I challenge you to describe something more relaxing than a nice, long stretch when you wake up, after you get home from a long day at work, or after a rewarding workout. Doesn’t get much better than that! As we age, there is a much greater need to maintain a proper fitness routine that will be gentle on our joints and muscles. Believe it or not, yoga is one of the easiest ways to mix up your workout routine – especially if you’re a senior! While often misunderstood, yoga is one of the top low-impact workouts that will give you long-lasting results. As much as exercise and physical activity is important, it is equally important to the time to meditate and slow things down, which is where yoga comes in! The key ingredient to make the most out of your yoga routine is to give yourself plenty of time to relax and breathe deeply. Here are 3 easy yoga moves for seniors to get you started!
The Mountain Pose: As you age, your bones, joints and muscles lose density, and it takes much longer to regenerate to keep you movin’ and shakin’! To combat this, our bodies evolve in various ways to perform simple tasks like walking, and balancing on one foot! Speaking of balance, there are various yoga positions that can help in training yourself to improve your balance! Here is one of our favorites, the mountain pose, which works to strengthen the spinal column and various muscles in the leg.
Step by Step:
- Stand up tall and straight with both feet together.
- Relax your shoulders
- Focus on distributing the tension and weight you feel down to your feet
- Relax your arms besides your body
- Take a deep breath
- Raise up your hands straight over your head, with your palms facing each other
- Reach up toward the sky with your fingertips and smile!
- Exhale 🙂
The Seated Twist
Even if you are not familiar with yoga, you have most likely done this once or twice, especially because it feels so good! The seated twist helps increase flexibility and stretches so many parts of your body, from the shoulders and back, down to your hips! As we age, we need to maintain flexibility to keep our circulation in check. The seated twist is great for this, and can also shape your abs and strengthen your core. We couldn’t think of a more relaxing way to fit in an ab workout!
Step by Step:
- Sit on a flat floor and extend your lefts
- Cross your right foot over the left leg and place the foot by the side of the thigh
- Bend your left knee, and as you do so, keep your right knee pointed up towards the ceiling
- Next, place your left elbow on your right knee and the other hand on the floor behind you
- Twist your body to the right as far as you can go
- Hold for one minute
- Now, switch sides!
- Practice this every day to improve your flexibility in your upper and lower back
The secret to a happy life is rewarding yourself each and every day, and yoga is definitely the perfect way to do it! While we have several positions that we love to do that help us relax, there is one in particular that does the job – child’s pose. We are all still children inside, which is why this pose is particular is an ideal way to channel your inner 5-year old. This pose doesn’t require too much effort of course, but provides an amazing boost of energy while helping you wind down for the day. Try doing this in the morning and before you go to sleep.
Step by Step:
- Sit down on the floor with your bottom on your heels
- Bend over onto the ground, and rest your head on the ground
- Focus on resting your chest on your knees and thighs
- Reach out and extend your arms
- Inhale deeply
- Exhale, and stretch each muscle out towards the tips of your fingers
Overall, practicing yoga a few times each week will help you keep up with an effective workout routine! Once you start realizing that this is time you should pay to develop both your body and mind, you’ll notice results in no time. These three yoga positions are ideal for seniors as they are low-impact and help regenerate the body in ways that a long workout at the gym couldn’t do in quite the same way. Once you perfect these moves, try more! Remember, it’s not a race, but it will pay off big-time in the future. There are plenty of senior yoga routines out there on YouTube that will allow you to switch up your routine from time to time, and hopefully will get you motivated to try something new when each and every day!