4 Yoga Poses that Promote Better Sleep for Older Adults

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A Harvard study found yoga can enhance mental focus, provide relief from chronic pain, and boost sleep quality. These benefits can extend to seniors looking to achieve better overall health. Here are four basic yoga poses that can help seniors enhance the quality of their sleep.

1. One-Legged Wind-Relieving Pose 

This is a simple pose that can minimize lower back pain that sometimes leads to restless nights. It also gently stretches the muscles supporting the hips. Here’s how to do this pose:

  • Lie down and bend the knees with feet flat on the ground
  • Pull the left thigh toward the chest
  • Straighten the right leg while keeping the feet pointed upward
  • Hold the pose for 5–10 seconds and repeat with the other leg

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2. Chair Pose

The chair pose can help seniors maintain optimal heart health when performed on a regular basis. It’s a pose that stretches multiple muscles to minimize aches and pains that can interrupt sleep. To do this pose:

  • While standing with feet together, swing the arms gently with palms down
  • Bend the knees as if preparing to sit and hold position for a minute
  • Return to a standing position and swing the arms gently

3. Staff Pose

This pose can help seniors with minor aches and pains. It also strengthens middle and lower back muscles and enhances posture, which can encourage seniors to assume better sleeping positions. To do the staff pose, seniors should:

  • Sit on the floor and stretch the legs out while sitting up as straight as possible
  • Place the hands on the ground near the hips with the fingers outstretched toward the feet • Flex the thigh muscles on one leg and gently rotate the thigh inward
  • Point the toes upward while flexing the ankle
  • Hold and repeat with the other leg

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4. Seated Forward Bend Pose 

For seniors looking to naturally lower their blood pressure, this pose can be helpful. It’s believed that maintaining a healthy blood pressure can better regulate the body’s internal clock to enhance sleep patterns. To achieve this pose:

  • Sit on a chair with the knees together
  • Round the shoulders, stretch the back muscles, and lean forward while breathing
  • Allow the arms to drop to the side while briefly holding the pose

These poses are all known to relax the body and prepare it for sleep. Because they’re all very gentle and light, they’re easy for seniors of all ability levels to do. If your elderly loved one needs help with exercise or any other aspect of maintaining a high quality of life while aging in place, reach out to Assisting Hands Home Care, a trusted provider of Arlington at-home care. Our caregivers provide transportation to and from medical appointments, nutritious meal preparation, assistance with daily exercise, and help with everyday tasks like bathing, grooming, and light housekeeping. Reach out to us today at (703) 988-1800 to learn more about our high-quality home care services.