FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What is the difference between yoga and mindfulness?
Mindfulness is about being aware of the present moment. It involves observing experiences without classifying them as good or bad. Mindfulness can be practiced at any time and place. For example, mindfulness can be practiced by eating, by observing the taste, smell and texture of the food, by being aware of each bite and how it makes us feel.
Mindfulness in yoga is when we bring internal awareness to how our body feels while doing the poses. Mindfulness is also when we bring awareness to the breath and co-ordinate each movement with the breath. In yoga, there is a powerful connection between the breath and the mind. When we become aware of the link, we gain the ability to use the breath to calm our thoughts and improve concentration. The more aware we are of the breath, the greater skill we develop in using the breath to note disturbances of the mind, allowing us to see and shift unhealthy thought patterns before they become entrenched. Through greater mindfulness and control of the breath, we reduce the distractions and disturbances that prevent us from experiencing our inherent joy and peace.
What is the difference between yoga and meditation?
Meditation has a number of benefits, this includes stress reduction, mood elevation, increased life expectancy of the mind and its cognitive functions. Meditation helps increase theta brain waves, which helps improve our intuition, creativity and makes us feel more natural. Meditation also helps increase gamma brain waves, which helps with higher processing tasks as well as cognitive functioning, which is important for learning, memory and information processing.
Because of the benefits of meditation, a lot of schools have started to introduce short meditation breaks throughout the school day. Whilst this is a step in the right direction, this may not be enough. Have you noticed how children cannot sit still or straight for a long period of time during meditation? Or how they become easily distracted by other students and activities around them? As a result, children are unable to fully access the wonderful benefits of meditation.
The purpose of the physical practice of yoga (yoga poses) is to place the body in positions that cultivate awareness, relaxation and concentration (in kids yoga, this is done in a fun, engaging and interactive way). Yoga poses are practiced to develop the ability to sit comfortably in one position for an extended period of time, an ability necessary for meditation. Through meditation, we are able to reach the goal of yoga - to unite mind, body and spirit by balancing, integrating and harmonising the hand, head and heart. Yoga is a journey to happiness by understanding ourselves and how we are one with the universe.
How is yoga transferrable to home?
Our kids yoga program is fun and imaginative. Yoga poses are based on nature, in particular, animals and how they move in nature (e.g. downward facing dog, upward facing dog, cobra, cat, cow, fish etc). The poses are fun and can easily be practiced at home, individually or with partners (e.g. siblings and parents). The breathing practices are made visual (e.g. children are asked to focus on how their belly moves with each inhalation and exhalation) and meditation is done in various ways that allows the children to remain engaged (e.g. counting thoughts using pom poms) and sit long enough to reap the benefits of yoga and meditation.
Is yoga a religion?
Yoga is not a religion. Yoga helps us to develop higher potentials of the mind and increase self understanding. This allows for a self-empowered approach to our lives. Yoga can support a religious belief but will not give its practitioners a religious belief. However, yoga is flexible and can be designed to suit the school's needs whether or not that involves religion.
Why choose Namaste Yogis?
Namaste Yogis is passionate about helping children become more calm, resilient and confident learners. Our aim is to help children increase their self awareness so that they can have a better relationship with themselves and others.
We spend a lot of time putting ourselves in the shoes of our clients to ensure our classes are engaging and meet the needs of both the school and the students.
We specialise in teaching age appropriate yoga to children. We understand children and how to keep them engaged in a class.
As specialist kids yoga teachers, teaching yoga is our passion and our main focus. We are 100% present when teaching yoga to the children. This is our priority and our passion. We put a lot of time and effort in researching and developing kids yoga programs and sequences so that children remain engaged and there is variety.
We are experienced in teaching yoga and are qualified adults and kids yoga teachers. Hence we understand correct postural alignment and anatomy as it relates to yoga. We also understand how best to sequence the poses to ensure injuries are prevented and benefits maximised.
What does “Namaste Yogi” means?
"Nama" means "bow", "as" means "I" and "te" means "you". "Namaste” literally means "I bow to you". Its a yoga greeting to show respect to fellow yogis, students, teachers and gurus. It’s a greeting which acknowledges the light that exists in all of us.
“Yogis” refer to a person practicing yoga.
The dandelion symbolises happiness and joy. It reminds us to be flexible in the mind, to move with the wind (or life) rather than against it, reminding us that how we experience the world is really up to us. Yoga teaches us that the world is neutral, it can be as happy or as miserable as we want it to be. We determine how happy our lives are through our awareness, our choices and our actions.
The dandelion reminds us of our inner child, when we were closer to our true selves, when our mind was not muddied or disturbed by judgement, egoism, hatred and attachments, when we experienced true and pure happiness. This is the goal of yoga – to come home to ourselves.