By Sangeetha Saran, Faye Martins, and Marie Jerard, E-RYT 500, YACEP
When it comes to kids yoga for emotional healing, there is good news. Yoga is an effective tool for helping kids feel better. A study published in the Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry found that yoga can help reduce anxiety and depression in children. In the study, kids who participated in eight weeks of yoga showed significantly lower levels of anxiety and depression compared to those who didn’t. The researchers believe that the benefits of yoga come from its ability to help kids focus on their breath and body, which can help them feel more relaxed.
Geared Toward Kids
Yoga is an ancient system of physical postures, breathing techniques, and relaxation exercises that promote well-being on all levels. Classes that are geared toward kids are no exception. The systematic practice of Yoga offers well-documented benefits to students physically, psychologically, and spiritually. Classes geared toward kids can help a child or teenager feel better physically and emotionally.
Of course, practicing asanas (postures) consistently will help a young person to feel stronger, lighter, and more flexible. On an emotional level, this new level of physical fitness and aptitude will boost a young person’s sense of self-mastery and self-esteem. Emotionally, a higher level of mastery and self-esteem is fundamental in supporting a young person in reaching for his or her dreams. The mastery of Yoga postures on the mat will support a sense of self-confidence as a young person continues his or her journey out into the world.
Kids’ Yoga classes can also promote emotional healing by reducing anxiety and easing depressive symptoms. Many kids today suffer from being constantly stressed by their academic, social, and familial obligations. Succeeding in today’s competitive world is challenging at best and sometimes very overwhelming. It is no secret that kids today are under a lot of pressure. They are juggling school, extracurricular activities, and social lives.
Pressure From Every Direction
Children are constantly bombarded with images and messages from the media and social media that can cause them anxiety and stress. As a result, more and more children are coping with constant stress. Yoga is an excellent way for kids to manage stress and anxiety. Yoga helps to calm the mind and body, and it can be a fun and relaxing activity for children. Kids yoga can also help to improve focus and concentration and boost self-esteem and confidence.
Finding the Best Fit
There are many different types of kids’ yoga classes available. Some classes focus on relaxation and breathing exercises, while others incorporate games and activities. Choose a class that is right for your child’s needs and interests. If your child is struggling with stress or anxiety, consider signing them up for a kid’s yoga class. Yoga can help to reduce stress levels, improve focus and concentration, and boost self-esteem.
This overwhelming sense of being crunched for time and energy frequently can cause too much cortisol and adrenalin to be released into the bloodstream. When these stress hormones stay too high for too long, they can cause a sense of being unbalanced, anxious, and depressed. Regular practice of Yoga will help a child to lower his or her anxiety level and to settle, ground, and feel less overwhelmed.
Many children and teenagers today also struggle with ADHD. This disorder is marked by unbalanced brain chemistry, an overactive nervous system, and an inability to focus and concentrate on essential tasks. Practicing Yoga asanas will release pent-up energy. Incorporating regular pranayama exercises with asanas will also help to balance the parasympathetic and sympathetic nervous systems allowing for a greater sense of ease and well-being.
Ability to Focus
The concentration that a vigorous Yoga training session requires will also develop a child’s ability to focus on one task at a time. This power of Dharana or concentration can also be honed by a brief period of meditation at the end of a kids’ class. These are some ways that a consistent practice of Yoga can alleviate the symptoms of ADHD and support a child’s continued emotional healing and well-being. It’s no secret that the ability to concentrate improves with yoga practice. Just ask any kid’s yoga teacher. We see it every day in our young students.
What Does Science Say?
They come into class stressed and distracted, but after a few minutes of mindfulness and calming yoga poses, they can focus and be present. There’s a science to back up what we see in our classrooms. A recent study published in the Journal of Physical Education, Recreation & Dance found that children who participated in just eight weeks of yoga had better autoregulation of their attention than those who didn’t. In other words, they could better control their ability to focus.
Coping with Trauma
Kids Yoga for Emotional Healing is a type of yoga specifically designed to help children cope with and heal from emotional trauma. Trauma can come in many forms, such as abuse, neglect, bullying, witnessing violence, or experiencing a natural disaster. Yoga is an effective trauma treatment, as it helps to reduce stress and anxiety, promote relaxation, and increase mindfulness.
Children at Risk
When children are dealing with difficult family situations or living in challenging neighborhoods, they can benefit greatly from yoga. Yoga helps to promote self-awareness, relaxation, and inner strength, which can be invaluable for kids in difficult situations. Yoga can also help children cope with stress and anxiety, which are common in children dealing with challenging circumstances. By teaching children how to focus on their breath and be present in the moment, yoga can help them to find a sense of calm amidst the chaos.
In addition to its mental health benefits, yoga can also be physically therapeutic for children. The gentle stretching and strengthening of the muscles can help to release tension and ease the pain. Yoga can also be an excellent way for kids to get some exercise and fresh air, both of which are essential for physical and emotional well-being. If you’re interested in incorporating yoga into your child’s life, many resources are available online, at your local library, or at school. There are also many certified kids’ yoga instructors who offer classes or private sessions.
© Copyright – Aura Wellness Center – Publications Division
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