Yoga kid. The sessions are aimed at making children more socially aware Image Credit: Supplied

DUBAI: UK-based charity organisation Autism Rocks and 136.1 Yoga Studio, located in Dubai Marina, are collaborating to introduce yoga sessions for children with special needs. The classes will be held every Saturday, starting September 9.

Led by Danielle Tearson, a yoga instructor from England, the classes are open to children in the age group of five to 18. The classes are aimed at helping the differently abled with behavioural management. “Sometimes these kids aren’t able to communicate well. By bringing them together in place that they probably haven’t been before, we intend to make them socially aware,” she says. “The other objective is to introduce more activities for such children and their families.”

A pre-registration is required. For more information you can call 04-441 6387 or


Benefits of yoga for children with special needs

1.Increased social-communication skills: Yoga increases imitation, cognitive skills and social-communicative behaviours in children with autistic spectrum disorder. In addition, children exhibit increased skills in eye contact, sitting tolerance, non-verbal communication and receptive communication skills.

2. Awareness and expression of emotions: Yoga brings more awareness to social cues such as facial expressions, actions, child’s emotions and how they are feeling.

3. Reduced anxiety: Yoga is known to calm their nervous systems and release tension in their minds. It helps their bodies support better sleep, digestion, mood and overall health and well-being.

4. Reduction in Challenging Behaviours: Specific poses and breathing strategies can provide proprioceptive and vestibular input from the sensory systems in order to support sensory integration and self-regulation.

5. Increased body awareness: By teaching body parts through yoga and movement of the body, children can develop a greater sense of body awareness. Directional concepts taught in yoga such as up and down and left and right are helpful concepts in developing a greater sense of body awareness.

6. Positive sense of self: The practice of yoga can support children in developing self-confidence and self-esteem.