Yoga - when you can't balance or stand for long

Morning all, I have attended a yoga class around four years ago but stopped going as my balance was a problem and I was embarrassed. I am keen to practice some of the postures at home and the relaxation side of it again - does anyone use a dvd to follow which takes into account balance issues or give any advice on how they manage to practice yoga independently. I feel that this may be a starting point for me to then be able to find a class where I could lie down at the back! Many thanks


Hi, I don`t have what you ask for, but i just wanna say I admire your pluck and wish you well.

luv Pollx


Have you a Nintendo Wii console? If so you could use the wii fit activities which has a whole section on yoga. My physio suggested me using it to help with balance, they have one in the neuro-physio dept at the hospital. There are other balance activities too which are great fun. Luckily my son had a wii console 3 years ago for Xmas. You can do the exercises in privacy of own home and it gives you goals to reach and tips to improve.

As well as using this I am planning to start some pilates classes at my local therapy centre soon as physio also said that was good to help improve balance,posture and core body strength. I wish you luck in finding a yoga class.

Take care



You could try contacting the british Wheel of Yoga to find a local teacher. Ring and discuss your issues with the teacher beforehand and make sure they are able to deal with your issues. Ask if you can have a 1 to 1 session first to assess your problems. Also ask for an initial trial sessions with the class to make sure it’s right for you.

This was advice from my yoga teacher for a friend who had some issuess.

They may also be able to advise you of a suitable DVD

I used to do yoga regularly as well and have given up for now due to the same reasons you state , I just can’t stand for an hour and my balance is rubbish!

I have changed over to pilates now as many of the poses are floor based, there is next to no standing (mostly lying down on back or side, or on all fours, cross legged etc) but you still get strong stretches and strengthen your core. Might be and idea to try it? It took me a while to be converted as I was so in to my yoga but it is great to have a good workout and not feel different from the rest of the class.

Hi Helen

I never done yoga in my life that was untill I got MS I very lucky my local MS branch runs yoga classes twice a week for people with MS all the postures are floor based and the breathing and relaxion are great I feel great for it Like you there was a woman joined our class about 3 weeks ago she done yoga before she had MS and had to give it up because her balance she really missed it but then someone told her about the classes that are run by our MS society she came along and has been there since she’s really happy that she can still carry on doing what she loves.

I’m doing it almost 3 years now and it has got me really flexible and relaxed once I could barely bend over to tie my shoe laces now putting my foot up to my ear isn’t even a problem lol.

I’ve been told our MS branch is 1 of the few that runs something like that I don’t know but it would been worth asking around to see if its avalible where you live.

Mark x

My balance is rubbish, but yoga really helps to keep me mobile. A decent yoga teacher should be able to give you alternative postures or offer suggestions to help you. I do many of the balance postures very close to a wall or door frame and can keep my fingertips, shoulder, hip or knee in contact with something solid when necessary. I have also found a gym ball really helpful with the ‘wide leg’ postures. I tend to fall forwards or backwards doing the warriors, triangles etc. Sitting on the ball stops that. It also makes the ‘wheel’ possible. The size of ball will depend on how tall you are. Finding a good teacher really is the key though. My teacher often just quietly places a block under my heels or hand if she thinks it will help without making any fuss or distracting any of the other people in the class. The British Wheel of Yoga website will give you contacts for teachers in your area. You might find speaking to a couple about your ‘issues’ a good way to help finding the right class for you.

Hi all - thanks for your replies - interesting to know how others approach their yoga - will try out the exercise ball and investigate local teachers. The comments about pilates also were really helpful - there is a local class so I will enquire there too.

Much appreciated your replies

Helen x

I started yoga about 4 weeks ago and I have to say Im loving it It really is making me feel great, I was really worried about the balancing side of it but my yoga teacher is fantastic and so are all the ladies that attend. If you cant do it then she just tells you to sit it out, Im so glad I have found such an understanding teacher and great bunch of people

Hi I swear by the yoga too and always get a spot near the wall. When the others are doing tree I stand with my back against the wall. I dont do true warrier as I have my knee on the floor ! Keep going I do 3 classes per week and my muscle strength has really improved since I have started.

Moyna x

I was doing regular yoga classes until I busted my shoulder and my teacher was brilliant. I was able to use a chair and do most of the exercises seated and she would adapt them for me so that I would still get the same benefit from them. And as others have mentioned standing next to a wall and holding it for support also makes other exercises possible.

It is a matter of finding a teacher who has worked with people with disabilities before and if you meet with her before hand so you can discuss what you can and can’t do she should be able to adapt the exercises to suit.

I loved going and miss my class. Once my shoulder is mended I’ll be going back.

Afraid I can’t suggest or recommend any good teachers though as I don’t live in the UK and you may not want to travel all the way to Australia just to do a yoga class


Hello all,

Wow, such a coincidence as this week I have recently been considering going to a yoga class. I haven’t done yoga before so I will be a right novice. Reading your postings have certainly given me the ‘umph’ to check out my local paper and join in.

Thankyou :smiley: xx

l went to Yoga classes for years - about 40yrs - used to take my mum with me as well. l found, as time went on and l did have problems with getting up off the floor. The instructor was always able to show me a easier way to do the same exercise - even doing some of them on a chair. l gave up last year - as l have a very bad hip/knee [ this is my good leg] - but after l have had my ‘hip hop op’ l am hopeful that l can start going again. Mums now 89 - and she now feels it is a bit too much for her. Although, she could show us all up when doing the ‘boat’ - nobody in the class could equal her. My best position was the ‘plank’ - l could hold the position for ages - and really show off. Most instructors will always adapt to suit - they certainly do not want you to hurt yourself.

Pilates is also excellent - and it is done mainly as floor exercises. Very good for your core muscles. So is Tai Chi - which is all done standing up. You will probably find that the yoga teacher will incorporate all of these disciplines in her class. lts so good for you and you will enjoy meeting everyone.

Have a good time and enjoy it all.