Children of all ages and their parents face lots of stresses that past generations did not. Commonly kids are raised in households where out of necessity either parents work, or they come from single parent homes. The pressure outside the home is also more intense as everyone is increasingly overwhelmed by massive amounts of information, distractions, overstimulation, and many temptations.
Often, as well intentioned parents you set an exhausting and pressure filled pace rushing your kids from one activity to the next. Then there are some children who because of circumstances canâ€™t engage in extracurricular activities. They develop a lifestyle of inactivity that includes no exercise and you are desperate to get them moving. Your parental challenges include making time for everyone to be together, achieving a balance between activity and rest, and teaching the skills needed to manage stress.
The Benefits of Yoga for Kids
Yoga is a form of exercise that helps your kids develops an awareness of how their body works and moves. They learn healthy ways to use that movement. Physical accomplishment increases their self-esteem and builds confidence. One of the most valuable lessons yoga teaches is that physical achievement is the result of learning mental skills. The body and mind work together to focus and concentrate. Add the awareness of breath, and over time, you will witness the emergence of your well-rounded children increasingly becoming ready to face life on favourable terms.
Teaching your kids to use breathing techniques through Yoga exercise will provide them with a tool to stay calm in stressful situations. Controlling their fear will help improve test scores, provide the courage to reach beyond comfort zones, or stand up to negative peer pressure. When your child regularly practices Yoga they change without even realizing it. They become part of a community that is welcoming, non-threatening, tolerant, supportive, and healthy. If the entire family attends exercise class together, they all share that sense of community.
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Yoga as Preventative Medicine
Throughout history Yoga has been widely ignored by Western doctors, but that is changing. Studies have opened the minds of mainstream medicine. Many medical experts now seek to learn more about alternative healing methods. They understand that Yoga shows promise as both a preventative measure and a treatment option. For example, Yoga is now used by a physical therapist to treat injuries and pain.
Regularly practicing Yoga can help you improve cognitive function (brain), heart health, inflammation, and risk of illnesses like diabetes (body). Most important is that you can experience lower levels of stress which also affects the body and mind (spirit). Some are even beginning to believe that Yoga may help you to reverse the aging process at the cellular level.
Gandhi once said: â€œHealth is wealth, and the basic requisite for every kind of happiness.â€
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Gather the family and let them know itâ€™s time to be together. Explain how much fun everyone will have practicing Yoga. Remember to laugh, especially with the younger kids; having fun will motivate them to stick with it. The benefits will begin to show in ways expected and unexpected and prove that the family that Yogaâ€™s together not only stays together but is a healthy happy and lucky family. Happy Yoga.