Today’s yoga for ADHD And Autism is focused on the neck and shoulder area to help you revitalise the brain chemistry and soothe the nervous system. I have also included some Core Work yoga postures For Better Digestion and a hand mudra to improve your attention.
Yoga for ADHD and Autism video and Yoga for ADHD and Autism pdf is also available for download later in this article…
What is ADHD and Autism
- Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a neurobiological condition that commonly occurs among school-aged children. It might last lifelong or till early adulthood.
- Latest research shows that there are chances of subtle improvements up to age 20 with the intervention of proper therapy and mindfulness practices.
- Digestive issues, Mood swings, lack of focus and attention are few prominent symptoms of the people suffering from ADHD and Autism.
- The disorder is characterised by inappropriate attention and hyperactivity which may cause a variety of problems including academic difficulties, impaired social skills.
- Autism spectrum disorder now affects 1 in 68 children. Boys are nearly 5 times more prone to ADHD than girls.
- Autism spectrum disorder is one of the fastest-growing developmental disorders in the United States.
- ASD is also more common than childhood cancer, diabetes and AIDS combined.
Difference Between ADHD And Autism
- According to HEALTHLINE, In the earliest stages, it’s normal for ADHD to be mistaken as ASD or vice-versa. Children in both the cases may experience trouble communicating and focusing. In spite of having the same symptoms, two have their own distinctive deep-rooted issues.
- It is very crucial to observe how your child is progressing towards his communication skills. In both the cases kids struggle with this essential skill but the autistic children have less social awareness and interaction with their surroundings.
- They find it too difficult to express their thoughts in appropriate words…
- Certain well known and common gestures like pointing with finger 👆 and eye contacts while communicating are also missing.
- A person with ADHD may chatter nonstop. Repeat the lines from his favourite cartoon or a dialogue from a movie.
You can take a self test designed by ADDITUDE ( which of course is not a substitute for a clinical test).
Attention Deficit Or Deaf???
- You are calling him(/her) by name, nickname or whatever… But he is not turning his head. He is dancing in front of the TV with the beats of music… that means he is not deaf either!
- You might be tempted to switch off the television but restraining yourself because the moment you do this he will come running to you and snatch away the remote control without staring into your eyes.
- He is also so choosy with the food, dresses, games… so different with his behaviour that you can’t relate to him with other children known to you or even with your own childhood.
- You are facing plenty of troubles while trying to teach him. Maybe he is not even ready to GRAB A PENCIL…
- The above behaviour could indicate the SYMPTOMS of ADHD and Autism combined or any one of these.
- However, without visiting a child psychiatrist you shouldn’t reach to any conclusion… this is very important. Because a wrong diagnosis can take your intervention in an entirely misleading direction.
But, you can definitely start with this yoga for ADHD and Autism. This will improve the overall growth of any child with ADHD, autism or a normal child with the learning and focus problem.
Only keep in mind that it is challenging to teach a child with ADHD; it may be his academic syllabus or a yoga posture.
How Yoga Can Help People With ADHD
A 2017 study showed that in children with ADHD, their attention and reaction time improved after 8 weeks of practising yoga twice per week. This activity can be an effective complementary therapy in addition to medication and psychological treatments, such as an occupational therapy.
According to Medical News one 2018 study, when preschoolers with primarily inattentive ADHD practised yoga three to four times per week, they experienced:
- a reduction in inattentive symptoms
- a reduction in hyperactive-inattentive symptoms
- improved attention
From the results of brain imaging studies, researchers wanted to observe the differences in the scans of people who practised yoga and those who did not.
They observed the scans of the individuals who were regular with yoga had structural and functional improvements in the following areas:
Processes memories and aids in learning.
Cluster of almond-shaped cells located near the base of the brain.Responsible for processing emotions.
Manages executive function, memory, language, and knowledge
These changes could explain the mental health benefits people experience after starting yoga for ADHD.
Ideal Food To Handle ADHD- Food For Thoughts
While research on yoga and its application to ADHD is promising, it is not a replacement for a therapy and a balanced diet. Good food habits and types of food can yield great results in case of any ailment. ADHD and autism are not exceptions!
According to the experts, what we eat directly affects our bodies, brains, and behaviours. A healthy diet that excludes known ADHD triggers can help significantly.
Foods That Might Worsen ADHD And Autism
Avoid the following edibles for the better results-
Sugar, gluten, some dairy, food colouring and dyes, packed foods, nitrites, artificial sweeteners, soy, allergens
Foods That Improve The Symptoms Of ADHD
These are the must haves for the people suffering from ADHD and autism-
Fish Oil & Omega 3 Complex, Zinc, Serotonin, B-Complex, Probiotics, GABA, Ashwagandha
Best Yoga Sequence For ADHD And Hyperactivity
Focus area neck, stomach, breathing
- Sit in Vajrasana for grounding.
- The best way to come into Vajrasana is by folding both the legs from the knees and sitting on your calves.
- Keep your big toes touching each other and spine erected.
- Place both the hands upon thighs.
- Take deep and slow breaths you can stay here as long as you wish to then come to the child’s pose.
- Inhale deeply and with an exhale, lean forward to make your forehead touch the mat.
- Keep your palms facing up beside both the feet.
- Calm down your breath further and set your focus between both the eyebrows at your Ajna Chakra.
- Child pose is the best yoga posture for healthy brain nerves.
Studies using MRI scans and other brain imaging technology have shown that people who regularly did yoga had a thicker cerebral cortex (the area of the brain responsible for information processing) and hippocampus (the area of the brain involved in learning and memory) compared with nonpractitioners.
- Hold the outer edges of the feet and slightly shift your head so that your crown touches the ground.
- Rabbit pose or Shashank asana helps to stimulate the Crown Chakra and is the best yoga posture for brain blood circulation and brain memory.
