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How Yoga Can Help with Caregiver Stress

Yoga is the ancient practice of controlling breath, improving posture and flexibility, as well as providing a relaxing way for the human body to work out.
 
Yoga has been a traditional form of exercise and meditation for thousands of years, giving millions of people an opportunity to relax and unwind from their stressful days. There are several different types of yoga that can be practiced including but not limited to: restorative yoga, hot yoga and prenatal yoga. Although all types of yoga stem from the same ancient practice, each type is customized to fit the needs of different groups of people during different stages in their life.

How Can Yoga Help with Caregiver Stress?

 
Being a caregiver is a rewarding, yet demanding job. As time goes on, caregivers may begin to feel burnt out, leading to increased stress, anxiety or depression. Regularly practicing yoga promotes a healthy mindset, healthy body and a healthy outlook on life. When a caregiver practices yoga regularly, he or she may feel a sense of calmness, peacefulness and overall a more positive outlook on life. During the yoga session, it is important for the caregiver to let go of the tension and stress that they are feeling from their daily tasks and surrender to the practice.

Exercise, more specifically yoga, can be very beneficial for caregivers. Yoga has been proved to increase strength and flexibility, two things that are imperative in order to be a successful caregiver. Exercise in general will help a caregiver relieve stress or tension that he or she feels in their every day life. By giving themselves time to unwind and focus solely on themselves and their health, this will improve their move and likely their general attitude towards their life. Exercise should be coupled with proper nutrition in order to get the full benefits of a healthy and active lifestyle as a caregiver.

How to Practice Yoga

 
It is important to always check with medical professionals before participating in any new form of exercise. After being cleared to participate in a new exercise routine, it is important to find the type of yoga that works for each individual person. Of course, hot yoga is not going to be suitable for everyone and restorative yoga may not be the right option for others. By doing the proper amount of research, caregivers can decide which type of yoga will work best with their lifestyle, needs and exercise related experience.

There are several yoga poses that can help caregivers build a strong foundation for their practice. By diving into these poses for yoga beginners, caregivers can introduce their mind, soul and body to the practice of yoga. Fundamental poses for yoga beginners includes but is not limited to:

  • Bridge pose
  • Chair Pose
  • Cat Pose
  • Cow Pose
  • Cobra Pose
  • Downward-Facing Dog
  • High Lunge, Crescent Variation
  • Happy Baby Pose

Where to Practice Yoga

 
Yoga can be practiced in a variety of places including a studio or in the comfort of the practitioner’s home. In the beginning stages of a caregiver’s yoga journey, it is advisable to start by taking lessons or classes from an experienced yoga professional. This will ensure that each pose is being done with proper form, in order to avoid injuries. After a caregiver is more familiar with yoga, the poses that serve them well and how to properly perform said poses, a home-based yoga program may be the next step. As always, make sure that form and method is proper and will benefit your body rather than pushing it to limits that will cause harm.

We hope that yoga can become an integral part of becoming the best caregiver, individual and yogi you can be. Namaste!

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