We can choose to age slowly and have a dignifying departure from this world or we can convince ourself that suffering and decaying is part of life and there is nothing you can do about it.
I have seen many cases of seniors who defy death against all odds and they keep going happily for years without letting themselves be bothered by a terminal diagnosis.
One student in our senior yoga classes celebrated her 100th birthday with our group. She was in a hospice after her centenarian birthday but was released and lived a few more years enjoying her life.
Another student over 90 years old received terminal leukemia news about one year ago and was given only 2 months to live. She is still alive and well today, one year after she received the news. I expressed my admiration towards her strength and her positive attitude. She told me she chooses to look into the good parts of life and doesn't let her mind "believe" the bad news.
Another student was born blind and never practiced yoga before the age of 70 when she moved into the retirement community. She comes regularly to our chair and floor senior yoga classes.She has become very limber and coordinated against her age, pains and disability. This achievement increased her self confidence and self esteem and now she is a happier person handling life’s struggles with more confidence.
I have seen newly formed romances in our senior yoga class at the retirement community where I teach. They leave the classes holding hands, looking very much in love. Being 90 plus years of age and only meeting just a few years ago they can fall in love as passionately as young people do. Several have confessed this to me.
Because yoga is such a universal principle which is not limited to age, race, sex, religion or disability, EVERYBODY can practice it. Respecting one’s body limits and following the balance rules, we can still enjoy its benefits at any age.
The most frequent "excuses" I hear from seniors: "I am too old", "I never did it before", "I am not flexible enough", "I can't get on the floor because I will never get up again", etc, etc, etc.
In our senior yoga classes we demystify all these excuses. We practice yoga to become limber and coordinated, not to train ourselves to become circus acrobats, but to have a "normal", independent and fulfilled life as long as possible. We use chairs as props for practicing the yoga poses or as aids to go up and down from the floor. Many of the students coming to my classes have never done yoga before, and most of them are over 80 years old.
It is never too late to begin practicing yoga!
The senior yoga classes are specially designed to address the seniors' needs and struggles like arthritis, non coordination, poor circulation and loss of feelings in the limbs, poor circulation, osteoporosis, incontinence, loneliness, depression, memory and emotional problems etc., all the aging challenges.
Yoga for seniors can be a very useful tool, not to make all these problems miraculously disappear, but to help become aware that those situations can be improved, controlled, delayed and accepted so they are not a daily burden anymore.
To practice yoga with us please check out my youtube channel.
One half hour of chair yoga poses and breathing exercises. We practice only sitting yoga positions, breathing exercises, light concentration exercises and light meditation techniques.
One hour of chair and some standing up yoga poses, breathing exercises, concentration exercises and medium meditation techniques.
One hour of floor only yoga exercises and breathing exercises.
Meditation class: advance laya yoga meditation