UBelong Yoga Zone
By Jill Clark and Blake Tedder, Phoenix UBelong volunteers
As renowned yoga master B. K. S. Iyengar would commonly say “Yoga is for everyone.” And we here at Phoenix World Burn Congress fully believe that too. Burn survivors and kids (and especially burn survivors who are kids!) can gain so much from the practice of Yoga. That’s why we’ve brought it to Phoenix UBelong this year. We had so much fun in our first session where we turned the Lanai Deck here at Hilton Anaheim into the “Yoga Zone”! The Phoenix UBelong participants were enthusiastic and extra-limber as we enjoyed (believe it or not) fun ways to breathe, new ways to stretch our bodies and scars, and the act of being completely still. Kids, still?! You betcha!
Children can benefit from Yoga in much the same ways that adults can. Yoga uses poses and breathing techniques to strengthen the body and calm the mind. Kids gain confidence as they learn to focus their attention on their breath and on how they are moving their bodies in the present moment. The ability to use a simple breathing technique to calm themselves in stressful situations is a life skill that is always available to them. Find one of us if you are here at PWBC and we’ll teach you a quick technique.
We live in an age where there is always noise, lots of activity and things move at a very fast pace. Even our children lead very regimented and, often stressful lives--not to mention kids who have a history of trauma. Learning ways to allow the body to completely relax and the mind to become calm helps children and adults manage that busy-ness by creating a small window of time when all they need to do is be present.
That’s what we’re doing here in the mornings at Phoenix UBelong--starting the kids off in in a fun, active, and relaxing way. The guys and girls are awesome! Can’t wait to get back into our Yoga Zone tomorrow! Over and out from Anaheim!