Yoga is as beneficial for children as it is for adults. It has now become common knowledge that yoga works to control and prevent stress and physical pain, circulation and digestion problems, as well as increasing concentration and helping to create better body alignment. As well as this, yogi’s will find themselves breathing more deeply, feeling more relaxed and securing a strong sense of inner peace and well-being. These effects are not limited to adults and are just as easy to be adopted by our little ones.
A CHAT WITH AMY FARROW FROM BRIGHT SIDE LIVING….
What was it that motivated you to start Bright Side Living (yoga studio)?
I wanted to create a comfortable and fun space for children and adults alike to explore the practise of yoga and develop a connection between body, breath and self. Through my own practise, since my teens, I have learnt a happier, healthier way of living and being. From this, I was driven to introduce a lifelong yoga practise as soon as possible in as many kids as possible. The poses and lessons of Yoga are the same for little and big yogi’s but I have had fun in adapting them into games and activities both on and off the mat, in line with a kid’s abundant high energy.
What is the most rewarding part about teaching yoga to young children?
Watching their confidence and awareness grow. I love seeing our little yogi’s adapt the ancient principles of yoga into their modern day lives. The simple acts of saying each class what makes them happy, and a positive affirmation has a great impact on how they view themselves and their immediate world.
What do children get out of regular yoga training, physically, mentally and emotionally?
Yoga makes kids happy and healthy on a physical, mental and emotional level. Parents and teachers often notice an increase in concentration, discipline and self control, along with an enhanced ability to problem solve and resolve conflict. With a regular practise little yogi’s quickly develop improved self esteem and confidence, and the breath and relaxation work has such positive affects on anxiety, stress and depression. Physically, through yoga, the children develop core strength, balance, coordination, awareness, improved posture, strength and flexibility.
Is it difficult for children to pick up the yoga poses and become comfortable enough to move into them on their own?
Children love to move, Our program incorporates yoga poses with movement, music and play. The classes provide a safe space for children of all ages and abilities to grasp and develop at their own time and pace.
Do you have any individual stories of a child who has changed for the better after practising yoga on a regular basis?
My favourite stories are when our little yogi’s feel so confident and proud of their yoga that they teach their families or kindy classes all of the poses that they’ve learned. I even had one little boy teach an entire restaurant! I have a girl in year 4 at school who uses her breathing to quiet her mind when she feels restless in class. The breathing exercises have helped her to learn how to focus, which will now help her in all areas of her life. Another young girl I teach has overtime improved her self-esteem drastically, making her a whole new child. She has become a lot brighter, more confident and is now an extremely self assured young lady, which has been a wonderful transformation to witness and help develop!