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Why Your Kids Should Learn Yoga Immediately

Why Your Kids Should Learn Yoga Immediately

Do you think that yoga is only for adults? Maybe because it has been around for 5,000 years and is usually associated with rather serious-looking grown-ups in unusual poses. Well, think again, because yoga is also great for kids! The overall benefits are that they can learn to calm down and become more aware of their bodies through proper breathing and self-control. In addition, it helps kids become aware of the importance of harmony between mind, body and spirit. Here are eight reasons why you should get you kids started on yoga so that they can really benefit.

1. Yoga helps with flexibility

Once kids start to learn the basics of stretching and correct breathing, they will soon start to gain in flexibility. This is great for preventing injuries and sprains when they do other sports.

2. Yoga can help kids to sleep better

The National Sleep Foundation has found that as many as 69% of kids under the age of 10 are not getting enough sleep. Doing a few bedtime poses such as Greeting the Moon or getting the child to hug her knees into her chest are great ways of winding down. These movements favor more restful and longer sleep. The book Sleepy Little Yoga: A Toddler’s Sleepy Book of Yoga has lots of great ideas to make the bedtime routine more enjoyable.

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3. Yoga is non-competitive

Sports can become over-competitive. and it is important to teach a child how to win and lose graciously. But yoga focuses on more than just the child’s athletic prowess: There is no emphasis on whether a child is obese, too thin or simply not fast enough—yoga can work for every body. It is also teaching kids to gain self-esteem—qualities which tend to be forgotten on the sports field.

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    4. Yoga helps kids to remain calm

    How many times have we had to tell kids to count to ten when they are about to lose it or throw a tantrum? When they learn yoga, they already know how correct breathing can calm them down. When these techniques are combined with yoga games and songs, kids can easily manage stress and regain inner peace when the going gets tough.

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    5. Yoga may help kids with ADHD

    A study carried out at the University of Sydney found that boys with ADHD benefited from doing yoga. There was an improvement in behavior, hyperactivity and attention span. Other studies have revealed similar benefits, although more extensive research needs to be done.

    6. Yoga can be fun for kids

    Children’s yoga can be child’s play. They can imitate the animal sounds of the poses they are doing, such as the Downward-facing Dog or the Cat pose. Colorful mats can be chosen so that they have some fun when doing the various exercises. Watch the video below for more fun activities with yoga.

    7. Yoga can help kids recover more quickly from illness

    Yoga has been used with success in helping children get over serious illness. It is especially useful in helping to tone muscles that have been inactive for long spells. A therapist at the Children’s Hospital at Montefiore in New York has found that it also helps older kids deal better with anxiety. Yoga can never replace essential treatment, but when used as a complementary type of therapy, it has proved to be quite beneficial for both kids and adults.

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    8. Yoga can help kids to focus

    Many of the yoga poses are connected with balance and coordination. In order to do these successfully, kids need to focus and concentrate. Improved attention span will also help them in their academic studies.

    As we have seen, yoga for kids (and adults!) will help them to be calmer and more relaxed while at the same time help them build their self-esteem and confidence. They will also be much more aware of the need for inner peace and harmony. Now tell me what other extra curricular activity offers all that in one package?

    Have your kids tried yoga? What were the benefits? Let us know in the comments.

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    Featured photo credit: Little Creations Yoga Class/Alex Burhmann via flickr.com

    More by this author

    Robert Locke

    Author of Ziger the Tiger Stories, a health enthusiast specializing in relationships, life improvement and mental health.

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    Last Updated on September 16, 2019

    How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

    How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

    You have a deadline looming. However, instead of doing your work, you are fiddling with miscellaneous things like checking email, social media, watching videos, surfing blogs and forums. You know you should be working, but you just don’t feel like doing anything.

    We are all familiar with the procrastination phenomenon. When we procrastinate, we squander away our free time and put off important tasks we should be doing them till it’s too late. And when it is indeed too late, we panic and wish we got started earlier.

    The chronic procrastinators I know have spent years of their life looped in this cycle. Delaying, putting off things, slacking, hiding from work, facing work only when it’s unavoidable, then repeating this loop all over again. It’s a bad habit that eats us away and prevents us from achieving greater results in life.

    Don’t let procrastination take over your life. Here, I will share my personal steps on how to stop procrastinating. These 11 steps will definitely apply to you too:

    1. Break Your Work into Little Steps

    Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “gee, this is so simple that I might as well just do it now!”.

    For example, I’m currently writing a new book (on How to achieve anything in life). Book writing at its full scale is an enormous project and can be overwhelming. However, when I break it down into phases such as –

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    • (1) Research
    • (2) Deciding the topic
    • (3) Creating the outline
    • (4) Drafting the content
    • (5) Writing Chapters #1 to #10,
    • (6) Revision
    • (7) etc.

