Wednesday June 20, 2018

Students in Georgia school will no longer say ‘Namaste’ during Yoga practice

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Photo: blog.onlineprasad.com

Bullard Elementary School students in Georgia will no longer say ‘Namaste’ during yoga practice

Georgia, US: The children of one Georgia elementary school will namaste no more during yoga practice after their parents complained to officials that it pushed the Hindu religion onto students.
Bullard Elementary School principal Patricia Moore promised parents this week that students would no longer say ‘Namaste’ or put their hands at heart center, part of the gesture, during yoga.

‘I am truly sorry that the mindfulness/de-stressing practices here at Bullard caused many misconceptions that in turn created a distraction in our school and community,’ she said in a letter to parents.

Bullard Elementary School in Kennesaw, Georgia will no longer allow children to say ‘Namaste’ or put their hands at heart center, part of the gesture, during the school’s yoga practice (file photo)

‘While we have been practicing de-stressing techniques in many classrooms for years, there have been some recent practices associated with mindfulness that are offensive to some.’

The word Namaste literally translates to ‘I bow to you’ but has also been interpreted to mean ‘The divine light in me honors the divine light in you,’ according to The Chopra Center.

In the Namaste gesture, one places their hands together at the heart, closes their eyes and bows. It is used to conclude a yoga practice and in the Hindu custom is a respectful and common way to say hello.

But some parents at the Kennesaw elementary school saw it as the equivalent of prayer in the classroom.

‘They’re pushing ideology on our students,’ Cobb County mother, Susan Jaramillo told 11 Alive.

‘Some of those things are religious practices that we don’t want our children doing in our schools.’

Bullard held a ‘Coffee and Conversations’ with parents to discuss their concerns before Moore announced the removal of the word from the students’ yoga practice.

The school will also no longer all students to color Mandalas during breaks. A mandala is a Hindu and Buddhist symbol for the universe that has become a popular pattern for coloring books

The principal added that the students would also stop using Mandala coloring pages during their ‘brain breaks’.

A mandala, loosely translated to mean ‘circle’ in Sanskrit, is a Hindu and Buddhist symbol for the universe.

It has since become a generic term for any diagram or pattern that represents the cosmos and, thanks to its intricate design, has become a popular pattern for both children and adult coloring books.

Moore said teachers would also continue not teaching students about the possible healing powers of crystals.

‘Although teachers have never used nor taught about crystals having healing powers during these breaks, we understand it has become a belief,’ she wrote.

‘Therefore we will ensure that nothing resembling this will be done in the future.’

Moore said the school also plans to form a committee of parents that will explore ‘research-based techniques and ideas for the classroom’, including when it comes to ‘mindfulness’.

Source: http://www.dailymail.co.uk

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Yoga a Boon for Breast Cancer Survivors

The more the women in the study practised yoga, the better their results

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Yoga a Boon for Breast Cancer Survivors
Yoga a Boon for Breast Cancer Survivors. Pixabay

Breast cancer survivors, if they practise yoga for as little as three months, may significantly reduce fatigue and inflammation, shows research.

“Modest yoga practise over a period of several months could have substantial benefits for breast cancer survivors,” claimed Janice Kiecolt-Glaser, professor of psychiatry and psychology at Ohio State University in the US.

“The results could easily generalise to other groups of people who have issues with fatigue and inflammation,” added Kiecolt-Glaser.

To reach this conclusion, researchers asked 200 participants to practise yoga in small groups twice a week for 12 weeks.

Women in the control group were instructed to perform normal routines and not to do yoga.

Results showed that on average, fatigue was 57 percent lower in women who had practiced yoga compared to the non-yoga group, and their inflammation was reduced by up to 20 percent.

Representational image.
Representational image. Pixabay

“The participants had completed all breast cancer treatments before the start of the study,” said the study published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

The more the women in the study practised yoga, the better their results.

“Though many studies have suggested that yoga has numerous benefits, this is the largest known randomised controlled trial that includes biological measures,” Kiecolt-Glaser said.

Chronic inflammation is linked to numerous health problems, including coronary heart disease, type 2 diabetes, arthritis and alzheimer’s disease.

A secondary analysis showed that more frequent yoga practise produced larger changes in fatigue, vitality and depressive symptoms as well as between an average 4 to 6 percent reduction in two of the three pro-inflammatory cytokines.

Also Read: Avoid Diabetes With Yoga, Weight Lifting

The yoga group also reported significantly improved sleep compared to the control group.

“Yoga has many parts to it – meditation, breathing, stretching and strengthening. We think the breathing and meditation components were really important in terms of some of the changes we were seeing,” Kiecolt-Glaser stressed.

Reducing fatigue enables women to engage in other activities over time. So yoga may have offered a variety of benefits in addition to the yoga exercises themselves, added the study. (IANS)