What Are the Benefits of Yoga for Toddlers?
Mindfulness seems to be a buzzword these days, however, it offers so many advantages to both children and adults. But how can we teach our little ones to be more mindful from a young age? Through toddler yoga! Aside from the many health benefits of doing yoga with your little one, it also teaches your toddler some valuable skills which will set them up for life.
Mental health professionals, doctors, and teachers are all now just recognising how much yoga benefits children’s mental and physical well being. Here are just some of the many benefits of yoga for toddlers.
Benefits of toddler yoga
Yoga (taken from the Sanskrit for ‘to unite’) is the practice of integrating body, mind, and spirit in the pursuit of inner peace and harmony. It uses simple meditation and breathing practices alongside the adoption of specific bodily postures. This creates a special mind-body connection in a social, bonding environment.
1. Improves strength and flexibility
Yoga, for both children and adults, requires control of the body, which in turn builds strength and flexibility. By learning to use all of their muscles in new ways, it will reduce their chance of injury when doing other sports or exercise.
Your child will love forming poses and trying their hardest to hold them, which will also improve their balance. This is also an excellent way to develop those all important motor skills.
2. Boosts self esteem and confidence
With some challenging poses thrown into the mix, your little one will learn how to push themselves beyond their limits and achieve what they are capable of. After all, yoga is a physical outlet for toddlers to express themselves.
They will be delighted to finally achieve a pose they have been working on for ages, which will majorly boost their confidence and self esteem. It will show them that hard work, dedication, and practice all pays off!
3. Helps with focus, concentration and memory
One of the great things about toddler yoga is that it teaches children skills which can be applicable to their everyday life. For example, yoga requires a deep level of concentration that your child will have to learn to maintain, even if it begins getting tricky. Different types of moves require toddlers to focus and use their memorisation skills, so they will have to learn to dismiss external distractions.
Yoga really is a great practice for children who struggle with concentration or have an inability to sit still. Even though yoga is beneficial to all children, it has been found to be particularly so for those with special needs. Studies have shown that yoga especially benefits children with autism and ADHD.
The same skills that are taught in yoga for being present and in the moment are required everyday in a school setting, and your child will have developed them naturally doing something they enjoy.
4. Increases body awareness and mindfulness
Toddler yoga is one of the few physical activities that’s non-competitive. It works wonders for teaching your little about their body, and how it moves and works. Your toddler will learn all about balance, coordination and spatial awareness during their yoga sessions.
They’ll also learn what their bodies are capable of whilst becoming more mindful using methods to connect their body and mind together. A mind-body connection is so important, so it’s a great gift we can give them through yoga.
5. Can help to ease anxiety and take control of emotions
Yoga is filled with breathing exercises that are ideal for calming the mind during episodes or anxiety or high-emotions, and often you have to be still to perform the movements.
These breathing exercises do not have to be contained within yoga practice, as your child will have a helpful go-to tool for life to help calm down, and just relax in general. They can use these relaxing techniques whenever they are in high-pressure situations or are feeling anxious.
Teaching your child how to relieve stress in a healthy manner now can set them up for the rest of their childhood, and even adulthood. There’s nothing better than having the ability to enter a peaceful state of mind and enjoy the present moment. It is the art of healthy living!
Helping your little one develop at Maryam’s Nursery
Helping your child develop into the best they can be is what we do at Maryam’s. Learn more about our mindfulness ethos here.