    Suddenly it seems very manageable. What I do then is to focus on the immediate phase and get it done to my best ability, without thinking about the other phases. When it’s done, I move on to the next.

    2. Change Your Environment

    Different environments have different impact on our productivity. Look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If it’s the latter, you should look into changing your workspace.

    One thing to note is that an environment that makes us feel inspired before may lose its effect after a period of time. If that’s the case, then it’s time to change things around. Refer to Steps #2 and #3 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity, which talks about revamping your environment and workspace.

    3. Create a Detailed Timeline with Specific Deadlines

    Having just 1 deadline for your work is like an invitation to procrastinate. That’s because we get the impression that we have time and keep pushing everything back, until it’s too late.

    Break down your project (see tip #1), then create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know you have to finish each task by a certain date. Your timelines must be robust, too – i.e. if you don’t finish this by today, it’s going to jeopardize everything else you have planned after that. This way it creates the urgency to act.

    My goals are broken down into monthly, weekly, right down to the daily task lists, and the list is a call to action that I must accomplish this by the specified date, else my goals will be put off.

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    Here’re more tips on setting deadlines: 22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

    4. Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops

    If you are procrastinating a little too much, maybe that’s because you make it easy to procrastinate.

    Identify your browser bookmarks that take up a lot of your time and shift them into a separate folder that is less accessible. Disable the automatic notification option in your email client. Get rid of the distractions around you.

    I know some people will out of the way and delete or deactivate their facebook accounts. I think it’s a little drastic and extreme as addressing procrastination is more about being conscious of our actions than counteracting via self-binding methods, but if you feel that’s what’s needed, go for it.

    5. Hang out with People Who Inspire You to Take Action

    I’m pretty sure if you spend just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you’ll be more inspired to act than if you spent the 10 minutes doing nothing. The people we are with influence our behaviors. Of course spending time with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates every day is probably not a feasible method, but the principle applies — The Hidden Power of Every Single Person Around You

    Identify the people, friends or colleagues who trigger you – most likely the go-getters and hard workers – and hang out with them more often. Soon you will inculcate their drive and spirit too.

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    As a personal development blogger, I “hang out” with inspiring personal development experts by reading their blogs and corresponding with them regularly via email and social media. It’s communication via new media and it works all the same.

    6. Get a Buddy

    Having a companion makes the whole process much more fun. Ideally, your buddy should be someone who has his/her own set of goals. Both of you will hold each other accountable to your goals and plans. While it’s not necessary for both of you to have the same goals, it’ll be even better if that’s the case, so you can learn from each other.

    I have a good friend whom I talk to regularly, and we always ask each other about our goals and progress in achieving those goals. Needless to say, it spurs us to keep taking action.

    7. Tell Others About Your Goals

    This serves the same function as #6, on a larger scale. Tell all your friends, colleagues, acquaintances and family about your projects. Now whenever you see them, they are bound to ask you about your status on those projects.

    For example, sometimes I announce my projects on The Personal Excellence Blog, Twitter and Facebook, and my readers will ask me about them on an ongoing basis. It’s a great way to keep myself accountable to my plans.

    8. Seek out Someone Who Has Already Achieved the Outcome

    What is it you want to accomplish here, and who are the people who have accomplished this already? Go seek them out and connect with them. Seeing living proof that your goals are very well achievable if you take action is one of the best triggers for action.

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    9. Re-Clarify Your Goals

    If you have been procrastinating for an extended period of time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you are currently doing. Often times, we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we don’t change our goals to reflect that.

    Get away from your work (a short vacation will be good, else just a weekend break or staycation will do too) and take some time to regroup yourself. What exactly do you want to achieve? What should you do to get there? What are the steps to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?

    10. Stop Over-Complicating Things

    Are you waiting for a perfect time to do this? That maybe now is not the best time because of X, Y, Z reasons? Ditch that thought because there’s never a perfect time. If you keep waiting for one, you are never going to accomplish anything.

    Perfectionism is one of the biggest reasons for procrastination. Read more about why perfectionist tendencies can be a bane than a boon: Why Being A Perfectionist May Not Be So Perfect.

    11. Get a Grip and Just Do It

    At the end, it boils down to taking action. You can do all the strategizing, planning and hypothesizing, but if you don’t take action, nothing’s going to happen. Occasionally, I get readers and clients who keep complaining about their situations but they still refuse to take action at the end of the day.

    Reality check:

    I have never heard anyone procrastinate their way to success before and I doubt it’s going to change in the near future.  Whatever it is you are procrastinating on, if you want to get it done, you need to get a grip on yourself and do it.

    More About Procrastination

    Featured photo credit: Malvestida Magazine via unsplash.com

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