Yoga can be a powerful and amazing practice to incorporate into your life, regardless of your age. If you are someone who has been active their whole life, the aging process doesn’t have to put a stop to all pf your movement. As we get older, certain exercises become more taxing on the body – weight lifting, cycling and running are some common offenders. Yoga is gentle enough for everyone and can even help reverse common health conditions and aches and pains. The human body is designed for movement, so it’s crucial you incorporate something that feels good for you in your daily life.
In a culture that glorifies multitasking and constant hustling, many of us work ourselves into the ground and face potential burnout. It’s a constant cycle of never-ending to-do lists and 50 plus hour work weeks. Exercise tends to go on the back burner when it should be a priority for the sake of health and longevity. We forget to have fun and enjoy life and we especially forget to just stop and be still. As we get older, we only get busier and take on more responsibilities. That’s why it’s so important to instill healthy habits at a young age that will carry over into your golden years.
The good news is, even if you are someone who is embarrassed to admit the last time you saw the inside of a yoga studio or a gym, our bodies are highly adaptable. With a little practice and consistency, you can get into a routine full of movement that will make the whole aging process more enjoyable and healthier!
So how can we still reap the benefits of exercise without high-impact and high-intensity workouts that we loved so much when we were younger? Yoga. It’s the safest and most effective workout for an aging body. Here are a few reasons why:
1. Yoga helps with sleep quality and cognitive function – Any type of exercise is favored for mental sharpness and brain function. Studies have shown that elderly people who practice yoga regularly showed improved memory and attention spans. Yoga specifically is gentle enough for men and women of all ages and can help prevent potential health issues like Alzheimer’s and Dementia.
2. Yoga decreases risk of depression – Depression is very common in the aging population and yoga can serve as a stress reliever for difficult times. Learning how to relax in poses will translate into all other aspects of your life. It will make it easier for you to transition into a calm frame of mind when you are faced with sadness or discontent.
3. Yoga improves mobility, balance and flexibility – If you’re someone who can barely touch their toes, you’re not alone. As we age, our flexibility and range of motion decreases and that’s where yoga can be an amazing tool. Certain asanas, or yoga poses, improve joint flexibility and can also help with any balance issues. Better balance means less risk of falls, a common cause of injury for older adults.