The human body is a unique and very powerful vehicle. Maintaining this vehicle so that it functions well throughout its lifetime is one way to increase your joy and fulfillment in life. Yoga is unique in its capacity to preserve and maintain health in the body as we age. The yoga asanas and pranamaya techniques address all aspects of the physical and subtle bodies, offering increased circulation, flexibility, and a boost in mood and emotional regulation. It does this through its action on the joints and muscles along with its ability to promote relaxation through its work on the nervous system. Yoga describes the human body as being made up of three distinct parts: the sthula (gross body), the karana sarira (causal body) and the suksma sarina (subtle body). The asanas of yoga act upon the gross body. Pranamaya acts on the subtle body. Different classes of postures act differently on the body for the health of the greater system. For example, inversions cool the skin, incease blood flow to the heart without taxing the heart, and help the lower extremities move venous blood back to the heart. Glands like the thyroid are bathed in fresh blood. Balancing poses warm the skin and promote strength and confidence. Forward bends stretch the back body and quiet the mind. Backbends stretch the front body, strengthen the back body, and stimulate the nervous system. And Pranamaya increases the mindfulness aspect of yoga and helps balance and quiet the mind and emotions. Together, the support for the body and mind in complete and the practitioner is refreshed and energized. Yoga is adapted as we age. Typically asanas are the main focus for younger bodies while pranamaya and modified poses are provide the most benefit for older people. The key to finding a good yoga class is finding a teacher qualified to address all aspects of the body, physically and energetically. For maximum benefit, find a practice that works for you and then maintain consistency in that practice. If you are curious about what yoga can do for you, call for a free consultation. Studio classes are appropriate for some while others may want one-on-one sessions. The key is to get moving!