Keep Active with Yoga During Healthy Aging Month!
Many believe that yoga is only for the young and agile, but the truth is that people of all ages can enjoy the mental and physical health benefits of yoga – including seniors! Yoga can play a crucial role in living your best life as you age. Strength building, stress reduction, and flexibility are just a few benefits yoga can bring to seniors.
In honor of Healthy Aging Month and National Yoga Awareness Month, we have compiled ten reasons for seniors to try yoga:
Yoga Strengthens Your Core
There are many yoga poses that focus on strengthening abdominal muscles, which can lead to improved core stability. For seniors, practicing yoga can help maintain greater balance and prevent the likelihood of a dangerous fall. Yoga can significantly benefit those who suffer from limited mobility because it often results in more independence and confidence.
It’s Low Impact
Yoga is a form of low-impact exercise, meaning that you can enjoy its benefits without putting strain on your body. Seniors who suffer from joint pain or osteoporosis are perfect candidates for yoga, as it does not require exerting a great deal of physical strength or pose a high risk of injury.
People With Limited Mobility Can Do It Too
Chair yoga allows seniors to practice the benefits of yoga while in a seated position. This alternative enables you to continue enjoying a healthy motion for those who cannot walk easily or at all.
Chair yoga can be performed from virtually anywhere and is simple to learn. For instance, the seated forward fold is a gentle sequence where you sit with your hands on your thighs, breathe in, and fold forward as your hips as you exhale, draping your body over your legs and sliding your hands down to the floor. After allowing your body to hang over your legs as your neck and head relax, breathe in, and slowly return to your starting position.
Some Forms of Yoga Can Help Maintain a Healthy Weight
More active forms of yoga can help seniors maintain a healthier weight, which can further support healthy bodily function and encourage mobility. According to Healthline, intense styles of yoga such as hot Vinyasa and power yoga can burn the most calories. Regularly practicing yoga may help develop muscle tone, which can also result in improved metabolism.
It Can Reduce Pain
Chronic pain is often unavoidable for older adults, but it can be managed with yoga. Yoga can help the body move healthily and reduce pains from chronic bone and muscle conditions by improving strength, flexibility, and mobility. A carefully performed set of yoga poses can reduce lower back pain and improve cognitive function. It can also reduce stress, lower heart rate, and reduce insomnia, which can lead to a higher quality of life.
It Can Reduce Stress
Older adults may underestimate how much tension they carry in their neck, shoulders, and upper back. Yoga is an excellent option for reducing such pressure through stretching. Yoga is also often revered for its relaxing atmosphere, further working to eliminate depression and anxiety.
It Can Lead to More Restful Sleep
Insomnia is common in seniors and is often caused by nagging stress or pain. However, yoga can help individuals sleep easier without as much pain or stress in life, resulting in better mental and physical health over time. If you or your loved one has trouble unwinding, releasing the tension, and sleeping, yoga is a great way to heighten the chances of more restful sleep.
It Can Help Increase Social Interaction
Yoga offers a fantastic opportunity for socializing, which is necessary for helping seniors maintain levels of happiness and self-esteem. Yoga classes can provide a social environment where older adults interact while exercising, allowing them to build a sense of community and share mutual interests with others.
Yoga Can Be Practiced Alone
One of the best benefits of yoga is that seniors can practice it together or by themselves. The internet offers many instructional videos and articles that seniors can use to supplement their in-person classes or try at home. Practicing yoga at home extends you the freedom to further customize your personal fitness goals.
Yoga Can Be Done Anywhere
Whether you’re on vacation with loved ones, relaxing at home, or prefer to go to a yoga studio or gym, you can do your yoga routine almost anywhere as long as you have your yoga mat with you. If you enjoy yoga, you don’t have to worry about messing up your routine just because you are not where you usually practice it.
These are just a few of the reasons that seniors should give yoga a try this month. If you’re not already making conscious choices to healthily move your body during Healthy Aging Month, make it a point to try practicing yoga in honor of National Yoga Awareness Month. Contact Ohioans Home Healthcare today if you have any questions about how home healthcare can support your healthy aging process.