Patients frequently ask us if activities like yoga can cure or treat varicose veins. It is true that healthy activities help patients live in better health while experiencing fewer symptoms of varicose veins like swelling and aching.
We encourage activities like yoga because they can improve circulation and make patients move better. Movement is good for veins and helps reduce varicose vein symptoms.
Yoga Poses for Varicose Veins
Varicose veins are often due to incompetent valves in the veins which allow the blood to pool and stretch out the veins below. For this reason, yoga poses that improve circulation and promote other types of movement are recommended.
If you are interested in trying yoga to reduce varicose vein symptoms, these poses may help:
1. Downward-Facing Dog
This popular yoga pose is a perfect start for those with leg pain. It aligns the body in a balanced way and inverts your head below your heart, a position that improves circulation and offers a full-body stretch. Beginners: you can make this pose easier by bending your knees, but always keep your back straight!
2. Warrior 2
A standing pose that opens the hips and strengthens the legs, Warrior 2 works your body in a way that compresses and releases the veins, promoting a healthier blood flow. It also builds muscle tone without requiring any weights or intense workout routines.
Another low-impact yoga pose that places your heart above your head for better circulation, Bridge focuses on building strength in the glutes and spine. For those with varicose veins, the Bridge pose is best in short increments, when combined with other poses and/or aerobic activity.
Great for relaxing and stretching the hips & thighs, the Butterfly pose is an ideal option for pregnant woman and patients with back or neck injuries. Once you’re comfortable with the position, try lightly fluttering your legs up & down for an enhanced stretch and to boost circulation in the legs.
5. Legs Up the Wall
Legs Up the Wall is an excellent restorative yoga pose that can relieve swollen or sore legs, calves and ankles. Start by practicing the pose for 1-2 minutes at a time, then transition to holding for up to 20 minutes.
In Addition to Yoga, Many Patients Choose to Get Their Varicose Veins Treated
Varicose veins can be treated for cosmetic or medical reasons (like swelling and pain). If the treatments are for medical reasons, they are often covered by insurance.
Treating your veins does not have to interrupt your yoga or other exercise routine. Now there are no down-time procedures (such as Closurefast RFA, Venaseal and Varithena) that can be done quickly as an outpatient. Most patients can return to work the next day.
Once treated, its important to remember these are treatments – not cures. Vein treatments can last for many years for most patients. During that time, optimizing health and mobility with activities like yoga can be very helpful.
Get Help with Varicose Veins
In closing, yoga can help patients with varicose veins feel better. It does not, however, treat or cure varicose veins, and any particular activity like yoga is not going to make them go away.
For those that need treatment, a consult with a vein specialist can help sort out the treatment options. For most patients, you can be back to doing yoga the day after treatment.
If you have varicose veins, our specialists are well-qualified to treat the veins for you. Schedule a virtual vein screening today or reach out to our clinics in NW Portland, Tigard, Happy Valley, Hillsboro or Bend to get started on your vein care journey.
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