If you are a Texas caregiver for an aging loved one, the holiday rush may have you feeling even more worn out and stressed out than usual. The rigorous schedule caregivers keep any time of year can be exhausting. When you add in the festivities of the season, it can lead to unhealthy levels of stress. There are several forms of exercise that are known to improve fitness and balance while also decreasing stress levels. The most popular are Pilates, Tai Chi and yoga.

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If you are a Texas caregiver for an aging loved one, the holiday rush may have you feeling even more worn out and stressed out than usual. The rigorous schedule caregivers keep any time of year can be exhausting. When you add in the festivities of the season, it can lead to unhealthy levels of stress. There are several forms of exercise that are known to improve fitness and balance while also decreasing stress levels. The most popular are Pilates, Tai Chi and yoga.

  •     Pilates – An old form of exercise, Pilates was originally designed to help dancers improve muscle strength without adding bulk. There are six core Pilates principals that help to improve core strength, torso stability and overall flexibility. It is a gentle enough form of exercise that it is often used in rehab with patients who are recovering from an illness or injury. Because Pilates focuses on breathing techniques, it is a great stress buster. That makes it a beneficial form of exercise for caregivers. You can find a Pilates program near you by searching by zip code at IDEA Health & Fitness Association or at Pilates Method Alliance.
  •      Tai Chi – An ancient form of Chinese martial arts, Tai Chi is uses slow, steady movements. Physicians often recommend it to patients not only for how much it helps to increase strength and coordination, but because of its ability to improve psychological health. The core philosophy of Tai Chi is teaching followers to slow down, relax, and focus on the mind- body connection. The Arthritis Foundation produced a great Tai Chi DVD that can help you get started.
  •          Yoga – The health benefits of yoga are impressive. It is actually considered to be a mind-body alternative form of medicine. Yoga has been credited with everything from decreasing blood pressure to decreasing anxiety. Hatha yoga is considered a good choice for caregivers because it is easy to perform and good for managing stress. This Yoga for Stress Management video from the Mayo Clinic can help you get started.

The bottom line on each of these forms of exercise is that they help caregivers use inner calm to create outer calm. That can be a key in keeping caregivers happy and healthy.

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