Yoga might seem like an extremely intimidating practice, especially if all you have been exposed to are high-level poses like handstands or even headstands. However, there are many types of yoga. Whether you are looking for something that builds strength, flexibility, mindfulness, or even just to sweat it out in an intense exercise session, there will be an option for you.
Whether you choose to learn yoga through an exclusive senior living program or by yourself in your own bedroom, there are many benefits to practicing yoga for aging adults. Read on to find out more.
Yoga Helps to Reduce Anxiety
Although old age and retirement should be about enjoying life to its fullest, there are definitely a set of difficult challenges that come with growing older. With these challenges may even come a sense of anxiety, worry, or even frustration.
Yoga practices help with this. Hatha yoga in particular encourages a sense of mindfulness through a slow-paced routine of different standing and sitting poses. This form of yoga focuses on breathing and stretching, making it perfect for both beginners and those looking to slow down in life. Through the different slow movements and mindful breath focus, it can trigger your parasympathetic nervous system to relax, alleviating the effects of anxiety and stress. Furthermore, the act of listening to your body and being mindful of the movement of each breath in and out of your body will allow you to practice greater mindfulness and awareness of your own body, thoughts, and emotions. This expanded awareness of Self will enable for greater self-soothing and management of negative emotions and circumstances.
Yoga can Enhance Your Respiratory Ability
If you are able to understand Sanskrit, you would know that the word used to refer to breathwork in yoga – Pranayama – can be easily taken to mean “to control your life force”. This is representative of the importance of our breath and breathing patterns in our daily life. Even though much of our breathing is involuntary and subconscious, it only takes a few minutes without the intake of breath before someone passes out.
With age, our physical exertion levels, and respiratory fitness declines. However, the reduction of oxygen within our bodies is detrimental to many bodily functions. By practicing Pranayama in yoga, you can learn how to have greater control over your breath, and in turn, greater control over your body.
Yoga can Improve Joint Health and Flexibility
As we age, our bone mineral density decreases alongside the decline of many other physical conditions. It will be easier to feel body aches or even to feel stiff and inflexible. Yoga is able to help through different forms that encourage flexibility. In choosing a type of yoga that is low impact and restorative, you can tone and strengthen your muscles while also relaxing and toning them. This can prevent muscle injuries and reduce overall body aches.
If you or your loved ones are looking for ways to improve your quality of life while participating in fun and enjoyable activities, consider our independent senior living community. Contact us to find out more.