Yoga for kids to keep them away from gadgets

Updated: Mar 03, 2020, 16:48 IST | mid-day online correspondent | Mumbai

When children are constantly glued to screens, their bodies get impacted negatively

This image has been used for representational purposes only.
This image has been used for representational purposes only.

Gadgets and devices surround the kids of this generation more than any other generation. Their day starts with a screen and ends on a screen. They prefer playing FIFA on their phones, rather than stepping out and playing on the ground.

Even though it’s a sad situation, it is the reality. When we are constantly glued to screens, our bodies get impacted negatively, like:

  •    Eyes start watering

  •    Bad posture

  •    Sleep goes for a toss

  •    Mind gets affected

  •     Leads to obesity

  •    Grades take a hit 

And the overall health faces the impact.

According to studies, screen watching not only affects our health but also negatively impacts our relationships. So what can we do about this situation?  This is exactly where Yoga can help us. Following the basic path laid down by Maharishi Patanjali, Yoga can help anyone to stay away from the screens.

  • With the practice of the first two limbs of Ashtanga Yoga, that is, Yama and Niyama, we must try to bring about some discipline in life. Having the right moral values, the kids at least start thinking on the lines, “Do I need to spend so much time on screens?”

  • Tapa (Dedication) can be given as a challenge to the kids, to keep them away from screens. Kids love taking up spontaneous challenges.

  • Similarly, asanas and pranayamas keep the kids engaged and also helps to improve their overall health. Asanas can also improve the posture and avoid the risk of obesity in kids.

  • Hastapadasana, Surya Namaskar - to use the dynamic energy of the kids, Bhujangasana, the Cobra Pose, Marjarasana, the Cat Pose are all fun asanas that will keep the kids stay engaged, away from the screens, and also healthy. These asanas are also very important to ensure a good flow of blood circulation in the body combatting the situation of long seated position while spending the screen time.

  • Bhramari and Abdominal breathing is also something that kids enjoy that will help in keeping them away from screen watching.

  • Along with this, eye exercises must also be practiced regularly. Trataka, or simply looking somewhere far away for a few minutes is beneficial to the eyes. Simple eye exercises like looking up and down, sideways, eye rotations are fun and easy to do as well.

  • Simha mudra, or the lion pose, can also keep the kids engaged.

  • The more you try to make Yoga fun for children, the more they will enjoy it. Connect asanas to animals, make it fun and like a game and the kids will reciprocate.

  • Ensure that your child has some or the other green leafy vegetable on his plate for every meal. Sprouts, cutlets with all the vegetables, pav bhaji prepared with variety of high nutrient vegetables, are easy ways to ensure that your child eats everything.

  • Children learn everything from what they see. So try to be a good role model. Do things that you would want your kid to copy and learn.

Let yoga be the guiding light, that leads you as well as the child, to stay away from screen watching and move towards better health.

By Dr. Hansaji Yogendra, The Yoga Institute 

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