Laura Powell is a yoga master certified in a range of subject matters that she shares with her community, encouraging a healthier, more peaceful lifestyle. Through Yogapeutics, she can help children and their parents learn the basics of yoga, aerial yoga, and how to de-stress by practicing poses.
When Laura Powell first began to practice yoga, it was largely for exercise and to help her build up core strength. She quickly learned that it had plenty of other health benefits that improved her overall well-being and so immersed herself in studies and practices of many different aspects. From this, she developed an expert understanding of yoga teachings and how the various techniques and approaches can have a tremendous impact on physical and mental health.
“The first thing I have to break to people is that yoga will have major health benefits for everyone,” says Laura Powell. “And the second thing is that yoga isn’t just for adults. Kids can benefit just as much, and the lessons they learn while they’re young help them improve their physical and mental health as they grow.”
Many yoga techniques and poses are too difficult for kids to accomplish. Some require more strength or balance than the average adult can muster. However, Yogapeutics works at a comfortable middle ground for children, delivering a well-rounded yoga primer that is both challenging and practical for their age.
Yogapeutics began when Lindsey Lieneck, a sensory integration occupational therapist, decided to use yoga and aerial yoga practices to enrich and regulate the brain and nervous system. The result was a therapeutic experience that she believed could be taught to kids and adults alike. The practice of Yogapeutics blends science and yoga with tools to strengthen the mind and body, which together help children achieve mental clarity and peace. Mindfulness is a large aspect of Yogapeutics and it teaches kids early on to treasure their time and to keep an open mind.
“Using the tools of aerial yoga, we can create a fun way for kids to play and be creative that in turn has a positive effect on their mind and body,” says Laura Powell. “It doesn’t feel like exercise or a chore, yet it still provides balance to the nervous system and encourages tranquility.”
Just as in aerial yoga, Yogapeutics utilizes a fabric sling hung from the ceiling that is often called a “yoga hammock.” In addition to the hammock, kids use props to balance and practice aerial yoga poses in a uniquely fun way. They also partake in sensory games that feel exciting and novel while helping the nervous system function optimally.
“There’s nothing extraneous or boring about Yogapeutics,” says Laura Powell. “It’s a powerful extracurricular activity that teaches mindfulness and perseverance while clearing the stress out and building strength for healthy growth.”