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As the top Chinese official in his village, Lu Wenzhen had a problem

The young people had all moved away. The elderly farmers left behind were ailing and if they didn't look after their physical and mental wellbeing, they would literally starve, and the village disappear . Then, 2 years ago, he had a eureka moment. “Yoga,” he said . It was an audacious plan that seemed out of place in Yugouliang, a community of fewer than 100 people far from the gyms and health food stores. The village is so remote that the closest train station is 2 hours away. Residents — whose average age is 65 — survive by tending to their cows and sheep and small plots of land. The farmers were unconvinced by Wenzhen's plan to do yoga . They’d never heard of yoga and he had never taken a class. But he watched videos and bought yoga mats to entice farmers. For the first few sessions, just a few residents turned up. But it didn’t take long for more people to join in and try ambitious poses . Yoga-strengthened residents, Wenzhen said, saved on medical costs. So maybe there's a few people in a remote Chinese village able to say #yogasavedmylife? . Last year, Wenzhen entered the farmers into a yoga competition in Shijiazhuang, the provincial capital. They won an award for being the “best collective team.” And according to an article in the @nytimes last year the local government says it’s giving him $1.5 million for a nursing home and a yoga pavilion that will make it easier for villagers to practice year-round . @lamyikfei took these photos of Yugouliang residents doing yoga last year 🙏 .


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