Yoga for mental health and teens:
In 2008 CAMHS noted that ‘Anyone working directly with children and families needs to ask themselves regularly “what can I do to improve the mental health and well-being of this child?”
‘Yoga is the stilling of the mind waves’
Specific Issues to which Yoga Therapy may be applied:
- Stress – Yoga and mindfulness are one of the best ways to cope with the stress that has built up through daily life, and to learn to relax when difficult situations arise. Through balancing of the autonomic nervous system through activation of its parasympathetic and sympathetic branches.
- Depression – Recent studies conducted at Mclean Hospital in US has shown that yoga can increase neurotransmitters in the brain called GABA. GABA is an inhibitory neurotransmitter that helps to curb stress by inhibiting the effects of adrenaline. Scientists have found that practicing just one hour of yoga increases levels of GABA in the nervous system.
We also know that yoga practice decreases cortisol, a hormone released during the stress response.
Mindfulness practices help us to see how our mind operates, allowing us to relinquish any negative thinking through self-awareness.
- Anxiety – Anxiety is a common state for all human beings, as it helps us to mobilise energy to act in the world. Unfortunately most of us experience too much anxiety.
Once the stress response is activated by the body it must run its course, as our body is structured to release hormones into our system that make flight or fight possible for survival.
However through breath practice with movement we can learn to relax and balance the nervous system, so that the stress response does not take over and completely flood the system.
Breathwork and yoga postures with mindfulness help students learn techniques to effectively calm the mind through the body.
This holistic approach ticks all the boxes – spiritual, physical, mental and social wellness advocated by OFSTED and PSHE (personal, social, health, economic education) curriculum of self-care.
‘Yoga is sharing a well-being toolbox to live an optimal life, and be intuitive to what your body needs and feels’
Yoga is totally inclusive of all religions and cultures.