Yoga proven to be a powerful tool in fighting frailty in older adults


Research shows practising yoga can help prevent and manage frailty in older adults, as it improves gait speed and lowers extremity strength comparable to exercise and tai chi.

As we age, our bodies become more susceptible to chronic diseases, disabilities, and frailty. Fortunately, a new study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine shows that yoga may be a powerful tool in preventing and managing frailty in older adults.

The study, which reviewed 33 randomised controlled trials comprising 2,384 participants aged 65 or older, found that yoga-based interventions improved gait speed and lower extremity strength in inactive older individuals. This improvement was shown to be comparable to the benefits of exercise and tai chi.

The effects of yoga on frailty markers such as balance, handgrip strength, and multi-component physical performance measures were also analysed by the authors. While the benefits of balance and handgrip strength were less certain, there was moderate evidence that yoga improved lower body strength and endurance.

According to researchers from Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Iyengar-based styles of yoga may be the most effective for older adults. These styles can be customised for the unique needs and abilities of older individuals, making them a safe and accessible option for preventing and managing frailty.

The study’s findings add to a growing body of evidence that yoga can play a significant role in healthy ageing and frailty prevention. So if you’re an older adult looking to stay active and maintain your strength, consider incorporating yoga into your fitness routine today.

Source: American College of Physicians.

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Ritchelle is a Content Producer for Healthcare Channel, Australia’s premier resource of information for healthcare.


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