Soccer, GAA, Ballet, Art classes, Rugby, Running, Coder Dojo!! The list is endless when it comes to extra curricular activities for our children and we have never had such a wide choice before!
But in this fast paced, screen laden, competitive world yoga could be just the reprieve from all of the madness that your child really needs.
Here are 5 reasons why your child should take up Yoga today:
1. Everyone is a winner!!
From a young age children begin to experience pressure to perform academically and socially. Add to this the pressure of competitive sports and it’s is easy for children to become overly self-critical, and lose confidence in themselves. Yoga helps to reinforce the idea that we are not in competition with anyone else or ourselves that we are enough and that we are all doing a good job. No pose needs to be perfect so children can relax and have fun!
2. Yoga helps us to deal with stress and anxiety in a mindful way
In this crazy busy world we rarely stop and take stock of how we are feeling, its usually when our emotions begin to flare up into anger or anxiety that we then realise it has been under the surface for a while. Yoga class can be a great remedy for the tension associated with daily stressors as well as an important facilitator of healthy physical, emotional and cognitive development. During yoga class children will learn to deal with different emotions through fun games and activities.
3. Get to know their own bodies.
Children are encouraged to respect and pay attention to their bodies, making sure each pose feels good, and coming in and out of positions when they feel ready (something most adults have a hard time doing!). As children grow and their bodies change, this becomes an important skill. Having the skills to listen carefully to the body and heart is not just a method to avoid injury, but also makes it easier be self-reflective and make good choices when dealing with peer pressure.
4. Its exercise for the body and the mind!
Yoga is a great way for children to get their bodies moving but also to exercise their minds and develop healthy thought patterns and mindfulness. By practicing yoga we move the spine in all 6 directions and stretch almost every muscle in the body, this helps to keep our skeletons and everything that supports it in top top shape.
5. Yoga can help us sleep better
Because the children chill out and relax at the end of class they are learning a really important skill which hopefully they will use throughout their lives- They learn to relax the body and the mind. No phones, no screens, no books: Savasanna is pure relaxation and calmness. Children can use the relaxation techniques that they learn in class to send them off to a long luxurious nights sleep. Good news for kids, Great news for parents!
Here are some of the benefits of kids yoga that your child can enjoy from regular practice:
• Increases self-confidence and builds a positive self-image
• Increases emotional resilience
• Helps to balance body and mind
• Teaches self-acceptance and self-love
• Increases sensory awareness and general body awareness
• Builds coordination and balance
• Expands self-awareness, and awareness of others
• Develops self-discipline and self-control
• Builds concentration
• Helps us to stand more erect and feel taller by supporting a long and flexible spine
• Fortifies all bodily systems; the skeletal, nervous, circulatory, digestive, respiratory, hormonal and muscular systems and improves our understanding of anatomy
• Increases awareness of breathing and deepens the breath
• Is non-competitive
• Encourages cooperation and teamwork
• Teaches how to relax and reduce stress
• Encourages compassion, generosity, and respect
• Teaches how to find inner peace
• Yoga is fun!