Many years ago when I started this blog, I set out to show the world that the body is not destined to age the way most people have been led to believe. In the time since, I’ve featured countless stories of men and women who have defied age by maintaining incredible physical abilities in their later years. I’ve also purposely featured people from all walks of life with entirely different goals and talents. We’ve seen elderly bodybuilders, power lifters, endurance athletes, martial artists, gymnasts, and more. Today I’ll add to that list of diversity by featuring an 80 year old yoga practitioner.
80 Year Old Yoga Display
I’m not easily impressed but the video below definitely caught my attention. To witness this 80 year old man casually transition through a variety of challenging holds is incredibly inspiring. And I say this as someone who has no interest or experience with yoga.
I’m definitely not against yoga. It’s just not something I’ve ever pursued. Therefore, I’m not sharing this video with hopes that everyone drops to the floor in an attempt to replicate this man’s performance. Instead, I’m sharing the video to once again highlight the amazing potential that exists within the human body.
Haven’t we all heard that the body loses flexibility as we grow older? Perhaps age isn’t the true culprit after all. Call it a hunch, but I’ll place a much greater blame on inactivity. The old “use it or lose it” advice rings true more often than not.
It’s also worth restating a theme that I’ve highlighted for many years. There isn’t a single road that we must all travel. For instance, yoga is not the only option to develop or maintain flexibility. Look for no further than Grand Master Jhoon Rhee for a classic example. He was highlighted in a previous entry when he turned 80 years old.
In summary, the moral to the story is rather straightforward. I strongly believe that the key to successful aging is activity. And this holds true regardless of your age. It doesn’t matter if you are 20, 40, 60, or 80, you’ll feel better when you finally decide to get up and move. The specifics of your activity matter less than the consistent and conscious effort to regularly move. We are all free to choose the goals and activities that we desire.
In many ways, you could say that successful aging is quite similar to general fitness. There isn’t a single type of training that should be pursued by all. Almost anything works if the individual is willing to work. Effort typically matters more than the specific activity. Whether you lift weights, run, perform calisthenics, or engage in yoga, you’ll be far ahead of your peers by simply taking the initiative to regularly challenge yourself.
And as evident by the video above, the sky is certainly the limit. Don’t let age hold you back from pursuing the goals that matter to you.
“The shoe that fits one person pinches another; there is no recipe for living that suits all cases.” – Carl Jung