Frozen Shoulder & Locked Knee

Frozen shoulder

In the world of holistic healing, Ayurveda stands out as an ancient system of medicine that offers profound insights into various health conditions. Two prevalent issues that individuals often encounter are frozen shoulder and locked knee. In this article, we delve into the depths of Ayurvedic perspectives on these concerns, exploring their causes, symptoms, and the intricate ways Ayurveda approaches their treatment.

Ayurveda, the “science of life,” has a unique perspective on health issues. Frozen shoulder and locked knee, though seemingly disparate, share common ground in Ayurveda. Understanding these conditions from an Ayurvedic lens opens doors to holistic and personalized healing.

Understanding Frozen Shoulder

Frozen shoulder, medically known as adhesive capsulitis, involves stiffness and pain in the shoulder joint. Ayurveda attributes this condition to an imbalance in the Vata dosha, affecting joint movements and causing discomfort. It is known as Avabahuka in Ayurveda. 

A. Causes 

The specific causes of a frozen shoulder, according to Ayurveda, may include:
1. Accumulation of Ama:
   – The presence of Ama, or toxins, in the body can disturb the balance of doshas and contribute to conditions like frozen shoulder. Ama accumulation is often linked to poor digestion and metabolism.
2. Vata Imbalance:
   – Excessive Vata dosha, characterized by qualities of dryness, coldness, and mobility, can lead to stiffness and constriction in the shoulder joint. This imbalance may be aggravated by factors such as irregular lifestyle, stress, or improper diet.
3. Poor Agni (Digestive Fire):
   – Weak digestion, resulting in poor Agni, can contribute to the accumulation of undigested food particles and toxins. This may trigger an imbalance in the doshas, particularly Vata, and manifest as frozen shoulder.
4. Injury or Trauma:
   – Physical trauma or injury to the shoulder region can disrupt the flow of energy and contribute to Vata imbalance, potentially leading to a frozen shoulder.
5. Lack of Lubrication:
   – Reduced synovial fluid or lubrication in the shoulder joint can result in friction and stiffness. Factors such as dehydration, poor circulation, or age-related changes may contribute to this lack of lubrication.
6. Sedentary Lifestyle:
   – Lack of regular movement and exercise can contribute to the accumulation of Vata dosha in the joints, including the shoulders. A sedentary lifestyle may exacerbate the risk of developing a frozen shoulder.
7. Emotional Factors:
   – Emotional stress and anxiety can influence the balance of doshas in the body. According to Ayurveda, unresolved emotional issues may contribute to the development of physical ailments, including frozen shoulder.
8. Improper Posture:
   – Incorrect posture during daily activities or while sitting can impact the alignment of the shoulders and contribute to stiffness over time.

B. Symptoms

  • Pain and Stiffness:

The affected shoulder experiences persistent pain, often described as a dull or throbbing ache. Stiffness in the joint is a common characteristic, making it challenging to move the arm freely.

  • Limited Range of Motion:

Individuals with a frozen shoulder may notice a significant reduction in the range of motion in the affected shoulder. This limitation can affect daily activities, including reaching overhead or behind the back.

  • Vata-Related Symptoms:

Ayurveda attributes frozen shoulder to Vata dosha imbalance. Therefore, symptoms associated with Vata, such as dryness, cracking sounds in the joints, and a feeling of coldness in the affected area, may be observed.

  • Aggravation with Weather Changes:

Vata imbalances are often influenced by changes in weather, particularly cold and dry conditions. Individuals with a frozen shoulder may experience an exacerbation of symptoms during such weather changes.

  • Pain Aggravation at Night:

Pain and discomfort in the shoulder joint may intensify during the night, disrupting sleep and causing discomfort.

  • Difficulty Sleeping on the Affected Side:

Due to pain and limited mobility, individuals may find it challenging to sleep on the side of the frozen shoulder.

  • Gradual Onset:

A frozen shoulder typically develops gradually, with symptoms worsening over time. The initial stages may involve mild discomfort and stiffness, progressing to more pronounced limitations in movement.

  • Painful Activities:

Certain activities that involve using the affected shoulder, such as lifting objects or reaching for items, can trigger pain and discomfort.

  • Associated Muscle Tightness:

Muscles surrounding the shoulder joint may become tight and tense as a result of the limited movement, contributing to the overall discomfort.


Understanding Locked Knee

A locked knee, a condition where the knee joint temporarily seizes, finds its roots in Ayurveda’s understanding of body constitution and dosha imbalances.

