Yoga for Anti- Aging

October 25, 2013

Pants & Sports Bra from: O’Neill,  Peace Tank: Wanderlust Whistler

While I was doing my Yoga Teacher Training in LA, I had the pleasure to study with some amazing people. Not only did I learn about yoga, yoga, yoga but I also learned about healthy foods, vitamins and natural remedies- true yogi style. One of the woman I trained with who I called my “yoga mom” was somebody that taught me so much in such a short time. During one of our conversations, my “yoga mom” revealed that she would soon be 60 years old. My jaw dropped to the floor as I literally thought she was in her late 30’s/early 40’s. She looked INCREDIBLE which also meant one thing: ask her everything she knows about looking and staying young. Besides her simple beauty regime, she believes that doing a bit of yoga each day really has helped.

The video above includes her must do poses that she recommends doing daily. It only takes about 15 minutes a day to do all four which is pretty much NOTHING. It is important to hold each of these poses for a few solid minutes to reap the benefits. Holding the poses for at least 3-4 minutes helps to stimulate the production of Hyaluronic Acid, which binds water and keeps our joints lubricated and young. Without getting too technical, all of these poses help our fascia which is the connective tissues and parts in our body which deteriorate through over-use and aging. Holding the poses for longer allows for a therapeutic release and stimulates the flow of peace in our body. _________________________________________________________________________________________________

1. Squat– We spend SO much time sitting in chairs or in cars that it is no surprise that so many people suffer from back pain. This pose is so easy and can be done when you watch TV. It stimulates metabolism and our digestive organs.

Directions: From standing, squat down slowly as the knees point to opposite ends of the room. Put hands in prayer position at the heart and squat down until your elbows connect with your inner knees. For a more intense stretch, gently push elbows into knees. Drop shoulders down the back and hollow out the armpits.

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2. Pigeon. This is a great hip opener, stretches out the glutes and helps with emotional release ( and you thought you needed The Notebook to get your feelings flowing).

Directions: Start in downward facing dog. Lift your right leg off the ground, bend the knee and start bringing it foward toward your the back of your right wrist. When you can’t bring it any further forward, set the leg down. The right knee should be somewhere near the back of the right wrist. Keep the right foot flexed to protect the knee -very important. Slowly slide the left leg back and keep it straight. You can keep the toes flexed or point them on the straight leg. I prefer to keep my foot flexed.

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3. Knee to Chest Pose. This helps with relief from excess digestive air, indigestion, bloating, and acidity.

Directions: Lie down on your back, arms and legs straight. Lift one knee into your chest. Hold the shin with both hands, or hook your elbow over the shin to provide some weight and help the knee release closer to your chest.

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4. Headstand. THIS IS THE NUMBER 1 POSE FOR ANTI-AGING!
A headstand should really be called  “mini face lift” . By letting your skin hang in the opposite direction, it helps to flush fresh nutrients and oxygen to the face, creating a glowing effect on the skin (of course- it does turn red before this effect though!). It is also great for the appearance of blue spider veins!! Any fluid that is retained in the feet is able to drain and reduces the onset appearance of these annoying things.

Directions: Bring your elbows to the floor forearm’s distance apart and interlace your fingers, tucking the outermost pinky underneath. Place the crown of your head on the floor cupped by your interlaced fingers. Bring the hips up as if coming into downward facing dog. Walk the feet in towards your head until your hips are over your shoulders. Kick up one leg and then the other. Press down strongly into your forearms to keep all your weight from coming into your neck and head.  Reach up through the balls of your feet and rotate the thigh bones inward slightly. Hold for at least 10 breaths. Do this pose against a wall if you don’t do it often!

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