Most people do not think that yoga and mindfulness are activities that today's youth are interested in; however, I have discovered while in schools and in the community with the Global Education Center that it is quite the contrary. Many of the young people that we serve are curious about yoga in many ways.
I decided to become a yoga teacher because I found that it was something that I needed for myself and wanted to share with people who had stories similar to mine. The practice of yoga for me is all about listening and observing what is happening on the outside as well as what's happening on the inside.
Through the Global Education Center, I received training from Little Flower Yoga, which honed my skills to help even the youngest children to be more mindful of themselves and their surroundings through movement, breath and focus. I have also enjoyed training educators and Davidson County Juvenile Court personnel on the finer points of helping students learn to refocus themselves and maintain self-control through the many facets of yoga.
While out in the community, in area schools and the Juvenile Detention Center with Global Education Center, I have witnessed firsthand the need and desire from youth, from preschoolers to teens, to be more reflective, calm, and observant. I take great joy in sharing yoga and mindfulness in the many different communities because most young people do not expect to hear a Black man talking about breathing, being mindful, or even letting them know that they are special just the way they are.
We live in such fast and crazy times where, if we don't take time to slow down, listen, observe, and reflect, we all too often become so overwhelmed that we cannot function to our highest abilities. Yoga does not stop the troubles of the world; it just allows us to see them for what they are and gives us the power to respond in a way that is healthy for us. While I am enjoying my presence with the kids, I often wish that I had been exposed to yoga at their age.