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Yoga and Mindfulness

Yoga and MindfulnessWhy is yoga important for elementary students?

Yoga and mindfulness have been shown to improve both physical and mental health in school-age children. Yoga improves balance, strength, endurance, and aerobic capacity in children. Yoga and mindfulness offer psychological benefits for children as well.

The Yoga and Mindfulness Program at Free Union Country School follows the Hatha tradition.

The Hatha tradition is based in five main principles:

  • Befriending the Breath: Students learn breathing exercises and reflect on the shifts that arise. Learning to use our breath properly can bolster awareness, activate alertness or aid in relaxation. It is a tool to use for self-regulation as we learn more about our mind/body connection.

  • Asana/Steady Pose: The physical practice that is designed with our students' rapid growth in mind. Muscles and joints need help catching up to growing bones. By learning a series of poses and learning to stay steady, they acquire balance and flexibility in addition to sharpening their concentration.

  • Proper Relaxation: Rest and relaxation are nature's way of recharging our bodies. Every yoga class dedicates time to rest, enjoy stillness, and allow silence.

  • Diet/Anatomy: We commit time to learning about the energetics of food and the importance of good nutrition. Learning the physiology of yoga helps students understand the “machine of the body” as an interconnected whole.

  • Positive Thinking and Mindfulness: Together we examine and reflect on themes such as kindness, truth, accountability and self-awareness. We take examples from our daily lives and construct ways to create positivity and peace in all circumstances.

Seven Ways that Yoga is Good for Schools