Can senior citizens be cared for through Yoga Asanas?
You betcha!! They sure can. The basic premise in yoga is Union – union of the various aspects of existence like body, breath, mind etc. In fact the word yoga originates from a Sanskrit root ‘Yuj’, which means ‘to unite’. Hence, it is possible for people of all ages and from all walks of life to utilize yoga techniques for a harmonious and joyful existence.
PRANAYAMA AND MEDITATION
Caring for elderly parents can be embodied by Yogic breath pranayama and NadiShodhan pranayama which can help expand lungs as they stretch and strengthen chest muscles. The Panchkosha meditation helps accept the situation proactively and improve patience and awareness. Hari Om or Chakra Meditation helps cleanse and energise ‘chakras’ and ‘naadis’ which in turn facilitates the smooth flow of ‘prana’. Doing meditation with back support may make it easy initially.
VEERBHADRASANA (WARRIOR POSE)
TRIKONASANA (TRIANGLE POSE)
The Triangle pose is a standing pose that stretches the spine and increases mental and physical equilibrium. It also reduces stress and back pain, letting the pain subside.MARJARIASANA (CAT POSE)
The Cat pose is done on all fours. It adds more flexibility to the spine, improves blood circulation and relaxes the mind. It is extremely good for those suffering from Scoliosis.SHISHUASANA (CHILD POSE)
Another sitting pose, the Child pose calms the nervous system and also relaxes the back. This particular pose is ideal for people who suffer from Scoliosis as a result of neuromuscular condition.
PASCHIMOTTANASANA (SEATED FORWARD BEND)
This pose stretches the lower back and relieves stress. It also reduces anxiety and fatigue and calms the mind.
ADHO MUKHA SVANASANA (DOWNWARD FACING DOG POSE)
This yoga posture lengthens the spine and brings strength throughout the body, especially the arms, shoulders, legs and feet. Due to the help of this pose, the bodyweight can be distributed better to the legs and thus take stress off the spine.
SETU BANDHASANA (BRIDGE POSE)
SHALABASANA (LOCUST POSE)
The Locust pose adds flexibility and strength to the entire back. It also relieves the body of stress, fatigue and lower back-pain.
SARVANGASANA (SHOULDER STAND)
The Shoulder stand makes the spine flexible and strengthens the arms and shoulders. This yoga pose also relaxes the mind.
SHAVASANA (CORPSE POSE)
*POINTS TO REMEMBER*
Respect your limits
Yoga requires a certain amount of physical exertion and thus one is advised to proceed with caution. Don’t stress your body or push your limits too much. Regular yoga practice will help increase your ability with time. Stretch only as much as your body can take and relax there.
Care for senior citizens can be better achieved by keeping a more optimistic outlook towards life. Speak to your friends and family, their support can help keep your spirits high. Have patience and faith in your practice, be consistent and enjoy it to the fullest.