"If you are good, then the whole world will be good for you". Swami Sivananda

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Developing World Citizens

The camp combines the discipline of yoga and the fun of camp. The program allows children to understand the principles of vegetarianism, respect for all religions, develop a love and respect for nature. Children are able to identify with the inner self within a group setting by practicing yoga.

It is a truly unique camp that unites the summer camp experience with the practice of yoga. This program is aimed specifically for children ages 9-12.

Established in 1972 by Swami Vishnudevananda, the Kids' Camp combines activities of outdoor adventure, creativity, yoga and cooperation.

The children learn and evolve through the practice of Swami Vishnudevananda's five principles of yoga:

  • Proper exercise
  • Proper breathing
  • Proper relaxation
  • Proper diet
  • Positive thinking and meditation

Swami Sivananda:

Serve, Love, Give, Purify, Meditate, Realize.

One of the greatest Yoga masters of the 20th century, Swami Sivananda, is the inspiration behind the Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centres.  Although he rarely left the little town of Rishikesh (with only 2 India tours and no visits abroad) Swami    Sivananda's teachings spread quickly throughout our entire planet. He personally wrote - by hand, no computers at the time more than 200 books on topics connected to Yoga and Philosophy.

 

He wrote in a style that is very direct and bursting with dynamic, spiritual energy. As a result many who read his books felt their lives deeply touched and transformed and so came from all of India, all of the world, to learn from him directly, and to bask in his holy presence.

 

 Swami Vishnudevananda:

Health is Wealth. Peace of Mind is Happiness. Yoga Shows the Way.

For 10 years Swami Vishnudevananda continued at the Sivananda Ashram and was trained in all aspects of Yoga by Swami Sivananda. Swami Vishnudevananda quickly became an exceptional adept in the path of Hatha-Yoga and was a very keen and tireless Karma Yogi. One day Swami Sivananda gave Swamiji a 10 Rupee note (less than a dollar!) and his blessings to travel to the West and spread the teachings of Vedanta. "People are waiting" were the words of the Master.

Swamiji's limitless energy and profound inspiration lead him to found and direct the International Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centres. There are now 20 Yoga centres and 9 Ashrams and many Affiliated centres. Swami created the first Yoga Teachers Training Course which to date has trained more than 26,000 certified teachers in the field of Yoga and spirituality. One of his brilliant touches was to summarize these ancient and vast teachings into five principles of Yoga which are easy to understand and convenient to incorporate in one's daily practice.

4 paths of Yoga by Swami Sivananda:

  • Karma Yoga or selfless service: Also know as the Yoga of action, Karma Yoga is the core of the entire Sivananda Organization. Put in a simple way, it is the path of Yoga where one serves with no expectations of reward. The duties are performed with the feeling that one is serving God through humanity. Karma Yoga is meant to purify the ego, for as one serves, one becomes an instrument in the hands of God, loosing his/her identification with the work done and forgetting about his/hers own wants and needs.
  • Bhakti Yoga or the Yoga of devotion: In Swami Sivananda’s words, Bhakti Yoga is the easiest and surest way to attain God-Realization in this present age. Through prayers, chants and worship one turns his/hers emotions into devotion, developing an unconditional love toward all creation, for God is beheld everywhere.
  • Raja Yoga: Raja Yoga deals with the control of the mind through the study and understanding of its workings. A set of practices is prescribed to discipline and control the components of the human being: body, prana (vital energy) and mind. With the tools provided by these practices, one develops will power and clarity of mind.
  • Jñana Yoga or the Yoga of knowledge: this is the intellectual approach of Yoga. Through the practice of Vedanta and a deep philosophical enquiry, one investigates the nature of the Self. This path is said to be the most difficult one, for the aspirant needs some previous qualifications as well as great will power and courage to face the Truth.

 

5 points of yoga by Swami Vishnudevananda:

The structure of the 5 points and the daily schedule allows you to personally experience each of the 5 points, on a physical, mental and spiritual level.

  • Proper Exercise (Asanas) acts as a lubricating routine for the joints and muscles and other parts of the body by increasing circulation and flexibility. The asanas not only produce physical benefits, but are also mental exercises in concentration and meditation, promoting optimum health.

  • Proper Breathing (Pranayama) connects the body to the solar plexus, where tremendous potential energy is stored. Through specific breathing techniques this energy is released for physical and mental rejuvenation.

  • Proper Relaxation (Savasana) is a vital part of keeping the body and mind healthy. Yoga teaches three levels of relaxation – physical, mental and spiritual.

  • Proper Diet (Vegetarian) is eating with awareness. A yogi takes food which has the most positive effect on the body and mind and the least negative effect on the environment.

  • Positive Thinking and Meditation (Vedanta and Dhyana) relieves stress and replenishes energy. Meditation is known to improve concentration and to bring peace of mind and spiritual strength. Meditation is beneficial for everyone, especially those with a hectic, stressful life.

  • A solid foundation in Hatha Yoga, including yoga postures, breathing exercises, and proper relaxation. Children will come home with great flexibility, balance/coordination, focus, and feeling very deeply relaxed. Children who continue with these practises will find themselves completely EQUIPPED to deal with the emotional and physical and mental demands of their school and daily lives.
  • Experiences with a great variety of fun outdoor activities, including games, sports, hiking, swimming, character- and team-building activities.
  • Valuable life skills from our yoga-based workshops, as well as life at Kids Camp in general. Such skills include self-awareness, positive non-violent communication and conflict resolution, and proper nutrition.
  • Experiences with the various arts: visual arts and crafts to help children learn to express themselves creatively and non-verbally; and drama-based activities leading to a final dramatic performance toward the end of camp. These experiences can be especially enriching for more introverted children, who, through gentle encouragement, learn to express themselves more freely and openly.
  • Learning to live in the spirit of karma yoga, or selfless service, through giving one hour of service each day to by helping to maintain common areas, their rooms, and/or cooking.
  • Forming transformative, strong, life-long friendships. During the camp, children from many different traditions, backgrounds, and cultures not only develop strong friendships, but often powerful bonds and love that they will carry with them for the rest of their lives.