In today’s world, an ever increasing number of kids are depicting signs of anxiety, stress and restlessness, all starting at very tender ages. This has been attributed to the crazy lives both at home with both societal and home pressures. With all this going on, meditation which has been used to reduce stress and anxiety in adults can equally be used for children of all ages. In addition to having multiple other mental and physical health benefits, meditation has no side effects unlike drugs. As a result, meditation make for a great tool to promote peace and balance in our hectic lives.
Organisations have taken this to heart and examples like the Chopra Center have created “My Light Shines Bright”, a guided meditation app targeted for kids aged 8-12. With 22 guided sessions, this app works to build creativity, confidence, foster a deeper connection and most of all, promote good sleep.
Deeper Into What Affects Kids
A joint research publication by CDC, Centers for Disease Control, and JAACAP, the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, reported that about 2 million American kids had been diagnosed with ADHD, Attention-Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder from 2003 until 2012. To add onto this, a million more are on drugs for the same with diagnosis beginning before the age of 6.
When kids with ADHD were taught meditation techniques in a study in Sydney, Australia by the National Therapies Research Unit for the Royal Hospital for Women, the results were amazing. From less hyperactivity to improved attention spans, meditation had proven that it worked. This overall led to an improved sense of self-esteem and relationships with their parents. Another amazing effect was that over 50% of kids under ADHD medication reduced or stopped. With all these amazing benefits, it is evident that this ancient practice and technique works. These kids end up being able deal with stress better and grow to live healthier lives.
The next issue now becomes, how do you get kids of all ages interested in meditation?
Meditation Techniques for Kids
Getting your kids interested in meditation is a delicate process that involves making meditation fun for them. Here are some ideas you can try out.
- You need to act by example. Kids will be interested and attracted to meditation if you also practice it dedicatedly.
- Start simple. According to experts, the length of a session should be a minute per year of age. You can also just practice silence at home where you dedicate half a day or a whole day to silence.
- Start on breathing exercises. Some popular techniques for kids are Ujjayi, Nadi Shodhana and Kapalabhati.
- Doing some yoga poses such as the sun salutation.
- Singing and chanting together using mantras.
- Giving them massages.