Summer camps are a time for children to have fun and forget about the stress and difficulties of life. At a time when children grow up with sometimes unlimited access to the internet, the pressures of school, and competitive sports finding a way to increase mindfulness, focus, and confidence is important. Yoga has proved time and time again that it is one of the most effective and life changing activities that benefits anyone from any age or background. It’s a must have activity that every summer camp, especially christian summer camps, should consider having. Here are a couple reasons why it’s crucial.
Just as Christianity teaches us to love our neighbors, yoga can help enhance that belief by teaching acceptance and tolerance of everyone. Yoga combines peaceful aspects of nature that teaches us to respect and cherish one another which creates peaceful communities in which everyone interacts peacefully. Yoga isn’t a competition where someone is competing against each other but an activity that brings people together. At summer camps where you often have young campers from many different places, acceptance is an important virtue to emphasize.
Yoga helps someone self reflect and gain confidence in their abilities and the paths they choose to take. As someone improves their yoga skills whether it’s being able to concentrate better or holding a position longer, simply being able to experience that growth inside helps boost confidence. Although most probably won’t be taking on Goliath any time soon, yoga provides an increase of self confidence that can help young campers deal with difficult situations that may arise in life. This self confidence can also have an impact on other aspects of their lives and help them have more confidence in their own beliefs.
I’m sure most of us have heard the phrase, “Patience is a virtue.” Often in this fast paced world we live in it’s easy to get annoyed at minor inconveniences when something doesn’t get here as fast as we would like. Yoga teaches us to be mindful and to live and enjoy the “now”. To young campers that can be as simple as enjoying the current day’s activity while waiting for their favorite upcoming activity.
Yoga is an activity that campers of any age can participate in. Usually most summer camp activities are divided and based upon age or interests. With yoga age isn’t too big of a factor considering that children as small as five years old all the way up to adults can benefit from it. It’s the perfect activity to bring the entire camp together and provide opportunities for children with vastly different interests to meet and talk with one another.
Yoga helps improve focus by boosting brain power. Campers are able to increase their concentration skills and are better able to self reflect during this time. Summer camps are a place to have fun but also to reflect and learn new things about a person’s own self. Yoga is the perfect way to go about encouraging a young camper to do just that. Yoga can help clear someone’s mind and focus their mental resources to learn, remember and quickly pick up information. With the relaxation techniques that are taught people learn how to keep distractions at a minimum and focus their attention on what’s important.
Yoga teaches a lot of the virtues and skills that align with our Christian beliefs. Christian summer camps can greatly benefit from having yoga as an activity. It’s something that everyone can benefit from and allows a young camper to gain valuable skills and virtues that will help them in life and help strengthen their spirituality which is what Christian summer camps are all about.
*** Shared with permission from Contributing writer, Mike at summercamphub.com.