There are many fantastic organizations like The Prison Yoga Project who are actively working to bring yoga and meditative practices to the insanely huge incarcerated population in the United States. This quick Prezi (appreciate the professor who gave me this assignment) briefly explains why yoga in prisons is a great idea, and that it’s actually not a new idea at all. There’s a link to a YouTube video in there which details the effects of Vipassana (a mindfulness practice) on prisoners in India; definitely worth watching in its entirety if you have the time.
The underlying cause of most crimes is unresolved trauma or personal stress/anxiety. Yoga gives prisoners the tools they need to cope with or overcome these issues, or at the very least, increases their happiness to a less self-destructive level. Maybe you don’t care about incarcerated individuals. Maybe it doesn’t matter to you if they’re happy. Regardless, yoga is a form of therapy that comes at a much cheaper price than anxiety medications or other therapeutic interventions. It also helps to prevent people from ending up in jail again once their initial sentence is served. That’s money saved on your taxes, from cut court costs to reduced treatment costs.
Here you gooooo – enjoy! —- Yoga in Prison – Prezi —– for those of you who haven’t used Prezi before, it’s like a fancy powerpoint. Use the arrows at the bottom to go from slide to slide, and click on anything you’d like to zoom in on!
You can read any number of articles on the benefits of yoga, or specifically, yoga in prison. Check out huntingtonpost.com or sciencedaily.com if you’re more of a skeptic!