There is no doubt that children are the future of this planet. As adults it is our duty to offer children a clear, mindful, and loving path to follow. And in this fast paced world, a mindfulness practice such as yoga, is a fundamental tool to instill in this young generation. And lets face it, kids yoga rocks!
More and more opportunities for children to practice yoga are popping up every day. Many schools are now offering yoga as well as after school programs.Summer camps are offering yoga programs. And most yoga studios now offer a weekly kids yoga class as well as daycare. Fortunately, a great deal of the misconceptions about yoga are starting to fall away, and it is being more widely accepted. These days everyone wants research and scientific studies to prove that something works, and now there is scientific evidence that yoga heals! But when it comes to kids, the proof is in the pudding!
When children practice yoga, they find a true sense of community and self-confidence. Their little faces light up when they are practicing. They learn about their body and how it moves and works. The practice teaches them to be patient and compassionate. Gratitude is a huge component that is interwoven into the practice. Yoga is a union of the mind and body, and children begin to understand their thoughts, and how to calm their minds. Many parents have seen their little ones faces turn bright red during a crying fit. Breathing exercises teach kids learn how to breathe deeper to calm their emotions. Yoga has amazing effects on children with many types of illnesses and challenges. Many organizations are now offering yoga to kids of all demographics and situations. The list goes on and on in regards to the benefits of yoga for children, as well as the growing opportunities to find classes.
To be honest, yoga for children tends to be way more fun for kids than yoga for adults. There are yoga games, songs, characters, and so much more. Yoga teachers that specialize in teaching kids to yoga have a special energy and drive that makes the experience so special and life changing. They aim to make the class a fun and inspiring experience, as well as calming and mindful. It is all about being in the moment, one breath, at a time.
Did you know that several yoga poses are named after children? Some of the best poses out there have names like, childs pose and happy baby pose. You know that moment when a baby is laying on its back and finds it’s toes for the first time? Well, that is usually one happy baby isn’t it? And many of the other poses are inspired by nature and animals, another great opportunity for children to learn about the planet and vocabulary!
As with anything these days, there can be a few side effects when it comes to kids finding their power and strength in yoga. For example, kids have been known to get their parents on the yoga mat with them, creating a beautiful opportunity for family bonding. Children will want to eat healthier foods that make them feel better while practicing yoga, so healthy family meal times are a must. Parents will most likely be told by their kids when they are feeling stressed out, that they need to take deep breaths and relax. This is especially helpful while stuck in rush hour traffic by the way! A whole new community of friends and support will most likely come with the journey into yoga, which will create more friendships and play dates. Science has shown that yoga has a positive impact on getting and staying healthy and the healing process, and we are overjoyed that the Children’s Television Network will be putting us on the air at their children’s hospitals across the nation to bring smiles to the kids and help them heal. When you look at the big picture, these side effects are probably totally worth it!
When the time comes for you to introduce your kids, and possibly yourself to yoga, take your time, do your research, and find the best fit for you and your family. Find a location that is convenient for you and feels comfortable. Look for a teacher that your child connects with and feels safe and at ease around. There are classes for different age groups and demographics, so you are sure to find a good fit for every child. Enjoy the journey as you approach it with an open heart and mind!