As the President of Ireland, you'd imagine Michael D Higgins would suffer with the odd bit of stress and achy bones like the rest of us. And yet, each time we see him he's full of energy. Now, we may know his secret.
Over the course of the recent election campaign, it emerged that Higgins regularly does yoga. We wonder if Bród and Sioda join in for a bit of "doga"?
Michael Ryan, a yoga instructor and "yogi" to the President himself, spoke to Marian Finucane about the regenerative powers of yoga, making the case that picking it up could shave years off your life. He also jokingly says that he's the "backbone of the country", rather than politically affiliated in any way.
He's so voluntarily detached from the world of current affairs that he doesn't even read a newspaper. In case you're wondering, he does know that Higgins won the election, as Marian checked.
Ryan met the President through Higgins' daughter, Alice Mary Higgins, who was a frequent student of Ryan's and suggested her father come along to soothe his aching knees. They began working together around the start of his first candidacy, Ryan recalled.
He explained that yoga is particularly suited to older practitioners, as it is a gentle but effective exercise. "Yoga can be a really good way of getting into the joints and beginning to work the tissues around the joints and support and create space…So, ankles that might go or knees that might go just know how to do their work a little bit better."
"Like all of us as we get older, we get a little stiffer and things begin to get a little worn and the idea of the practice is to just to kind of bolster the body to support the system", Ryan explained. As for Sabina, she's "pretty active" according to Ryan and has her own workout schedule, but has taken part a few times over the years.
Ryan says that the President has much more mobility than he did when they started working together.
Ryan came to practice yoga as he was born with hip dysplasia and struggled to combat it over the years. Having spent many years studying in the States, particularly in San Francisco where he was inspired by yoga classes where the average age of students was 65 and they were capable in doing moves that Ryan couldn't do at the time.
"For me, it was a real eye-opener because I suppose yoga's been going on for so long over there, and there's also a healthy mentality towards ageing and how to look after yourself. And I think that's something we're still learning here."
If you feel yoga isn't for you, Ryan said don't be put off: his class features people mostly over the age of 40 and "of all shapes and sizes", and he explained that each pose can be altered to fit an individual's ability.
His oldest client at the moment is 87, so he knows his stuff!
To hear his tips, anecdotes and thoughts on why men shy away from yoga, listen to the clip above!