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How Yoga Helps Kids with ADHD

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How Yoga Helps Kids with ADHD

By: Donna Freeman of Yoga In My School[/url]

When diagnosing Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) three symptoms are considered: inattention, hyperactivity and impulsivity. Children with ADHD have one primary challenge – focus – whether lack of, fluctuations in, inability to refocus, or obsessive focus. Yoga asanas (poses) and breathing techniques can dramatically improve the ability to focus and can be used anytime, anywhere.

Students with ADHD who regularly engage in yoga are able to develop coping skills. Their self esteem improves as disruptive behaviours are reduced. They are also better able to understand themselves and appreciate who they really are, and the contributions they can make.

Yogic practices of visualization, affirmations, and relaxation can prove especially powerful as behaviour therapy techniques. These can help increase attention span, improve the ability to relax, help regulate emotions, and teach stress management skills. In addition, they will reduce stimulus overload by providing a sense of calm and inducing the relaxation response.

Partner and group poses further yoga’s effectiveness in helping students with ADHA as they provide a forum for social skills training. The controlled environment with a short specific task, followed by positive reinforcement is ideal for teaching the application of social skills.

Children with attention-deficit challenges benefit greatly from regular practice. Two to three times a week is optimal. Use pose cards such as The Kids Yoga Deck: 50 Poses and Games by Annie Buckley or make your own using drawings or pictures of the poses (a dog, a snake, a mountain). Children can then pick different groups of cards or poses for each session.

This Weeks's Featured Author: Donna Freeman

We thank Donna for providing this article for our website

Author, teacher and kids yoga expert, Donna Freeman believes yoga can be done anywhere, by anyone, at anytime. Her book, Once Upon a Pose: A Guide To Yoga Adventure Stories for Children, has a section dedicated to special needs individuals and how to adapt yoga to meet these needs and bring the benefits of yoga to all. Visit her website at Yoga In My School for over 120 articles on yoga for kids and teens.

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Tags: Yoga Article ADHD