By Robyn Parets, founder of Pretzel Kids®
You may already know that practicing yoga has many health benefits. But did you also know that yoga and mindfulness is beneficial to children as well as adults?
In fact, there’s a lot more to yoga than just the physical activity. Yoga is a well-known way to reduce stress and calm your mind. This is ideal if your child is excitable or anxious. Yoga also offers children an outlet to burn energy in a focused way. Finally, yoga is not competitive, which helps boost a child’s self-confidence.
And, most importantly: Kids love yoga!
In this article, we’ve compiled 6 health benefits of yoga for kids. We think that by reading this list, you’ll have a better understanding of why the ancient practice of yoga is so much more than just physical poses.
1. Yoga Enhances Flexibility and Strength
Perhaps you believe that yoga is all about lying down and melting your worries away. While resting pose (savasana) may be an important part of yoga, this ancient practice can actually be an amazing full body workout! Each pose works on different muscle groups to give you a complete workout consisting of strength training and stretching. Keeping the body strong and nimble will also help prevent injuries when kids are participating in sports and activities.
2. Yoga Improves Balance
Many yoga poses offer kids the chance to practice improving their balance and coordination. With each posture, students gain strength in their feet, legs, and core to maintain proper balance and coordination. Some of the more popular balance poses for kids include Tree Pose, Airplane Pose and Dancer Pose.
3. Yoga Increases Focus
With yoga, children learn to focus on the pose and their breath at the same time. This is no easy feat, as each yoga posture requires the use of different muscle groups, which can be challenging. But with each pose and breath, your child will increase their ability to focus. They will then be more apt to apply this new skill throughout their daily lives at home and at school.
4. Yoga Improves Self-Esteem
Because yoga is a non-competitive physical activity, children are able to progress at their own pace without the pressures that come with competitive sports. And this helps build up their self-esteem as they gain confidence and satisfaction in what they can accomplish.
5. Yoga Helps Manage Stress and Anxiety
Practicing asanas and mindfulness allows children to release physical tension through movement, stretching, and guided breathwork. Yoga also teaches them to focus on the present moment. Lastly, children will learn how to relax their bodies and minds. Once they’re able to calm their minds and relax their bodies on their own, they will be able to apply this to their daily lives, helping them reduce stress and anxiety.
6. Yoga Helps You Self-Regulate
Alongside managing anxiety, yoga helps kids pay attention to their breathing and body placement. This, in turn, helps them become aware of their own body in space, as well as their breathing patterns. And, when consciously slowing down the breath, children can release bodily tension and be more equipped to regulate their emotions.
Are You Ready to Introduce Yoga to Your Children?
Let’s face it: We’re facing incredibly challenging and stressful times right now. Yet, you can help by including yoga in your child’s daily life.
If you want to start teaching kids yoga right now, we’ve got just the answer for you! The Pretzel Kids Method is the perfect way to introduce yoga to your children.
Remember: By practicing yoga, kids will gain more than just flexibility and good balance. They will form a strong mind-body connection that will give them tools to thrive in difficult situations that they may encounter as they grow up.
About Robyn: Robyn Parets is the founder of Pretzel Kids yoga. You can learn more about Pretzel Kids here.