Thursday, March 11, 2010

Chair Yoga & Yoga for Older Adults

We're gearing up for our next session of Chair Yoga (starting April 9). This class is so much fun to teach - I love the social atmosphere, the "let's try something new" attitude and the awesome approach to a healthy lifestyle this group demonstrates.

Included in this group of Chair Yogis is my 85-year-old grandfather. He’s been missing his yoga so much since the Fall session that just last week he came to the studio for a private class. We practiced meditation and relaxation techniques, did supported asana (poses) and finished with a deep relaxation.

For many people, the idea of Chair Yoga or Yoga for Older Adults is pretty foreign. So I thought I'd offer an overview here...

This class is for anyone who wants to practice yoga but has limited mobility. Often this applies to older adults but it can also be great for people with conditions such as arthritis and fibromyalgia, regardless of age. During the class we use chairs as supportive props (using them to sit on or for support in some standing poses). The class begins with a relaxation to calm the mind and body. We practice breath techniques that enhance lung capacity and quality of breathing and then move into the physical asana practice. We tone and stretch the entire body using traditional yoga postures. My favorite in the series is Warrior 2, a strong pose that's wonderful for body and spirit!

This class is excellent for anyone who wants to improve their strength, flexibility and balance. It's also an excellent opportunity to socialize with like-minded people. Most of the people in our last session were new to yoga when they started, but by the end they were sold on the extensive benefits of the practice!

If you or someone you know could benefit from this gentle class please call or email us to register!

And just as a little encouragement, here's a few photos of the yoga "supergran", yoga teacher Betty Calman (age 83). But don't worry, none of these postures are pre-requisites for the class!

Image credit

What a wonderful reminder that yoga is something we can practice our whole lives :)


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