When being mindful of your Health, you must add exercise to your life. Yoga is a wonderful workout. I love yoga so much that I became a certified instructor. I want to bring balance, strength and flexibility to an aging population. A “perfect” body is not needed to practice yoga. Many of my students realize benefits quickly when using several basic yoga poses daily. Ten to fifteen minutes a day will give great benefits. Our bodies love the stretch, which helps us to build strength, balance and confidence.
Yoga helps to keep the discs between the vertebrae plump, supple and healthy. With adult spines, all nourishment to the vertebrae, discs, spinal muscles and other soft connective tissues comes from movement. When we move, fluids flow into and out of the spongy discs. These movements include stretching, lengthening, forward movement, extensions, lateral movements, and twists. Discs that are not nourished begin to shrink and lose their elasticity. Under nourished discs are more prone to injury, herniation, sciatica and other nerve problems.
In many adults, much of this movement has been curtailed. This can happen from injury, fear, and laziness. As we age, it is more important than ever to keep moving. We must also work hard on our posture. Yoga exercise provides appropriate strength, length and stretch movements that encourage strong, tall, perfect posture. Regular yoga practice keeps the postural muscles toned and able to maintain alignment that is good for one’s health. Poses performed in yoga challenge core stabilizing muscles, deep muscular in the torso that support the skeleton’s alignment.
Every day and every hour your flexibility, balance and strength will change. Any time you stand in a strong mountain pose: shoulder blades back by the spine, abdominal muscles pulled tight and tucked up, head aligned with spine, arms straight down pushing fingers toward to the floor; you are helping your body remember how we were destined to be.
Balance can be practiced anywhere; even standing at the kitchen sink. Raising one leg at a time, even if lightly resting your hand on the counter will help your brain and your body, remember balance. Use props like a wall, chair or block; helps us get into the full proper pose. Try not to be lazy in a pose. If you are lazy, you will not reap the great benefits.