Seniors give free yoga a go

| 10/10/2019
  • Cayman News Service

(CNS Local Life): Seniors over the age of 60 are being given a chance throughout this year’s Older Persons Month to give yoga a try, after a local studio offered free Seniors Chair Yoga classes in partnership with the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS). The 45-minute classes are being held every Friday throughout October and the first class of 21 senior citizens, many of whom had never tried yoga before, started last week, and it went down very well..

“We experienced unprecedented demand,” said Tricia Nelson, the manager of Bliss Yoga Cayman, which is offering the classes. “We were hoping to attract 15 people per session, but were pleasantly surprised that registration was very brisk. Straight after the first session, 18 signed up again, one’s even registered her husband!”

Instructor Lindsay Correia explained that the class offers a low-impact and highly relaxing way of exercising in a controlled and tranquil setting.

“Many of the movements help to open up the rib cage and relieve built-up tension in the body, which can get increasingly inflexible due to long periods of restricted movement and inactivity. A relaxed and comfortable body leads to a relaxed and comfortable mind,” she noted.

Correia originally devised the sequence of poses to help a friend resume modest exercise after major leg surgery.

“The more I got into planning the workout for her, the more I realised it’s suitability for seniors wanting to retain mobility and reclaim a greater flexibility,” she said. “I took Chair Yoga participants through various poses after a few minutes of deep breathing exercises. These included ‘the goddess’, which opens up the pelvic region and some modified ‘warrior’ poses for improving balance and posture while strengthening your legs, outer hips and upper back,” she added.

One of the ladies who took part was Ann Elliott from South Sound, who said the class was brilliant. “I wasn’t quite sure that I’d take to it, having never done yoga before. It was so relaxing, and yet I definitely felt that I was exercising,” she said. “I am a fairly active senior but my daughter is always telling me I could do more. I’ve signed up for next week and have registered my husband as well,” Elliot added.

North Side couple John and Rhoda Smith also gave it a try. “I’ve never experienced anything quite like it,” said John Smith. “I can’t even describe how I feel right now but it’s definitely positive,” he added after the taster session. “What I liked about it is that I stretched muscles I haven’t thought about in years. This class should be year-round.”

DCFS Social Worker Sigrid Menschaart, who organised the sessions, was encouraged by the positive feedback. “I was delighted that Seniors Chair Yoga was so well attended,” she said.

“This is the first time we’ve had this kind of class as part of our Older Persons Month offerings. The more active seniors seem to have responded really well to it. A few of those who came along have never attended any Older Persons Month events before, so it’s very encouraging that we are reaching new seniors,” she added.

This Friday’s (11 October) Bliss Chair Yoga session is almost full. To try Chair Yoga on Friday 11, 18 and 25 October, contact the studio at 949-9642.


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Category: Yoga

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