Therapeutic Benefits of Yoga for Children in Occupational Therapy

The ancient methods of Yoga derived from the Indus Civilization during 5,000 B.C. Yoga has been widely recommended as a tool to help individuals feel a sense of balance both physically & mentally. The word yoga comes from the Sanskrit root word “yog” which means to join or “unite.” In recent studies, Yoga practices have been showing increasing benefits and popularity in the west. Children with special needs have difficulty managing the sensory stimuli that constantly bombard their lives. Learning a different method of approach concentrate on the right stimuli can help children manage their expressions effectively.

How Can Yoga Help My Child?

Children are often exposed to multiple stimuli throughout the day, and finding a way to grasp their attention spans without being distracted can also be a challenge. Yoga pairs the combination of controlled breathing, strength building, balance, awareness, and meditation in creating the right balance for an individual. Breathing exercises help boost energy or even do the opposite, of aiding with relaxation. It can be significantly beneficial to maximize concentration and focus, and help increase lung capacity. Strengthening core muscles through yoga poses, are great ways to alleviate the pressure caused by delicate joints. Maintaining a stronger core can aid with digestion, and provide the other muscles support for balance and coordination. Yoga poses can also increase the focus in children naturally by silencing the mind and allowing them to create more awareness in how they process their movements, and what they give attention to.

Children who have tried Yoga have seen improvements in various areas:

  • Increases proprioception (self-awareness)
  • Helps Develop Motor Planning Skills
  • Reduces Stress
  • Increases Flexibility in Joints
  • Improves Muscle Tone/Respiratory Muscles
  • Builds Concentration
  • Stronger Bodies Help Aid Better Digestion

Yoga Techniques to Try At Home:

Tree Pose:


Relaxation Pose:


Butterfly Pose:


Warrior Pose:


Tortoise Pose: