Can Yoga Cause Positional Vertigo

Introduction to Positional Vertigo

Positional vertigo is a type of dizziness and is a symptom of a balance disorder. It is caused by a disruption in the inner ear and its component parts, the semicircular canals which are responsible for detecting motion, orientation, and head position. Its main characteristic symptom is a spinning sensation that is most intense when changing position such as turning the head in bed or getting up from sitting or lying down. Other symptoms may accompany positional vertigo including nausea, vomiting, lightheadedness, difficulty concentrating, or adjustments necessary to maintain balance.

Positional vertigo occurs when the fluid (endolymph) within the semicircular canals becomes unbalanced due to changes in pressure or displacement of particles in the fluid known as otoconia. Common causes for this displacement include head trauma, infections inside the ear canal (such as labyrinthitis), benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV), Meniere’s disease, adverse drug reactions, reduced vascular supply to the labyrinth due to lack of oxygenation (ischemia) or age-related degeneration.

Identifying positional vertigo requires professional medical care since there are many types and causes associated with it. A thorough medical history and physical exam by an audiologist will evaluate signs and symptoms of muscular and peripheral diseases related to vertigo. Additionally specialized tests such as electronystagmography -a method that uses electrodes placed around your eyes to measure eye movements while you recline with blood pressure cuff inflation on both arms -can help determine if posational vertigo is present. Treatments vary depending on what underlying medical condition is causing it but generally involve medications such as antiemetics, mild tranquilizers or physical therapy exercises like repositioning maneuvers for BPPV. In some cases surgery may be required if other treatments prove unsuccessful.

Benefits of Yoga

Yoga can provide numerous physical benefits, including improved flexibility and balance, as well as enhanced breathing. Practicing yoga can help to improve posture, enhance muscle strength and tone, reduce body fat percentage, and increase lung capacity. Yoga can also have positive psychological and emotional benefits. A regular practice of yoga can reduce stress levels, relieve anxiety and depression, induce a state of relaxation, improve self-awareness and empathy towards others, and cultivate self-acceptance. In terms of emotional wellbeing, subjects reported feeling an increased sense of peace after following a regular yoga routine. Additionally, it has been proven that following a regular practice of yoga can lead to improvements in concentration due to its mindfulness aspect. Overall, the practice of yoga promotes an overall sense of wellbeing which helps practitioners re-align with their bodies in a deeper way.

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Can Yoga Cause Positional Vertigo

Yes, yoga can cause positional vertigo. The potential risk factors vary depending on the type of poses one is engaging in, since certain poses involve a rapid change in head positioning. This abrupt movement can lead to a disruption of the ear’s balance system and the inner ear pathways which control equilibrium or sense of balance. As a result, this jarring movement can cause a type of dizziness called benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV). BPPV occurs when calcium crystals become displaced within the inner ear canal and lead to an intense bout of dizziness or spinning sensation. It is important to note that different poses may put individuals at risk for developing vertigo, so it is best to be mindful of the types of poses you perform until you become more comfortable with them. Additionally, if you have been diagnosed with a current condition involving your ears or vestibular system, it may be wise to limit your yoga practice or speak with your doctor before continuing.

Complicated Movements

Yoga poses that require complicated movements such as sudden head or body turns, bends and stretches, forward folds, and inversions can trigger positional vertigo. Particularly for those with a balance disorder or inner ear problem, certain poses may be more prone to triggering an attack of positional vertigo. For example, poses like head stands and shoulder stands which require the practitioner to turn the head in a way that flips the inner ear apparatus upside down can exacerbate positional vertigo symptoms. Utkatasana (Chair Pose) which causes the practitioner to bend forward while keeping their head upright is also known to trigger positional vertigo episodes. Other poses that involve bends, twists and inversions are mainly ones to avoid if you have positional vertigo.

Proper Posture & Awareness

Yes, yoga can cause positional vertigo. Proper form and awareness of potential warning signs is key when practicing yoga. Ensuring that you maintain proper alignment and posture in each pose will help minimize the risk of positional vertigo. It is important to be aware of any dizziness or disorientation you may feel while in a yoga pose, as these sensations could be an indication of positional vertigo. Additionally, maintaining proper respiration by deeply inhaling and exhaling with each movement can help reduce any inner ear pressure that can aggravate positional vertigo. Paying attention to your body, remaining conscious of potential warning signs, and taking deep breaths throughout practice will ultimately help you remain safe while doing yoga.

Regular Check-Ins With Instructor

When practicing yoga, having an experienced instructor regularly check-in can be immensely beneficial. Instructors are trained to spot potential postural issues that could lead to positional vertigo, and they can help correct them so that you have proper form. By monitoring postures, instructors can also suggest modifications or alternatives if a move is putting too much strain on the body. Additionally, instructors are great resources for answering questions or offering guidance to ensure your yoga session is injury-free and comfortable. Regular check-ins with an instructor can ensure that you are making correct and healthy body movements while maximizing the benefits of your practice.

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Positional vertigo is a condition in which a person experiences dizziness and loss of balance due to changes in their head position. While doing yoga, it is important to be aware of how poses or movements may affect one’s risk of positional vertigo. Practicing mindful stretching and avoiding activities that involve extreme head rotations can help reduce the risk of positional vertigo while doing yoga. It is also important to avoid over-stretching and more strenuous poses such as headstands or back bends that involve sudden transitions between positions. Taking regular breaks during the practice session may also help reduce the risk of positional dizziness or vertigo. Exposure to direct sunlight or bright lights may also have an effect on symptoms of positional vertigo, so practicing yoga away from direct sunlight can be beneficial as well.


Yes, it is possible that yoga can cause positional vertigo. People should be aware of certain yoga poses that involve rapid head movements and sudden changes in position as these can cause a disruption of the tiny crystals in the inner ear which can lead to positional vertigo. Additionally, people with known physical conditions or those who are taking medications should discuss these with their doctor before performing any of the aforementioned poses. To protect against positional vertigo while doing yoga, people should make sure to perform poses slowly and carefully, take breaks often, and make sure to pay attention to any signs or symptoms of positional vertigo before continuing.

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