Chair Yoga

Chair Yoga refers to a form of yoga done seated in a chair or standing using a chair for support.   It offers a practical way to gain the benefits of the yoga discipline for a wide spectrum of levels and personal circumstances.  Chair yoga can be practiced by those individuals who are recovering from an injury or illness or those in a wheelchair.  Seniors who are dealing with joint issues or age-related health conditions are able to benefit from chair yoga.   It provides an opportunity for stress relief for office workers at their desk.

In 1982, a yoga instructor by the name of Lakshmi Voelker developed chair yoga.  One of her students wasn’t able to get down on a floor mat any longer due to severe arthritis.   Lakshmi Voelker modified traditional yoga poses for the chair so that postures can be done from low to high ability level based on the flexibility and range of motion of the participant.  Voelker has also created and distributed a CD and DVD of the chair yoga program as well as taught the concepts internationally to hundreds of practitioners.

Chair yoga is beneficial to a broad spectrum of people:  seniors, office workers, disabled and those who are chronically ill.   As well it can be of benefit for conditions such as: arthritis, osteoporosis, chronic pain, MS, scoliosis, heart disease, and weight issues.  In Lakshmi Voelker’s own words:  “They (users) learn to love the chair or wheelchair on which they sit. They feel the freedom in the classes of doing the best they can with the levels of flexibility they have at the moment.”


Specific Techniques


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