PACEMAKER - AND NOW?
Pacemaker - and now?
People frequently ask me whether ist is safe to practice yoga after the implantation of a pacemaker. Most recently, the question was posed like this: "As of late, my mother-in-law has a pacemaker. She has practiced yoga on a chair before and would like to start again now. Is that problematic? Is there anything to consider?"
First of all, there are many different reasons for implanting a pacemaker. On top of that, there are many different types of pacemakers. Fortunately, as yoga teachers, we don't have to worry about this. As always, the personality associated with the pacemaker is of higher importance to us. The person's age, level of fitness and state of health, as well as the accompanying illnesses they suffer from, which may limit physical performance. Generally, if there were no complications during the implantation or healing process, the pacemaker is a blessing for the person concerned, and it makes their life much safer.
Normally the pacemakers are implanted in the upper right or left side of the chest underneath the collar bone, into the soft tissue or within the anterior chest muscles. For all operated persons, it is important oo stay away from induction stoves and refrain from using mobile phones on the side where the pacemaker sits. The first three months are vital to the completion of the healing of soft tissue, all movements above shoulder height should be performed with much care. The pacemaker and the scar tissue need time to heal, but with time, one can safely increase the extent of movement step by step. The full range of motion of the shoulder joint and the strength of chest and shoulder muscles are often restored entirely. As far as yoga is concerned, every patient may slowly begin to resume their normal extent of motion in movements in in both, everyday life and on the mat after three month of successful implantation. Also, strength and endurance of the shoulder girdle and of course the whole body should then be restored. One should still pay close attention to any feelings of pain or discomfort, and refrain from movements that induce them. Overall, a person's performance on the mat is more dependent on the overall fitness and age, than on the fact they have a pacemaker. In conclusion: No worries!!