Keep a check on how yoga is taught to your children

Every morning, when Vishnu tries performing the Chakrasana (wheelpose ), he loses balance. The seven-year-old knows how to practise the asana, but the problem arises when he tries to bend his body in the pose. Learning yoga as part of school curriculum is important, but equally important is the way it is taught. So if your ward is attending his weekly or daily yoga classes in school, it's your duty to check whether he is practising the asanas (postures ) without errors.

Yoga experts believe if the asanas are not practised correctly, they would not serve the purpose and there could be complications. To avoid this, many suggest the state government standardise yoga for all schools. "In many schools, yoga is taught for the sake of teaching. The trainers should not mix the styles of different yoga experts. If they do, it will confuse the students. And that's what is happening in many schools. This situation can be changed only if there is uniformity in teaching yoga in schools," says Ganapathi Ramakrishnan, a senior yoga practitioner, whohadeven approachedthe governmentto press his point a couple of times in 2011.

However, talking toMedia R Sarayu Rani, head, biology department, Chettinad Vidyashram,saidstandardisation would never help. "If you standardise and make it common, then every student will be learning the same programme from their trainers. Each student need to practise different asanas according to his physical and mental needs. Our trainer suggests some asanas to calm down naughty andsuper-activechildren. SoI don't believe in standardisation. What is important is who is teaching," said Rani.

Very few schools in the city can afford expert yoga teachers. In many schools, either trained teachers or those hired from outside, are helping the students in yoga. With a class strength of at least 30, it will be difficult for the trainer to check every student.

Finding good yoga trainers is very difficult these days, according to K R Nandakumar, general secretary of the Tamil Nadu Matriculation Higher Secondary Schools Association.

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