From the crib to the coffin, our bodies crave activity. Whether you are a newborn, a young child or a nonagenarian, see how yoga can be a mainstay for a healthy and happy quality of life.
We are natural born yogis.
Babies are natural yogis. We are all born with an innate ability to breathe, move, stretch, and rest; yet many of us quickly forget about these inherent qualities. Not only are yoga poses such as the happy baby pose appropriately named, babies are great yoga teachers because they remind us how exciting and exhilarating it is to move our bodies generously. Whether we believe it or not, it seems we are born to practice yoga. Just watch happy babies grab their toes and kick their legs up in the air and you may soon realize what you might be missing. Have you been neglecting your own mind and body over the years?
If you are one of the many stiff, tense and tired individuals who don’t get enough exercise, please keep reading and let the following examples inspire you to get moving.
You are never too young.
At 5:30 every morning at the Brahmanand Saraswati Dham Ashram in Northern India, Shruti Pandey leads a yoga class of 30 students between the ages of 65 and 90. She has been teaching this class for two years and has had remarkable success. So what is the big deal you ask? Pandey is only six years old.
Within just six months of taking yoga classes (which she asked if she could do after watching her older brother practice yoga) Pandey surprised everyone by doing several very advanced poses with notable ease. Her grandfather, who calls his little yogini granddaughter a miracle, says she is a perfectionist, a fast learner, and unlike other kids her age, has much patience and determination required to practice yoga.
Next time you feel you cannot be bothered with a regular exercise routine, think of the fortitude of young Shruti Pandey. As an adult, it seems you should have as much, if not more, devotion to your mind and body than this six-year-old yoga teacher. Find out what inspires you to move your body and then go for it.
You are never too old.
Bernice Bates, at 91 years young, is said to be the oldest yoga teacher in the world, according to the Guinness Book of World Records. Practicing since 1960, Bates leads a weekly one-hour class at a retirement community in Florida where she lives. Most of her students are between the ages of 60 and 70 and some have been taking her yoga class regularly for the last 15 years.
Bates credits her own daily yoga practice with keeping her mind and body flexible, fit and healthy. Every morning before getting out of bed Bates practices a few minutes of simple yoga poses to get her blood flowing and help her start her day with a positive attitude.
It is never too early or too late to stretch, bend and move your body. If you have been sedentary, start now and remember how good it feels.
December 13th, 2011