As soon as we hit 18, it seems that our bodies start to go downhill. Our back hurts, and we start to click in a lot more places when we get up in the morning. While we can keep our minds fresh easily, there’s a lot of options to keep our bodies looking, and feeling, younger. Yoga has been around for centuries, and as a form of exercise, it’s a fantastic, low-impact workout that will leave you feeling sore, but in a good way. Here are some of the most popular yoga poses that slow the signs of aging.

If you are new to yoga, it’s recommended to not push yourself further than you’re capable, because this will only cause injury. Start by performing each pose for around 5 breaths, and build up from there when you feel ready. If you feel that you need a break, or have to stop, you can always go back to the child’s pose, and when you’re ready, start again. Always remember to speak to a professional if you are not progressing or there may be an injury stopping you. Common issues as we age include problems with our hips, and doing yoga may help to combat the lack of flexibility, but if you feel there are still problems, there could be an underlying problem. You may wish to consult a hip surgeon or specialist for more information should you feel that way. But yoga fixes a lot of common issues, and here is a short, but effective, sequence to try at home.

Equal Standing

Stand on a yoga mat in bare feet. Feet parallel, together, and hip-width apart. Arms are down at the sides. Focus on how your body weight is distributing itself. Without lifting your feet, shift your body weight to the center. Stack your hips over your ankles, and put your shoulders over your hips. Imagine a string is pulling you from the crown on your head. While doing all this, make sure that you aren’t over engaging the muscles.

Tree Pose

From your standing pose, shift your weight onto your left leg and foot. Adopt a prayer position with your hands. Open your right hip and leg with your right foot on your toes. Place the right heel against the calf of your left foot. If you feel stable, bring the foot onto your left thigh or calf. Breathe, and lower your foot slowly before repeating on the other side.

Downward Dog

From there, go onto your hands and knees. Wrists under shoulders, and knees go under hips. Feet should be hip-width apart. Curl under your toes, reach your tailbone towards the ceiling. Keep your heels off the floor at this point, then slowly straighten your legs and you will feel a stretch in the legs and the back. Place the balance of weight in between your hands and feet rather than on your shoulders. Once you have had 5 breaths, walk your feet towards your hands and slowly rise up, vertebrae by vertebrae.