PEAK (Practice Empathy Acceptance Kindness) Kids Yoga was founded by local parent and yoga teacher, Kimberly Wilson, as a way of bringing yoga through physical practice, mindfulness, stress reduction, and relaxation to kids in her community with affordable before and after-school yoga enrichment programs. PEAK Kids Yoga is a community-based approach to yoga to improve the lives of kids through convenient, accessible, and affordable yoga programs.
Yoga practice helps children and teens in several ways:
1. Improve fitness and physical health.
Students participating in yoga develop a strong connection to body awareness and movement. The poses help improve coordinate, balance, strength, and flexibility.
2. Reduce stress and anxiety.
Elementary, middle school, and high school kids struggle with both academic and personal challenges. Yoga, through breath and awareness, provides space to step back and regulate your response to stress in a calm and thoughtful manner.
3. Improves optimism.
Studies have shown that yoga can help build a sense of optimism. During a time when children and teens are looking toward their future, yoga can build a sense of hopefulness for the future.
4. Improve focus and school performance.
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is one of the most common developmental disorders in children and adolescents and affects 1 in 10 children. Studies have found that children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder who practiced yoga once or twice weekly can improve their behavior as well as school performance.
5. Improves self esteem and body image.
The school-age years are a formative time in which kids often struggle with body image issues, peer pressure, and bullying. Yoga creates an accepting and safe environment, rooted in the principle of non-judgment. The practice helps you feel more connected to and accepting of your body.
6. Encourage creativity.
Yoga encourages creativity and playfulness, developing not just physical flexibility but flexibility of the mind as well.
7. Develop discipline and self-regulation .
Yoga that is taught with mindfulness has significant advantages over traditional physical activity. Yoga has been found to reduce impulsivity, increase patience, and improve the ability to regulate attention.
Yoga and mindfulness provide kids with skills to navigate challenges and build a core foundation that benefits both the mind and body well beyond teenage years.