Youth Yoga and Mindfulness

Strengthening attention, developing body awareness, and calming our minds is a life skill children develop over time. It’s difficult to access cognitive information when we’re stressed or upset.  Practicing yoga and mindfulness cultivates focus, self-regulation, self-awareness, compassion, and empathy. These important soft skills are vital in becoming a well rounded, thriving adult. When practiced as a moving meditation, studying the body and mind in movement, yoga, literally means “to yoke” — unifying mind, body, heart and breath to the present moment.  Simple, but far from easy. This experiential way of learning offers children a pragmatic tool to manage and self-regulate strong emotions, improve interpersonal skills, and build inner resilience in real time, while difficult situations are happening, in the moment.

I’m trained through Mindful Schools, a wonderful, non-profit organization out of California dedicated to “transforming schools from the inside out” since 2007. Here is a snapshot of the evidence-based work they’re doing:

mschools-snapshot

We will explore practices such as awareness of breathing and sound, building compassion, how to regulate strong emotions, express gratitude and generosity, mindful test taking, eating, among other awareness trainings.  It is taught in a universal, secular group setting. Using developmentally appropriate language, each session builds on the one prior to cultivate the practice. Every child receives a home practice journal to incorporate the lessons into their daily lives.  We experience, reflect, then discuss how this integrates into real-life situations.

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courtesy of David Lynch Foundation

Students will learn… practical, universal life skills to respond to stress reactivity:
– Improved Attention & Focus
– Better Emotion Regulation
– Increased Compassion

The City of Pleasant Hill is hosting this 60-minute class that combines yoga and mindfulness training geared towards our youth. The first 30-minutes focuses on yoga to calm and strengthen both our mind and body. The last 30-minutes, students will learn practical, universal life skills to counteract stress reactivity through mindfulness. Students will explore awareness of breathing, building compassion, how to regulate emotions, and expressing gratitude.  Each child will get a workbook/journal to incorporate the practice into their daily lives. Class is taught by yoga instructor and school teacher, Tammie Dixon, and mindfulness instructor, Allison Peet, owner of From Within Wellness. Please bring your own mat or a towel as yoga mats are limited. 

Hosted by City of Pleasant Hill
Where: Doanes Park Youth Center
When: Sundays, March 5 – April 30 (no class Easter Sunday)
$70/child – Ages K-8th grade welcome
Register by calling City Hall at 515-262-9368

More info HERE on the City of Pleasant Hill’s website


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