How To Get Started With Chair Yoga
Gentle chair yoga and seated yoga poses are usually accessible for anyone, even beginners, but there are a few safety tips before you get started.
- Talk with your doctor: Always check with your primary doctor before beginning any new exercise routine. While yoga is generally recognized as safe and effective for all fitness levels, its important to coordinate all treatments including new exercise.
- Use props: Props can help make the poses below more accessible and comfortable when you are starting. A sturdy chair is the first prop to gather, but yoga blocks, a blanket, and a strap or belt can also help.
- Mind your balance: If you struggle with balance, make sure you have someone with you as you get started.
- Find a class: A simple Google search can help you locate a yoga studio near you. A qualified and experienced teacher can help you gain confidence and build a safe home practice.
Once you start a regular home practice, its important to listen to your body. Chronic pain conditions can change from day to day, so what felt good one day may be excruciating the next. In any pose, sharp and stabbing pain is a clear indication that you need to come out of the pose or use a prop to make it more comfortable.
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Chair Yoga For Beginners
While chair yoga is great right now, it also works post pandemic. I dont think desk jobs are going away anytime soon. Honestly we all seem to be glued to screens more and more. So anything we can do to move our bodies, even 10 minutes at a time, is a good thing.
Below I outline the movements including in the 5 minute chair yoga for beginners class. And, perhaps more importantly, why they are included.
- Cat Cow For spinal flexion and extension. Often we have a tendency to slouch in chairs, this gets the spine moving again to find proper alignment.
- Hip hike This movement is lateral. Think side bending. Plus it gives you a butt massage at the same time. Bonus!!!
- Side bend The hip hike was the warm up. Lets lengthen and breathe into the side ribs.
- Thumb it up Perhaps the biggest issue with todays technology is that 90% of our actions are in front. Eating, sitting, driving, working, and phones. Use thumbs to open the chest from all the scrunching.
- Seated Twist One of the other movements of the spine is rotation. Twists are a great way to get digestion moving, and relieve back pain.
- Have you done chair yoga before?
- Are you doing a lot more sitting during the pandemic?
- How much time do you spend at a desk in a typical day?
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How Much Do Yoga Lessons Cost
Yoga is a combination of exercise, meditation, and spiritual connection, the spiritual side of it connecting to Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, or Tantradepending on the teacher.
The goal of taking yoga classes is to experience physical well-being and an overall oneness of mind, body, and spirit. Given that many people get physical injuries doing yoga poses too advanced for them, it is important to pick a teacher who has the experience and wisdom on hand to pace the learner properly.
Raise Your Energy Levels Strengthen Your Core And Fix Your Back Issues All From The Comfort Of Your Favorite Chair
Are everyday tasks becoming increasingly difficult to do? Is your balance and mobility not what it used to be? Is back pain coming on more frequently? If so, youâve come to the right place.
What you need is a straightforward, effective, and practical workout routine that you can begin doing today! Without the complexities and information overload.
The chair exercises contained in this book will help you:
- Improve your posture and relieve back pain
- Loosen your joints and radically improve your ease of mobility
- Increase stamina, raise energy levels, and promote weight-loss
- Improve your heart health â decreasing the risk of cardiovascular disease
- Regain a sense of autonomy over your body and reduce the fear of falling
- Drastically improve your overall quality of life
Finally, you no longer have to worry about what exercises to do to ensure you are staying healthy and strong. These 10-minute workout variations encompass ALL elements of health and fitness and are easy to follow.
In this book, you will receive:
- 7 different workouts, one for each day of the week
- Core strengthening exercises for core workouts
- Cardio HIIT workouts to improve your stamina and energy levels
- Back stretching and yoga routines to release any tension in the muscles
- 70+ illustrations with simple instructions
- Video demonstrations to ensure correct technique and form
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Minute Gentle Chair Yoga By Senior Shape Fitness
Lauren starts this chair yoga for seniors video by saying this isnt a push yourself workout. The focus is more on relaxing stretches, gaining flexibility, and feeling good about yourself. She says everyone should do what they can easily do, and you do you is how she puts it.
Deep cleansing breaths start the yoga session before going into a seated Cat and Cow pose. Lauren takes you into the seated version of the Cactus pose by working with the palms and elbows.
There are many stretchy arm movements then its time for the Eagle pose with the arms flowing, trying to meet the palms together. Breathing is done throughout, but its easy to keep up with Lauren.
