Darla Hernandez | WSBT | March 26, 2019

Yoga has received a lot of national attention because of the benefits for the mind and body.

Two women are bringing their expertise to Michiana classrooms in hopes of creating mindful kindergartners.

It’s about calming the mind and the body. Teachers say that there’s plenty of evidence shows that their students are actually achieving higher scores, interconnecting better with students, and doing better after all after a mindful class.

“At the end, they say they feel calm. They feel strong and they feel confident. And they feel happy,” said Rachael Von Eschenbach.

Von Eschenbach and Mindi Dugard founders of Mindful U recently received a grant from PHM schools to teach mindful yoga to four kindergarten classes at Prairie Vista School in Granger.

“Physical changes in their physical ability to attend and to focus. To respond positively, to mediate interpersonal relationships. There’s a feeling of connectedness,” said Von Eschenbach.

Dugard says research shows that today children have more stress, depression, and anxiety. All negatives that mindful yoga helps combat.

“When there with themselves, or they’re trying to take a test, or they’re trying to settle themselves down, they’ll have all those tools with them. To give them for having life success,” said Dugard.

Sara Hammond says she’s seen big changes in her kindergarten class thanks to Mindful Yoga.

“We had one of the children go down to take a test. The other teacher said it was a hard test. He saw her, she was breathing at the computer. She was doing her five-finger breathing. She’s been doing the things that we’ve been teaching,” said Hammond.

Hammond says she would love for more students to have the opportunity to practice mindful yoga and be their best self.

“They feel confident in themselves and I think it’s been a great thing for them,” said Hammond.

Mindful U says that they hope to expand to more schools throughout Michiana. Mindful U will be headed to classrooms in the South Bend School Corporation in April. For more information on the program, click here.

Read the full story and watch news video here.


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