- Now come out of your cocoon and evolve completely in cobra pose or bhujangasana.
- Place your palms below the Shoulders and push the torso away from the ground.
- Keep your legs and thighs pressed firmly against your mat.
- You can reposition your hands for another variation of bhujangasana.
People suffering from ADHD are often gluten intolerant and have digestive issues. Yoga postures which exert appropriate pressure in the abdomen area help greatly to maintain the digestive process.
- From the cobra pose, raise both the legs off the mat and bind the fingers on your back.
- With slight upthrust, curve your back to lift your shoulders and legs away from the ground.
- Take three deep breaths here.
Locust pose also works great on your internal organs to channelize the proper blood circulation in digestive organs.
Cat and Cow Pose
- Release everything and come on all fours.
- Work on a few rounds of cat and cow translations.
- When you inhale, hollow your back, send your head up and tail bone up.
- Exhale and curve your back to bring your head down and tailbone down.
- continue with few of these excellent transitional yoga postures.
Cat and cow posture or Marjareyasana works great on your spine to provide the best physical and mental balance; It also stimulates all the energy centres of the body called CHAKRAS.
Thread and Needle Yoga Posture
- Inhale and send your right hand up.
- With an exhale thread it passing through your left armpit.
- Your right ear is on the mat.
- Place your left hand either on front of your mat or on your back for full bind thread and needle yoga posture.
- Continue with deep breathing.
- Repeat on the other side.
Some areas of the brain shrink as you age, but the older yoga practitioners showed less shrinkage than those who did no yoga. This suggests that yoga may also counteract age-related declines in memory and other cognitive skills.
Downward Facing Dog Pose
- Come back once again on all fours.
- Tuck your toes, lift your knees, stretch your hips for Adho mukha svanasana or downward facing dog posture.
- Take three deep breaths and walk your dog.
- An inverted yoga posture like this helps to increase the amount of blood flow towards the brain and calms the entire nervous system.
When you lift weights, your muscles get stronger and bigger. When you do a weight bearing yoga posture such as downward facing dog pose, your brain cells develop new connections, and changes occur in brain structure as well as function, resulting in improved cognitive skills, such as learning and memory.
- Come to plank pose, chaturanga, upward and downward facing dog pose (please refer to this video).
- At this point, a short Vinyasa flow works great in maintaining a great posture and stimulating the entire body system.
Wide legged Forward Fold
- Very carefully move towards the length of your yoga mat.
- Send your legs to feet apart for a wide legged forward fold.
- Try sending your crown of the head touching the ground.
- If you want you can bend your knees a little bit.
This inverted pasture is very calming and works great for better mental health.
Yogi Squats Or Malasana
- Now simmer down by lowering your hips.
- Bring the heels in and toes out in Yogi squat or Malasana.
- Join your hands together in front of your heart center in namaste mudra.
- Take three deep breaths and feel the sensation in your groins and thighs area.
Hand Mudras are used during Asana practice as well in dance, mediation and prayer. They help to channelise energy, activate a certain state of mind.
Mudras engage certain areas of your brain and can leave a profound effect.. When you bend, cross, extend, and touch your fingers with other fingers, in the process of forming a mudra, this engages and influences your body, mind, emotions, energy and spirit.
You might have noticed when you are trying to concentrate, you may naturally bring your hands into a mudra.
Hakini Mudra is well known to aid concentration, focus and improve brain power by helping to bring together the right and left sides of the brain. This Mudra is considered to be an excellent brain gym if done on a regular basis.
How To Hakini Mudra
- Join the tips of your both hands fingers.
- Keep your palms separated.
- Breathe Deep and slow.
- Try to remember something.
- Use it when you need to focus.
- Focus on the third eye area aka Ajna Chakra as you do this Mudra.
- Try placing the thumbs at the third eye area, centre of the chest or lower down to the navel.
Download Yoga For ADHD and Autism PDF here>>
Wrapping Up- Yoga For ADHD And Autism
Yoga has been shown to help improve ADHD symptoms. 15 to 20 minutes of regular yoga practice can increase the dopamine levels and strengthen the prefrontal cortex of the brain. One study found that people, especially kids who practised yoga postures mindfully twice a week for 8 weeks, improved on focus and attention.
Very few sessions of moving your body can make you stay motivated for mental works, increase your brainpower, boost energy, and bust all confusion.
It acts on your brain in the same ways as your ADHD medication but without any harmful side effects!
To reap these rewards, though, you need to do all the yoga postures and hand mudra the right way.
The key is to find an experienced yoga teacher.
Being dedicated to a yoga sequence our brain cells start developing new connections causing the changes in brain structure and its function which improves cognitive skills such as learning and memory. Yoga helps to strengthen parts of the brain which plays a key role in memory, attention, awareness, thoughts and language and speech development.
When you lift weights, your muscles get stronger and bigger. When you do yoga, your brain cells develop new connections, and changes occur in brain structure as well as function, resulting in improved cognitive skills, such as learning and memory. Yoga strengthens parts of the brain that play a key role in memory, attention, awareness, thought, and language. Think of it as weightlifting for the brain.
Studies using MRI scans and other brain imaging technology have shown that people who regularly did yoga had a thicker cerebral cortex (the area of the brain responsible for information processing) and hippocampus (the area of the brain involved in learning and memory) compared with nonpractitioners. These areas of the brain typically shrink as you age, but the older yoga practitioners showed less shrinkage than those who did no yoga. This suggests that yoga may also counteract age-related declines in memory and other cognitive skills.
Don’t forget to watch the video on YouTube, which is on the same topic- Yoga For ADHD And Autism.
Please subscribe to my channel to support the free and fabulous yoga on YouTube!
Thanks for being with me on your mat. Namaste Yogis !