Yoga

Excellent Benefits of Yoga for Seniors and Positions to Try

Old age comes with various perks, like wisdom and discounts. Unfortunately, it also presents physical and mental challenges that could be daunting to our elderly loved ones.  

Many life-threatening conditions tend to increase with age, which could further speed up if older adults don’t stay physically active. 

The good news is that we don’t have to push grandma and grandpa to hit the gym and lift weights. Yoga, in particular, has tons of benefits for older adults. 

Keep reading below for the many benefits of yoga for seniors and positions they can try. 

Improves Balance and Stability

Balance plays an important role even in minor day-to-day activities like climbing the stairs or standing up from bed. Losing it means it’s easier to trip and fall, resulting in injuries. Unfortunately, slips and falls could be fatal for seniors

Aging means less reactive nerves, which can affect balance. This can be further worsened by chronic medical conditions. 

Yoga helps strengthen core muscles in the pelvis, hips, and lower back, which provides balance and stability. That’s why a few yoga sessions a week will help seniors get better stability and reduce the chances of falls. 

Some of the best yoga poses for balance include: 

  • Mountain pose (Tadasana)
  • Tree pose (Vrikshasana)
  • Eagle pose (Garudasana)
  • Angled crescent lunge
  • Warrior II pose (Virabhadrasana II)

Enhances Flexibility 

Having stiff joints and muscles is common for most seniors. Yoga involves gentle movements that loosen and strengthen a person’s muscles, further promoting flexibility. The downward-facing dog (Adho mukha svanasana) is one of the best yoga poses that can loosen stiff joints and promote flexibility.

Alleviates Anxiety 

The transition from the nine-to-five life may be overwhelming to some older adults. They might begin worrying about health, financial stability, and isolation. Unfortunately, such existential distress in seniors could trigger various anxiety disorders

Yoga alleviates stress and anxiety through controlled breathing and calming movements that ease certain physical and mental tension.

Some of the best yoga poses to help with anxiety include: 

  • Tree pose (Vrikshasana)
  • Triangle pose (Trikonasana)
  • Child’s pose (Balasana)
  • Extended puppy pose (Uttana Shishosana)
  • Hero pose (Virasana)

Provides Better Sleep

Lack of sleep among seniors could trigger mental problems like depression, memory loss, and increased confusion. That’s why the incidence of insomnia is higher for older adults. 

Fortunately, yoga can help manage various symptoms of insomnia. It also enables seniors to fall asleep quicker and longer. Additionally, it allows them to enjoy good quality sleep. 

To attain a good night’s rest, older adults should try the following poses: 

  • Seated forward bend (Paschimottanasana)
  • Child’s pose (Balasana)
  • Happy baby (Ananda Balasana)
  • Legs up the wall pose (Viparita Karani)
  • Restorative bridge pose (Setu Bandha Sarvangasana) 

Achieve Excellent Mindfulness

Mindfulness refers to a certain state of mind reached during meditation. It’s when a person becomes conscious and connected to their environment. Additionally, it enables individuals to become increasingly aware of their current thoughts and emotions.

Becoming aware of such feelings allows the person to let go of any worries and problems they have. That’s why mindfulness is perfect for older adults transitioning to a life of old age. 

It’s one of the many reasons why yoga is encouraged for seniors at home or in quality assisted living facilities. Fortunately, most yoga poses help achieve mindfulness. 

Encourage Older Adults To Do Yoga 

Adjusting to old age can be overwhelming to seniors. Support their journey by encouraging them to do various activities, like yoga. 

Yoga is a beneficial exercise that helps improve an older adult’s overall physical and mental well-being. You never know what a few minutes of their day can do for the rest of their life. 

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