Yes, Kids Can Do Yoga!
They watch you. Either as you’re grabbing your mat to head to your local studio, or practicing your poses in the privacy of your living room, your children see and they’re curious.
Kids naturally become interested in whatever they see their parents doing, and your yoga hobby is no different. While many parents may be inclined to deter their children’s participation until they’re a little older and more mature. We challenge you to embrace their enthusiasm and involve them now.
Here’s why, as outlined in this Infographic from Mom Loves Best.
Yoga Can Fight Hyperactivity.
Hyperactivity seems to run rampant and has a number of different origins. For some children with ADHD, it’s chemical. Yoga can be for the children who find themselves in ultra-structured academic environments, it’s because they lack an unstructured outlet. Others it’s because their lives are so over-scheduled that they have no time left for simple, unabashed play. Yoga offers kids an opportunity to learn relaxation, stress management, and decompression techniques, and can help them create an environment free of the external stimulants that tend to overwhelm their brain. A regular practice can help them feel less hyperactive throughout the day. Yoga can help them calm down in moments of extreme overwhelm.
There is even scientific evidence that indicates yoga can be part of an effective treatment strategy for children with ADHD.
Yoga Can Improve Mental Health.
Children are under increasing amounts of pressure these days. Between sports, academics, and social media the stress can seem crushing. In fact, incidents of mental health diagnoses are increasing in our children at an alarming rate.
Yoga can help combat this trend. As kids learn self-calming and stress managing techniques through their yoga practice, these lessons can follow them into everyday life. It can help them handle the pressures, resulting in fewer incidents of anxiety and depression. In addition, as a child learns new skills and gains confidence, their self-esteem also improves, helping to further protect their mental health.
Yoga Can Help Your Child Sleep Better.
Few parents sail through their kids’ childhoods without seasons of sleep issues. Whether it’s the child who refuses to sleep, can’t fall asleep, can’t stay asleep; or can’t wake up in the morning. Kids of all ages struggle with good, healthy sleep. And that’s a problem – because quality sleep is linked to concentration, immune function, and mood.
Yoga has been shown to help improve sleep quality, not only because of the physical exertion involved, but because of the mental clarity as well as stress management strategies it helps instill in your child.
How to Teach Your Child Yoga
If you’re ready to respond to your child’s curiosity with an invitation to practice yoga together, it can be difficult to know where to start, or what’s appropriate. If you opt to just teach them some poses together, make sure you don’t expect perfection and allow it to be fun and silly as you begin. Try taking them to a studio, pick one that is accustomed to working with kids. It will keep the mood light and the poses simple.
As your child matures in both age and skill, their practice will mature as well. And hopefully, yoga will become as much a part of their life as yours, providing them a healthy outlet to follow them throughout their life
About the Author
Jenny Silverstone is an yoga enthusiast, fit mom, and a blogger for MomLovesBest.com – where she writes about her journey through motherhood and gives tips for new parents.