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Welcome to our post “What are the Health Benefits of Yoga for Kids?”
It seems like it’s harder to be kid these days. Lots of pressures on them, from schools, parents & social media. And kids are exercising less and more and more are becoming overweight. In fact, one in three kids in the US are now officially obese and this can lead to all sorts of other complications with their health, such as-
- High Cholersterol
- High Blood Pressure
- Early Heart Disease
- Bone Problems
- Skin Conditions such as heat rash, fungal infections and acne
Schools try to help but are affected by cut backs and parents are too busy surviving to help their kids. Fast food is also a problem, with some Cities now denying fast food restaurants from opening up within a certain distance of schools.
Of course, it’s not just obese children that are suffering. Even if a child is normal weight, that doesn’t mean to say they are physically fit. More kids than ever are staying at home on their play stations and x boxes rather than getting some exercise in the sun. This will inevitably lead to health problems and sleep disorders in later age and sometimes even while they are still young.
There is a low-cost solution for everyone and that is Yoga. Yoga is a low-cost, helpful tool that can have a positive impact on children. Here are some amazing benefits of teaching yoga to kids.
- Develop body awareness
- Learn how to use their bodies in a healthy way
- Manage stress through breathing, awareness, meditation and healthy movement
- Build concentration
- Increase their confidence and positive self-image
- Feel part of a healthy, non competitive group
- Have an alternative to online social media and online games
What are the main health benefits of Yoga for kids in a bit more detail?
1. Yoga is Non-competitive
In today’s world, we hear so much about being the best and achieving the most. Yoga teaches kids that their bodies are different; different bodies do different things and all of them are okay. There is no one better or worse at yoga than anyone else; we are all just exploring our bodies and learning from them in our own way. Yoga is truly for every body.
2. Enhances Physical Flexibility
Yoga promotes physical strength because kids learn to use all of their muscles in new ways. Whether a pose is done standing, sitting, or lying down, each one can challenge various muscle groups while helping a child become aware of his body and how it efficiently functions.
3. Develops Balancing
Balancing poses teach children that with increased focus, you can increase attention naturally, even in kids who struggle with different attention challenges. Poses and games focused on balancing skills, develop an intrinsic strength, evoke a meditative feeling, and promote stillness and quieting of the mind.
4. Develops Focus and Concentration
Yoga helps create awareness in the body through deep breathing and movement. It gives kids a way to express themselves, build a strong connection between what they hear and what they do. Children that have healthy body awareness are more confident and strong, have better posture, breathe better and have a sense of quiet strength.
5. Boosts Self Esteem and Confidence
Yoga teaches them to persevere, be patient, and work toward their goals. A yoga teacher can only offer guidance; it is the child who has to work to succeed. Therefore, when a child masters a pose, it gives him confidence and self-esteem. Enneking often describes kids’ yoga as “prehabilitation,” a proactive action to ward off instability or sickness; yoga also provides tools for practicing compassion, mindfulness, generosity, focus, strength, and flexibility.
6. Strengthens the Mind body connection
Yoga helps kids achieve a sound mind in a sound body by exercising the physical body and calming the mental spirit. “As parents we want our children to act and behave with mindfulness and with compassion, to be brave, to know love and happiness, and to find inner peace,” De Collibus a yoga teacher and founder of Sweet Pea Yoga says. “Since the modern world moves very, very fast for children, it’s not long before they feel all kinds of pressure (personal, parental, social) to keep up with everyone around them. Yoga functions as a release valve that alleviates pressure and as a foundation to nurture and develop a resilient and resourceful body, mind, and spirit,” she says.
7. Meditation and Relaxation
Yoga is meditative by nature. The poses that a child will learn, will encourage them to hold a balance in posture or move through a series of poses, creating a soothing, calming mindfulness. Using breathing techniques will improve anxiety and stress. And many yoga teachers of children use songs and games for additional fun.
8. Special Needs Children
Yoga is of benefit to all children, but where it really excels is in its benefit to children with special needs. Autism and ADHD
With ADHD & Autism, asanas can provide excellent relief in regards to ADHD & Autism symptoms, as they allow increased oxygen and blood flow to the brain — which can have a balancing effect on the nervous system as a whole.
They can help you to learn to lengthen and deepen the breath which allows for an overall feeling of calm.
Children and adults who suffer from ADHD & Autism often find themselves unable to connect their bodies and their minds, and yoga allows for precisely that connection to occur. The main goals are to quiet the mind and develop concentration.
Another incredibly important benefit in coping with ADHD & Autism is learning how to settle yourself when things feel out of control. Yoga teaches deep breathing which eases the mind, allowing you to cope much easier in difficult situations. It also increases your awareness to allow you to better control your emotions.
Parents may notice how yoga benefits their kids, but the best judges are the kids themselves. Children who have practiced yoga tell teachers and parents that they are able to concentrate better during the day, focus better on their activities, and pay attention to their tasks — all the finest endorsements.