Updated: Aug 26, 2020
This is a follow on from my last blog, to serve these who are unable to sit on the floor in easy pose or are unable to move much due to their bodily restrictions.
These are certain basics before we start
Remember that Yoga is not a competition. Do your best and relax.
Dress comfortably, preferable in 100% cotton clothing.
Keep your feet bare, so the electromagnetic energy can be conducted throughout all 72000 nerve endings in the bottom of the feet. If you are elderly, it may be too hard and cold to remove the shoes.
If you have medical restrictions, discuss with a physician your intended practice of yoga.
Don't eat 1-2 hours before doing yoga to prevent stomach aches.
Its best to practice in a quiet, out of the way room with lots of fresh air.
Pace yourself. Begin slowly, build up your practice consistently. Begin an exercise for the suggested minimum time, building up to maximum. if your are unable to do the minimum, start where you can and build from there.
Listen to your body. Be aware of any changes. If you feel nauseous or faint during any of the exercises, stop and wait a few minutes before continuing. You may not be used to the increased oxygen. Your body needs time to adjust to this added source of vitality. You may also feel strange from the body detoxifying.
For beginner to yoga, it is suggested to relax 1-3 minutes between each exercise. This relaxation is crucial, as it allows the body to adjust to the effects of the exercise.
When you conclude a set, relax lying down on the floor, bed or leaning back in the chair for 5-10 minutes. Breathing deeply and slowly relaxing all parts of the body. Listening to soothing music can promote relaxation.
When you are ready to "wake up", take some deep breaths. Roll the hands in circles at the wrists and the feet in circles at the ankles. Twist and stretch the spine in all directions, left and right. Rub the palms and the bottom of your feet together.
Doing your practice in a chair
Choose a sturdy chair, straight-backed chair without arms. If a wheel chair is needed, work with the arms the best you can. Only if needed, arms of the chair can give support and stability by holding on to them. Holding onto the sides of the base of the chair can also supply support.
Sit straight, a little away from the back on the chair. The feet are flat on the floor. The hands can be palms down on the tops of the legs or on top of the base of the chair next to the thighs to help straighten and lengthen the spine.
Doing your practice on a bed
If you are doing bed yoga, modify the exercises to what you can do.
Whenever possible use a firm mattress. If a wheel chair is used, keep it near the bed in case it is needed. You may want to do some of the postures on the bed - like postures that would normally be done on the floor. For the sitting up postures, you can transfer to the chair or sit on the edge of the bed, making sure that the feet are flat on the floor.
Seated Mountain Pose Alignment Points:
Sit near the front edge of the chair with your feet parallel, hip-width apart, with your knees and ankles pointed outwards.
Press the soles of your feet down into the floor. Anchor your sit bones on the chair, and lift your head toward the ceiling to lengthen your neck and spine.
Lift your sternum and keep your chin parallel to the floor.
Bring your palms together at your heart, touching your thumbs to your sternum.
Engage your inner thighs and abdominal muscles while rolling your shoulders up, back, and then relaxing down. Take deep breaths while doing so.
Benefits of Pose: Increases awareness of posture overall, especially the spine. Strengthens all core muscles of torso and allows more space for organs to perform optimally.
Book here for your online Senior Yoga session with Harjit.