Is yoga the answer to eternal youth?
You don’t have to be a wise old yogi to benefit from the astounding effects of yoga.
In fact, experts reckon it takes little more than 12 sessions to drastically improve the mobility of elderly people.
In a 12 week study conducted by the University of California, LA, researchers found that the yoga sessions increased walking speeds by 8%, improved reaches by 18% and drastically improved the participants’ balance. All participants were sufferers of ‘dowager’s hump’ (hyperkyphosis), a condition where a patient develops a hunchback which severely impairs movement. The spinal curvature of these patients was reduced by 6% after just 12 sessions of yoga.
You don’t have to be fit, lithe and bendy to enjoy yoga. It is a low impact, safe exercise that involves gentle movements and controlled breathing, making it a fantastic option for older people.
Other studies have shown yoga to reduce depression, prevent the hardening of the arteries, reduce stiffness and strengthen bones – all conditions associated with getting older.
If you would like to find out more about the benefits and to contact a professional, please visit our Yoga Therapy page.
Remember that aerobic exercise is essential for a healthy heart, so consider teaming yoga with regular brisk walks to get the blood pumping and the oxygen flowing.
Read and comment on the original Guardian article.
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