Lauren leads you into some simple spinal twists after gentle side bends with an arm straight up. You can grasp the chair for support if you need it. Next, some wide-open arm and leg body stretches with inhaling and exhaling seem relaxing. Lauren advises keep your core engaged and reminds you to move how you can.
Knee-hugging starts off the middle part of this chair yoga video. Lauren does knee crosses while breathing deeply and adds that you can do ankle crosses if that isnt comfortable.
Belly button to the spine is the position to try for before the moves go into forward folds with the hands dropped.
Chair Forward Bend Pose
This pose can stretch your low back and shoulders as well as your hamstrings, depending on your flexibility.
- From Seated Mountain Pose, exhale and hinge at your hips to come into a forward bend over your legs.
- Reach your hands to rest on the floor or your ankles, wherever you feel a good stretch, letting your head fall into your lap.
- Inhale, moving back up to an upright seated position and raising your arms up overhead.
- Move between the forward fold and upright sitting posture for 10 breaths.
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Maintaining Balance Strength And Mobility
As we get older, we naturally lose strength and flexibility, which can in turn affect our sense of stability and balance, according to the Mayo Clinic. Fortunately, yoga is known for its ability to help improve muscle tone, flexibility, coordination, and balance. The key for seniors, especially those who are new to yoga, is to find ways to practice that allow them to feel stable and supported throughout the practice. Thats where props, including chairs, can help.
Chair yoga is not necessarily synonymous with yoga for seniors. Anyone can practice with a chaireither sitting down or using the chair for support in standing posesand the practice can range from relatively easy going to downright sweaty. Its an adaptable way to practice that allows you to reach your particular goals and abilities.
Remember that each persons body develops differently over time, and we all bring in different health concerns and physical conditions. Dont be shy about experimenting with different ways to approach yoga poses depending on your particular needs. For example, hypertension or glaucoma may preclude forward bending poses. You may want to avoid bearing weight on injured knees or arthritic joints.
The good news is that there are almost infinite possibilities for adapting your asana practice to suit your needs. Below are suggestions for poses that might appeal to seniors or anyone who wants to practice with a chair for support.
How Can Yoga Help The Mind
Yoga is one of many effective methods to reduce stress and anxiety. It gives you a sense peace and relaxation.
Multiple studies have shown regular yoga has a positive effect on stress levels, and can improve your sleep quality.
Moreover, yoga helps people develop more awareness and enhance their ability to concentrate. People who regularly practice yoga are more focused and less distracted than those who dont.
Yoga can also be used to treat depression and other mental disorders.
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A Ten Minute Chair Yoga Sequence For Beginners
Yoga is a practice available to anyone who wants to understand themselves better. If your mobility is restricted or you find it difficult to stand, it doesnt mean you cant be a yoga practitioner. Chair yoga consists of modified postures done seated on a chair or standing with the support of a chair. This chair yoga sequence helps bring the light of awareness to your mind and body if you cant or dont want to move too much. You can also use it when you need a break from work or are stuck in long hours of seated travel. If youre suffering from an injury, practicing yoga in a chair is a good way to nurse your joints and muscles back to health.
Here is a non-exhaustive list of the benefits of chair yoga:
Reduces anxiety and sadness
At the core of all asana practices including chair yoga lies the synchronization of movement with breath. This awareness deepens the breath and can help you move past the default stress response in your nervous system to activate the parasympathetic nervous system, making you feel calm and alert. As you do this repeatedly, it can reprogram your nervous system to make you feel less anxious and sad even when youre not practicing yoga.¹
Reduces pain and improves sleep
Improves mental clarity and attention
Increases strength and stability
Gentle Chair Yoga For Seniors
Chair yoga is a wonderful way to be active, and its something you should consider if flexibility is one of the things that matters most to you. Well start by practicing yoga poses and teaching you the basics of what you need to know about yoga in order to get started.
You dont need to have any experience of doing yoga before either. Weve taught complete beginners and helped them to learn the basics pretty quickly. Thats the great thing about yoga it doesnt have to be particularly complicated and it has real benefits either way.
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Benefits Of Chair Yoga
There are many benefits of chair yoga for seniors, and although chair yoga is particularly popular among older adults do you to the increased level of safety it provides, chair yoga is also a great option for anyone with mobility challenges, those with injuries, people just getting started on their fitness journey, and anyone who is sitting at a desk most of the day who wants to add a few healthy yoga poses to their fitness routine.
