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Is Yoga Beneficial to Kids?
By Islena Faircrest


Yoga is for everyone - young, old, and everyone in between. For children, Yoga can help develop their flexibility, strength, coordination, and body awareness. Their concentration can improve along with their ability to relax and feel calm, which helps them to cope with the conflict and stress of an increasingly hectic world.

More than being just great exercise, Yoga is a way of life that encourages kids to play, connect more deeply with their inner self, and develop a receptive relationship to the natural world around them.

It encourages self-esteem and body awareness, and fosters cooperation and compassion, instead of competition.

Having taught Yoga for mom and baby classes, preschool kids, as well as elementary, middle, and high school kids, I’ve seen babies laugh and giggle as their moms crooned sweetly to them from downward facing dog. I’ve kept toddlers attentive with animal yoga poses during an imagination trip to the jungle of “Where the Wild Things Are”. Taken seven year olds on “magic carpet rides building sand castles on the beach” in the guided visualization of Savasana. Explored the ethics of “Yamas” & “Niyamas” with teens (healthy, loving attitudes and values) seeing how we could apply some of the ancient knowledge and wisdom of Yoga to their modern day life challenges. Particularly in situations where their internal compass might be challenged, and how awareness in their choices and decision-making can help. I’ve seen kids experience the rush and joy of the inherent power in their bodies as they tried a handstand or other challenging pose for the first time.

Through Yoga, children can discover how unique, worthy, and complete they are. How interconnectedness is a feeling and understanding, not just a concept. How self-esteem can come from feeling present and connected to one’s sunshine and innate power in the body. That intelligence has many forms. Or as one of my Yoga teens puts it... “The happiness I feel from doing something I really like is going to bring me success in my life. Practicing something again and again is not only going to make me better at it, but will teach me ways that I can improve.”

Taking care of our bodies with Yoga when we are young, and developing healthy habits, will serve us all life long. The lessons of life are not all that hard, but remembering them can be the tricky part. That’s why it’s called a Practice. Something that reminds us daily of how cool and interesting life is, with all of it’s “yay! woo-hoos” and “yucks” combined, which help us to learn and grow.

Islena Faircrest is a mother and Yoga teacher in Nosara. Her website is www.rooftopeco.com


More Health News

Sedentary Kids and Teens Prefer Watching TV Over Outdoor Activities

A recent research from the Universidad Nacional, carried out in Nicoya’s elementary and high schools, showed high rates of sedentary lifestyles among this population

NICOYA – The need to promote healthy lifestyles and to improve the quality of life of the region’s citizens, along with the high rate of cardiovascular disease and malignant tumors that exists among the residents of Guanacaste, led a group of researchers from the Escuela de Ciencias del Deporte (School of Sports Sciences) of the Universidad Nacional (UNA) to conduct a research, during 2009, in the student population of Nicoya. More >

6 Toxic Reason Why Not To Burn Trash

Open yard burning of household trash is common practice here in Nosara.

Disposing of your trash in this matter may seem like a harmless and easy way to rid yourself of the daily pileup, but studies, from the United States Environment Protection Agency, now show this is a very hazardous activity for the human health of the community and the environment. More >



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