Early start to a happy life
A child is like clay in the hands of a potter. Mud has no identity of its own but the potter gives it structure and meaning.
Today's children suffer from the effects of modernisation. They have to prove themselves to parents, peers, friends and teachers. Yoga can give the child focus, awareness, sensitivity, relief from stress, freedom from loneliness and solace, and can initiate children on their inward journey.
If yama and niyama (the basic ethical codes of life such as satya and ahimsa) are taught from childhood, one can aim at making a perfect child, citizen and human being. This will also help the child adjust to his environment positively.
There are three types of asanas suitable for children — cultural, meditative and relaxing — and they cater to different needs.
Yoga benefits every child intellectually, emotionally and physically. With regular practice, the child will benefit from enhanced concentration and memory, more focus and improved mind-body coordination. The practices are an effective prevention for obesity, asthma, sinusitis and other chronic ailments.
As a physical activity that's non-competitive, yoga encourages self-esteem at an early age. Yoga has also been shown to help the hyperactive and attention-deficit child. These children crave movement and sensory/motor stimulus. Yoga helps channel these impulses in a positive way. Postures such as the Warrior Pose and Tree Pose help instil in them calm, confidence and balance. Ardhachakrasana, or the Half Wheel Posture, increases the respiratory capacity of the lung while toning and massaging the internal organs of the abdominal area. Tadasana, or the Palm Tree Pose, helps increase height as it strengthens and straightens the spine, and improves digestion. Ushtrasana, or the Camel Pose, corrects rounded shoulders and stimulates the digestive system by stretching the abdominal area. Chakrasana, or the Wheel Posture, strengthens the back and makes it flexible and supple.
Most postures are named after and reflect the movements of animals. Through observation, the sages understood how animals live in harmony with their environment and with their own bodies. This sense of harmony with oneself and with nature can be inculcated in children through the practice of the various postures based on animal movements.
By stimulating the imagination, yoga encourages creativity; releases fear, anger and sadness; and helps trust in the inner self grow.
A child is full of innocent wisdom. The deeper purpose of teaching children yoga is to help them maintain this natural wisdom and radiance.
Bharat Thakur guides you through practices that will connect you to the wisdom of the ancient Indian science of exercising