It’s not the most uplifting piece of information you’re ever going to receive but as we get older there are, potentially, a few conditions and diseases coming our way. However, on a much more positive note, by practicing yoga as part of our self care routine in some cases we can slow or prevent the onset of some of these.
Heart – High Cholesterol & Heart Disease
How yoga can help. It has long been known that exercise plays an important role in keeping ourselves heart healthy. Staying mobile and incorporating physical exercise into our daily routine is critical to our long term health. Incorporating a yoga practice of asanas (physical poses) in to our daily routine can help. A moderate vinyasa (flowing) class practiced a few times a week will keep the heart rate up for a cardiovascular workout but even a slower paced practice also has its benefits as it encourages physical activity. The meditation element of a yoga practice can also reduce the effects of stress and anxiety and its impact on heart health.
Lungs – Chronic Respiratory Diseases
How yoga can help. The breathing exercises which form part of a well rounded yoga practice can help to improve lung capacity. With yoga’s attention to breath techniques and posture the ribcage becomes more expansive and the diaphragm moves more freely enabling the lungs to work more efficiently.
With a regular yoga practice we can support ourselves and, in some cases, slow or prevent the onset of some conditions and diseases.
Mind – Stress & Depression
How yoga can help. Through the practices of mindfulness and meditation the mind can quieten and negative thought patterns that can fuel stress and anxiety may be managed more effectively. Many yoga instructors will incorporate an element of mindfulness or guided meditation into a class or, alternatively, it’s well worth giving a dedicated meditation class a try.
Bones – Osteoporosis & Arthritis
How yoga can help. There are many conditions that affect the bones as we age, the more common ones being osteoporosis and arthritis. The weight bearing poses of a regular yoga practice can help reduce the risks of bone degeneration caused by osteoporosis. Moving fluidly through physical poses helps keeps the body moving and maintains the range of motion in the joints which is beneficial for those who may be affected by arthritis.
Although this is just a small sample of the benefits of yoga and age related conditions it does illustrate the value of a yoga practice as a worthwhile health care investment.
Make this the year you discover the life enhancing affects of yoga by giving your local class or yoga studio a try.
As with all online health related research, be sure to get the ok from your doctor before embarking upon any new fitness regime 🙂