Yoga Journal Yoga Buzz blog recently featured a post titled "Yoga for Kids: It's like Eating Green Beans, but Fun!".
"Yoga for Kids is one of the fastest growing yoga niches out there today. It's taught in hundreds of studios across the country. A recent report from CNN featured kids that use yoga to cope with everything from ADHD to divorcing parents," the article read. "But can a 4-year-old really appreciate the depth of the practice?"
I've heard this question myself, and I've run into my fair share of doubters. While yoga grows and becomes more widely accepted as an important component of one's lifestyle, there are still those who don't quite get it. Some of these are parents, teachers and others who care for or work with children.
Lisa Flynn, Founder of ChildLight Yoga says, " Yoga helps children see the beauty and light within themselves, boosting their self-confidence, allowing them to feel more comfortable with their bodies, and helping them get in touch with who they are inside. A child who learns yoga for relaxation will be developing skills that last a lifetime."
Lisa lists a few of the benefits of yoga for children on the ChildLight Yoga web site:
• develops/improves strength & flexibility
• improves concentration, focus & attention
• develops/improves balance & coordination
• improves general body awareness
• boosts self-confidence and self-esteem
• improves sleeping patterns
• encourages mind/body connection
• promotes calm and ability to be less reactive
• expands creative expression & imagination
• aids digestion, circulation & elimination
• promotes respect for self & others
• improves immune system function
• teaches environmental awareness, earth care,
and overall sense of connectedness
• promotes self-discipline and self-control
• clears the mind, promotes learning-readiness
• promotes an overall sense of well-being
Yoga Journal asks at the end of this post, "Do you have kids who practice yoga? Have you noticed any benefits?" Whether you are a long-time supporter of this and other children's yoga programs, or someone being introduced to the children's yoga community for the first time, take a moment to think about your own child.
What a wonderful opportunity to share your experiences with other yogis, parents and kids themselves! (Please share your experience by posting your comments here as well!) By sharing what we have heard countless times in classes, trainings, community events and through correspondence, you will help spread the word that yoga is a worthwhile activity that will benefit children throughout their lives. — Amy Bevan