Anti-Aging Yoga: How-to Slideshow

Sadie Nardini by Sadie Nardini | February 23rd, 2009 | 26 Comments
topic: Health & Wellness, Healthy Aging, Yoga

twisted-lungeI’m 37 years old, but look me in the face, give my body the once over, and like most others, you might peg my age around 27. That’s not vanity talking … it’s the reality of a consistent yoga regimen. I feel like Benjamin Button, getting younger and more vital instead of older with each year.

What yogis have known for centuries, science now backs up: When it comes to looking and feeling young, skin creams and injections ain’t got nothing on the practice of yoga. Yoga changes the body’s system as a whole, so the glow on your more youthful face actually comes from an inner transformation and slowing down of the aging process. This means fewer wrinkles, less stress, more immunity, increased brain power and yes, a body that stays healthy and beautiful for a lifetime. So forget botox. Try yoga!

I’m not talking about face yoga here — though that’s fine to do, too.

More and more research is finding that people who practice a vigorous form of yoga just three hours a week are investing in maintaining a youthful glow by switching on the anti-aging hormones that slow down the process from the inside out. In fact, some studies show that on average, these three hourly sessions make practitioners biologically nine years younger than their non-yogi counterparts. Now that’s change we can believe in! Yoga does this by stimulating the endocrine system to produce balanced amounts of hormones, and helps switch on and off genes that we need (or don’t!) to keep us running smoothly. It’s been shown, among other things, to reduce stress hormones like cortisol, a major factor in disease and aging.

Make this practice part of your regular routine, and reap the benefits of invigorated health and beauty that will have people asking you what your secret is. You’ll just smile slyly (with fewer wrinkles) and say, “It’s the yoga.”

THE PRACTICE

The following 6 power poses work specifically to trigger the main endocrine glands: reproductive, adrenals, thymus, thyroid, hypothalamus, pituitary and pineal, and the major organs, which all work together to regulate stress, metabolism, aging, sleep and immunity.

1. Seated Cat/Cow

SEATED COW

SEATED COW

SEATED CAT

SEATED CAT

Regulates: reproductive and stress hormones

Come into an Easy Seat. Place your hands on knees, and with each inhale, arch your back, drawing shoulder blades closer. Exhale, and round in, shoulder blades move apart, chin towards chest.

Repeat for one minute or more.

2. Metabolic Spark

METABOLIC SPARK 1

METABOLIC SPARK 1

METABOLIC SPARK 2

METABOLIC SPARK 2

Regulates: metabolism and weight management, immunity

Return to Easy Seat. Inhale into the chest and ribs, and reach your arms out parallel to the floor, palms facing forward. Exhale more quickly from the navel, and swing your arms to reach out in front of you, palms face each other.

Repeat for one minute.

3. Twisted Lunge

TWISTED LUNGE

TWISTED LUNGE

Regulates: organ health, overall system function.

Come into a Lunge Position, back heel up, hips squared. Bring your palms together at the chest and plant your right elbow onto the left knee. Keep the hips level as you exhale and spin your heart and top shoulder to the sky. Place your back knee down onto the floor if needed.

Take 5-10 breaths here, then switch sides.

4. Humble Warrior

HUMBLE WARRIOR

HUMBLE WARRIOR

Regulates: Sleep, aging

Come into a Warrior One stance, right foot forward, back foot planted with toes facing diagonally to the left corner of the mat. Interlace your fingers behind the back, inhale to arch the back, and exhale, bow forward. Your right shoulder brushes the inner front knee. After a few breaths here, spin your back heel up into a Lunge position, place your back knee on the mat and take the crown of your head lightly onto the floor or a block.

Take 5 breaths in the high pose, and one minute in the lower position.

5. Sleeping Pigeon

SLEEPING PIGEON

SLEEPING PIGEON

Regulates: Mental sharpness, endorphins, master balance of glands

Move into Pigeon, right knee forward and wide of the right hip, back leg extends behind you. Fold forward with level hips, and press your forehead into double fists or a block.

Breathe here for two minutes then switch sides.

6. Supported Shoulderstand

SUPPORTED SHOULDERSTAND

SUPPORTED SHOULDERSTAND

Regulates: Sleep, skin elasticity, detoxification

Lie on your back, knees bent. Lift your hips and place a block under them. Raise your legs into the air, bent knees at first, then straightening them when you feel stable. Free float in this supported inversion, or take the legs onto a wall.

Be here for 5 minutes to end your practice.

Comments

  1. These are great, Sadie. I really love your blog and your teaching style!

    Maggie | February 23rd, 2009 | Comment Permalink
  2. Hi Maggie–thanks so much for saying so. I’m glad you’re loving it. Let me know what else you’d like to see here!

    Namaste,
    Sadie

    Sadie Nardini | February 25th, 2009 | Comment Permalink
  3. These DO look great, Sadie!

    Do you have them in a video/dvd format (which is much easier for me to follow than trying to squint at my small laptop monitor while in a pose)??

    Namaste!

    Zydekitten | March 4th, 2009 | Comment Permalink
  4. These poses look great,Sadie. But I don’t think I’m as flexible as you. Are there modified poses that I could do that would provide the same benefits?

    Sandra Mitchell | March 5th, 2009 | Comment Permalink
  5. Hi Zydekitten and Sandra!

    Z–you can catch a similar video sequence on my YouTube classroom…the pne you want is at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZpDf0HBgNuo
    It’s a bit bigger, but the main draw is that you can hear me talk you through it so you’re not always looking at the screen. Good luck!

