Yoga To The Rescueby Shaye Molendyke | 4/10/2016
Those of us who live and breathe all things yoga love reading studies or hearing experts confirm what we already know: yoga heals. The latest flurry of yoga-to-the-rescue activity focuses on kids in school. One study I read recently, while alarming, had a hopeful message. The study suggested that roughly 80 percent of children and teens will have some type of psychological problem by the time they reach 21. Many of these problems, like depression, anxiety, phobias, can be attributed to chronic stress. The good news? A review of the research (published in Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences) says “This is one reason why more schools are turning to yoga to improve the health of American youth.”
Still not convinced? Check out an elementary school in Baltimore that went above and beyond so many others. Instead of sending kids to a detention hall when they’re acting out or being disruptive, teachers now send them to a beautifully appointed yoga and meditation room that has a staff member on hand to talk to, if the student chooses. Instead of taking a “time out,” these kids get to “tune in.” Administrators there tell us it’s working so well that the school has had no suspensions in the last year and a half. A high school that’s implemented a similar program not only cut back on its suspensions but their attendance is up.
We need more schools and after-school programs that use yoga and meditation to help kids who suffer from chronic stress and even childhood trauma. The science and research clearly suggest that we carry our unresolved childhood issues into adulthood, so the fact that schools like Robert Coleman Elementary School in Baltimore are stepping up gives me hope that more institutions will follow suit.
YogaFit teachers are particularly suited to move into this field, to bring the power of yoga to children and adults who struggle with chronic stress and PTSD. We offer two specialty programs (a 100/140 hour YogaFit Warriors certification and a 100-hour YogaFit for WarriorKids certification), as well as individual workshops that will prepare you to teach students one-on-one; work with families and schools to set up new programs; and use your wisdom and knowledge to make a difference.
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