The yoga postures, known as asanas, bend the spine in many different ways:
Side to side
Twisting from one side to the other
Moving the spine in this way keeps the spine supple and healthy and nourishes the entire nervous system. The asanas release tension and blocked energy; lengthen and strengthen muscles; and tone, stimulate, and massage the internal organs. As a result, the muscles and organs are bathed in blood, nutrients, and prana. Every cell is rejuvenated and cleansed. Respiration, cardiac functioning, circulation, nervous system functioning, elimination, and mental clarity improve. Fatigue and stress are reduced.
Energy to Age Gracefully
Yoga postures are anti-aging and anti-gravity—they reduce the sagging of organs and muscles due to aging and gravity's constant pull. The saying “You're as young as your spine” is absolutely true. Regular practice of yoga postures maintains the suppleness and youth of the spine. The postures also develop coordination and balance—essential as one ages, for preventing falls. They improve posture and increase knowledge of body mechanics.
As people grow older, as life slows down a bit and as their responsibilities change, the desire to go inward and contemplate life grows. The system of yoga provides a wonderful framework for that inward search and growth. Conscious relaxation and meditation are time-tested tools for contemplation and inner wisdom.
Yoga is a wonderful way to get into shape. The postures tone organs and develop long, lean muscles. The practice of forward bends, back bends, lateral poses, twists, and inversions balances and works every muscle, bone, joint, and organ in the body. Weight-bearing yoga poses, crucial for healthy bones, provide one of the best exercise systems known to man. Flexibility and strength of the muscles and range of motion in the joints greatly increase. Stamina and endurance also improve.