It seems like all kids have ADHD these days. Is stimulant medication really the answer? Maybe they are just overstimulated and overwhelmed? Yoga helps kids slow down and provides them an opportunity to meditate and take a breather from a day packed with bullies, school, homework, competitive sports, and other after-school activities. Yoga for young children can calm your child down and provide a single focus, giving parent and child alike a much-needed moment to catch their breath.
Improved posture, mastering breathing techniques that help to reduce stress, increased flexibility and improved balance and posture are just a few examples of whole body health benefits that you may have taken away from your own yoga practice and can be equally beneficial to the child yogi. After all, the underlying language of yoga is love, and by practicing yoga, kids will learn how to love themselves, leading to overall improved health and better self-esteem. According to the Wall Street Journal, clinical studies have proven that children who practice yoga not only have improved physical fitness levels but elevated emotional balance and academic performance as well. Yoga provides kids with invaluable life tools that can be nurtured and refined by continued practice, and these tools can be carried with them throughout their lifetime.
Yoga for children should be adapted and taught in a dialogue that makes it fun and easy to understand. Long, complex sanskrit words for poses can confuse children and turn them off. Fortunately, the English translations of those asanas create a very visual dialogue (starfish, cobra, downward dog, etc.) -- making it easy for the child to understand and imagine how a pose might look.
Many yoga studios offer at least one kid friendly class a week. Gyms and community centers periodically offer classes for kids. Some schools -- public and private -- have also begun introducing yoga programs. Finding a child-friendly yoga class near you may be challenging, but YOGAaccessories has everything you need to get your kids practicing any time of the day in the comfort of your own living room! From smaller-scale yoga mats to yoga picture books and DVDs, browse the links below to hook up your mini yogi!