Children live a busy life. Just as adults deal with the hustle, bustle and pressures of daily living, children do so, too. School pressures, constant lessons and competitive sports are among the daily stresses children deal with.
Adults have found yoga to be helpful for inner health and relaxation. Young children, who start yoga at an early age, see these beneï¬ts as well as the practice of yoga encourages self-esteem and body awareness with non-competitive physical activity.
What is Yoga
Thousands of years ago, the practice of yoga started in India and has recently become very popular worldwide. The the word “yoga“ means “union“ in Sanskrit and is called this because yoga is the union of mind and body.
Yoga is a system of physical exercises or postures, called asanas. These postures build strength, ï¬‚exibility and conï¬dence while promoting strong breathing to help calm and refresh the body and mind.1
Age to Begin
Surprisingly, children can begin practicing yoga as early as the age of 2-3 weeks, with the help of their mother, of course, as part of their mother’s yoga routine or baby massage to help digestion.2 As children get older, they can learn to do positions on their own and basic techniques for relaxation. Proper breathing techniques can be taught at any age.
Yoga for children, like adults, beneï¬t the mind, body and spirit by improving mind/body connection, encouraging a healthy lifestyle and promoting an overall sense of well-being. A child who learns yoga will develop essential skills for a life of health and wellness.
Yoga for children beneï¬t their body, mind and spirit individually in the following ways:3
- Helps with neuromuscular development
- Encourages motor development
- Develops a strong, ï¬‚exible body
- Increases balance and coordination
- Develops core strength to improve posture
- Reduces injuries
- Improves digestion and circulation
- Strengthens the immune system
- Relaxes the body, promoting better sleep
- Brings a feeling of calm by reducing stress and anxiety
- Relieves tension
- Increases concentration, focus and attention span
- Promotes thinking and memory
- Balances energy
- Builds conï¬dence and self-esteem
- Develops discipline and self-control
- Supports a sense of universal connectedness
- Inspires respect for self and others
Whether a child is learning Warrior One, breathing in Child’s Pose or mastering Downward Dog, they’ll be soaking up all of the numerous benefits of yoga. Their body, mind and spirit will grow stronger at a young age and will lay the foundation for a calm, focused and relaxed life in the future.
- 1 http://www.pbs.org/parents/food-and-ï¬tness/sport-and-ï¬tness/why-yoga-and-kids-go-together/
- 2 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yoga_for_children
- 3 http://www.yoga4classrooms.com/beneï¬ts-of-yoga-in-schools