Yoga help­ing chil­dren

Heal­ing through re­lax­ation

Maroochy Weekly - - LIFE - Danielle Ford danielle.ford@sc­news.com.au

STACEY Nel­son’s job is one few oth­ers do.

She works as a yoga ther­a­pist at the Sun­shine Coast Univer­sity Hos­pi­tal.

While yoga as a ther­apy, not ex­er­cise, is not a new con­cept Ms Nel­son said it’s rel­a­tively un­known as a treat­ment for chil­dren.

“I’m not aware of any other chil­dren’s yoga ther­a­pists work­ing in hos­pi­tals in Aus­tralia and it’s quite a new con­cept in terms of a main­stream set­ting,” she said.

Ms Nel­son de­cided to study yoga ther­apy af­ter see­ing the num­ber of chil­dren re­quir­ing the treat­ment.

“Pre­vi­ous to teach­ing yoga I was teach­ing kids train­ing classes and I kept at­tract­ing peo­ple who needed ex­tra help from a ther­apy as­pect,” she said.

Through her work she treats clients with a range of con­di­tions, asthma the most com­mon.

“I work a lot with chil­dren with asthma, it’s a huge, preva­lent con­di­tion,” she said.

“A lot of the time kids with asthma don’t breath through their nose, don’t fully use their di­aphragm, and don’t ex­pel prop­erly so the breath­ing part of yoga re­ally helps.

“I can go in and look at their mon­i­tor and see their oxy­gen lev­els and it’s amaz­ing the im­prove­ment at the end of just a half hour ses­sion.”

She also works with a num­ber of chil­dren with ADHD and autism.

“Of­ten they’re over-stim­u­lated and start be­hav­ing in a way that peo­ple see as naughty when it’s just their way of calm­ing their ner­vous sys­tem,” she said.

“So I teach them poses and breath­ing tech­niques they can use as a so­cially ac­cept­able way to self-sooth.”

Ms Nel­son also shares her 12 years of knowl­edge with oth­ers, run­ning yoga for kids with special needs teacher train­ing pro­grams to help oth­ers teach chil­dren yoga.

“When teach­ing kids any form of yoga it needs to not just be ly­ing there be­ing still you need to know how to en­gage with chil­dren,” she said.

“My les­sons are about teach­ing how to make it high en­ergy but also re­lax­ing at the same time.”

Her next train­ing ses­sion is on November 18.

To for more in­for­ma­tion visit, staceynel­son.com.au.

PHOTO: CON­TRIB­UTED

YOGA KIDS: Stacey Nel­son has been teach­ing chil­dren yoga for 12 years.

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