Yoga as Stress buster for kids.
Very few parents notice that their child is stressed out because of peer pressure, or upcoming stage performance or recital, or keeping up with the expectations of teachers and parents and so on. Some kids may lack courage to speak in class, have low self esteem and may grow up to be introverts as adults. We usually don’t regard these as stressful for our kids, but often they are. The bustling pace of our children’s lives can have a profound effect on their innate joy—and usually not for the better. There are plethora of stresses which yoga can help in encountering not only the adults but also the kids.
Kids’ yoga seems like a child play but it has significantly positive impact on kids. Children derive enormous benefits from yoga to help counter the day to day pressures. When children learn techniques for self-health, relaxation, and inner fulfillment, they can navigate life’s challenges with a little more ease. Yoga at an early age encourages self-esteem and body awareness with a physical activity that’s noncompetitive. Fostering cooperation and compassion—instead of opposition—is a great gift to give our children.
Physically, it enhances their flexibility, strength, coordination, and body awareness. In addition, their concentration and sense of calmness and relaxation improves. Doing yoga, children exercise, play, connect more deeply with the inner self, and develop an intimate relationship with the natural world that surrounds them. Yoga brings that marvelous inner light that all children have to the surface.
When yogis developed the asanas thousands of years ago, they still lived close to the natural world and used animals and plants for inspiration—the sting of a scorpion, the grace of a swan, the grounded stature of a tree. When children imitate the movements and sounds of nature, they have a chance to get inside another being and imagine taking on its qualities. When they assume the pose of the lion (Simhasana) for example, they experience not only the power and behavior of the lion, but also their own sense of power: when to be aggressive, when to retreat. The physical movements introduce kids to yoga’s true meaning: union, expression, and honor for oneself and one’s part in the delicate web of life.
Yoga as a teacher on the mat.
Yoga with children offers many possibilities to exchange wisdom, share good times, and lay the foundation for a lifelong practice that will continue to deepen. The kids’ yoga program at SMARTS Club combines yogic techniques designed especially for children using Dr. Howard Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligences. Dr. Gardner, an author and professor of education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, describes eight intelligences innate in all of us—linguistic, logical, visual, musical, kinesthetic, naturalistic, interpersonal, and intrapersonal—and emphasizes that children should be given the opportunity to develop and embody as many of these as possible.
In keeping with this theory, SMARTS Club yoga integrates storytelling, games, music, language, and other arts into a complete curriculum that engages the “whole child.” We employ ecology, anatomy, nutrition, art, origami and life lessons that echo yogic principles of interdependence, oneness, and fun. Most of all, our program engages the entire mind, body, and spirit in a way that honors all the ways children learn. Our multi sensory program is based on this foundational theory.
From ABC’s to animal classification to life cycles can be taught with various yoga poses. Being a science teacher I have integrated fun experiments from breath counting to learning scientific names of the animals. Fun and creativity is the best way to teach kids of any age group. Including different kinds of props like stuff toys, puppets, Hoberman’s sphere, singing bowl, chimes can gets kids attention and help them to focus and learn. Kids who practice yoga perform better at school, sports and public performances as they are keen listeners, rule followers and good performers. Learning to breathe right and sit right keeps them healthy and prevents many problems later on in life.
SMARTS Club offers yoga based enrichment to kids during after school hours @ their Frisco and Plano locations. We offer free yoga try outs for kids (and moms too!), so experience the benefits of yoga!
Contact us to enroll or use our EZ Online Registration
You can also let the learning fun continue all year long by enrolling your child into our award winning After School Program or any of our academic classes including tutoring in all subjects, STAAR, cogAT, ACT, ITBS, and SAT Prep or extracurricular activities such Chess, Robotics, Bollywood Dancing and Kids Yoga. We have locations in Frisco and Plano and for your convenience we also offer all our academic programs online! Enroll your child today and watch the test scores go up!
Contact us to get details on our current discount offerings for our Preschool program and Early Bird Specials for our Summer Camp program that was a great hit last year and this year we have added Chess Camp option.