Yoga's stretching exercises for seniors are similar to those used by everyone else – they promote flexibility and strength while helping enthusiasts relax and reconnect with themselves. That said, yoga for healthy aging is becoming an increasingly important form of physical activity for the millions of Americans hitting retirement age.
Nationally, the numbers on elderly adults are pretty jaw-dropping. In 2009, the federal government's Administration on Aging (AOA) tallied about 40 million Americans aged 65 or older. The agency estimates that in just two decades, that figure will leap to 72 million!
By 2030, one in five Americans will be at least 65 years of age, the AOA notes.
This trend is largely due to two factors – namely, the large number of people born in the baby boomer generation and the increasing average lifespan (due to improving health technology).
However, living to one's golden years does not guarantee health or happiness. Many aging Americans suffer from physical ailments and cognitive decline. To slow the progress of these problems, or to reduce their severity if they occur, elderly yoga enthusiasts may consider increasing the number of times they practice the holistic regimen each week.