Social Prescribing Hour: How yoga and meditation can prevent and improving mental illness in young people
The role of holistic activities in preventing and improve mental illnesses
Social Prescribing Roundup
This week’s Social Prescribing Hour discussed how holistic activities like yoga, meditation and mindfulness can improve and prevent mental illness, particularly if taught earlier to young people and teenagers.
Our host this week was Robin Watkins-Davis, an inspiring young lady who founded Bliss by Robin in 2016 at the age of 17, a startup aimed at providing yoga classes to young people under 25 and prisoners and young offenders. Robin also runs workshops in schools as well as offering mentoring, positive support, outdoor adventure retreats and online yoga videos and resources for young people.
Robin feels passionately about the lack of self care awareness in the education system with not many skills being taught to help young people take care of their mental health. With mental health in under 25’s becoming an alarming concern, Robin is dedicated to supporting as many young people as possible by sharing yoga and meditation techniques which are relevant and empowering for their daily lives in a modern society.
Such important work. One thing yoga helps lots of young people with is awareness not only of their body and mind but the environment around them. I am interested in environmental projects - perhaps making videos to educate young people on how to take better care of the enviro— Bliss-ed (@Blissed13) January 23, 2019
Participants shared their concerns about the lack of holistic and self-care activities currently within the curriculum, with others sharing success stories from schools that already offer yoga and mindfulness to teenagers.
Robin reiterated how evidence backs her belief in the positive mental health benefits associated with yoga and mindfulness and shared and interesting article about how deep breath can engage and change different parts of the brain.
#socialpreshour Clinical Commissioning Groups or their overarching co-operatives should be able to help. But funds are tight and it is difficult to get referrals. A "Choose how you move" scheme did get referrals from GPs . The trick is to agree moneyfollowing the patient— Peter Simmonds (@PeterSimmo) January 23, 2019
The next question for Robin queried the main issues facing young people and their mental health, why it’s so important to learn about self-care and why we should embed mental health education into the curriculum.
Q3. What are the main issues facing young people and their mental health? Robin Watkins @Blissed13 discusses the importance of caring for our minds and building mental health education into the curriculum #SocialPresHour pic.twitter.com/qnkFZfJX0F— #SocialPrescribing (@SocialPresHour) January 23, 2019
We’re currently working hard with students to co-produce our @LifeRooms_MC content for younger people. Lots of issues around anxiety, confidence, self-esteem, body image. Yoga, art, comedy, drama, music, sport and relational programmes will be key to making this partnership work.— Michael Crilly (@Crill75) January 23, 2019
I really do agree as a preventative measure, but I still wonder how we support teenagers with v poor mental health to learn these coping mechanisms and access services such as Robin’s when they are going through such termoil.— Amy Fieldhouse (@FieldhouseA2014) January 23, 2019
We definitely need to be giving children the skills to help them in the future. I knew nothing about mental health till I started working in it. That was an eye opener at 19 years old.— PLWorkshopsCIC (@PLWorkshops) January 23, 2019
The final question welcomed a bit more background from Robin on Bliss-Ed and what her plans were for 2019.
A real need . Any tips on how to engage with young people . Offering the non medical support is so crucial and often very tricky to do . Especially with so many factors such as family , parents , school, peers .....— Mohan sekeram (@SekeramMohan) January 23, 2019
I think a very topical area at the moment is helping them to cope with exams. Good mental health and sleep hygiene helps to focus and revise. But its also important to learn how not to get stressed in the build up. Breathing exercises to cope on the day would be good too.— TheThyroidCoach (@TheThyroidCoach) January 23, 2019
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A big thank you to everyone to Robin and everyone that joined in and contributed their ideas, thoughts and questions! Join us again on Social Prescribing Hour Wednesday February 7th, 8-9pm.
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About the Author
- 6287 18th April 2019
- Top 5 Finalist in the Ro’ya Female Start up Company Award Dubai 20th January 2015
- Elemental Showcase at Mobile World Congress 2016 2nd March 2016