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Healthy Cells is a local health magazine with most of the articles written by local professionals. People love to read about healthcare from their local health professionals. Each month includes a wide variety of articles on various topics.
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Yoga for Healthy Aging

Over the last few years, the health benefits of yoga have become more widely known and substantiated by research. Unfortunately, many people think yoga is only for the young and healthy, and don’t realize the benefits yoga has for individuals as they age. Yoga can be an important contributor to helping you age gracefully, not just physically, but also mentally.

Many of the physical benefits of a regular yoga practice are the same regardless of your age. Some of these include increased strength, flexibility, and cardiovascular health. There are also physical and mental benefits that can be invaluable to individuals as they age.

Yoga has a well-established reputation for improving balance and coordination. This becomes especially important as we begin to age and the risk of falling increases. It also provides better control of the body in unplanned or awkward positions, further limiting the risk of falling or injury from a fall.

Weight-bearing exercises, such as running, walking, or weight lifting, have been shown to help build bone. As we age, these high-impact exercises may no longer be the best choice to help fight osteoporosis. A recent Harvard study showed that yoga can help to increase bone density in the spine and hips and decrease the risk for osteoporosis. This makes yoga a gentle alternative for those wanting to increase bone density and decrease risk of fracture.
Many people experience deterioration of the cartilage in the joints or more serious joint issues, such as osteoarthritis, as they age.


Low-impact exercise can help improve joint mobility and reduce joint pain. Most yoga poses provide a full range of movement through each of the joints in the body. For individuals experiencing joint pain, these exercises can help prevent further cartilage breakdown and provide pain relief and increased mobility.

Stress management is also an important benefit of a regular yoga practice. Through the utilization of postures, breathwork, meditation, and relaxation, yoga can help to decrease your blood pressure and heartrate, resulting in decreased stress. It can also help build stress resilience, making your body and mind more capable of handling stressful situations when they arise.

Many of the stress management benefits of yoga also contribute to overall brain health. Yoga increases brain function, resulting in improved focus and information retention. A recent study also showed greater cortical thickness in regions of the brain related to the cognitive functions of attention and working memory, which may be associated with cognitive preservation.

As you age, you may find yourself wanting to start a yoga practice, or adapt the practice you currently have. There are classes available that focus on providing benefits and modifing poses for aging bodies. These may include Gentle Yoga, Restorative Yoga, or Chair Yoga. With a variety of class types available, you are sure to find one that best fits your needs!

Yoga can be very beneficial to our bodies and minds as we age. In addition to all the benefits discussed, it can help to alleviate age-related concerns, such as improving diabetes management, decreasing blood pressure, and improving overall wellbeing. Take an opportunity to find a yoga class that best fits your needs and see how quickly you begin to feel better!
Kate Vernor is the owner of Palms Together Yoga, located at 1717 R.T. Dunn Drive Unit E in Bloomington. For more information, you may call 309-825-1800, or e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .



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