Yoga for seniors, older adult: 4 exercises to prevent joint pain, osteoarthritis | Health - Hindustan Times
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Yoga for seniors, older adults: 4 exercises to prevent joint tension, osteoarthritis and other discomfort

ByZarafshan Shiraz, Delhi
Mar 16, 2023 03:11 PM IST

Yoga will keep your mind sharp and agile while ensuring that you maintain self-discipline. To improve seniors and older adults' health, immunity, strength, joint tension and general wellbeing, try these mild asanas.

It is never too late to start living a healthy lifestyle and you can start new endeavours at any age as you can lower your chance of developing many life-threatening conditions including diabetes, cardiovascular disease and certain types of cancer by maintaining a healthy level of physical activity as you age. Also, the body's slower metabolism makes it more difficult to maintain weight loss but maintaining physical and mental fitness is of utmost importance, as is safe exercise.

Yoga for seniors, older adults: 4 exercises to prevent joint tension, osteoarthritis and other discomfort (Photo by Vlada Karpovich on Pexels)
Yoga for seniors, older adults: 4 exercises to prevent joint tension, osteoarthritis and other discomfort (Photo by Vlada Karpovich on Pexels)

In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Himalayan Siddhaa Akshar, Founder of Akshar Yoga Institutions, said, “The fact that you are in the prime of your retirement years indicates that you have a lot of free time. You can prevent joint tension, osteoarthritis, and other types of discomfort by practising Yoga on a regular basis. Yoga will keep your mind sharp and agile while ensuring that you maintain self-discipline.”

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To improve seniors and older adults' health, immunity, strength and general wellbeing, he suggested to try these mild asanas:

1. Samasthithi/Tadasana

Tadasana or Mountain Pose (Twitter/drvaaash)
Tadasana or Mountain Pose (Twitter/drvaaash)

Pull in your abdominals and ease your shoulders down and back as you stand tall with your big toes touching and your heels pressed together. Take 5 to 8 deep breaths while tensing your leg muscles. Seniors can maintain a tall, powerful posture by striking this pose.

Word of advice: Try to balance your body weight equally on both feet.

2. Vrikshasana

Vrikshasana or Tree Pose(Photo by Blendtopia Smoothies on Unsplash)
Vrikshasana or Tree Pose(Photo by Blendtopia Smoothies on Unsplash)

Take up the Samasthithi role to begin with. Center your weight on your left leg while raising your right leg off the ground. Bring your right foot as close to your inner thigh as you can, or at the ankle or calf, by supporting it with your palms. Join your palms together as you raise your hands. Place your head between your arms at all times. Similarly, extend your other leg.

Word of advice:

• Avoid performing this pose if you have a shoulder, hip, knee, or ankle injury.

• This pose must not be done by those who have arthritis.

3. Vajrasana

Vajrasana or Thunderbolt Pose/Diamond Pose(Photo by Tim Chow on Unsplash)
Vajrasana or Thunderbolt Pose/Diamond Pose(Photo by Tim Chow on Unsplash)

Your thighs should be pressing down on your calf muscles as you sit down in a kneeling position with your knees joined, your pelvis on your heels, your toes curled outward, your heels close to one another, your big toes next to one another, your palms facing upward on your knees, and your back straight.

Word of advice:

· Avoid doing this asana if you have a knee or ankle injury. Place a pillow on your calves in order to cushion your knees in case you are doing this on a yoga mat. You can even perform this asana on a bed or a cushioned surface.

4. Paschimottanasana - Seated forward bend

Paschimottanasana or seated forward-bend(Photo by Benn McGuinness on Unsplash)
Paschimottanasana or seated forward-bend(Photo by Benn McGuinness on Unsplash)

Begin with legs stretched forward. Extend your arms upward and keep your spine erect. Bend forward exhaling to place your upper body on your lower body. Lower your arms and grip your big toes with your fingers. Try to touch your knees with your nose. Hold the posture for 10 seconds.

Himalayan Siddhaa Akshar advised, “You can begin practising Yoga at any age, which is only one of its many advantages. You can lower your risk of developing Alzheimer's disease, deteriorating memory, unsteady balance or any physical disability by practising Yoga. Yoga keeps you upbeat and eliminates any mental health illnesses like depression and anxiety. Enjoy healthier bone and joint health, more energy throughout the day, and better moods.”

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