A. Causes:

  • Accumulation of Ama (Toxins): – Ama, or accumulated toxins in the body, can contribute to joint stiffness. Poor digestion and improper elimination can lead to the formation of Ama, affecting the joints, including the knee.
  • Poor Lubrication of Joints: – Inadequate synovial fluid, which lubricates the joints, can result in friction and stiffness. Vata imbalance can reduce the natural lubrication in the knee joint.
  • Inflammation (Pitta Imbalance): – Pitta dosha, when aggravated, can lead to inflammation in the joints. In the knee, this inflammation can cause swelling and restrict movement.
  • Kapha Imbalance: – While less common, an aggravated Kapha dosha may contribute to joint stiffness. Kapha governs structure and stability in the body, and imbalance can lead to heaviness and congestion in the joints.
  • Injury or Trauma: – Physical injuries or trauma to the knee, such as fractures or dislocations, can disrupt the natural movement of the joint, causing stiffness.
  • Poor Circulation: – Reduced blood circulation to the knee joint can impact the supply of nutrients and oxygen, contributing to stiffness.
  • Age-related Changes: – Natural aging processes can lead to wear and tear of the joints, including the knee. This can result in conditions like osteoarthritis, leading to joint stiffness.

B. Symptoms

Locked knees often result from aggravated Vata and Kapha doshas, causing stiffness and difficulty in bending or straightening the knee.

Ayurvedic Treatment for Frozen Shoulder & Locked Knee

A. Commonalities in Ayurvedic Treatment

Ayurvedic treatments for both frozen shoulder and locked knee share common threads. Holistic healing, focusing on the individual’s overall well-being, involves dietary modifications, lifestyle changes, and specialized therapies.

B. Dietary Modification 

1. Anti-Inflammatory Foods: – Include foods with anti-inflammatory properties, such as ginger, turmeric, garlic, and green leafy vegetables. These help reduce inflammation in the joints.

2. Warm and Nourishing Foods: – Choose warm and nourishing foods that pacify Vata dosha. Incorporate soups, stews, cooked grains, and warm beverages.

3. Healthy Fats: – Consume healthy fats like ghee, sesame oil, and olive oil. These fats support joint lubrication and reduce dryness.

4. Omega-3 Fatty Acids: – Include sources of omega-3 fatty acids, such as flaxseeds, chia seeds, and fatty fish, to support joint health and reduce inflammation.

5. Avoid Cold and Raw Foods: – Minimize the intake of cold and raw foods, as they can aggravate Vata dosha and contribute to joint stiffness. Opt for cooked and warm meals.

6. Herbal Teas: – Drink herbal teas with anti-inflammatory herbs like ginger, turmeric, and cinnamon.

C. Lifestyle Modifications:

1. Regular Exercise: – Engage in gentle and regular exercise to maintain joint flexibility. Yoga and tai chi are beneficial for improving range of motion.

2. Warm Compress: – Apply a warm compress or hot water bag to the affected joint to reduce stiffness and promote circulation.

3. Avoid Overexertion: – Avoid excessive or repetitive movements that may strain the joints. Practice moderation in physical activities.

4. Maintain a Healthy Weight: – Achieve and maintain a healthy weight to reduce the load on joints and prevent additional stress on the affected areas.

5. Adequate Rest: – Ensure proper rest and sleep to allow the body to heal and recover. Maintain a regular sleep schedule.

6. Stress Management: – Practice stress-reducing techniques like meditation and deep breathing to manage overall well-being.


D. Ayurvedic Medicines: 

1. Maharasnadi Kwath:

Maharasnadi Kwath is a classical Ayurvedic formulation known for its anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties. It is often prescribed to alleviate joint pain and stiffness.

2. Yogaraja Guggulu:

Yogaraja Guggulu is a traditional Ayurvedic remedy that helps balance Vata dosha and supports joint health. It contains a blend of herbs known for their anti-inflammatory effects.

3. Simhanada Guggulu:

Simhanada Guggulu is commonly used in Ayurveda for managing joint disorders. It helps in reducing inflammation, promoting flexibility, and relieving pain.

4. Shallaki (Boswellia serrata):

Shallaki, or Boswellia serrata, is an herb known for its anti-inflammatory properties. It can be used internally to support joint health and reduce inflammation in conditions like frozen shoulder.

5. Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera):

Ashwagandha is an adaptogenic herb that may be recommended to reduce stress and support overall well-being. Stress management is crucial in Ayurveda for preventing and managing joint issues.

6. Dashamoola Arishta:

Dashamoola Arishta is a fermented Ayurvedic preparation containing the ten roots formula. It is used to balance Vata dosha, improve joint health, and enhance overall vitality.

7. Mahanarayana Taila:

Mahanarayana Taila is a traditional Ayurvedic oil used for external application. Massaging this oil onto the affected joint can help reduce stiffness and improve flexibility.

8. Gandharvahastadi Thaila:

Gandharvahastadi Thaila is another Ayurvedic oil formulation that can be applied externally to the affected joints. It helps in relieving pain and promoting joint mobility.

E. Ayurvedic Therapies 

Here are some Ayurvedic therapies that may be recommended:

1. Abhyanga (Oil Massage):

Abhyanga involves massaging the affected joint with warm Ayurvedic oils. This therapy helps improve blood circulation, reduce stiffness, and nourish the joint tissues. Sesame oil or Mahanarayana oil is commonly used.

