A couple of weeks ago, an acquaintance from my yoga school invited me to her birthday party. She then said, “Yes, I can’t believe I’m turning 40.” I almost peed my pants. She looks 28, 29, 30 at the most. This girl can do the splits, vinyasa her heart out, and has smooth, glowing skin. She has been practicing hot yoga for eight years.
The thought of not actually looking old when I’m old is very appealing to me. I have a small heart attack whenever I think I see crow’s feet or smile lines creeping on my face.
All I really know about it: Yoga helps reduce stress – stress ages you (why my mother has so many grey hairs). Yoga also helps keep your spine healthy, which keeps your body supple.
Although you don’t see many over-forty somethings in yoga on a daily basis, I think it’s SO important for older people to practice at the least some type of gentle yoga and balance work. My mother recently fell when hiking on vacation and shattered some godforsaken bone in her elbow. I brought my father to a gentle hatha class, he couldn’t stand on one foot for tree pose. One of my major fears is my mother or father will fall and break their hip.
I hope I don’t offend anyone when I say I think Bikram Choudhury is a nut. I have taken many Bikram classes and love the practice and respect him very much for bringing it to the masses. His behavior has tarnished the reputation of yoga in the United States. However, it is pretty amazing to compare this picture from 1992 to 2012. He looks the same after 20 years!