Yoga Experiences Controversy
With studies coming out showing how yoga can help children with autism, it is no wonder why some want to implement yoga in schools. By only just examining the autistic children, they are calmer, more focused, and a lot more patient throughout their school day. However, parents are joining forces to stop this monstrosity.
Children Learning Yoga
Children who are being introduced to yoga learn new ways to wiggle their bodies and move in a way that is uncommon on the usual playground floor. They learn fun poses like, ‘Warrior’ ‘Airplane’ and ‘Pigeon’. They repeat after the teacher and follow along, but parents seem to have a problem with this newfound system. They believe that through these safe and often soothing yoga practices, their children are being taught a new religion.
Elementary School Under Scrutiny
Paul Ecke Central Elementary School is experiencing some controversy over their yoga program. At a monthly Encinitas Union School District board meeting, a group of parents attended to protest about the program. Only seven were able to speak that night, but many more are against it. To show they mean business, they brought in a constitutional lawyer who agreed with a lot about what they were saying. “I will not allow my children to be indoctrinated by this Hindu religious program,” an upset parent said.
There is much discussion over where the fine line is between the separation of church and state, but when it comes down to the practices of yoga, these parents have never been so uneducated about it. Yoga opens the person up to a mountain of possibilities that can only improve a person’s well being. This elementary school has actually been teaching yoga to its students for about three years now, so there is a bit of wonder as to why there is a protest coming from the parents now.
Is Yoga A Religion?
Yoga can be very spiritual, but it would be far fetched to call it a religion. The practices being performed in the school are solely for relaxation purposes. Relaxation can be defined as many things. Many adults find it relaxing to turn on the TV or to soak in a hot bath. Yoga is a healthy way to ease the mind, let go of daily hassles, and unwind the body. In no way, does it impose a religion on the participant.
More Yoga To Come
In San Diego, California, a good number of schools have already been teaching yoga to its students and many of these schools have seen great results. The results have been compelling enough that this yoga program has received a $533,000 grant to expand to schools district-wide.
Half of the San Diego schools are providing yoga twice a week for 30 to 40 minutes. This is part of an enrichment program where students also learn about music, physical education, reading, and gardening. It was originally designed to give teachers more planning time. The other remaining schools will be following the yogi footsteps at the start of January. By then, over 5,000 students will be able to de-stress from difficult tests and everyday-student life.