The benefits of yoga for your children

Yoga is an activity that has been booming for a few years. Adopted by adults who recognize its many benefits, more and more parents want their children to benefit from it. The practice of yoga has many benefits as it can help improve flexibility, strength and balance while teaching children to focus and relax. In addition, yoga can help children learn about themselves and their bodies in a fun, non-competitive environment. Obviously the discipline is adapted to the age of the practitioners, their needs and their physical and mental limits.
This article will explain how yoga can be beneficial for children.

What is yoga and what are its benefits for children?

Yoga is a form of exercise that combines stretching, breathing and relaxation. It has been shown to benefit children in many ways. Yoga can help children improve their flexibility and strength. It can also help them learn to focus and relax. Yoga can also help improve children's self-esteem and confidence.

In addition to its physical benefits, yoga can also provide emotional and mental benefits to children. Yoga can help children learn to manage stress and anxiety. It can also help them learn to focus.

Overall, yoga is a great way for kids to get exercise, learn to focus and relax, and improve their overall well-being.

How is a session structured?

During a yoga session for children, several aspects are addressed: a very calm time where we work on breathing and learn to channel ourselves, a more dynamic time where we stretch and link postures to prepare the body for a more intense effort or, on the contrary, for a return to calm, and a dynamic time with links of postures that will allow a complete work as you will see below in this article.
Yoga for children, although it is recognized for its calming virtues, remains a playful discipline, especially because many postures are named after animals, characters or terms related to nature, which allows the child to enter into a "role play" and makes him want to participate more.

What benefits for the child?

Body awareness: 

Through the work of different postures, on the ground, standing or in balance, the child feels each part of his body and learns to discover it a little more. They also learn to manage their body in space.

Improved concentration: 

Through breathing exercises, the child is encouraged to clear his mind and focus on the present moment. He is also encouraged to be master of his gestures and to control his body in order to progressively improve in the postures that are proposed to him.

Better management of emotions 

Here, all the different aspects of yoga are important. The fact that the discipline is gentle, that we work on breathing, stretching and that we rediscover our body, all this constitutes a positive state of mind for the child. He learns to accept that he can't do everything right the first time, he learns to be proud of himself and sees himself progressing. He is always encouraged by the teacher who is not looking for a physical or intellectual performance.

A physical activity to let off steam gently 

Yoga is a gentle activity, but it is also a physical activity in its own right because it engages the muscles and joints, especially during the posture sequences. It also helps to make the body more flexible and to work on balance. The child will be able to exercise while respecting and controlling his body.

Injury Prevention: 

By strengthening muscles, working on flexibility and controlling different postures, children tone their skeleton, improve their overall body posture and gain range of motion. 

All of this will help build bone mass and therefore strengthen the skeleton. Working the muscles, joints and tendons will also help prevent injuries.

Sleep Improvement: 

The practice of yoga allows one to relax mentally and physically. This work of relaxation combined with the work of breathing also helps to rebalance the hormonal system and to bring down the daily excitement. This state of calmness and serenity felt during yoga sessions can also be felt at bedtime and thus improve sleep. 

Yoga can help improve flexibility, strength and balance while teaching children to focus and relax. In addition, yoga can help children learn about themselves and their bodies in a fun, non-competitive environment.

Some yoga postures for children

When doing yoga with children, it's important to make sure the poses are appropriate for their age and ability. You don't want them to feel frustrated or overwhelmed, so start with basic poses and increase them as they become more comfortable.

Here are some basic poses that are perfect for children:

1. The cobra pose: 

This pose strengthens the spine and helps improve flexibility. Have your child lie on his or her stomach, then slowly lift the head, chest and arms off the floor. Hold for a few seconds, then release.

2. The cat and cow pose: 

This pose stretches and relaxes the back muscles. Have your child get on all fours, then inhale while arching the back and looking up. Exhale as you round your back and tuck your chin into your chest. Repeat several times.

3. Laying the triangle: 

This pose improves balance and coordination. Have your child stand with one leg extended out to the side, then reach toward the extended leg, parallel to the ground. Hold this position for a few seconds, then switch legs and repeat.

4. Child's pose: 

This pose is great for relaxation and stress relief. Have your child sit back on his or her heels, then lean forward until the forehead rests on the floor. If you wish, hold your arms out in front of you. Hold this position for a minute or two, then release.

The benefits of a regular yoga practice for children

Research has shown that a regular yoga practice can provide a number of benefits to children. Yoga can improve flexibility, strength and balance, as well as concentration. In addition, yoga can promote calm and relaxation, and can help manage stress and anxiety. For children who have trouble concentrating or paying attention, or who are easily overwhelmed or overstimulated, a regular yoga practice can be especially beneficial. Yoga allows children to listen to their bodies and breathing, and to learn to manage their own energy. This can be extremely helpful in developing self-awareness and self-control.

In addition to the physical and mental benefits of yoga, there are also emotional benefits. For children who are dealing with difficult emotions such as anger or sadness, yoga can provide a safe place to explore these feelings. Yoga allows children to connect with their inner thoughts and feelings without judging them, which can be very beneficial.

As you can see, yoga is an essential activity for your children, whatever their temperament. In order for them to enjoy practicing and to do so safely, it is strongly recommended to register them for sessions supervised by a certified professional. 

The Wellness expert for Oktofit :

Manon

Manon

As a personal trainer, I discovered Pilates during a course in Paris and decided to make it the basis of my coaching with my clients. I also trained in Yoga to become a certified instructor and offer a more complete range of exercises during my sessions.