“How Youth Benefit from Yoga: Words from a Volunteer” by Rachel O’Conner

 

At the heart of things, yoga is not just an exercise composed of poses and breathing techniques. Rather, it is a practice that devotes itself into bettering any individual’s quality of life, mind, and body. Media always portrays yoga as a relief for adults moving hurriedly through the busy mechanisms of life and responsibilities. But yoga is not just for them and their chaos! Children and the youth are able to benefit from yoga just as much as adults. Regardless of age, yoga impacts its user in practice with only the most positive changes.

In today’s world, everything has its technological impact and influence – and quite frankly, it is very easy to become disconnected from life with so many distractions. This century, we exist not only as a growing population of tech-savvy people, but we have given birth to the generation of Millennials (Generation Y): the first individuals to perceive society as a space of time propelling itself on technological advancements. By practicing yoga, young millennials reliant on technology can calm their busy, meticulous minds. Yoga brings one to the present moment, harnessing energy to solely focus on the sense of self and personal ambitions. Slowing down from a never-sleeping world will always do more good than harm.

Children – on the other hand, who involve themselves with yoga, are introduced into a lifestyle of self-awareness, health, and relaxation that roots itself deeply into their young age, encouraging positive physical and emotional nourishment throughout their adult lives. Also, the thought of a cute kid explaining yoga and how it helps them is a wonderful thing. Wisdom comes from every surprising corner!

Furthermore, yoga is a soothing outlet for the youth today that seems to be more pressured by society, standards, and expectations than any generation before them. With advertisements, diversified opinions, and the ease of access to social media content, everything can become genuinely overwhelming. Self-esteem can also take a toll with such factors. Yoga promotes feelings of empathy, gratitude, and most of all – forgiveness. With healthy feelings constantly flowing through the body in practice, negativity and toxic thoughts eventually fade away in exchange for understanding, inner strength and acceptance.

On a more physical note, youth who engage in yoga daily strengthen their muscles and joints to improve posture. Yoga consistently revitalizes muscles and movements that can become neglected with long days spent sitting in classrooms and desk jobs. Everyone is prone to the symptoms of old age, such as arthritis and back pain. However, yoga reverses those effects with movements and poses that invigorate the body’s strength day after day. In conjunction with a healthy diet, it’s completely possible to still feel 30 at 50, and so forth. The long-term effects of yoga completely shine throughout life. Pain, physical obstacles, and overwhelming moments of self-doubt diminish over decades worth of practice.

In conclusion, the youth absolutely benefit from yoga. Living a wonderful, quality life with this healthy outlet shouldn’t be a goal that starts at a particular age. Instead, it should start as soon as possible.

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

We would like to thank Rachel O’Conner for her collaboration and ability to share her experience with yoga and it’s effects on youth.

Categories: Yoga • Tags: community, inspiration, leadership, listen, mindfulness, motivational, seattle, service, street yoga, teaching yoga, trauma, volunteer yoga, wisdom, yoga service