2. Pinda Sweda (Bolus Massage):

Pinda Sweda involves massaging the affected area with boluses filled with medicated herbs and rice cooked in herbal decoctions. This therapy helps reduce pain, inflammation, and stiffness.

3. Janu Basti (Knee Oil Pool):

In Janu Basti, a ring-shaped reservoir is created on the knee joint, and warm medicated oil is poured into it. This helps in lubricating the joint, reducing pain, and improving mobility.

4. Greeva Basti (Neck Oil Pool):

Similar to Janu Basti, Greeva Basti focuses on the neck and shoulder region. Warm medicated oil is pooled around the affected area to alleviate stiffness and discomfort.

5. Panchakarma Therapies:

Panchakarma procedures like Virechana (purification through purgation) and Basti (enema therapy) may be recommended under the guidance of an Ayurvedic practitioner to detoxify the body and balance doshas.

6. Lepa (Herbal Paste Application):

Local application of herbal pastes made from anti-inflammatory herbs can be beneficial. The paste is applied to the affected joint, left to dry, and then washed off.

7. Patra Pinda Sweda (Leaf Bolus Massage):

This therapy involves massaging the affected joint with boluses filled with herbal leaves, which are dipped in warm medicated oils. It helps in reducing pain and inflammation.

8. Dhanyamla Dhara (Medicated Grains Pouring):

In Dhanyamla Dhara, warm medicated liquid made from fermented cereals is poured over the affected area. This helps in reducing inflammation and improving joint mobility.

9. Basti Karma (Enema Therapy):

– Basti is a comprehensive enema therapy that involves the introduction of medicated substances through the rectum. It is used to balance doshas and promote overall health.

10. Marma Therapy 

– Marma are vital energy points which are located in our body. When we apply pressure on Marma, Energy releases from it which helps body to recover from diseases like Frozen shoulder and Locked knee.

Yoga and Exercises

Yoga and exercises can play a significant role in managing conditions like frozen shoulder and locked knee by improving joint flexibility, strengthening muscles, and promoting overall well-being. Here are some yoga postures and exercises that may be beneficial:

For Frozen Shoulder:

  • Pendulum Stretch: Gently sway the arm in a circular motion, allowing it to hang freely. This helps loosen the shoulder joint.
  • Cross-Body Reach: Use the opposite hand to gently lift and pull the affected arm across the body, stretching the shoulder.
  • External Rotation: Hold a rubber exercise band between the hands and rotate the affected arm outward against resistance.
  • Shoulder Flexor Stretch: Gently stretch the arm overhead with the assistance of the opposite hand, promoting flexibility.
  • Yoga Asanas (Poses): Gentle yoga poses like Tadasana (Mountain Pose), Gomukhasana (Cow Face Pose), and Garudasana (Eagle Pose) can aid in improving shoulder mobility.

For Locked Knee:

  • Quad Sets: Sit with legs extended and contract the quadriceps muscles, holding for a few seconds. This helps strengthen the muscles around the knee.
  • Heel Slides: While lying down, slide the heel towards the buttocks, bending the knee. This exercise promotes knee flexibility.
  • Straight Leg Raises: Lift the leg while lying down, keeping it straight. This exercise strengthens the quadriceps.
  • Hamstring Stretches: Gently stretch the hamstring muscles by sitting on the floor and reaching towards the toes while keeping the knee straight.
  • Yoga Asanas (Poses): Yoga poses like Virabhadrasana (Warrior Pose), Sukhasana (Easy Pose), and Setu Bandhasana (Bridge Pose) can help improve knee flexibility and strength.



    • Ayurveda has shown significant effectiveness in treating these conditions, with many individuals experiencing positive outcomes.
    • The timeline for results varies for each individual, but consistent adherence to Ayurvedic principles is key. Generally A week to six months are needed.
    • Ayurvedic therapies are generally safe, but consulting with a qualified practitioner ensures personalized and safe treatment.
    • Yes, by adopting Ayurvedic principles in daily life, individuals can reduce the risk of developing joint-related problems

Uniqueness of our therapies  

At Arogya Mandir – Shri Siddhanath Ayurvedic Hospital, Miraj, we delve deeply into the ayurvedic examination of each patient. Utilizing noninvasive Ayurvedic diagnostic tools such as Ashtavidha Parikshan and Nadi Parikshan, we precisely determine the pathogenesis of the disease and then prescribe therapies tailored to the specific condition. This approach leads to expedited results.

Our therapies boast the following distinctive features:
– Tranquil and hygienic therapy rooms staffed with trained therapists in a positive environment.
– Selection of appropriate massage oil based on the patient’s Prakruti and the condition of the disease.
– Complimentary Prakruti and Dhatu Sarata examinations before the commencement of therapies.
– Authenticated procedures for each therapy.
– Judicious use of herbal medicines and instruments during the therapy sessions.
– Specialized rooms equipped with all facilities for inpatient care.

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