Imagine your boss has just increased the rigor of your work and is asking you to not only put in your 40 hours, but take some of your work home. There’s a high stakes meeting quarterly and if you don’t perform to standards you’ll get demoted- or worse fired. On top of the time you’re required to spend on your job you’ve committed to a sports league with some friends to let some steam off after sitting at a desk all day. Someone who you just hung out with last Friday is now giving you the cold shoulder and you have no idea why and another person you don’t even know is posting really nasty comments on your social media.

Stressful, right? Now imagine you’re 11 and dealing with all of this.

In 2016 this is a typical day for our young girls. They’re working harder, but feeling more stressed and less confident. While trying to discover their identity they are being bombarded with media images that are promoting mature and fast paced lifestyles.

So how do we help our girls? Yoga is a huge step in the right direction. According to WebMD, “Yoga has been found to improve quality of life, reduce stress, anxiety, insomnia, and depression… It has also been found to lower heart rate and blood pressure. And, perhaps not surprisingly, yoga has been shown to improve fitness, strength and flexibility.”

Yoga connects the participant to their inner self. It promotes a deeper sense of calm, improves concentration (on and off the mat), and raises self-esteem. The benefits for girls manifest as better grades in school, stronger friendships, more self control, and happier young ladies.