Yoga and You 瑜伽与你
When you hear the word “yoga,” do you think of a person with his legs twisted up like a pretzel注? If so, it may seem like yoga is very complicated or just for adults. Not true!
Kids and teens can do yoga for the same reasons grown-ups do: because it feels good to stretch[伸展] out your body, slow down your breathing, and relax your mind. Yoga can help you feel calmer when life is busy and stressful.
What You Need 你需要——
Any time you start a new exercise routine it's a good idea to check with a parent. A yoga class can be a great way to get started because the instructor can teach you how to get into the poses.
Find a large enough space with few distractions. No TV or people, if possible. Wear comfortable workout clothes and no shoes or socks. A yoga mat[垫子] can be helpful because it cushions[缓冲（压力）] a bit and keeps your feet from slipping. Yoga should not hurt, so go slow and ease into position. Go only as far as you comfortably can.
Why Yoga for Stress? 为什么选择瑜伽减压？
When you get stressed or nervous, many things can help you feel better. Talking with someone—a parent or friend—is a great idea because they can help you figure out what's wrong and start coming up with solutions.
In addition, you can ease[减轻，放松] stress through exercise. You probably know exercise is good for your health, but it's also a proven way to put you in a better mood. So it makes sense that yoga is a favorite activity among people who want to feel stronger and more relaxed.
Yoga includes a lot of stretching, but that's not all—yoga also focuses on breathing and meditation[沉思，冥想], which means thinking calm thoughts. Practicing yoga is a chance to learn stretching/breathing/thinking skills that you can use to calm yourself down the next time you feel worried. In other words, yoga can help your body stay loose and relaxed when things heat up!
Think Good Thoughts 积极的想法
Meditation is the first part of a stress-relieving[减轻，解除] yoga routine. Meditation means being calm, quiet, and focused. Some people call this “feeling centered.” When you're feeling centered, you can do your best in stressful situations such as taking a test or working through a disagreement with a friend. Try these meditation exercises:
Take a yoga vacation: Find a quiet, private place, like your bedroom. Sit in a comfortable position and close your eyes. Imagine a place where you feel safe and relaxed. Is it your best friend's backyard?
Your grandma's house? Camping in the woods? Imagine yourself in this place for three to five minutes. You'll feel much calmer after your “yoga vacation.”
Positive pictures: When you're feeling stressed about a big test or game, it can help to imagine it going really well. Sit in a comfortable position and close your eyes. Picture yourself feeling prepared for your test or kicking the winning goal in soccer. Of course, positive pictures can't take the place of actual preparation, but they can help you feel more confident.
Breathe Deep 深呼吸
On one hand, you already know how to breathe. You're doing it right now! But learning how to breathe in yoga practice can help you notice how your breathing changes when you're anxious or upset. Often, when you start to feel nervous or uncomfortable, your breathing may get faster and you might not breathe as deeply. Once you tune in to[了解，熟悉] your breath, you can try belly breathing.
Get Up and Move! 动起来！
There are many different yoga poses. Some can help you stretch the neck, shoulders and back, which are most likely to get tense when you are nervous or stressed. Try these two yoga poses when you want to de-stress[减压] yourself:
Surprise/Sourpuss[牢骚满腹的人]: Open your mouth wide and bug[使（眼球）暴突] out your eyes, then close your eyes very tightly and pucker[折成褶子] your lips.
Alternate[轮流，交替] back and forth between “surprise” and “sourpuss.” Do this while you're studying to help loosen up your face and jaw, which can get really tense while you're studying. If you have a study partner, make a game of it! Who can make the silliest face?
Shoulder gymnastics: Do a few gentle shoulder and neck rolls right before a test to keep your shoulders nice and loose. You can even do them during a test if you need a refreshing break.
Have Fun with Yoga 开心自在玩瑜伽
Yoga can help you in serious ways, but it also can be a lot of fun. You can smile during yoga, and even laugh, which is a great stress reliever too. Yoga can be done alone or with friends. And you can do it at home, at a yoga studio, or in the park.
We'll end with a special Sanskrit[梵语（的）] greeting—“namaste.” It's traditionally said at the end of a yoga practice and it means the light inside of me bows[鞠躬] to the light inside of you. Namaste.