    Sandra–You will work towards more flexibility by trying these poses with the following modifications:
    The Cat Cow and Metabolic Spark poses you can do as is or seated on a chair.
    Put your knee down on a folded blanket for the Twisted Lunge and the Humble Warrior. In the Warrior, turn your back heel up as in the lunge and just go as low as you can. Aim for head lower than the heart over time.
    For Sleeping Pigeon, place your forearms on a couple of stacked blocks or books, and it’s OK if your hips stay high at first. Just make sure they’re centered in space, and breathe.
    The hips on a block should be fine, but try it with a pillow or block under your hips, and your legs up on the couch. Just elevate your feet on the couch a little higher than your knees, so you get a full inversion.

    Hope this helps, ladies, and GO YOGIS! LOOK YOUNGER AND FEEL GREAT!

    Namaste,
    Sadie

    Sadie Nardini | March 7th, 2009 | Comment Permalink
  6. I have to agree on the age thing, I am 10 years older than Sadie is and most people can’t believe that I have a 23 year old daughter and that I am not in my early 30’s. Yoga and a good diet, not painful, no knives or scary things injected in just a smiling happy face and a flexible body!!

    Sherry | March 8th, 2009 | Comment Permalink
  7. Hi Sadie,

    Your slide show looks so great and your comments are easy to follow!
    I’d really love to publish your article on my own web page – in German. Please let me know, whether this is ok for you or not.

    All the best,
    Karin from Austria

    Karin | March 15th, 2009 | Comment Permalink
  8. Hi Karin,

    Sure–I’d be honored! Just be sure to credit Gaiam, OK? Danke!

    Sadie

    Sadie Nardini | March 15th, 2009 | Comment Permalink
  9. Looks, GREAT, Karin…thanks so much for sharing it.

    Namaste,
    Sadie

    Sadie Nardini | March 20th, 2009 | Comment Permalink
  10. I read some where that practicing yoga can help and even reverse your grays?? Is this true? How long do you think one has to stay in an upside down position for this to happen? Does yoga stimulate cell regeneration? Is this what the experts are referring to when they say, “anti-aging”?

    Thank you,

    Wendy K. H.

    wendy | October 21st, 2009 | Comment Permalink
  11. Hi ,

    keep up the good work very helpful..

    Thanks

    joe | July 18th, 2010 | Comment Permalink
  12. Hi Sadie.I’m from Germany and I don’t always have the possibility to look at your video of youtube.So it would be great if it’s possible to buy a dvd of your programm.Or could you otherwise suggest me one of somebody else.Thank you very much.Greetings from Germany

    Baerbel | July 23rd, 2010 | Comment Permalink
  13. Gaiam.com has an array of great yoga DVDs. Check them out and other yoga gear at http://www.gaiam.com/category/yoga-studio.do

    Jessie Lucier | July 23rd, 2010 | Comment Permalink
  14. Hi Karin,
    Thanks for this article on Yoga. I’ve been into exercise for some time but have never tried yoga but I’m convinced from your article the value of it in any exercise program. Thanks again!
    Jimmie

    Anonymous | July 24th, 2010 | Comment Permalink
  15. Sorry I mean Sadie not Karin.

    Anonymous | July 24th, 2010 | Comment Permalink
  16. Hi Sadie,
    I love that you put in exactly what each pose is good for as well as the description. Very easy to follow and very inspiring. I’ve bookmarked your site and will definitely be popping back.

    Anonymous | July 24th, 2010 | Comment Permalink
  17. For a person relatively new to yoga, what is the general consensus of transforming the aging process to younger skin by doing these poses as suggested? Is this more of a preventive practice against the aging process or is it effective in turning back the hands of time to a more youthful look?

    Joey at Celazome Skin Care | July 26th, 2010 | Comment Permalink
  18. I have 10 years on you.. and also excited if 10 of those can be erased by doing yoga and living an anti-aging lifestyle. I like the Twisted Lunge (my husband’s favorite is the Sun Salutation).

    What is exciting is that we have choices.. gives us some power!! I better get to some yoga!

    Vicki Zerbee | July 30th, 2010 | Comment Permalink
  19. I love the way yoga makes you feel after even though its one of the hardest things I have ever done in my whole life! Especially as a guy! I’m not to flexible but this is definitely helping. Transitioning from one tough position to the other is crazy lol I got to hand it to you sadie these are great step by step slides and instructions. Its true, fitness is one of the primary keys to staying young and you are definitely living proof. Thank you for the great information it will help me kill my p90x yoga workout in addition:)

    Juvenon Reviews | August 10th, 2010 | Comment Permalink
  20. its really excellent…

    abida | December 12th, 2010 | Comment Permalink
  21. Yoga is one of the most effective ways to make you look and feel younger and can add years to your life with better health, strength and flexibility. Keep your metabolism high, regulate aging.

    bellamora | January 3rd, 2011 | Comment Permalink
  22. You look like you are 24 years old !!!!!! i wish i could say the same about me
    :( ………… i will start doing yoga from today

    shafalika | February 4th, 2011 | Comment Permalink
  23. I am a regular practitioner of yoga

    pepsharada | June 24th, 2011 | Comment Permalink
  24. This yoga post is very cute. Some people think that it’s just a boring bending or changing and posing body position but they are wrong. It gives a lot of benefits such as anti aging. Thanks for posting it!!

    Mayjex | August 3rd, 2011 | Comment Permalink
  25. I recently started a regimen for anti-aging, yoga paired with a supplement of all natural ingredients for skin

    michelle jeffries | September 29th, 2011 | Comment Permalink
  26. The main thing to control the aging process is to take the proper and healthy diet.
    Also go for regular walk and do some yoga.

    Lock My Age | October 25th, 2013 | Comment Permalink

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