Active Aging Yoga might not be different from all yoga but it is different from a lot of yoga in that it's focus is about building the awareness and insight necessary to deal with many of the things we deal with as we get older.
On the yoga mat this looks like classes that include education about our Orthopedic (and more) body and the insight on how to develope and maintain a better working, longer lasting, less stressfull physical body. AA Yoga should be much easier on your joints than lots of common yoga in todays studios and gyms, while still helping individuals build strengths and better movement patterns. As we age, muscles and connective tissue can repair and rebuild much faster than our joints. The "Movement" oriented fitness most of us grow up with can creat lots of stress on aging joints. With a much deeper awareness on how a human body is built to move, AA Yoga can focus on re-developing better movement skills and patterns through yoga asana.
All the while, integrating other common yoga concepts to deal with mindfullness, kind heartedness, learning and more.
AA Yoga is less about the right age and more about the best timing for you. Without some intervention, many folks begin to take old movement patterns that werent as much a big deal in their teans, twenties and maybe their early thirties and begin to develope health and movement issues that could eventually become injuries. I often see people in their 40's mixed in with fifty year olds, sixty year olds and beyond.
I believe if we are going to continue to use our body well we need enough strength to keep it moving and keep it moving in a healthy way. And yet we see strong people develope poor movement habbits and then injuries all the time. So as much as we need strength, an awareness and mindfullness about how we are moving and how our bodies are developed to move is crucial.
Some of the same technique and alignment is used with younger audiences (with a few styles of yoga) but the focus is often shifted from longevity towards performance and intensity in todays yoga classes. By shifting the focus and mindfullness to the healthy movment of our orthopedic body and using conditioning to help prevent future issues, you have a yoga class great for anyone who is beginning to deal with these aging topics or simply concerned about their longevity.
In short, "PathoMechanics" are the movement patterns we develope that can eventually lead to over-use injuries, pathologies, degeneration and more. Essentially, movement disease.
First it's important to understand, if we live long enough we will all develope these poor movement patterns. They are a normal part of aging and living. That said, we can do our best to deal with them, prevent them from becoming worse and potentially even get rid of them before the wear and tear becomes an even greater issue. The way we do this, is with intelegent, modern science inspired, informative movement practice.
This means we not only have to be students but we also must be very open hearted practitioneers of movement or yoga asana.