Anuradha G., a yoga instructor for over 10 years has used her experience and knowledge to transform the lives of those who have had the good fortune of being under her tutelage. Her keen sense of observation, sensitivity and compassion has helped her delve deep into the psyche of each student and devise a regime to cater to individual needs.
She began her career as a teacher of yoga in Petit School, initiating 4-6 year olds to the benefits of yoga. She also taught yoga at Rishikul, MET and to Citi Bank employees, BKC. Through her varied experiences with schools and corporates, she realized the need for formulating workouts to suit individual needs. Inspired, she began her journey of personal training.
Each and every stage has its own Dharma or duties to be undertaken. Of the four stages Vanaprasthashrama is the third stage of life. Conventionally, it is the age group between 60-75 years and is the retirement age where the individual is supposed to handover household responsibilities to the next generation and should take up the advisory role. This stage prepares you for the next stage which is Sanyasa. Hence men and women should gracefully withdraw themselves from the material world and detach themselves from attachments to food, relationships, possessions or views.
Old age is inevitable but feeling old is an option. If you lead your life with discipline, determination and detachment from the beginning, this stage is not a challenge as you will live within your means keeping in mind your health, financial position and social status. It is never too late to cultivate good habits since there is ample time at this stage. You can cultivate hobbies, engaging in social work as this stage provides you with an opportunity to pay back to the society and to nurture nature. Your endeavour should be to serve as an ideal role model for the younger generation. Practicing yoga Asanas and Pranayams will help the body in this stage to sustain itself. As we age, our bodies tend to hunch and compress. Pranayams strengthen and expand the lungs and the Asanas increase the flexibility of our body and mind. It is important to undergo regular health check-ups to monitor your health. Depending on your bodily needs, a routine should be fixed. An early morning walk must become a regular feature of your day followed by a healthy breakfast.
When performing Asanas, keep in mind the contraindications. Also, the goal must be to contribute to society by achieving a higher state of consciousness. Parikarmas which means Embellishment of the mind should be strictly practiced. The Parikarmas are Maitri, Karuna, Mudita and Upeksha.
(i) Maitri is friendliness towards all. Even when you are upset with someone, forgive and stay calm. Do not blame or express anger.
(ii) Karuna is compassion. Be compassionate towards others. When someone is in pain, reach out to help the individual overcome or cope with the pain.
(iii) Mudita means celebrating the joy of others and providing encouragement
(iv) Upeksha is Benevolence. Be kind to all and look upon the obstacles and difficult times in life with detachment.
Try not to get involved but instead be an observer. When all of the above is practiced, we enjoy the benefits of a healthy body, mind and spirit. Life becomes joyful and helps us to make a smooth transition to the next phase - Sanyasa. You expel negative emotions as hatred and become free spirited, calm and detached from material possessions and can move gracefully towards liberation and oneness with God.
At every stage the right practice will make the transition to the next stage effortless. Supported by the tenets of yoga, you can face life's challenges with equanimity and awareness.
Certain yoga principles as Yogachara, Bhavas, Yamas, and Niyams make you fit and confident and help you to recognize your strengths and weaknesses. Further, once you have identified your limitations, you can correct this with faith and uninterrupted practice of yoga.
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