Thursday, October 3, 2013

Yoga For Autism

Yoga is having a resurgence of popularity. Introduced into Western Society in the 1900s, and coming to the forefront during the 50s/60s and then again in the 80s, yoga is practiced all over the United States of America and also Australia as a form of exercise. No longer confined to those investigating the spiritual aspects, yoga is seen as advantageous both physically and mentally by mainstream health practitioners.
More recently, yoga has been used as a form of therapy for children with autism, providing physical, mental and even cognitive benefits. Regular stretching, breathing and focusing exercise has been shown to alleviate insomnia, stress and fatigue, while increasing focus, strength and confidence.

One of our readers, Laura, passed on the following presentation slides by Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP from a session from the Oklahoma Statewide Autism Conference – November 19, 2011. Laura says, "This has some great info and ideas on doing Yoga with kids. It was done by a speech path and has some web links at the end."

There are some really great ideas, as well as links to research etc. If you're investigating the option of yoga for your child/ren, then I highly recommend looking at this 60 page document. Set aside some time to read through and watch some of the YouTube videos. Here's a report on the benefits of yoga for children with autism:

A yoga app that is recommended by our readers and staff in our Top Apps For Fitness discussion is Super Stretch Yoga. This is a free app that guides children through yoga poses and breathing exercises.

From iTunes:
Using storytelling, animation and video examples, kids enjoy making NAMASTE a part of their day. NAMASTE is The Adventures of Super Stretch’s secret code to help kids learn to find balance and strength in their lives. Be the best you can be! Practice poses, collect 12 stars and get a team photo.
Each of Super Stretch's friends helps us learn how to use movement and breathing to make every day balanced. Then, real-life kids demonstrate the pose. So easy and entertaining we forget that it’s exercise

If you would like to download this app, please support Smart Apps for Special Needs by clicking on this button:


Cas' daughter is already super stretchy because she has hypomobility and hyperextensibility.

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