect is much more effective in preventing falls than the static balance poses more commonly taught in yoga classes.

This will be taught across two 3 hour sessions online. The training will be recorded and available to watch for 21 days.

Meet the Teacher

Timothy McCall, MD is a board-certified internist, Yoga Journal's medical editor since 2002 and the author of the Amazon #1 bestseller Yoga as Medicine: The Yogic Prescription for Health and Healing. He practiced medicine in the Boston area for a dozen years before devoting himself full-time in the late 1990s to yoga therapy. He has studied with many of the world's leading yoga teachers including BKS Iyengar and TKV Desikachar, as well as Patricia Walden, Rod Stryker and Donald Moyer. In 2005, Timothy began his studies with a traditional Ayurvedic doctor, Chandukutty Vaidyar, and spent more than a year at his clinic in Kerala, India. He serves on the editorial board of The International Journal of Yoga Therapy, and co-edited and contributed to the 2016 medical textbook, The Principles and Practice of Yoga in Health Care. His latest book is Saving My Neck: A Doctor’s East/West Journey through Cancer. Most recently, Timothy has introduced an approach to yoga, which he calls Vinyasa of Breath. See DrMcCall.com

Timothy Mc Call

Watch Timothy McCall discussing the benefits of Yoga for Osteoporoisis:

Some doctors advise people with the bone-thinning disease osteoporosis to avoid practicing yoga. Does this advice make sense? What are the risks? How can you practice yoga safely if your bone-mineral density is less than normal? Dr. Timothy McCall, author of Yoga as Medicine, offers some guidance: