Benefits of Yoga for Seniors
Yoga is an ancient practice that holds benefits for people of all ages -- from children/teens all the way up to seniors. The great thing about yoga is that it is low impact and can be easily modified to accommodate all body types and abilities. For seniors, a regular yoga practice could be the secret to maintaining a healthy, mobile body into your golden years.
For senior specifically, yoga has benefits for maintaining virility and flexibility for both body and mind. You’re never too old and it’s never too late to start a yoga practice. Find a teacher or class that caters to seniors and/or beginners, and you’ll find your body quickly adapts.
Here are some of the benefits of a yoga practice for an older student:
Low-impact regular exercise. As we age, our bodies can sometimes not handle the impact and stress of high-intensity workouts like running, aerobics, or weight lifting. Yoga is a low impact exercise that places minimal stress on joints. Senior can enjoy the benefits of regular exercise -- like a reduction in risk of death and chronic disease -- without the higher risk of energy.
Increased strength. Strength training is one of the most important things you can do to avoid injury and broken bones as a senior -- but sometimes weightlifting can be too much. Yoga strengthens the body by moving around it’s own body weight -- reducing risk of injury while also strengthening muscles and bones. One study showed that seniors who performed strength training twice a week reduced the risk of death by 46% and 19% reduction in cancer deaths.
Improved bone health. Yoga is not only safe for seniors with osteoporosis, but it has been shown in some studies to actually reverse bone loss. One study took bone density scans for two groups of people with the average age of 68. Those that practice yoga for two years showed no bone loss and many even gained bone. Those in the group that did not practice yoga showed bone loss.
Better flexibility and range of motion. Loss of flexibility and range of motion in older adults is a leading cause of falls and injury. The gentle stretching in yoga helps improve flexibility -- especially in the spine.
Mental clarity. A healthy body helps support a healthy mind, so regular exercise like yoga can help improve seniors overall mental clarity. One Japanese study followed a group of seniors aged 65 to 75 throughout a yoga program. The study concluded that practicing yoga significantly reduced anxiety and improved overall mental health for the senior group.
In summary, it’s time to start a yoga program -- no matter your age! At Corefitness we offer a variety of yoga classes for all ages and abilities including:
Yoga Essentials -- a basic class great for those looking to gain better posture, strength, and flexibility.
Gentle Yoga -- a class that focusing on breath exercises and gentle strength. Great for relaxation and stress relief.
Dharma Gentle Yoga -- a gentle class that is perfect for individuals coming into the practice from a sedentary lifestyle or recovering from an injury.
Contact us today to learn more or get enrolled in a yoga program suited to you!