California's Tahoe Truckee Unified School District (TTUSD) is offering yoga classes to its high school students, reveal sources.
Hindus have applauded TTUSD for offering yoga in its high schools, and have urged all California school districts to do the same for their pupils.
Calling it a "step in the right direction", Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, suggested all school districts of California to incorporate yoga in the lives of the students. Yoga, referred as "a living fossil", was a mental and physical discipline, for everybody to share and benefit from, whose traces went back to around 2,000 BCE to Indus Valley civilization, Zed pointed out.
Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, further said that yoga, although introduced and nourished by Hinduism, was a world heritage and liberation powerhouse to be utilized by all. According to Patanjali who codified it in Yoga Sutra, yoga was a methodical effort to attain perfection, through the control of the different elements of human nature, physical and psychical.
According to USA's National Institutes of Health, yoga may help one to feel more relaxed, be more flexible, improve posture, breathe deeply, and get rid of stress. According to an estimate, about 21 million Americans, including many celebrities, now practice yoga. Yoga was the repository of something basic in the human soul and psyche, Rajan Zed added.
According to Corine Harvey, TTUSD Executive Director of Student Services: "The TTUSD yoga program is the result of a Placer County Mental Health Innovations Grant. ...The intent of the grant is to offer yoga as a healthy physical strategy that builds resiliency factors with our youth...".
TTUSD, encompassing over 720 square miles, serves about 4000 students in California's Nevada, Placer and El Dorado counties with 12 schools. With a tagline of "A New Vision of Education", one of its Beliefs includes "embracing the diversity" and its Vision includes "engage scholars in effective and innovative instruction". Its Wellness Program includes addressing "spiritual concerns" of high school students. Kim Szczurek is its Board of Education Trustees President and Dr. Robert J. Leri is Superintendent-Chief Learning Officer.