OLDER people should be offered yoga classes to improve their physical and mental health, a review recommends.
Over-60s who practise the ancient postures and breathing techniques sleep better and are less depressed, researchers say.
They also have improved balance, flexibility, leg strength and show more vitality than those who do not exercise in old age.
Researcher Divya Sivaramakrishnan said yoga should be promoted more in official physical activity guidelines.
She said: “Yoga has great potential to improve important physical and psychological outcomes in older adults.”
Edinburgh University researchers reviewed 22 previous studies into the benefits of yoga among those aged 60 and over.
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They found it was better than no exercise and other more popular physical activities, like walking and chair aerobics.
Study leader Divya said too many older people were inactive and did not meet official recommendations on balance and muscle strengthening.
She added: “Yoga is a gentle activity that can be modified to suit those with age-related conditions and diseases.”
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