Yoga in schools is something that has been a controversial topic since it was introduced in public schools years ago. Having roots in Hinduism there has been the question of whether yoga is a religious practice, and thus violating the separation between church and state.
Some argue that the religious association of yoga means it does not belong in schools; others, like amaZEN U, see yoga as a way to teach mindfulness, empathy, improve focus, and take â€œbrain breaksâ€ throughout the school day to improve performance in the class.
The Ohio startup, amaZEN U, is brining yoga into the classroom in an easy and convenient way: using online subscription-based videos.
What makes amaZEN U different from a yoga class?
1-5 Minute Videos
These videos arenâ€™t meant to serve as a yoga class, or take the place of PE class, theyâ€™re meant to serve as a short mindful break from learning.
No Equipment Needed
Each video is made for use right in the classroom; poses consist of chair and standing poses. Thereâ€™s no need for a yoga mat or fancy yoga equipment.
The only thing youâ€™ll need is access to YouTube or Vimeo using any computer, tablet, or mobile device.
You Donâ€™t Need a Large Open Space
With most traditional yoga practices you need room to spread out and move, but using amaZEN Uâ€™s online videos, you wonâ€™t even need to move desks/tables off to the side of the classroom to follow along. Poses are done right in in the studentsâ€™ chairs or standing to the side of their seat.
The amaZEN U yoga videos are made specifically for all students from pre-K to all the way to grade 12. The language is not â€˜kiddishâ€™ and teachers can follow along with their students, because teachers need a break too!
Mindfulness and meditation has been proven to have a variety of benefits, by teaching yoga in the classroom, amaZEN U is introducing these techniques and getting students on the path to living a healthier, more mindful, life at a younger age.
What do you think of this program? If youâ€™re a teacher, would you use it in your classroom? If youâ€™re a parent, how would you feel if your child was participating in this program at his/her school?