Benefits of chair yoga include the following:
- Allowing people with mobility issues, poor balance, or muscular weakness to practice yoga in a safer manner
- Increasing core strength and control
- Increasing muscular strength in the arms, shoulders, and legs, depending on which poses are practiced
- Boosting mood, self-esteem, and feelings of well-being
Chair Yoga For Lower Back Pain
Chair yoga class is great for seniors with physical challenges. Before you begin be sure you have checked with your doctor to have permission to enjoy this yoga class.
Beginners or experienced yoga students at any level need to be extra gentle. I will give clear guidance for you to follow.
Have a seat on your chair and set an intention to practice gratitude for all that you can do.
We will do several seated stretches and a flow routines to warm up.
Slowing down to stretch for a few minutes daily is great for seniors and everyone of all ages.
The next part of our practice is standing up. This easy moving routine is best for seniors who will appreciate a chair for balance.
Actively keep your leg muscles engaged to protect injured parts and avoid pain.
Hold firmly with your chair as we stretch in the standing yoga chair practice energizing, anti aging exercises for the elderly.
Enjoy the yoga lunges and squats as we repeat them several times. Build up to doing them 11, 20, 25 or 30 funky dance reps throughout the day.
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What Happens When I Start Doing Yoga
You may find it difficult to begin yoga. It will become easier to practice yoga after a few more weeks. Youll begin to notice improvements with your posture, breathing and flexibility.
Your mind will calm and your muscles relax. You will feel calm and energized.
Your heart rate will slow down. Your body will feel less stressed.
Youll acquire new skills and abilities over time. Youll discover new strengths and weaknesses. Youll also notice changes in your life.
Fun Chair Yoga For Seniors Videos
When its time to feel more energized and get some exercise without overtaxing the body, chair yoga is a perfect solution. Weve gathered four fantastic chair yoga videos suitable for older adults and complete beginners. You can adjust the moves to your fitness and flexibility level and learn some basic yoga poses.
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Chair Yoga For Seniors: What Are The Benefits + 4 Great Videos To Get You Started
This guide to chair yoga for seniors showcases some excellent videos anyone can do. Even 15-minute sessions for beginners can benefit the body and energize the spirit. Youll learn different poses, stretches, breathing techniques, and helpful tips.
Weve included 4 different videos to get you started:
For seniors and those with injuries or mobility issues, chair yoga can be the perfect solution to the problem of getting enough physical exercise for optimum health.
If youre dealing with an injury, recovering from surgery, or have balance, mobility, weight, or strength issues and find exercising on your feet regularly just impossible, youre certainly not alone. As HelpGuide.org points out, we should still make sure to keep exercising while considering our limitations. Chair yoga for seniors provides needed exercise and muscle strengthening and can be fun!
Gentle Chair Exercises For Seniors
We offer chair exercises for all kinds of seniors, meaning you can find something that works for you no matter what your particular circumstances. Some people might want to start out with very gentle chair exercises, and these can be just as rewarding and helpful as other exercises for many people.
You dont have to be doing very taxing and fast-paced exercises in order to benefit. Any kind of movement and exercise can help you and thats why you should think about making the most of these gentle exercises. Once youve built up some confidence, you can go further and try more exercises if you like.
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Using A Seat As A Prop Or For Support Makes Practice Accessible For Bodies At Any Age
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More than a third of Americans who practice yoga are age 50 and older, according to research by yoga therapist Carol Krucoff. Some have been doing yoga for decades. In fact, many seniors continue to practice well into their 60s, 70s and beyond.
Others are new to yoga, urged to take up the practice because of its well-researched health benefits for hypertension, osteoporosis, arthritis, hormonal changes, and other conditions that tend to impact seniors. While health care providers often recommend it as a gentle exercise option, yoga practice does come with caveats.
Yoga participants aged 65 years and older have a greater rate of injury when compared with other age groups, according to Krucoff, author of Relax into Yoga for Seniors. Thats not to say that we should give up yoga when we get our AARP card. But our practice might need to continue to evolve as we mature.
What Is Chair Yoga
Chair yoga is an adapted yoga practice that allows you to stay seated while practicing yoga focused poses. It can be practiced by anyone who wants to enjoy the benefits of yoga and may have mobility limitations. For example, chair yoga is great for anyone who needs more support, is managing an injury, or wants a more therapeutic approach to the practice.
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