The Kids’ Yogi

From schoolwork to peer pressure, it’s easy for kids to get stressed out this time of year. That’s where Lisa Ballo of Royal Oak swoops in with her mobile studio, Belightful Yoga, to help young students manage their stress on the go. We chatted with Ballo to get the scoop on her growing business – and her role in the first-ever National Kids Yoga Conference, happening Sept. 27 in Washington, D.C.

MISSION: CALM
Ballo started doing yoga about 25 years ago to relieve her body from the tension caused by her job in the ad industry. Soon, she realized it had a big positive impact. “It brought me to that place of calmness,” she says. Wanting to help others, she decided to start teaching yoga – and developed a passion for working with kids.

DELIGHTFUL BELIGHTFUL
Since 2010, Belightful Yoga has taken classes on the road. The studio works with kids ages 5-plus with all levels of abilities. Teachers are specially trained to work with children with Down syndrome and autism. “I wanted to help bring that wellness culture on site,” Ballo says. “There was a need for me to bring it to people of a younger age, because that was a tool that I wish I had.”

YOGA FOR YOUTH
Whether self-esteem issues or obesity, kids face lots of pressure. To Ballo, yoga is a tool they can use their entire lives to reduce stress and build confidence. “It’s definitely more than just exercise,” she says. “It supports both their minds and their bodies. It’s a tool that, through movement with breath, supports both.”

THE CONFERENCE
The National Kids Yoga Conference will gather national leaders from across the country who, like Ballo, are involved with youth yoga. They’ll share tools and ways to expand the movement. Ballo’s looking forward to speaking and sharing her knowledge with others. Find more at yokid.org.

JOIN A CLASS
Call 248-560-7744 or visit belightfulyoga.com to see where Ballo’s classes will be next. Prices, times and locales vary. Want to schedule something? Get in touch, Ballo says; they’re flexible and happy to set up something for you.

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