Not only can it help kids relax, but pediatricians say the ancient practice may also be a helpful treatment for asthma, autism, and more.
Why Kids Should be Doing Yoga
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Yoga has been around for thousands of years, but the focus on children continues to grow. In fact, to answer the increasing demand for instructors qualified to teach kids, the Yoga Alliance (an organization that maintains a registry of yoga teachers and schools that meet specific standards) developed guidelines for teachers and schools so they can be credentialed in children’s yoga. Although there are currently more than 430 instructors who have registered under the new specialty, it’s safe to assume that the numbers are actually higher because registration is voluntary.
In an American Psychological Association survey, nearly one third of kids ages 8 to 17 said that they’d recently had health symptoms often associated with stress, such as headaches and stomachaches — things yoga can address, even in those younger than 8. “Kids can condition the stress response when they’re younger in a way that may inform how they react to stress later in life. So giving them tools to help manage anxiety can be very useful,” says Dr. Birdee.