Forget 20-somethings twisting into overheated, tights-wearing pretzels. Yoga, dating back 5,000 years, is for all ages. Nearly 18 million Americans are finding stress relief, rejuvenation and many other reasons for taking part in this ancient practice. If you can breathe, you can yoga.
- Babies: With their knack of touching their heads to the floor with their bums in the air not to mention putting their toes in their mouths, little ones are natural yogis. That ability can be enhanced to benefit parents and babies. There are forests of books and DVDs on the subject but a mommies' favorite is Helen Garabedian's Itsy Bitsy Yoga program www.itsybitsyyoga.com.
- Designed to strengthen the bond between parent and child from birth to 4-years-old, these touching, singing and stretching sessions provide relaxing, healthy playtimes.
- Kids: School, peers, parents can stress children. Yoga offers tools to cope they can use for a lifetime. Look for a program that tones down the lecturing and encourages creativity.
- Teens: At a time when big changes are happening, yoga provides guidance to "fit in" new and growing bodies.
- Adults: Whether you are seeking meditative solitude or a group sports experience, yoga has a class for you. Find the one right for you by trying out Kundalini, Power, Ashtanga or Bikram yoga. Or, explore Tantric yoga brought to the mainstream by Sting and his wife.
- Seniors: Although you'll find 80-year-olds who can touch their nose to their knees, that's rare. For the average person up in years or much younger folks with flexibility issues, chair yoga is a starting point to consider. Breathing exercises is a major component with poses for strength and flexibility supported by a chair for balance.
- Dogya: Oh yeah, for and with your dog. Yoga is truly for all.