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Oregon Family Magazine

Kids Yoga Benefits Body, Mind and Spirit

10/19/2010 12:05 ● By Anonymous
Today’s kids lead busy lives. If they’re not at school, they’re busy with music lessons, sports practice and socializing. With the ever-quickening pace of their lives, it’s essential that children learn how to de-stress, relax and stay fit.

Yoga gives kids those skills. When kids participate in yoga, they get to enjoy an interdisciplinary exercise that benefits both their physical and mental well-being.

We’ve known for years that Americans’ overall health is declining. Sedentary lifestyles put millions of people at risk for hypertension, diabetes and other diseases. Even in Oregon, where we tend to be more active, 9.6% of children ages 10-17 are obese, as are 25% of adults. Yoga helps keep obesity and obesity-related diseases at bay, allowing children to be active and learn exercise skills that last far beyond the time they spend in the yoga studio.

In addition to helping kids fight obesity, yoga enables them to become stronger, more flexible and more coordinated - benefits that extend to daily life and other activities, such as organized sports.

Yoga allows kids to explore their imagination and fosters creativity. In class, kids will twist their bodies into trees, bark like dogs or hiss like cobras, all while learning the basics of yoga and improving their physical and mental health.

While the physical benefits are reason enough to encourage your child’s participation, yoga also allows kids to de-stress and improve their ability to cope. When they participate in yoga, they are not just twisting their bodies into different positions on a mat. Sessions incorporate storytelling, music and imagination, creating an approach that engages the whole child.

Children also walk away from yoga classes with a better understanding of how they fit into the larger picture of life. Assuming a tree pose helps them understand how a tree lives and allows them to feel a greater sense of oneness with nature. Yoga changes children from the inside out by improving their self-health and equipping them with tools to lead more active lives.

ZenSpot is offering yoga classes for kids ages 6 - 12 starting Saturday October 23rd. To learn more, visit the ZenSpot website.

To learn more about the benefits of yoga, take a look at this article from Yoga Journal. Obesity statistics from HealthyAmericans.org.