Scientists and doctors agree, that feeling good is the key to intelligence, creativity, and motivation. In fact, high levels of dopamine, the “feel-good” chemical in your brain is largely associated with learning and memory.
Recent brain imaging tests show that dopamine is essential to real learning. Real learning meaning that the information being taught “sticks” and is integrated into the child’s life, compared to short-term learning, whereby the child memorizes the information being taught only to forget it after he/she is tested on the subject. Short-term learning usually takes place under stress making it difficult for the child to actually retain information for the future. Real learning becomes embedded in the child’s memory, making it easier for them to retain and even build upon what they already know.
Kids yoga has proven to make a big difference in kid’s lives. Every parent wants their child to succeed, to feel good about their self, and to give to and benefit from society and the world as a whole. Because kids yoga integrates movement with confidence, self-appreciation, friendliness and compassion for self, others, and our world, it’s like killing two birds with one stone, or as I’ve heard in the yoga community “feeding two birds with one scone.”
Supporting kids yoga in schools and at home is simple. It can be as easy as creating a 10-15 minute fun stretching sequence for kids or a 5 minute breather in the middle of a difficult math lesson. Those moments of de-stressing will calm children, help release dopamine in their brain, and remind them of the joy and simplicity of life. As they return to a difficult math problem or confusing grammar rule, they’re better able to focus, allowing real learning to take place.
There are a number of books, workshops, and teacher trainings out there to help you support kids yoga in school.
As a parent you might want to consider bringing your kids to kids yoga classes outside of school or connecting with your child in the home with a home-based practice. There is a ton of support out there for children and adults alike! It’s time to take action for your own life and the life of our children, our future.
All the materials you need are available, and if you don’t seem to have to time to practice yoga with your kids, source out a local kids yoga teacher in your community! There are numerous teachers available!