Although yoga is popular among adults, it can be easily appreciated and enjoyed by kids. In fact, practicing yoga can be a fun physical activity that you and your whole family can do together. So why not step on the mat this weekend, or after your kid’s ballet or soccer meet, or even this Father’s Day? Here’s every reason you should:
1. Yoga is non-competitive.
With school and extracurricular activities being largely competitive environments, yoga offers a safe, quiet space for your child to be relaxed and at ease. It is an activity where there are no winners or losers, and nobody is better than the other.
Because yoga celebrates each person’s individuality, it also teaches your child that everybody is unique. Unlike other physical activities and sports that are dependent on one’s talents and skills, yoga is wholly accepting of anybody no matter what. Practicing yoga with your child will also show them that you are celebrating them for simply being themselves, and vice versa.
2. Yoga helps develop a healthy body image.
One of the benefits of yoga is that it helps build body awareness. Specifically, it enhances proprioception, which is the awareness of position and movement of the body. Yoga, then, encourages your child to connect with their body.
Developing body awareness at an early age not only supports physical wellbeing, but it also allows children to feel comfortable and confident in their own skin. After all, yoga can be practiced by anybody, regardless of looks or size.
Additionally, adults may lose proprioception as they age. Practicing yoga also helps improve one’s memory, and keep the nervous system strong. This way, you’ll be able to stay active and sharp even as your kids grow older.
3. Yoga is versatile and playful.
There is not just one way to practice yoga—there are many ways to practice yoga. At the same time, your yoga practice can easily adjust to your and your family’s needs at the moment. Do you need a high-energy, sweaty type of practice today? Or do you need a slow, relaxing, and meditative one? Whatever you and your family are feeling, there is surely a type of practice that will cater to you.
For parents and young children, you can also incorporate toys, games, and music in the practice. It’s a great way to encourage your children (and you) to play and have fun.
4. Yoga helps reduce anxiety.
It’s no secret that physical exercise helps boost mood levels, and helps support individuals with depression or anxiety. However, yoga specifically promotes moment-to-moment awareness, and helps clear the mind.
In fact, the Harvard Medical School confirms that yoga helps reduce stress—especially since it also encourages self-soothing techniques such as meditation. Studies show that yoga helps reduce heart rate, lower blood pressure, and promotes healthy respiration, and thereby fight overall signs of stress.
Practicing yoga as a family helps promote relaxation for everybody! After a hard week at school or at work, it is definitely a great way to unwind and enjoy each other’s company.