It’s a fact of life. As your 30s dissolve into 40s and then evaporate into 50s, your body doesn’t function like it did when you were twenty. That’s why as a mature adult it’s important to place a higher emphasis on health and exercise so that your body stays in good condition. And with its low-impact nature, yoga may just be the perfect physical activity for the older generation. Here are some of the unique ways it can help mature adults everywhere.
As you age, life’s big stresses are inevitable: parents pass away, kids grow up and leave home, friends fall out of touch. Feeling the stress of these changes is natural, and yoga can give you an effective way to deal with them. Just like meditation, yoga helps practitioners develop focus and mental calm. Because of this, you’ll be able to better put big changes in perspective and be less emotionally shaken by the waves and tumbles of life.
Additionally, yoga can do wonders for your body in terms of lowering the physical symptoms of stress. With regular practice, it can lower blood pressure, stimulate your immune system and regulate your heart rate.
As you grow older, it’s important to find ways to keep your mind sharp. Yoga requires you to focus on both your breath and body postures. In a typical session, you need to listen carefully to your instructor to follow instructions and move your body correctly into the right position – all while paying attention to your breath. All of this mental activity helps your mind stay sharp, fresh and alert.
One way your body deteriorates when you age is through bone density. And if you’re inactive, the loss of bone density is even greater. The weight bearing postures of yoga help strengthen your bones. In fact, studies have even shown that yoga can prevent and slow bone density loss.
Of course, depending on your age and physical ability, it may not be wise to be doing an intense bikram yoga session five times a week. A gentle yoga practice works just as well to keep your bones strong and healthy.
It’s sad to say, but growing older usually also comes with fewer social connections. We live in a youth-centric culture, and unfortunately older adults don’t get the attention or respect that the younger generations garner. The result of this can often be loneliness. One way to prevent this and create new social connections is to get out of the house and join a class. With yoga, you’ll have the opportunity to meet other individuals while keeping your body in good shape. This can lead to new friends, connections and social opportunities.