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News

Why do young people need yoga?

Categories: East Sheen,East Sheen News,News

Amy Vaughan, the founder of Yoga Seedlings runs after-school yoga classes for children and teens in Richmond, Mortlake and Twickenham. Here she writes about why yoga is great for children and teens.

You are never too young to start yoga! Practising yoga from an early age builds a strong foundation of self-worth, love, respect, kindness and compassion; these are essential qualities for positive long-term health and wellbeing. Yoga is all-inclusive and non-competitive; it increases self-awareness and confidence whilst stretching and strengthening young bodies. Yoga is physically, mentally and emotionally beneficial, helping children and teens to put aside worries and connect with themselves and others. Yoga equips young people with invaluable tools to deal with stress, anxiety and other socially demanding issues. When young people learn techniques for self-care, they are able to navigate life’s challenges with a little more ease.

Yoga Seedlings promotes yoga as a way of life from an early age. It is our mission to share yoga with as many young people as possible. We deliver after-school yoga classes for young people in Richmond (RACC), Mortlake (BeMore Studio) and Twickenham (The Exchange). Our classes are the perfect balance of energy and serenity. We design classes to introduce yoga to young people in a fun, creative, educational and nurturing style. Quiet, slow and reflective breathing and relaxation exercises follow high energy sequences, allowing young people to release built-up energy and stress before reflecting and connecting with themselves.

Children’s yoga classes are fun, energetic and calming. We explore different themes through a combination of yoga sequences, music, breathing exercises, yoga games, creative arts, meditations and relaxations. Our classes give children the opportunity to celebrate their own uniqueness through learning to connect to their mind and body, their peers and the wider community. Physically, yoga nurtures freedom of movement to help build flexibility and strength; mentally and emotionally, concentration and self-confidence are improved. Children are given the space to explore being in their bodies and learn to appreciate the endless variety of things our bodies can do for us: balance, twist, bend, jump, play and relax. The classes are designed to help children become in tune with themselves, to develop their skills to self-regulate and to create calm, happy, confident young people.

Many changes take place during teenage years; yoga is a kind and supportive tool for self-exploration and awareness through this transition. We provide a safe, secure, non-competitive space free from academic pressures, schedules and expectations to allow young people just to be themselves and relax. This is a vital age to reap the physical and mental benefits of yoga to help physically nurture changing bodies and deal with fluctuating emotions. A regular yoga practice during teenage years can help to balance the body’s chemistry and physiology. Our teen classes are perfect for students experiencing stress or anxiety due to exams or schoolwork.

Yoga provides a much needed mental break for young people. Many sensorial stimuli are constantly bombarding their brains, which consequently must process a heavy load of information without enough rest. Yoga gives young people time out from academics, social media, schedules, expectations and competitive sports and allows them just to ‘BE’. Savasana and meditation are often young people’s favourite part of the class, giving their bodies and minds the stillness and quiet they so often lack in our fast-paced world.

ABOUT AMY, FOUNDER OF YOGA SEEDLINGS

I have over twelve years’ experience working as an art teacher in primary and secondary schools. I am a smiley, plant-powered, wellbeing enthusiast of multiple movement disciplines. My yoga journey equipped me with a life-changing toolkit that has me taught me how to care for myself physically, mentally and emotionally. Yoga gives my life balance and boosts my sense of playfulness, which stops me from taking myself so seriously! I have a deep gratitude for the joy and spiritual richness that the teachings of yoga have brought to my life. This led me to combine my two passions: yoga and the development of young people to create ‘Yoga Seedlings’, promoting yoga as a way of life from an early age. It is my mission to share yoga with as many young people as possible. I have completed both children and teen yoga teaching training with Yoga Alliance accredited Helen Clare of Class Yoga and Charlotta Martinus of Teen Yoga. I also trained with Ieva Wildbeamer of Rainbow Kids Yoga in Yoga for Kids and Families.

w: www.yogaseedlings.com

i: @yoga_seedlings

f: @yogaseedlings1

Author: Bori Kiss

Bori has been a member of the ESV team for a few years now. She loves long walks in Richmond Park and coffee that's not too hot to drink.