The kids have returned to the classroom, with an entire fall season ahead filled with studying, memorizing and learning new things. With such an emphasis on curating young intellects, it’s easy to forget about the links between body and mind. School sports teams are one way to keep growing kids’ bodies strong, but connecting the physical body with breath and movement—as is done in yoga and Pilates—is an especially effective way to help bring out the best in kids.
It’s not a competition
Joining a sports team is a great way to develop discipline, camaraderie and sportsmanship, but rarely during the school year are children encouraged to get up and moving without having a competitive goal of beating another team, or besting a personal time. Practicing yoga and Pilates allows kids to enjoy movement for movement’s sake, and can help build confidence and self-esteem levels.
Yoga and Pilates don’t have to be boring, quiet classes for kids. The names of poses can be descriptive, and inventive Instructors can encourage imagination in young minds. Kids can play at standing like a tree, scrabbling like a crab, or sitting like a frog as they build muscle and breathing ability.
It enhances body and mind
Yoga and Pilates teach kids how to use their muscles in new ways and make their bodies stronger and more flexible, while encouraging a focus on breath and the physical sensations of being in a pose. Together, these things help kids become aware of the possibilities of movement in their own bodies, and also help expend excess energy and increase concentration and focus outside of practice.