With my 35th birthday fast approaching, I wanted to share how yoga can keep you feeling great about aging. Every year, I celebrate the gift of aging; sometimes it involves facing a fear (like trapeze school) or just plain fun (like a wig and bindhi-themed pool party!). Yoga has helped me feel younger and happier than ever and I know it can do that for anyone.
I often hear beginner students complaining about aches and pains and blaming it on age. As soon as they develop a regular practice, the pain disappears and they get stronger in more ways than they can imagine. This goes for 30-year-old and 60-year- old students. Yoga can actually make aging fun and here’s how.
#1 Best Body Ever – Yoga gives you a strong, flexible and balanced body that is suited to help you fight sickness and stay mobile for as long as you practice. Many of my older students have discovered strength and flexibility they never had before. Plus, seeing your body’s new abilities influences students to eat more whole foods that also fuel its efficiency.
#2 Fearlessness – Working with standing and arm balances in yoga helps you to work through your fear of falling, which is a metaphor for failure. As you approach a crow pose, which most people are physically able to do, you realize just how paralyzing fear can be. Once you fall a few times and realize that you are ok, you are willing to take more risks in life knowing that if you fail, you can just try again.
Once I conquered crow and headstand, I was able to overcome other fears to move forward in my life.
#3 Peace in Your Mind – With a consistent yoga practice, you can develop moments of peace in your mind regardless of whether you are sitting in nature, in traffic or in a room with screaming kids. This peace is what allows your body and mind to function better, fighting off threats of aging internally and externally.
#4 Passion Pursuit – With a strong body, calm mind and fearless spirit, you can use your yoga practice to help you discover and pursue your passions. You stop putting off the things that make you happy and you start prioritizing them because you understand that time is limited and your happiness is worth pursuing.
#5 Unapologetically You – And finally with all this positivity coursing through you, you realize that no one is watching and judging your every move on or off the mat and it’s perfect to just be yourself. You accept and love your body, your quirks, and experiences that have brought you to this moment and you live fully as you want to with each day you are gifted with.
Aging is a privilege and yoga reminds us to enjoy it.