It ain’t the years, honey…it’s the mileage.
-Indiana Jones, Raiders of the Lost Ark
I was stopped in my tracks by an analogy in a book I’m reading, comparing the difficulty of something with “starting the violin at age 40”. Blink. Was that meant especially for me? It made me smile because, while I don’t anticipate ever becoming a violin virtuoso, I’m not doing too bad either. And, I really enjoy it, and look forward to learning more.
Because that’s what it’s about, really. You’re never too old to learn. And in fact, learning keeps you young. Can I extend that to yoga keeps you young? I’ve always told other type A personalities like myself that you are never “done” learning yoga. And maybe that’s why it’s such an effective tool for managing our well-being. Every time we step onto our mat there is ample opportunity to learn and grow, from a teacher, from a new pose, from an old pose, from ourselves, from how we receive the teachings from all of the above. Everyone adores all the pictures of people in their 90s practicing challenging asana. That’s not just some pr stunt – it’s the real deal. Yoga keeps you supple, in both body and mind. I’ve found that yoga keeps me in learning mode, not just about yoga, but in lots of other areas. It’s opened my mind to receive the many, many teachings out there.
And it seems to me that it just keeps getting better with age (cue the fine wine cliché, santé). Sadly, our culture places a high value on the beauty of youth, when there is so much beauty to appreciate across all ages. It could be an article in one of the fashion and beauty mags (it probably already has been): “Be beautiful at any age with yoga!”
So when you’re feeling the miles, à la Indiana Jones…remember that yoga is the ultimate tune-up, for a lifetime of mileage. Keep on truckin’. Namaste.