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Top 3 Yoga Poses Recommended by a 63-Year-Old Yoga Instructor for Improved Flexibility

As you age, it is a reality that your body undergoes changes. To ensure these changes are positive, maintaining good physical shape through appropriate exercises is crucial. In a conversation with Judy Schnoebelen, RYT-500 and YogaSix instructor, Eat This, Not That! explores the most effective exercises for improving mobility...READ THE FULL ORIGINAL ARTICLE HERE▶▶

Why is mobility so important? Well, for Schnoebelen, the reasons are simple. She wants to be an active grandmother who can easily bend, sit, and stand seamlessly.

“Mobility is simply the ability to move with ease and fluidity. As a concept, it does not stand alone. It incorporates and depends on strength, coordination, flexibility, and balance,” she tells us. “Mobility is the ‘new flexibility,’ meaning that fluidity of movement will likely serve us better than flexibility as we age … Focusing on mobility supports the functional movements that we need to live well. Additionally, core and leg strength help in getting up from the floor, and balance allows moving from one position to another.”

A yoga session is chock-full of healthy movements that start with posture. Practicing good posture and engaging your muscles both support strength and stability. For instance, how your head is positioned with your sacrum and shoulders is so important, as is your pelvis alignment.

“Postural changes occur with movement, and yoga provides the perfect platform for the body to modify and adjust when we move from one pose to another,” Schnoebelen explains.

Now, let’s get into Schnoebelen’s best-recommended moves for better mobility that you can easily work into your routine. And when you’re finished, don’t miss the 10 Daily Bodyweight Exercises To Keep You Youthful & Fit.

One-legged Mountain (Eka Pada Tadasana)

This first exercise will have you balancing on one leg. “One-legged mountain is a great pose to practice every day to improve your balance and is often used to transition to other poses,” says Schnoebelen.

Begin in mountain pose. Bring your arms overhead, and position your feet parallel to each other, hip-width apart. Push into your right big toe, pinkie toe, and heel. Activate your glutes, quads, and core. Keep your pelvis neutral. Then, lift your left foot as you slowly inhale and bend your left knee. Breathe out as you form a 90-degree angle with your left leg and flex your toes.

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Goddess Pose (Utkata Konasana)

This next yoga pose, goddess pose, opens up the hips and supports better stability and strength.

Begin by assuming a wide stance, or step back and shift to the side. Move your toes out to 45 degrees. Breathe in as you move your arms into a goal post position, keeping your elbows aligned with your shoulders. Breathe out as you spread your fingers out to create strength and tone in your arms. Engage the muscles in your quads, glutes, and core. Push into your shoulder blades, and locate a neutral pelvis. Pull your belly button inward, and engage your core.

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Cat and Cow

Cat and cow is an excellent move to improve your spinal mobility as you arch and round your back. Schnoebelen adds, “It’s also one of the best poses to connect breath to movement as you inhale from one shape (cow) and exhale to another (cat).”

Begin this move in the goddess position. Put both hands on your thighs, in between your knees and hips. Breathe in as you squeeze your shoulder blades together. Push your palms into your thighs as you pull your tailbone up. Your spine should be fully extended. Breathe out as your chin comes to your chest. Push into your palms as you “hug up” into your ribs and belly. You should be flexing your spine fully. Do the cat-cow exercise for a minimum of three full rounds of breaths.

Keep in mind you can also perform cat-cow while seated on a chair or from an all-fours position on the ground.

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Tiara Clephin

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