Yoga may help kids on different levels. Practicing physical postures (asanas) can increase the production of endorphins, which generate feelings of well-being. Breathing techniques (pranayama) help regulate the nervous system by activating parasympathetic (relaxation) neurons and calming sympathetic (flight or fight) neurons. Guided relaxation techniques benefit kids by giving them an alternative way to respond to the stressors in their lives.
One of the best ways to address the particular challenge of teaching Yoga to kids is to incorporate stories into the class. Not only does weaving stories into the series engage the attention of children, but it also encourages them to focus their minds on something external, which can naturally help to settle the excess energy of children. Yoga stories are also particularly well-adapted for pose changes within a series and can aid a Yoga instructor in shortening posture holds for children.