Imagine a nation whose younger generation attends yoga classes and benefits from yoga intervention. Imagine the youth with fewer cases of mental health problems and know the significant gains of yoga and its positive impact on stress reduction and self-discovery.
What if we stop imagining and make yoga a part of the physical education curriculum of today’s youth?
Regardless if yoga classes are included or not in students’ physical education sessions, the fact remains that the demand for yoga is high. Yoga is considered the most popular fitness and exercise technique in the world.
Yoga practice is becoming a global phenomenon. In the US, data shows 36 million people practice this relaxation, breathing, and balance program.
According to Google trends, Singapore held the second spot on the list of the top nations where yoga was most popular in 2020.
Schools must act fast about integrating yoga into physical education classes.
Let’s talk about the whys and the hows as we venture further into how a yoga program can significantly boost a person’s fitness, body, health, and quality of life.
Yoga and Physical Fitness – Boosting Children’s Mental Health
Yoga is known as a form of low-impact fitness program. It’s a physical activity that promotes physical fitness, relaxation, and health. But the practice has more to offer than physical activity and body development.
Yoga has a positive impact on mindfulness and meditation. The program promotes positive development regardless of your age. A yoga class makes you aware of the present – of what is “now.”
This is why it’s important to expand the emphasis and range of physical education class beyond sports and to be active. It is high time to teach yoga as part of physical education classes in a classroom, gym, and schools.
A yoga class can lower the stress levels of its students while boosting the beneficial chemicals found in the brains, such as GABA and endorphins. The said chemicals work by improving one’s mood and decreasing anxiety.
Yoga promotes mindfulness. Yoga classes teach students to be present and mindful of their surroundings. Yoga sessions teach students to stay calm amidst the pressure or problems they face at school, in class, at home, or with their parents.
What Should a Physical Education Teacher Teach Students about Yoga?
Students will gain a lot from learning yoga at a young age. It will provide students with a good training ground for developing their character and skills.
This is why it is important to consider including it in physical education classes of the students at school.
Students will benefit from the yoga postures and breathing techniques. Despite being a low-impact form of exercise, a yoga class is a productive physical activity that offers a positive effect on health and wellness.
The question remains – should yoga be added to physical education classes of students at schools?
Here are the mindfulness, fitness, health, and other benefits students and other people can gain from yoga:
1. Cognitive regulation
Yoga is effective in managing a person’s emotions and heightened feelings. Everybody will benefit from learning how to control their emotions, including children and students.
Self-regulation is critical skill students need to learn to develop early on to help them succeed in life. It gives them the ability to respond according to how other people react and in response to their internal cues.
According to studies, yoga can help a lot in developing the self-regulation of students, especially when it’s part of their curriculum.
A randomized controlled trial found that more high school students developed better self-regulation skills after they agreed to do regular yoga sessions for 16 weeks. They fared better than the other students who only attended regular physical education classes.
2. Reduced stress
Yoga is an exercise that brings calmness. When taught at schools, students will have an easier time developing the ability to cope with troubles and dealing with problems outside the academe.
They develop exceptional stress management skills and deal better with common school problems, such as low grades, home troubles, or any negativities in their lives.
By making yoga part of their school routine, studies found that students will develop better resilience to stress. It happens as they gain higher levels of self-efficacy and self-control.
Over time, the practice will help them overcome anxiety too. These students will grow up knowing the right way to respond to stressors and panicking events.
3. Better awareness
Yoga brings students awareness of their surroundings and the people around them. They become more sensitive to all that is happening and how they respond to other people.
Research suggests that yoga helps former bullies to develop a better sense of understanding and treatment of other students. Yoga helped most of them overcome their problematic behavior.
With yoga integrated into classes, those who participated in it had fewer troubles at school, including detentions and frequent absences. They also developed better study habits and became more engaged in academic performance.
4. Overall improved wellbeing
Yoga is a form of exercise that doesn’t only improve a person’s fitness; it also helps students develop mental fortitude.
These students who do yoga at schools develop a higher sense of awareness of their environment. They also started seeing themselves clearly as they became more mindful and present.
Should Yoga Be Added to PE Classes?
Physical education helps a lot in keeping students active and physically fit. Most PE classes include sports that promote physical activity and endurance.
With many children and adolescents of today dealing with anxiety, stress, and other forms of mental health concerns, isn’t it high time students learn about the benefits of yoga?
Yoga is part of the curriculum in Rishikesh, India. Students are open to learning and attending yoga from early elementary onward. You’ll find a good list of schools in the place that offer yoga classes for students or training teachers without previous experience in handling a yoga class or teaching yoga as physical activity in physical education programs.
Offering yoga to physical education classes no longer needs to undergo a systematic review. The pros outnumber the cons, with the benefits of a yoga program to classes, students, children, parents, and school staff.
Yoga promotes balance, and schools will benefit from teaching the practice to their students. You never know, but the best yoga classes Singapore could offer these kids are the sessions held at their schools.
Yoga for a Healthy Mind and Body
It is not surprising that the demand for yoga teachers is becoming higher. Yoga teachers are now offering their services in yoga studios and private institutes.
It’s becoming common to find ads about the need for a yoga instructor course Singapore or a physical education teacher specializing in yoga.
These teachers are everywhere. They can lead yoga classes or teach yoga postures and breathing techniques to small groups of students in a yoga studio or as freelancers.
Yoga is not a sport, but it’s a physical activity that provides hoards of benefits you can’t get from other sports or exercises.
Should yoga be added in PE classes? Yoga is a form of meditation, and it’s an exercise that requires physical movements as you do the yoga poses. While it can be relaxing, yoga also poses a challenge.
Yoga requires discipline, something that will hone the students to become better people with skills that can be handy when they get older.