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Thursday, September 24, 2015

Bully-proofing our schools through yoga

Courtesy Calming Kids
Can’t we all just get along?

Bullying and violence is unfortunately escalating in schools, even with mandated bully-awareness programs, says Dee Marie, MA, CYT and founder of Calming Kids Yoga, an organization which brings classical yoga in to elementary schools during the school-day curriculum to teach ahisma –non-violence to self and others.  
“Yoga is a lifestyle, not just an exercise routine. We look at all aspects of yoga, how we feel in our body, how we breathe and process thoughts, how we communicate and treat ourselves and others,” says Marie, whose six-week long programs have had impactful results.
Based on questionaires circulated to students prior to the Calming Kids sessions, kids admit to not being able to handle stress, having headaches, losing sleep and being fidgety, says Marie.
However, “After six weeks of yoga, they felt they could handle stress, communicate more effectively, bullies were bullying less and those being bullied could stand up for themselves better,” says Marie.
To spread her successful teaching method, Marie launched a five day teacher training program and has trained educators nationwide and globally.
Marie later launched an online teacher training and estimates 2500 teachers, physical therapists, and child psychologists.
“We’ve found in our research model that students are better able to handle themselves better and manage stress after our yoga program,” says Marie. “There is a decrease in feeling angry or anxious for no reason and up to 94% less hitting. My vision is that by 2020, every child in school will learn reading, writing, math, breathing and relaxation. My mission it that yogic-principles go mainstream.”

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