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Effect of one week of yoga on function and severity in rheumatoid arthritis

Shirley Telles*, Kalkuni V Naveen, Vaishali Gaur and Acharya Balkrishna

Author Affiliations

Patanjali Research Foundation, Patanjali Yogpeeth, Haridwar, India

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BMC Research Notes 2011, 4:118  doi:10.1186/1756-0500-4-118

Published: 12 April 2011



Previous studies have shown that yoga practice improved the hand grip strength in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA).


Sixty-four participants with RA (group average age ± S.D., 46.5 ± 9.6 years; 47 females) were assessed at the beginning and end of a one week yoga program. The Stanford Health Assessment Questionnaire (HAQ), hand grip strength, rheumatoid factor, and C-reactive protein levels were assessed on the first and last day and compared using a t-test for paired data. All participants showed reduced disability scores of the HAQ and rheumatoid factor levels, with an increase in bilateral hand grip strength in male participants alone.


This single group study indicated that a brief intensive yoga program was beneficial in RA, with decreased disability, better functionality and changes in the rheumatoid factor levels suggesting improvement.