You know Yoga isn’t all about crazy positions where you have to bend your legs in impossible angles. Yoga can be accessed by everyone of all levels – look at the Chair Yoga class I lead for U3A in Croydon which requires no previous experience and it’s not restricted to seated poses – we also use the chairs to facilitate balance and increase confidence for standing poses.
Members of my group access the poses at their own level and the rule is if it hurts stop! The programme varies each time with poses designed to increase flexibility and improve balance. We also focus on working the heart muscle, expanding the lung capacity and building up strength. These all have positive effects on mood and well-being. There is no competitive edge; we only challenge ourselves and we do have lots of fun.
Yoga is beneficial for so many reasons – it increase muscle strength and tone, it maintains a balanced metabolism it increases your flexibility and it makes you feel better, stronger, calmer.
And this is U3A so the cost of each session is a modest £3 per which covers the venue expenses and as a U3A member I give my tuition on a voluntary basis.
There is Yoga and Chair Yoga U3A classes around the country and if my group are anything to go by- you will love it so give it a try.
Here are just a few comments from members of the Chair Yoga Croydon group:
- “I enjoy every moment and look forward to many more!” Sheila
- “Thanks Jenny for your fun-filled and enjoyable chair yoga”. Neelam
- “Enjoying every moment”. Frances
- “Very lovely, well-organised class”. Arlene
Chair Yoga Sun Salutation
- Sit tall with feet stretched out – buttocks firm on chair edge
- Arms stretched out to sides – palms down – starfish fingers
- Rotate shoulders – palms up – little fingers higher than thumbs
- Back straight – sit tall – shoulders down
- Scoop the arms up in front
- Stretch high – little back arch – look at your hands if you can- back to neutral
- Turn arms so knuckles touch
- Take the arms down with resistance – arms by sides
- Quick shake of shoulders
- Prayer hands – press palms together strongly– breathe
- Flex feet – Swan down to feet – stretch back and backs of legs – breathe
- Use core muscle strength to sit up – breathe
- Swan down to feet – pointed toes this time
- Use core to sit – press prayer hands – breathe and smile.
- Repeat a few times
Croydon U3A Chair Yoga takes place on the first and third Wednesdays of the month, 2.15-3.35pm, at Shirley Methodist Church