For more information about the benefits of yoga and mindfulness for kids, please explore the following links:
Huffington Post: “Why our Children Should be Taught to Meditate in School“
Minds are naturally restless, but they also possess the innate capacity to concentrate on just one thing… If we want our kids to do better in school — and in life — we need to strengthen their crucial capacity to focus on what is before them.
“Yoga Prevents Bullying in School”
“A comprehensive yoga program can greatly reduce violence and bullying… [Study results show] yoga as an effective method for increasing anger management skills and decreasing physical outbursts of violence…”.
UTNE Reader, “Meditation, Not Meds“
[Meditation and the relaxation response are] widely recognized to be important. The issue is that the school systems don’t have enough money to provide training. But it helps the children themselves not only in their struggles with the manifestations of stress—not only anxiety, insomnia, and bellyaches—but also with drug abuse, violence, and alcohol abuse.
Greater Good Science Center, University of California, Berkeley: “Mindful Kids, Peaceful Schools“
A 2004 survey of mindfulness programs by the Garrison Institute in New York—an organization that studies and promotes mindfulness and meditation in education—showed that many schools are adopting mindfulness trainings because the techniques are easy to learn and can help children become “more responsive and less reactive, more focused and less distracted, [and] more calm and less stressed.” While mindfulness can produce internal benefits to kids, the Garrison report also found that it can create a more positive learning environment, where kids are primed to pay attention.
Oxford, CT Patch: “Want Kids to Relax, Focus, and Succeed in School?“
We ask kids to “calm down” and “relax” but we don’t teach them how. [Practicing mindfulness] helps children become aware of their thoughts, their sensations and their feelings and consequently helps clear minds, eases anxiety and hones concentration skills.
Education Week: “Peace In Ourselves, Peace In the World”
“How, then, do we teach our students (and practice what we preach) to not hold onto feelings of hatred, revenge, bitterness, fear, or any other negative emotions that create brain clutter? One way is to teach our students to be mindful. Mindfulness, in brief, is a system of mental training that positively impacts the way individuals perceive and respond to themselves, their relationships, and the world.
Studies of students who have had mindfulness training show that students’ overall health and well-being are improved, including a decrease in depression, anxiety, and anger; and an increase in self-confidence, self-control and self-regulation. Some reports also include an increase in student academic performance.”
LA Yoga: “Cobra in the Classroom”
A detailed article illustrating many yoga programs available in Los Angeles schools, and the benefits seen among kids, including this passage below: How Yoga Benefits More Effective Learning:
- Chronic stress inhibits learning. Restful yogic practices, such as savasana (relaxation) and pranayama (breath techniques), can invoke the relaxation responses in the autonomic nervous system, allowing learning to progress more effectively
- Postures such as eagle pose and twisting triangle are cross-median movements that help to coordinate communication between the right and left hemispheres of the brain. This can aid in improved reading and spelling skills.
- Balance poses improve concentration and focus.
- Mindfulness helps to alleviate unhelpful negative emotions that hinder memory function.
- Increase resilience and decrease reaction time.