More and more children nowadays experience stress, pressure and anxiety. Our education system seems to have taken a direction that is making it harder and harder for our kids to just be kids. Learning and understanding gets replaced with memorising and intelligence is measured by test results. It seems that self expression and creativity have taken a back seat.
The rise of pressure in schools has coincidentally created a rise in anxiety, ADHD and behavioural challenges in children as young as four years old. Luckily amongst this havoc of more schools and parents are turning toward alternative methods like Yoga as a way of solving and managing the challenges that children are facing at present. Yoga is an ancient practice that has the potential to help children and adults alike cope with everyday stresses and empower them to lead more balanced lives.
Denisa Nenova is the founder of MahaDevi Centre, a Yoga centre which offers Yoga therapy “Yoga for the special child- the Sonia Sumar Method” to adults and children in London and further afield.
“Every parent that has walked through the door shares the same struggle and looks for something that can help their child and so they turn to Yoga. I think that is great news and really the best alternative treatment for pretty much anything from a physical disposition to mental or emotional challenges. To me Yoga and in specific The Sonia Sumar method holds the key to treating any condition. We see a number of children for Yoga therapy 7 days a week and probably half of them if not more have anxiety, panic attacks, high stress levels, sleepless nights, overly active wired up minds, so we apply classical Yoga practices to ease off things and help the child learn to settle, calm down, self regulate and manage the challenges they may be faced with be it in the class room, in the play ground or in any other situation in life.”
Yoga has indeed become a revolutionary practice across the globe. One can find a Yoga centre in pretty much every corner of town but what exactly is it about Yoga that has such potential to help children who are struggling.
“To start with Yoga is a practice that deals with the person as a whole, not just the body but also the mind and the emotions and that applies to children too. They are little beings that have all that we have and they are actually even more sensitive than adults are so one really needs to approach the child as a whole. When we work with kids we apply all elements of Yoga to ensure that we support the child on all levels – physical mental and emotional.
We practice breathing exercises to clean the lungs and stimulate the endocrine system, strengthen the immune system and relax and balance the nervous system. We then practice postures or asanas to tone the body, promote body awareness, strength and flexibility. That allows the child to be more comfortable with being in his/her body and helps them learn how to control that body. In a way you can say this empowers the child and allows them to take charge of themselves. We implement positive suggestions to further empower the child.
At the end of class we also of course do relaxation which is a very special and important part of the practice when all that we have worked on and learned during the class can be assimilated on a much deeper level.
It is also a time where the child can let go of anything that is no longer serving them on again a deeper level it is in a way an opportunity for letting go of all those heavy things that can’t be expressed with words sometimes.
Yoga for the Special Child is a very intelligently put together practice pioneered over 45 years ago and was the first Yoga Therapy method out there. Nowadays you see many variations of this method around the globe and we truly feel we are lucky and honoured to be able to provide this in our centre so children from all backgrounds and with any conditions can access it. ”
So despite all the changes our kids are facing there appears to be hope and opportunities for everyone to find the way back to peace and balance be it through Yoga or through mindfulness techniques or all other alternative approaches.
There is an abundance of studies and research done on many topics and access to a variety of treatments so it is worth looking at what would resonate with you, your child and your family and giving it a go.”
The centre offers yoga therapy treatments every day of the week round the clock. For more information please visit MahaDevi Yoga Centre.
Article from MahaDevi