For some, the word yoga can pull up certain images. Maybe it’s a Lululemon-clad soccer mom. Or perhaps an Eastern guru. But yoga is accessible -- and more importantly, beneficial -- for people of all ages, ability, and walks of life. More and more research and yoga practitioners are finding that yoga can benefit a hard-to-reach segment of the population -- teens.
It’s no secret that yoga is great for your health. It’s been proven to reduce stress, anxiety, and depression -- while providing a number of body-boosting benefits like increase in strength, flexibility, and circulation. All of those benefits still occur when practised by teens.
One study from the Journal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics, pulled together a group of teens that practised 10 week Kripalu yoga program during their physical education class that included meditation, relaxation, and breath work. The study paired that group with a different set of teens that attended traditional PE during that time. Here’s what the study found:
Teens that participated in the yoga program scored lower than the control group for symptoms of mood disorders -- like anxiety -- than those who didn’t practice yoga.
Teens who did not practice yoga reported more negative emotions than the group that went through the yoga program.
The teens LIKED yoga! 75% reported they would like to continue practicing yoga.
Studies like these are promising that yoga could be a real effective, preventative treatment for mood disorders, anxiety, and depression among teens. As a fitness option, yoga holds some advantages for teens that other workouts may not, like:
Yoga is a group activity that’s non-competitive. For many self-conscious teenagers, competitive sports can put a dent in their self-esteem. You don’t to be athletic, talented, or even coordinated to enjoy yoga.
It teaches that fitness can be fun. Yoga is gentle and encouraging -- while still being challenging. Enjoying a workout as a teenager can set the foundation for a lifetime of fitness.
Yoga benefits other sports. If a teen is involved in other sports, yoga can support their efforts by adding flexibility and strength. It can also help prevent injuries in more high-impact sports.
If you are the parent of a teen or are a teen yourself interested in trying yoga, we offer a wide variety of classes to suit your needs and schedule. Take a look at our class calendar to find one of the following yoga classes at Core Fitness:
Yoga for Tweens