Practicing yoga regularly is a wonderful way to keep our muscles supple, lean and strong, improve posture and maintain flexibility. Yet, even under the most ideal circumstances sometimes we still manage to develop aches, pains and soreness.
Coincidentally, not too long ago, this is exactly what happened to me. After one of my favorite classes, I was in the locker room telling a friend how I’ve had to ease up on my workouts because of the discomfort I had started experiencing. I shared this with her because she’s a smart woman who is knowledgeable about a variety of subjects and gives great advice …in a way; she’s like a walking Wikipedia. Immediately she recommended that I try using arnica montana gel on my sore muscles. Having never heard of arnica montana and skeptical over the validity and reliability of this treatment option, I promised her that I would do some research on it before I would try it out. This is what I discovered.
What is Arnica Montana?
Arnica is a perennial plant with yellow-orange flowers similar to daisies. Found in East Asia, Europe, Siberia, Northern United States and Canada, it is also known as leopard’s bane, wolf bane, mountain tobacco and mountain arnica.
Medicinal Usage of Arnica Montana
Fresh or dried arnica flowers have been used medicinally since the 1500’s and continue to remain popular today. Known for its anti inflammatory and pain relieving properties, arnica is used as a treatment for bruises, sprains, muscle aches and joint pain.
How To Use Arnica Montana
Apply arnica montana gel or cream directly to the affected area as soon as possible after symptoms develop. Follow the directions on the product label regarding the frequency and duration of usage. Arnica montana creams and gels are sold over the counter at many health food stores and pharmacies.
Are There Any Risks?
Arnica montana is generally safe when used topically. It should never be rubbed on broken or damaged skin. When used for a long period of time, irritation may result causing eczema, blisters, peeling and other skin conditions. In rare cases, some people develop allergic reactions.
As a result of what I read, I felt that it was a safe and inexpensive product to try.
I’m happy to say that the gel has alleviated my muscle aches. In fact, I’m so excited about my new discovery that I had to share it with all of you.
*As with any treatment option, check with your physician before using.