Oh, I remember my middle school days. Awkward, although studious, just trying to find my social circle. I also remember physical education class. We were forced to climb the ropes, launch over a vault box on gymnastics day and everyone’s favorite, pop the balloon pinned to the bullseye on archery day. If you popped it, you won a piece of sugarless candy.
And then on we went to high school…
Thinking back, there was one thing definitely missing from the middle school fitness days – yoga! I was an avid dancer and cheerleader for a majority of my life, which included practices four to five times a week. I can only imagine the flexibility I would’ve had if I practiced yoga twice a week like I do now.
Physical fitness aside, there are so many amazing mental benefits that yoga offers. According to a recent Boston Magazine article, more schools across the nation are embracing yoga and incorporating it into the curriculum.
A recent study by Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health and Sat Bir Khalsa, an associate neuroscientist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital here in Boston, examined the impact of yoga on high-risk students in local schools. Participants completed 32 yoga sessions in 2014 and were then asked to complete a questionnaire based off of their yogic experiences. One result that clearly stood out was a reduction in cigarette smoking.
So maybe it’s time to pack your yoga mat with your notebooks and lunchbox.
Will adding yoga to the classroom reduce anxiety, depression and substance abuse? Only time will tell, but we’re certainly on the right track.
And I can honestly say that yoga would have been more useful than hitting the balloon bullseye!