Yoga is a Sanskrit word meaning “union.” It can be thought of as a form of exercise developed over thousands of years in India. It promotes health and happiness by working on the mind, body, and spirit. Yoga is being used more and more as a treatment modality. Where the techniques and benefits of yoga were once in doubt as a therapy, physicians are now turning to it as a viable treatment for many different conditions, including chronic pain. Study after study has shown that for many people, yoga is one of the most effective treatments for increasing mobility and reducing chronic pain. Yoga works on stretching and strengthening the body. By increasing strength, improving flexibility, and ridding the body of muscle tension, a person can bring their body into balance and ease chronic pain. Practicing yoga can allow someone to focus on positive aspects of life, as opposed to focusing strictly on pain. Deep breathing has physical and psychological benefits that can help calm the extreme emotional effects of chronic pain. There are now hundreds, if not thousands, of different “styles” of yoga, each promoting a different path to similar conclusions. This blog post is an excerpt from Pain Recovery – How to Find Balance and Reduce Suffering from Chronic Pain by Mel Pohl, MD, FASAM, Frank Szabo, LADC, Daniel Shiode, PhD, Robert Hunter, PhD; Published by Central Recovery Press (CRP).