Yoga has so much to offer that almost everybody can get healthy by adding it to their lifestyle. When no exercise seems to be safe and doable, here is how seniors can stay healthy with Yoga.
1) Seated Mountain (Tadasana)
Take a deep breath, sit up straight and extend your spine. As you exhale, root down into the chair with the lower part of your tailbone, keeping your legs at 90-degree angles and knees directly over ankles leaving a little room between the knees. Take a deep breath and as you exhale, roll your shoulders down the back, pull your bellybutton inwards and relax your arms down at your sides. Now, you will need to engage your legs by lifting your toes and pressing them firmly into all four corners of your feet.
2) Seated forward bend (Paschimottana)
Begin with mountain pose, focus on extending the spine and fold your legs. Now, put your hand on the thighs and slide them down the legs as you fold for a little extra support. You will then need to take 5 or more even breaths in this pose in order to massage intestines, helping you with digestion. In addition, it will also help lengthening the spine and stretching the back muscles. Now, inhale as you lift your torso back to an upright position.
3) Warrior I (Virbadrasana I)
Start with seated mountain pose and take a deep breath. As you inhale, lift your arms out to the side and raise your hands up to meet above your head. Keep your pointer fingers and thumbs out and lace rest of the fingers together. Point in the direction of the ceiling. Now, as you exhale, roll the shoulders away from the ears. Keep taking deep breaths for few seconds and then release your clapsed hands on an exhale.
4) Eagle arms (Garudasana arms)
This pose helps you relax the shoulders and upper back because it stabilizes and flexes the shoulder joint. Start by taking a breath or two and as you inhale, just stretch your arms out to the sides. Bring them in front of you as you exhale and swing the right arm under the left and left under the right, grapping the shoulders as if you are giving yourself a hug. Now, as you inhale try lifting your elbows as higher as you can and then roll your shoulders down as you exhale, relaxing them away from the ears. Try repeating this process few more times.
5) Reverse arm hold
This yoga pose is good for stretching the shoulders and opening up the chest helping you with with posture, stress, and breathing difficulties. As you inhale, stretch both the arms out to your sides and place your palms down. Roll both shoulders forward so that both your palms are facing behind you. Now bend the elbows and let your hands swing behind your back. Clasp your hands and gently pull your hands away from each other without releasing your hold. After you’ve taken 5 slow, even breaths with arms clasped this way, re-clasp the other wrist or elbow and hold for 5 breaths.
(This article originally appeared on www.practo.com, authored by Dr. Saurabh Gupta, https://www.practo.com/healthfeed/5-yoga-poses-that-seniors-can-do-in-a-chair-17815/post)