Stress-busters for school children

Determined to help students tackle stress and peer pressure, many schools are now turning to yoga and other stress-busters in the new academic year. Yoga teachers in the UAE are also noticing increased youth participation in their courses.

By Preeti Kannan (Our staff reporter)

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Published: Fri 4 Apr 2008, 9:22 PM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 4:45 PM

Over 75 girls and boys from the Dubai Modern High School were in their school premises early morning recently for a five-hour action-packed yoga session.

For the next one week, they practised different postures and learned several kriyas (breathing techniques) to help them deal with stress and also increase their attention span levels.

Darryl Bloud, Principal of Dubai Modern High School, said, "The biggest problem students face is stress in academics, stress with teachers and parents. We want to improve the health and concentration of students, besides inculcating compassion and friendliness. We need to inspire the young minds to be happy, creative and have a sense of belonging."

The school plans to get all its students to take the Art of Living course and will soon get its teachers and parents to join them too.

Madhu Bhatnagar, an Art of Living Youth Programme Coordinator in the Middle East, told Khaleej Times: "Many school children are taking to yoga in the UAE. We regularly teach yoga and a lot of games to young students to help improve their mental alertness and enhance their memory. It is believed that in a 45-minute class, a child's attention span could be just about 15 minutes.

"However, breathing techniques and yoga can improve concentration as there is a strong connection between the mind, body and soul."

Indian High School, (IHS) Dubai, also encourages its students to take yoga sessions, music classes and sports activities. "Yoga, music, a balanced diet, and sports do act as stress-busters, besides time management," said the CEO and principal of IHS, Ashok Kumar.

Schools like Our Own Indian School, Dubai, have experts from the Indian subcontinent teaching students ways to enhance their memory and improve their concentration while preparing for exams. A recent week-long innovative course in the school saw a huge turnout as students tested various methods to improve their memory power.

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