Are you on the hunt for low impact exercise ideas that will help lower your risk for common killers like heart disease? If you have been interested in yoga but hadn’t worked up the nerve to “hit the mat” yet, don’t miss this quick guide:
What is Yoga for Seniors?
Yoga at its core is an ancient practice in breathing, stretching, meditation, and guided poses. Originating in eastern culture, yoga made its way to the U.S. in the late 20th century, building quite a following across the country as different modalities and styles were developed and specialized studios popped up in more and more places.
Yoga has been adapted for seniors specifically by incorporating more seated movements for those with mobility issues, as well as gentler and more educated approaches to limit joint stress and other common age-related ailments. Common yoga styles for seniors include:
Chair yoga – practiced entirely with the use of a chair, either to sit on or support yourself with, this type of yoga incorporates poses that are modified for seniors who cannot bear weight for long periods of time on their legs.
Water yoga – yoga in a pool is the name of this style’s game and offers a weightless, low-impact practice that is hard to find anywhere else.
Restorative yoga – spend extended periods of time practicing stillness and aligning the body and mind in this yoga style that embraces mental wellbeing.
What are the Benefits of Yoga for Seniors?
In addition to offering generous physical exercise for seniors, routine yoga practice also touts a handful of health benefits including:
Lowered blood pressure
Senior yoga can be adapted for older adults with a range of ailments including arthritis, diabetes, mobility issues, and even Alzheimer’s.
Where Can I Find a Senior Yoga Class?
Because of the continued boom of the retiree demographic, more and more yoga classes are being offered to seniors in a variety of environments. You can look for senior classes at your area senior or community recreation center as well as at boutique yoga studios, fitness gyms, health clubs, and even within your own retirement community.
If you would rather see what senior yoga is all about at home, try streaming free instructional yoga videos online either on your computer, tablet, smartphone, or smart TV. You can conduct a quick search for “senior yoga tutorial” on Youtube.com or check sites like DoYogaWithMe.com.