Kalari is an ancient martial arts discipline that originated in south India. Contained within the discipline are unique healing techniques and exercises, which are extra to medical, yoga and alternative therapies. As a result the range of options from which to access treatment for rare and hereditary ailments is widened.
At present KTOA is the only method other than Knee Replacement Therapy for treatment of Osteoarthritis (OA). It consists of a series of exercises and it is complemented with select yoga poses, which comprise a session of KTOA.
Kalari Namaskar Asana 60° (KNA 60°) - It strenthens the whole leg and muscles of the feet consequently body weight is better distributed. The strengthened muscles take the body weight that was bearing down on the knees consequently the cartilages are enabled to repair and perhaps even become reconstituted. Additionally, the pose induces lightness on the feet consequently the body is trimmed and streamlined.
The poses are suitable for all OA patients regardless of duration of ailment. It has no side effects, in fact it has extra effects hence it may be adapted into our regular physical fitness routines. Kalari poses fit in with the concept of Ageless Yoga Therapy because it makes us 'light on the feet'.
Impact of kalari poses
When we begin KTOA the muscles of the thighs calves and ankles gain strength, offsetting the load the bones and cartilages were carrying. For the duration of therapy the cartilages get a timeout during which to recuperate and reconstitute without stress bearing down on the knees. After making progress the cartilages are capable of taking more weight, however, lifelong practice of the poses may be necessary to prevent relapses. A crucial reason for lifelong practice is because the cartilages take time to reconstitute. Symptoms like pain and locking disappear initially, giving us back our quality of walk but it does not mean the cartilage is fully healed. In some cases this may take a few years, which is all the more reason for lifelong practice.
Bujangasana/cobra pose - The raised head and torso are supported by the hips buttocks and thighs whereas the hands only provide balance. When the muscles become strong the bones carry less weight, reducing wear and tear of bones and cartilages.
KTOA makes us light on the feet by spreading body weight evenly between the hips thighs knees calves and ankles.After a period of regular practice we may observe that body weight has decreased and it has become more streamlined.
Utda padasana/raised leg pose - In the customized version the yogi lies perpendicular to the wall and both legs are placed against the wall. It enables holding the pose for a longer duration, about 2-3 minutes, which helps lower inflammation at the knees.
An extra effect when Kalari and Yoga poses are combined is dimensional. When we commence the process of detaching and shifting body & mind from genetic template or dual dimension (DD) to template of consciousness or aligned dimension (AD) we become light and enlightened. The seamless balance obtained after yoga with the template of consciousness takes the concept of lightness on the feet to an altogether different and ethereal level. Kalari + Yoga + template of consciousness is a process by which to symbolically emulate the idea of weightlessness, which is a characteristic of consciousness.
Drdasana/sideways relaxation pose - This is another multiple effects pose like shalabasana and dwi padasana. It relaxes the carotid artery and the veins at the sides of the neck, making it seem designed especially for treatment of Parkinson's disease. It is a substitute for shavasana, which pose an OA patient may not hold for any duration. The duration of drdasana is not more than 5-10 minutes whereas shavasana may take 30 minutes therefore it is a good option with which to end a session when short of time. And the pose is included in the combination with which prostate gland condition may be treated.