At Golden Glow Yoga College everyone can be part of a group dynamic and yet also enjoy the personal challenge of learning a new life- long learning skill that will benefit them through adult life.
Everyone is welcome!
What is Yoga ?
The yoga system was devised in India thousands of years ago. Yoga asanas or poses are derived from observing nature. The yogis studied the movements of animals, noting how they breathed, moved and relaxed. Many of the yoga poses imitate or represent the spirit of animals, such as the dog, lion or cat. They also imitate parts of the environment, such as mountains or trees, helping us to appreciate the grace of these natural wonders. Performing the animal poses in yoga shows us that to reach our highest potential as human beings and show loving, compassionate, forgiving and happy characteristics, we need to control our baser animal instincts, such as greed, selfishness and desire.
Benefits of Yoga for Children and Teens
Yoga takes a holistic approach to maintaining health and wellbeing that makes your children feel good and aids their growing bodies. Studies into the benefits of yoga have shown that it can help children in the following ways: Flexibility and Strength, Better posture, Body awareness, Breathing, Concentration Techniques and building Self Esteem.
Flexibility and Strength
Children are naturally flexible and agile and these are important qualities to maintain in their young bodies. Yoga poses or asanas strengthen their growing spines, keep their muscles supple and encourage good joint movement. The action of the poses creates a more elaborate range of muscle motor skills that fine-tune co-ordination and increase the overall range of motion.
Practicing these poses regularly straightens and strengthens the spine, sending a fresh flow of blood and nutrients to a child’s muscles and disks. When the back is upright and lifted, it enables better energy flow and the nervous system works more efficiently, improving such involuntary actions as breathing or digestion.
Learning how to breathe well is an essential part of yoga practice and has a direct link with our minds and emotions. When we feel nervous or upset our breathing becomes very shallow and laboured. Practicing simple breathing awareness helps to calm the mind and helps free blocked emotions and creative energy. This can be further developed as teens when the lungs are fully developed. (Please note Golden Glow Yoga College does not teach specific Pranayama technique to children under 14 years of age unless specifically supporting the treatment of specific medical conditions such as anxiety and hypertension.)
Yoga encourages body awareness through the poses, as most of them are repeated on body sides of the body, which is believed to harmonize the left and right hemispheres of the brain. The ability to distinguish between right and left is the essence of body awareness that develop around the age of seven, about the time that hand dominance is established.
Focusing the mind is an essential part of yoga practice. Concentration and visualization exercises help children to learn to sit still, get in touch with their inner selves, focus their minds and avoid outside distractions so that they enjoy the present moment. When they acquire concentration and visualization skills they are more alert and receptive, making it easier for them to pay attention at school and increase their learning abilities.
Building Self Esteem
Yoga uses positive language affirmations and visualization techniques that increases a child’s self –esteem. In addition, as a child becomes more proficient at the yoga poses, he feels healthier and more toned and his or her confidence and self- image improve. The non-competitive aspect that can be encouraged in yoga can also go some way to helping children and teens recognise their own value, strengths and limits, whatever their shape or size.