An Introduction To The Wonders Of Chair Yoga
Anywhere, at any time, by anyone ...
Posted by Anne Marie Tovey on 21/10/2020 @ 8:00AM
Although yoga is ageless and has been practised for many years, there is a need for innovation and modification in our modern-day (mostly seated) lives. Chair yoga offers one such solution ...
Chair yoga requires no special equipment or clothes. It can be an excellent way to build a stronger, healthier you!
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Chair yoga is for anyone, regardless of age or ability, who spends many hours in a seated position. It was developed in the 1980s by Lakshmi Voelker as a therapy, when she noticed one of her pupils, in her thirties, was unable to do floor poses because of arthritis.
Since then, more and more creative ways are used to adapt yoga poses for chair-based yoga with options based on levels of flexibility to make participation accessible and a joy for everyone.
Similar muscle groups are used, without stressing the joints or worrying about balance, slowly building strength with the integration of the breath to activate the parasympathetic nervous system to calm the body and mind.
"So, what could Chair-yoga offer and
is it for me, you may ask?"
In a nutshell, it can help anyone who is desperate for a sense of grounding, relaxation, happiness and movement, especially during these traumatic times. A short chair-based yoga session, whilst seated, can leave you feeling uplifted, energised, centred and more present in your body.
The simple practices can be applied anywhere as it does not require much space or special clothing. What is more, it does not need to be done as part of a yoga session, it can be integrated as a life-changing routine at any time during the seated day, here I am even thinking of deskbound workers, care workers or anyone who feels the need for movement in the comfort of their home!
We have all heard how important it is to get up and move at least every hour, but most of us barely get up to go to the bathroom. Physical inactivity, we are often told, increases health risks. It is so important to do what we can to add movement that is right for our own bodies, throughout our day to improve our health.
In her book, Chair Yoga, Kristin McGee quotes the World Health Organisation (WHO) by stating that physical inactivity is the fourth-leading risk factor for death in people around the world. She goes further by saying when we sit all day, we are at risk of developing diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, postural problems, muscular imbalances and not to mention the impact on our mental health.
"Our organs don't function at full capacity which impacts on how quickly we age!"
How can chair yoga help then? Some simple chair-based yoga moves will help to keep the face, the body and mind (yes, the mind too!) free of tightness and will help strengthen the body throughout the day. Yoga links the body and the mind through the breath.
In a previous blog post, I discussed becoming aware of the 'essential' breath, our constant and reliable friend. Awareness of the breath is key to living a longer, healthier and more fulfilling life. It brings calm to the nervous system and yet energises our body through oxygen-rich blood.
Yoga helps us connect to our inner-selves and to others. I told my personal story before where I explained how important yoga was during my time of personal loss and grief to find my path back to happiness and joy. The benefits of yoga are so profound that really everyone should be practising it in some form. Chair-based yoga can be that choice.
"It can be done anywhere, at any time, and by anyone of any age or physical ability!"
It requires no special equipment or clothes. It can be an excellent way to build a stronger, healthier you and could be an opportunity to connect with other like-minded people on a path to a healthier, happier you.
Please join me to try it out for yourself!
Until next time ...
ANNE MARIE TOVEY
I offer personalised 1-2-1 yoga classes, a 10-week Yoga4Health Programme commissioned by the NHS
or monthly subscription chair-based yoga classes on Zoom three times a week at 12 noon to 12:30pm
on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.
Would you like to know more?
I run 30-minute chair yoga sessions via Zoom on a Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 12 noon until12.30pm. If you'd like to join me, do call on 07768 314962, leave a comment below or click the Messenger icon in the bottom right of your browser to chat.
You can also visit my website at https://www.ageless-yoga.co.uk.
About Anne Marie Tovey ...
Anne Marie completed an 18-month yoga teacher training through Yoga Campus in London in February 2020 to share the magical benefits of yoga with others.
She also recently completed a PTSD and Yoga4Health certifications through The Minded Institute to help people dealing with trauma and those who want to start a healthier lifestyle through yoga.
Helping business owners to create a supportive working environment that will have a positive impact on their business. The benefits, that flow from the holistic and systemic approach from yoga, will have a rippling effect on the health of all employees, their families, their communities and all stakeholders from the bottom up and equally from the top down.
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