With about 3.3 million people in the U.S. using wheelchairs, 1.825 of them are age 65 or older and using a geriatric wheelchair. Even though they may not be as mobile as they used to be, it is still important that they exercise regularly. For this reason and more, special classes have been developed specifically for those using geri chairs for elderly.
One growing trend in the health and wellness industry is yoga for wheelchair users. This type of yoga still possesses the same values as other yoga practices, but it’s designed for geriatric wheelchairs, bariatric wheelchairs, and other high-quality seating. Its purpose is to enhance movement for physically limited individuals, bringing them inner peace and harmony while increasing body and self-awareness.
The practice of yoga involves using breathing techniques to bring together the physical, emotional, and mental body while restoring balance and peace to an individual’s life.
This new form of yoga is open to people of all skill levels and teaches flexibility, strength, as well as healthy breathing techniques. As a result, students leave the class feeling more positive and fulfilled.
In addition to breath-work, students also learn exercises such as the Seated Spinal Twist, which helps to increase flexibility in the upper body. Many traditional yoga poses can be modified in order to accommodate the physical restrictions many patients may have.
Before starting any yoga program, it is important to consult your doctor to make sure you are able to participate. Communicate with your doctor what you hope to get out of the classes to ensure that you are indeed making the right decision for your health. Once you have been cleared for practice, you can then begin taking classes with a well qualified, trained instructor.
Some rehabilitation centers offer yoga therapy like wheelchair yoga that can be customized to meet your needs and fitness goals. This practice could see a higher increase in popularity due to the 2 million people who begin using wheelchairs each day. Many would like to continue being physically active while staying within the guidelines of their doctor’s orders. This type of exercise helps those in a geriatric wheelchair or other types of wheelchairs to remain positive about their condition and feel good about themselves and their abilities overall.