Children de-stress with yoga
Children at a Montessori centre are learning to deal with the pressures of modern life using the ancient art of yoga.
Jessica Bunting, a yoga instructor based at the new Wellness Station in Blenheim, has been teaching yoga to the preschoolers for a month.
Montessori House of Children owner and manager Rachel Roundhill says yoga classes have been held at the centre in the past.
‘‘Yoga sits really well with the Montessori philosophy,’’ she says. ‘‘It’s connecting the body through the mind, and inner peace, and learning through movement which is what we do.’’
Rachel had been looking for someone to teach yoga when she found Jess, who had attended Montessori Blenheim as a child.
Jess talks the children through the story of yoga first, and practices it using references to animals and nature, Rachel says.
‘‘They love it. They’re really engaged and they love Jess, she’s gorgeous and young and really involved with them and brilliant at what she does.’’
Rachel says that as adults juggle jobs, family life and money, children experience some of the stresses of modern life too, and yoga teaches them to cope using techniques such as full body breathing.
‘‘It’s really important to give the child that calm environment and that peaceful time to centre. It’s going to help with regulating their emotions and their general feelings.’’
Jess says the children enjoy the lessons, which teaches similar skills to those adults learn, but in a more playful way.
‘‘It’s combining breath, body and movement in a mindful way ... getting the kids to identify parts of their body and how they move, how their breath works in their body and how it works together.’’
Jessica Bunting, of the Wellness Station, does yoga with the children at Montessori, from left, Mika Burkhart, Nikita Wratt, Gus Clark, Addison Campbell, George Barnett and Grey Luxton.