Yoga for Autism and Special Needs

This article is written by Ms. Marie Nicolette Ereñeta as she advocates and supports individuals with special needs through the practice of yoga. 

Yoga for Autism and Special Needs is a therapeutic and complementary modality for children with neuro-diverse brains and other complex needs or conditions. 

About Yoga:

The practice of yoga for kids with diverse abilities supports complex needs using specific strategies to develop mind-body connection through sensory processing from common challenges like:

  • anxiety
  • difficulty with expressive and receptive language
  • difficulty with self-regulation of their arousal states
  • delayed fine/gross motor skills
  • limited body awareness
  • sensory challenges
  • irregular sleep patterns
  • digestive problems
  • difficulty with focus and concentration

Yoga strategies such as asanas (yoga poses / movement)pranayama (yogic breathing), progressive relaxation, and netra viyayama (eye exercises and tracking) among others, are introduced to children in a fun and interactive approach to allow them to feel successful. As they learn through repetition, new challenges are presented along the way to build self-esteem and confidence.

About the Program:

Yoga as a form of therapy is tailor fitted to support the child in the various domains in human development – cognitive, communication, motor skills, and social-emotional. Appropriate yoga tools are then matched to the child’s developmental and learning ability and learning working towards specific milestones and goals.

Classes are influenced by the philosophy of Asanas for Autism and Special Needs through somatosensory approach. Many children with sensory integration dysfunction and/or language processing difficulties experience great levels of stress and anxiety. Just like driving a car, when all our sensory inputs are working well, we are able to steer the car and apply the right amount of pressure to slow down or accelerate. For children with processing difficulties, it can be quite frustrating not to be able to control and manage how information is received and expressed to navigate and interact with the world.

The  purpose of Yoga for Autism and Special Needs is dedicated to bringing the benefits of yoga to the lives of children of any and all abilities so that they may live happier, healthier, and more peaceful lives for years to come.

The child is MORE THAN his or her limitations.

The program or class series is individually focused, and not condition focused. Your teacher will work with you and your child, taking into consideration your doctor's medical diagnosis and the challenges in your child's cognitive, communication, motor skills, and socio-emotional development. Each child is unique, therefore your program is tailor-fitted to your child's needs and home environment. Your program is shared to your doctor and therapists because we advocate to nurture a holistic support team working towards a common goal.

Who is this program for:

  • (ASD) Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Down Syndrome
  • Prader Willi
  • Fragile X
  • Cerebral Palsy
  • Learning Disabilities
  • Anxiety Disorders
  • Motor Coordination Difficulties
  • Behavioral Challenges
  • Language Processing Disorders
  • Sensory Processing Difficulties
  • All children, any and all abilities!

High-evidence based journals mentions

Autism Spectrum Disorder:

  • Improved focus and attention
  • Improved sensory processing
  • Improved communication
  • Improved self-regulation
  • Improved motor control

  • Down Syndrome:

    • Improved physical and motor development
    • Improved social and emotional development
    • Improved cognitive skills
    • Strength and postural control

    Cerebral Palsy

    • Improved range of motion
    • Postural stability

    Other noted benefits from a regular practice

    • Increased muscle tone, flexibility, & poise.
    • Improved breathing and digestion.
    • Enhance confidence & sense of self.


    Discover if Yoga is the right complementary therapy for your child by reaching out to or 09177006642 or @yogaforautismandspecialneeds on Instagram.


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