Page 33 - Seniors Today -Volume no1
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fortable body can only house an uncom-               Having said that, ask yourself why you didn’t
        fortable mind. The most harmful decisions            like Yoga when you tried it. Was the teacher not
        seniors make is to stop socialising and being        customising it enough for your level and body
        part of their community events. This leads           capacity? Was it too slow or too discouraging to
        them to stop taking basic necessary physical         ever attempt again? Were you receptive enough
        efforts required in grooming, walking etc.           to make a lifestyle change at that point? Was it too
        which spirals into sedentary lifestyles, anxi-       ‘spiritual’ for a logical mind like yours? Did you
        ety, memory loss and joint pain.                     simply not like or understand the teacher’s in-
                                                             structions or felt their knowledge was lacking?
        All religions indirectly enforce abstinence
        or some effort to reach holy places to help          Whatever your reasons to discontinue were, Yoga
        strengthen our will power. So, one way or an-        needs patience, effort, willingness and consis-
        other, our rigidity in mental attitudes to resist    tency. If any of this was missing from your end,
        or not prioritise exercise, reflects in the rigidi-  it would have felt like tasting a bite from a buffet
        ty that sets in the body.                            and deciding the catering is not up to the mark.

        Is exercise needed as I age?                         Beyond this, Yoga may still not be your choice of
        Exercise is needed at every stage of our lives.      movement. There are lovely, safer options such as
        The type, intensity and duration changes. In         Walking, Qigong Tai Chi, Aqua therapy, Laugh-
        fact, the more we advance in age, the more           ter Clubs, Dance, Heritage and Religious Walks,
        necessary it becomes to keep ourselves mov-          Pilgrimages, Errands to the bank, Grocery Shop-
        ing to avoid muscle atrophy (deterioration of        ping, Household Chores, Gardening, light active
        muscles due to lack of use).                         sports such as Table Tennis, Golf, Swimming or
                                                             anything that makes your body move and makes
        Does age matter or can we all be young at            you sleep with a sense of accomplishment and
        heart?                                               sweet exhaustion.
        I’m the first to advocate to my age group when
        I hear laments like “Oh, we’re old now” that         Here’s hoping more seniors look forward to their
        age is just a number. But after 60 there are         mornings and find their post Yoga-class smile.
        some realities about the physical body that
        should be honoured. The joints needn’t be            Next issue: Pranayams and Yoga Basics
        unnecessarily taxed unless you have been
        active all your life, followed a healthy diet and
        have strong surrounding muscles. So, unless
        you have marathoning goals as a challenge for
        yourself, running, weight training etc could
        be avoided. If you wish to try a new workout,
        let your body guide you. If it feels more pain-
        ful than pleasant, maybe it’s not what you

        I tried Yoga and didn’t like it. What alter-
        natives are safe and beneficial for me?

        Firstly, not everyone has to enjoy Yoga in-
        stantly or ever. It is perfectly natural to have
        a personal preference that motivates you to
                                                             Exercise is needed at every stage of life
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