Why yoga for kids?
- Yoga is great exercise. It builds strength, flexibility, and coordination.
- It’s a fun, non-competitive activity.
- Kids can do it anytime, anywhere – without expensive equipment or organized teams.
- Yoga relieves tension and anxiety.
- It’s the antidote to overstimulation. Yoga helps kids focus, get present, and quiet their minds.
- Kids can learn ways to stay calm and cope with stress through breathing, balancing, and meditation.
A few words on mindfulness.
I recently became a Mindful Educator through Mindful Schools. This allows me to bring mindfulness to youth to build attention, self-regulation, and empathy. We all need time to be still and practice mindfulness, but kids with stress have difficulty paying attention, regulating emotion and mood, sleeping, and being ready to learn each day in the classroom. I believe mindfulness can benefit our children in a world of school violence, excessive screen time, and over-scheduled kids and parents.
Here are some interesting links if you want to learn more about mindfulness:
A few words on touch.
Much research has been done on the effects of touch on early child development. As parents, we’re told to touch and hold our babies to bond with them. Studies have shown that infants who are not touched regularly do not thrive.
I make a point to give foot massages and hugs in my classes. It relieves tension and helps kids feel loved and important. Touch and massage also build self-confidence and teach a child how to give and receive affection. I pay attention when a child doesn’t like to be touched. It can be a signal that this is what the child most needs to calm down and relax. So spread the love and give your child regular hugs and even try a foot massage!