Growing old in a healthy way – who wouldn’t want that? Regular yoga practice can help you do just that. Among other things, yoga helps to keep your bones and muscles flexible and strong, maintain your energy level, improve your circulation and relieve stress. More than enough reasons why yoga works a lot better as an anti-aging remedy than an expensive cream!
7 reasons why yoga works as an anti-aging tool
1. YOGA MAKES YOUR SKIN LOOK YOUNGER
Yoga does wonders for your skin. It is for a good reason that most yoga teachers look 5 to 10 years younger than they really are. Yoga stimulates circulation and creates a healthy glow. Also, when you sweat during a yoga practice, your body is excreting toxins (both physical and mental). Many studies have shown that yoga, especially facial yoga, can reduce signs of skin aging and make your skin look younger and more even.
2. YOGA IMPROVES BALANCE AND COORDINATION
Maintaining balance is a tricky one for all ages, but requires extra training above 60. Simple actions such as walking, sitting or trying to grab something from the top shelf can cause imbalance and insecurity. Certain Yoga poses help improve your balance and flexibility later in life. Practice the Tree pose, high lunge, chair pose, triangle pose and half-moon pose regularly and you will soon be unflappable as a 60-plusser ;-).
3. YOGA REGULATES SYMPTOMS MENOPAUSE
No woman escapes it; menopause. You usually experience it sometime between the ages of 45 and 60. Are you in the middle of it? Then you might recognise yourself in hot flushes, osteoporosis, fatigue, night sweats, insomnia, dry skin and deeper wrinkles on your face. Yoga poses like the Warrior, Chair pose, Hero pose and spinal twists have been proven to reduce symptoms of menopause.
4. YOGA REDUCES ANXIETY AND DEPRESSION
Asanas such as Child’s pose, Cobra pose, Cat’s Pose, Viparita Karani (legs against the wall) and Shirshasana (headstand) are effective in transforming anxiety and depression into greater confidence and calmness. A Harvard study on mental state shows that physical and mental health are not two different aspects, but are deeply connected. Hence, you can say: that which affects your body (both positive and negative) affects your mind and vice versa. So practising yoga is a therapeutic remedy to change your reaction to stress and make it easier to deal with.
5. YOGA HELPS AGAINST PAIN
As soon as you get older, more and more physical aches and pains come around the corner. Back pain is perhaps the most common complaint of old age, and it can be annoyingly long-lasting. The vertebrae and bones in your spine do not get stronger with age. Resulting in pain and stiffness. Yoga helps to strengthen your spine. Some poses (think about twists with your spine, Big Toe Pose, Boat Pose, Bow Pose, Bridge Pose, Camel Pose, Cat Pose and Chair Pose) helps slowing down the stiffness as they keep your spinal cord and the muscles around it flexible. Start maintaining your spine as early as possible to avoid back pain overtaking you one day.
6. YOGA REDUCES RISK OF KYPHOSIS – ROUNDED BACK
Are you past 60? Chances are your back is bulging, also known as Kyphosis. This is a condition in which abnormal curvature occurs in the cervical, thoracic and sacral regions. In short, a curvature in pretty much your entire spine. The result of Kyphosis is a loss in height of your spine, which in turn affects your posture and flexibility. Yoga postures recommended for people with kyphosis are poses where you open your chest and consciously bring your shoulder blades down so that your heart opens forward. What also helps is old school hanging from a stretching bar or pull up bar that you clamp between the doorframe.
7. YOGA BOOSTS YOUR LIBIDO
As far as we are concerned, a good lovemaking session once in a while, will keep you very young anyway. We found these 3 yoga poses that turn your consciousness inwards, towards where lust for life is stored. And let sexual energy equal life energy. Go, and find out yourself!
Women physically hold most tension in their hips. The Pigeon releases all tension from the hips and it helps your mind settle down.
Happy Baby pose
Your groin, hips and lower back are strengthened with this exercise. This, of course, comes in handy during sex.
This pose comes straight out of the Kama Sutra. You clamp one leg over the other. When you finally release the pose, all the blood flows back towards the uterus at once.
GROWING OLD VITALLY WITH YOGA
Yoga helps to obtain and maintain a vital body, which remains flexible even as it ages. Through the physical practice, your mind automatically joins the ‘anti-aging mill’ as well, resulting in a resilient clear mind. By practising yoga 2-3 times a week, you can extend your vital years of life (also depending on the rest of your lifestyle, of course!) and reduce the number of diseases. Of course, your breathing is also important; the deeper and more regular it is, the more peaceful your body and mind will be. In yoga, Ujjayi breathing is used during practice