Year : 2012 | Volume
: 3 | Issue : 2 | Page : 63--64
Yoga camp in Ayurvedgrams of Chhattisgarh
Raghavendra Madhu, Nilesh Jain
Directorate of AYUSH, Government of Chhattisgarh, Raipur, Chhattisgarh, India
Directorate of AYUSH, Government of Chhattisgarh, Mantralay Parisar, Raipur 492 001, Chhattisgarh
The clinical and empirical health benefits of yoga and pranayam have been reiterated through research. Yoga is being adopted as a system to alleviate the burden of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) across the globe. The Directorate of AYUSH, Government of Chhattisgarh (DoA, GoCG) conducts annual 5-day-yoga camp across 146 Ayurvedgrams in the State. The present article brings out the AYUSH initiatives the State is taking toward active ageing. A total of 71,096 people participated in the 5-day-yoga camp across the State. A mean participation of 5079 people over 5 days was reported across districts. Such statewide practices need to be promoted and appraised.
|How to cite this article:|
Madhu R, Jain N. Yoga camp in Ayurvedgrams of Chhattisgarh.J Ayurveda Integr Med 2012;3:63-64
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Madhu R, Jain N. Yoga camp in Ayurvedgrams of Chhattisgarh. J Ayurveda Integr Med [serial online] 2012 [cited 2014 Apr 16 ];3:63-64
Available from: http://www.jaim.in/text.asp?2012/3/2/63/96517
Five-day yoga camp
Chhattisgarh has been a forerunner in taking program initiatives in AYUSH. A yoga camp was initiated across 146 Ayurvedgrams for 5 days (8 th -12 th February, 2011). It was taken up as a crucial initiate toward rejuvenating the indigenous manners of healthy lifestyle. The program objectives were as follows: (1) To organize 5-day-yoga camp across 146 Ayurvedgrams in Chhattisgarh. (2) To sensitize people toward physically active life through yoga. (3) To ensure active participation from the community.
Ayurveda advocates preventive and health lifestyle practices in swasthvrutta. Ayurvedgram is a model village where Ayurveda-based lifestyles are promoted through behavioral change communication, training of village health workers toward identification and use of local medicinal herbs. It also includes developing herbal kitchen gardens and herbariums in the village. The elected village representatives are also sensitized toward the concept so that there is also active participation from the community. There is also focus on promoting income generation programs and economic activities for the village self help groups based on AYUSH herbal remedies.  To imbibe this concept into a programmatic phase, the Directorate of AYUSH, Government of Chhattisgarh (DoA, GoCG) initiated the model of Ayurvedgram. One from each block of Chhattisgarh, 146 Ayurvedgrams were selected.
Various Pranayamas and Yogasanas were taught at the 5-day yoga camp. The pranayamas taught were Bhastrika, Anuloma-Viloma, Kapalbhati, Bhramri, Sitlee, Sitkari, Ujjayi, Vedhene Bandh. The yogasanas taught were Shavasana, Padmasana, Uthita padmasana, Dhanurasan, Vajrasan, Suryanamskar, Tadasana, Vrikshasana, Bhujangasana, Chakrasana, Shalabasana, Shirsasan, and Swastikasan.
Materials and Methods
The DoA, GoCG identified 146 AYUSH dispensaries and Patanjali Yogpeeth as an organization competent to conduct yoga camps for this programme. The DoA, GoCG also made necessary administrative planning and signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Patanjali Yogpeeth. Two remote districts were falling short of yoga trainers. It was mutually decided that the camps in those districts would be conducted after the camps in all other districts and dates were finalized. Ayurvedic medical officers (AMOs) selected young adolescents doing well in yoga as volunteers, sensitized the community regarding the camps, made necessary arrangements including social grounds at local level. The five-day camps were conducted early in the morning. AMOs promoted volunteers to continue yoga as a routine activity.
In the 5-day-yoga camp 71,096 people participated across the State. A mean participation of 5079 people over 5 days was reported across districts.
Evidence and experiences
Yoga is an ancient Indian regimen, which provides a psychological, physical, and spiritual exercise to an individual. It has been studied for several decades for its role in the management of several chronic diseases including hypertension, asthma, obesity, neuromuscular diseases, and psychiatric illnesses (Aljasir, 2010). The scientific outcomes of such yoga camps are difficult to measure at a state level yet such initiates in rejuvenating AYUSH systems and behavioral lifestyle change cannot be undermined. A 40-day-yoga camp reported a significant reduction in BMI and anxiety.  The Ayurvedgrams have been directed to select volunteers for the village who shall carry forward the yoga activities. Studies have reported that pranayam helps in cardioacceleration.  Sympathetic reactivity is also known to be reduced after 7-day yoga training and is advocated for bronchial asthma patients. , A 3-month study in pranayam training modules has shown that there is increased parasympathetic activity and decreased sympathetic activity. It has also been noted that practice of pranayam modulates cardiac autonomic status and improves cardio-respiratory functions.  Another 6-weeks course in pranayam studied ventilatory lung functions before and after the practice. They had improved ventilatory functions in the form of lowered respiratory rate (RR), and increases in the forced vital capacity (FVC), and prolongation of breath holding time.  Innes and Vincent (2006) documented that yoga-based programs suggest beneficial changes in several risk indices, including glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity, lipid profiles, anthropometric characteristics, blood pressure, oxidative stress, coagulation profiles, sympathetic activation, and pulmonary function, as well as improvement in specific clinical outcomes.  WHO document that participation in regular physical activity reduces the risk of coronary heart disease and stroke, diabetes, hypertension, colon cancer, breast cancer, and depression. Additionally, physical activity is a key determinant of energy expenditure, and thus is fundamental to energy balance and weight control. The dual burden of disease in India, that is the burgeoning noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) and the prevailing communicable diseases are posing a significant challenge to the constrained health resources. Cost-effective practices like yoga and pranayam promoted at mass level should be viewed as a mechanism in primordial prevention of NCDs.
An initiative like an annual 5-day-yoga camp is a giant leap in trying to inculcate healthy ageing practices by the State among the people. Yoga may be an effective mode of reducing disease burden and DALYs (disability adjusted life years) of NCDs. Government initiatives in adapting healthy traditional lifestyles assure political will toward a healthy State. Long-term impact of such camps needs to be appraised through scientific studies.
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