Yoga Benefits: ADHD

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Yoga Benefits: ADHD

adhdThough many of us experience times of a wandering mind (SO often in yoga lessons and stories the wandering mind is referenced as a monkey mind – bouncing and jumping from topic to topic), with some days better than others, there are some us [I include myself in this number] that live with the clinical diagnosis of Attention Deficit / Hyperactivity Disorder.  Within this there are those of us living with hyperactivity and impulsivity type, some with inattentive type, and some with a combo.  Though I often tell people that recovery from a shoulder injury brought me to yoga, the amazing effects on my brain are what have held me to the mat ever since.

Though each person’s experience with ADHD is their own, the amount of activity in the brain can often be paralyzing, and make follow-through on actions and even trains of thought a challenge, which frustrates not only friends and family, but us as well!  Often highly stimulating environments are overwhelming, and flood the brain with additional information that leads to behaviors that to outsides can appear bizarre or misplaced, often as an attempt to cope.

Yoga seemed like a savior. Breath that for a nanosecond could calm the brain, movements that brought me back to the breath, whew, what a space.  Those with ADHD have traditional treatment options available to them, which include medications, psychotherapy, and ADHD coaches.  Yoga can be a nice addition to these methods, and compliments them, should a person choose.

The mindfulness aspect of yoga is a powerful tool to help shape the way the brain works, and allows participants to feel less symptoms.  Mindfulness allows individuals to not only develop the ability for the brain to have moments of stillness, they also allow us time to notice where the brain darts off to, and begin to see if there are patterns and habits the brain repeatedly gets stuck on.

Yoga, as a form of exercise, also boosts brain function through boosting neurotransmitters, which can assist with concentration, alertness, energy, motivation/drive, mood, and cognitive functioning (in addition to other benefits).  By linking movements together in sequences, like flows and sun salutations, we offer the brain the opportunity to grow and reconnect synapses.  Additionally balance postures assist in developing focus and equilibrium.

Allow yourself the room to quiet your brain today!