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(Like A Good Wine) Age Matters! Am I Too Old To Start Yoga?

Hello all and Happy New Year! I hope your break was relaxed and enjoyable and full of all the things you love.

Well, here we go with 2019. Classes start up again next week (Monday 7th) for January and I hope a flurry of newbies will join us!

I will list my classes below for anyone in/around Glasgow who may be interested in joining one of them, but for now...

Let's chat about starting yoga.

Maybe it's something you've been thinking about for a while now. Or maybe it's a brand new idea altogether.

Are you thinking maybe you're a little too old and inflexible? Well just WHEESHT! (Sorry, sometimes the Ayrshire just shines through me, uncontrollably.)

I was recently reading a brilliant article and I will include a few quotes below, as well as the direct link itself. The article was telling us how age DOES matter - and here is why...

The article read... "As we age, the structure and functionality of our brains change and this often leads to cognitive decline, including impaired attention or memory. One such change in the brain involves the cerebral cortex becoming thinner, which scientists have shown is correlated with cognitive decline. So, how can we slow or reverse these changes?"

Scientists in Brazil conducted a study (which was recently published in Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience, nonetheless) between a handful of female yogis and a handful of NON-yogis but very similar otherwise i.e. overall healthy and ALL OVER THE AGE OF 60! And what they found was very interesting...

They discovered that the yogis "had a greater cortical thickness in the left prefrontal cortex, in brain areas associated with cognitive functions like attention and memory. The results suggest that yoga could be a way to protect against cognitive decline in old age."

BUT HOW? WHY?!

Because yoga is a wonderful tool and practice, that's why. One of the main researchers, Elisa Kozasa of Hospital Israelita Albert Einstein in São Paulo, Brazil explained, "In the same way as muscles, the brain develops through training. Like any contemplative practice, yoga has a cognitive component in which attention and concentration are important.”

Yoga allows you the time and space to stop still. To breathe, the digest your day, to put things into perspective, to feel stronger in both mind and body, to release those feel-good endorphins and encourage a more positive mindset, to commune with other like-minded men and women. I don't know how you view the typical yoga class (I know some find it quite daunting), but I think it's safe to say each one is quite different. For instance, my classes always start with a laugh and a chat. I love a light-hearted approach. Our time for silence is when we move - and even then, we still stop to laugh. BECAUSE LAUGHING SOLVES SO MANY THINGS!

You are NEVER too old to start practicing yoga. In fact, you should!!

My mum started her practice around 53 years old and, three years later, she's never looked back. She looks forward to her class so much every week. It's HER time. Maybe the older you get, the more you realise how precious time actually is? Time for YOU. Away from families (as much as she loves us like crazy, she loves her single hour of quiet too and does NOT want to miss it!), away from phones, emails, work life, the dog that wants in and out the back door every 10 minutes, the words "MUM!" and "NANNY!" that never stop (even though not one of us lives with her!) She just loves her practice and her quiet time. And so she should! You're entitled to YOU time and we need to start reminding ourselves of that a little more. Self-care can be brushed aside as being self indulgent but it's absolutely not. It's a requirement. How do you care for everyone else if you can't care for yourself?

Yoga seems to be a rather sound resolution for so many reasons, doesn't it?

It's easy on your joints, it's non-impact, it's relaxing, it's empowering and it offers sooooo many more benefits - including better functioning brains! And who can argue with that...?

(If only it would encourage more common sense. I, personally, could do with a dose.)

If you're interested in reading the whole article, it's linked below;

https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2017/08/science-shows-yoga-may-protect-your-brain-in-old-age

If you'd like to join one of my classes, here is my weekly timetable. Just shout me at info@lisacunninghamyoga.com to book a space!

Tuesday

The Chakra Hut, Bishopbriggs 6.45pm (all welcome, including teens)

The Chakra Hut, Bishopbriggs 8pm (MEN'S CLASS ONLY, including teens)

Thursday

COLAB (Old Savoy Centre), Sauchiehall Street, 6.45am (AM NOT PM! i.e. coffee, not wine!)

St Margaret's Church, Kilmarnock Road, Newlands 7pm (all welcome, including teens)

Friday

The Chakra Hut, Bishopbriggs 10am (all welcome, including teens) (email donna@ahamoments.co.uk to book)

Peace, love and Namaste (and healthier brains!) to you all.

See you in class, Lisa ;-)

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