From Yoga Mat to Peaceful Classroom
The Sivananda Yoga for Schools program brings yoga to classrooms. We offer courses that introduce children and youth to yoga postures, breathing and relaxation techniques. Our yoga programs build on the inherent strengths and resiliency of youth, and highlight how to use yoga and relaxation to develop skills that can be integrated into daily life.
Why Yoga in Schools?
Today’s world is highly stimulating for children. School, television, video games, competitive sports and the like can be exciting, but being bombarded with so much information can also leave children and teens feeling anxious and restless.
Emotional and social well-being is essential for ensuring all students have an opportunity to realize their full potential, achieve academic success and contribute to community life. Yoga can provide a solid foundation for peaceful, healthy living.
What is Yoga?
Yoga is a system that helps educate the mind itself. The classical yoga approach is a complete system that unfolds a balanced personality in the child. The Sivananda Yoga Centres have made the teachings of yoga accessible by grounding it in several basic principles of healthy living:
- Balanced Exercise: Yoga postures keep the spine, muscles and joints in a healthy and supple state. They also help to balance all of the hormonal changes that may arise during the growing process.
- Proper Breathing: Is important for supplying fresh oxygen to the body and brain, increasing physical and mental capacity and clarity. These exercises remove congestion, relieve asthma and promote emotional stability.
- Balanced Diet: Teaches basics of healthy nutrition and how to prepare food which has the most positive effect on the body and mind and the least negative effect on the environment.
- Relaxation Techniques: These practices release the physical and mental tensions and reduce the stress of day- to-day living. They also teach how to manage anger, regulate fears and worries and cope with distress.
- Positive Thinking and Concentration: Teaches the connection between our thoughts, feelings and behaviours. Concentration exercises help focus mental energy so it can be used in a positive, creative and constructive way. Attention is developed, the power of memory is sharpened and learning becomes a more efficient process.
Classes and Courses for Schools
We offer introductory (6-8 sessions), full-semester, and year-long courses. Programs can be adapted for various age groups and modified to address the concerns of children with special needs.
- The Introductory Program: Teaches the basics of yoga, breathing and relaxation practices as a 6-8 session program.
- The Full Semester School Program: Builds on the Introductory Program and includes a variety of yoga postures, student tailored breathing exercises, relaxation and concentration practices.
- The Year-long School Program: Builds on the Full Semester Program and includes mindfulness-based activities and meditation as well as a mindfulness-based life skills program.
Programs are delivered as part of the curriculum, in units of 6-8 classes, as a lunch hour or as an after-school program.
We also work closely with our community partners to ensure that the yoga programs are sustainable and tailored to meet the diverse needs of the communities we serve.
Yoga at Your School
We are proud to be an approved Educational Partner with the Toronto District School Board. To set up a yoga program for your school, please contact the program director, Saraswati, by email at [email protected].