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Mindfulness For Elderly

seniors aged care mindfulness

The Benefits Of Mindfulness Sessions In Aged Care Facilities

Mindfulness is the art of being aware of the present moment. Whether you’re enjoying your surroundings, revelling in an experience, or focusing on your body, mindfulness exercises help us calm our minds and ease stress, nervousness, and anxiety. Studies have shown that older people who practice regular mindfulness have a better quality of life, reporting better mental and physical wellbeing. The YOGAMIGOS team felt that seniors living in aged care facilities and retirement homes across Australia should have access to the benefits of mindfulness, so our mobile teachers provide classes specialising in mindfulness for the elderly.

The Physical Benefits

Although mindfulness exercises focus on calming the mind and quieting intrusive thoughts, there are many positive physical benefits associated with regular mindfulness practice.

  • Enhanced digestion. Diet and age are two of the most significant factors that can affect the digestive system, but mindfulness and meditation have been shown to improve digestion. The deep breathing we teach during our YOGAMIGOS mindfulness sessions improve circulation and increase oxygen levels in the blood, relieving digestive issues.
  • Improved sleep. Mantras, meditation, and other mindfulness practices alleviate insomnia symptoms, encouraging deeper, healthier sleep.
  • Reduces blood pressure. By lowering and controlling blood pressure, mindfulness exercises help reduce the risk of stress-related diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, and high cholesterol.
  • Controls pain. Mindfulness meditation for seniors encourages focus on the breath, forcing the mind to think of things other than chronic pain. These techniques may help senior residents when they get particularly bad flare-ups.

The Cognitive Benefits

In short, mindfulness is fantastic for the brain. It has a wide range of positive impacts on cognition and mental health.

  • Slows down the progression of Alzheimer’s disease.Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia are progressive illnesses prevalent amongst the elderly. Mindfulness exercises have been shown to improve both short and long-term memory, slowing down the progression of Alzheimer’s.
  • Sharpens mental alertness. Studies indicate that mindful meditation offsets age-related cognitive decline, keeping the mind sharper for longer.
  • Improved mood. Mindfulness practice encourages people to leave space between a stimulus and a reaction, so a person is less likely to act in an aggressive, confrontational manner when provoked. Additionally, mindfulness meditation for seniors stimulates the prefrontal cortex and allows for the release of endorphins (the happy hormone), which both work to improve overall mood.
  • Decreased stress and anxiety. When people are stressed or anxious, the brain produces cortisol, also known as the stress hormone. Cortisol makes the body go into fight or flight mode, increasing blood pressure, increasing heart rate, and making the mind feel nervous. Mindfulness exercises encourage people to focus on the present during moments of stress or anxiety, which calms both the physiological and the cognitive effects of cortisol.

The Spiritual Benefits

Mindfulness is such a soulful practice, but we often forget to consider the non-religious, spiritual benefits it presents to seniors.

  • Encourages gratitude. Gratitude is all about being aware and grateful for the present moment, looking for the small blessings in each day. As seniors practise mindfulness regularly, they begin to notice life’s small beauties once more. The colour of the flowers in the morning, the cup of coffee in their hand, the company of a friend, all the things that make life wonderful.
  • Regain control. One of the most difficult parts of aging is relinquishing control to other people. Seniors in aged care facilities may feel frustration at their bodies or minds, but mindfulness allows them to regain some of that control. Mindfulness teaches people that they are responsible for creating their own joy and letting go of thoughts and feelings that detract from that joy. It’s never too late to learn to let go of toxicity.
  • Coming to terms with the reality of aging. Aging can be a daunting process, but it’s one we must all make peace with at some point in our lives. Mindfulness practice encourages seniors to embrace the current moment, turning their thoughts away from the unknown future. It allows people to get a true sense of their physical and mental well-being, face the challenges of aging head-on, and make peace with them.

How To Organise A YOGAMIGOS Mindfulness Class For Seniors

At YOGAMIGOS, we have over 50 mobile instructors Australia-wide, so we can come to your aged care facility to run mindfulness activities for seniors. Organising a session is simple.

  • How often will you need us? Whether you’re looking to run a one-off mindfulness class or you’d like to do weekly, fortnightly, or monthly sessions, YOGAMIGOS would be happy to help. The more sessions you book, the cheaper the rates become.
  • Contact YOGAMIGOS. We’ll provide an experienced, professional instructor to run mindfulness for the elderly. Make sure to let us know how many people will be attending and how long you’d like the sessions to run. If we’re unable to come to the aged care facility, we can run the class via an online Zoom session.
  • Let us know what you’d like to focus on. Do you just want to provide a general mindfulness and wellness session? Or are you looking to address the symptoms of stress, anxiety, and geriatric depression? Make sure to let us know the goal of the mindfulness sessions so we can tailor our classes to suit the needs of the residents.
  • Set aside a space for the class. You’ll need to provide each resident with around 2sqm of space, so they have room to feel comfortable. We can run the session in a recreational space like the lounge room, dining room or garden.
  • Reduce distractions. We find that running the yoga sessions generally take place in the communal lounge room and recreational space. So it’s great if we can schedule your chair yoga sessions outside of mealtimes.

How Much Does Seniors Mindfulness Cost?

Gifting your residents with tailored mindfulness and wellbeing sessions is priceless! However, if you're interested in the numbers, costs may vary depending on how many residents attend the class, the duration of the sessions, and the number of sessions you wish to book. The more sessions you book, the cheaper the rate. Here is a rough pricing guide below based on up to 25 people per session:

INTRO SESSION - One 1-hour session: $179 plus GST

WELLBEING BUNDLE - Six 1-hour sessions: $169 plus GST per session

ZEN BUNDLE - Twelve 1-hour sessions: $159 plus GST per session

If You’d Like To Learn More About Seniors Mindfulness Classes, YOGAMIGOS Would Love To Work With You!

At YOGAMIGOS, we believe that yoga, mindfulness, and pilates should be accessible for all Australians. That’s why we began our mobile yoga, pilates, and mindfulness business in 2012. Now, we’re proud to have a team of 50 mobile instructors across the country. We have plenty of experience offering yoga, pilates, and mindfulness sessions to clients of all ages, from the little ones right through to our senior citizens. Because YOGAMIGOS have mobile instructors, we can bring our classes to you. We can also provide our classes online. Whether you’re looking to organise regular seniors mindfulness sessions or a strength-building pilates class, your wonderful YOGAMIGOS instructor is ready to share their love of yoga, pilates, and mindfulness to help you get more out of your day. If you’re interested in organising mindfulness for the elderly, don’t hesitate to reach out to us today!