A new report has proven that more children are now partaking in yoga, and using sleep supplements. Analyzed by data from the National Health Interview Survey, which revealed tactics from outside mainstream medicine, the study showed that kids between the ages of 4 and 17 years increasingly turning to yoga, tai chi and qi gong in 2012, from statistics reviewed in 2007. Alternatively, the numbers also prove an increase in children using the natural hormone supplement, Melatonin, which helps with sleep.
Published in the National Health Statistics Reports, the study reviewed data from interviews with approximately 17,321 parents and caretakers. In 2012, the percentage of youth engaging in yoga was at 3.1 percent, versus the 2.3 percent in 2007. The authors of the study also note that industry data shows an increase in yoga instructors in general, by close to 8 percent during that five-year time period as well. Public schools are also starting to include yoga into their physical education curriculum due to the strengthen development, stretching and relaxing elements that this fitness activity promotes.
The Chinese practises tai chi and qi gong were included in the report, as they also promote mind-body activities. Richard Nahin, senior author of the study noted in a recent news conference that approximately 600,000 more youth engaged in these activities: with an estimated 1.9 million children participating in yoga, tai chi or qi gong, in 2012; compared to 1.3 million in 2007.
On the flip side, melatonin use in children grew to 0.7 percent in 2012, from 0.1 percent in 2007. As melatonin is a natural hormone supplement, there is no safety concern regarding its use on children.
The study team adds there is no correlation between these increases in yoga and melatonin for children, and the levels of education their parents may have. While naturally parents that are well-educated may be able to help pinpoint complementary practices for their children when it comes to physical activity and sleep; nothing of this sort was determined within the data or study.
As with any individual starting a fitness routine or supplement, it is advised that parents ask their pediatrician or family doctor before enrolling their kids into a yoga program, or starting the melatonin supplement.