South Tyneside business recognised with second national award for yoga classes helping children's mental health

A South Tyneside-based business which is helping improve children’s mental health in the borough has been recognised with a second national award.

By Sarah Sinclair
Saturday, 2nd November 2019, 8:00 am
Updated Sunday, 3rd November 2019, 5:15 pm
Kalma Baby South Tyneside founder, Victoria Thompson (centre) with the team at the What's On 4 Kids awards.
Kalma Baby South Tyneside founder, Victoria Thompson (centre) with the team at the What's On 4 Kids awards.

Kalma Juniors classes, run by Kalma Baby South Tyneside - which introduces youngsters to yoga and mindfulness – was named the UK’s ‘Most Loved Sport’ in the competitive, What’s On 4 kids Awards.

The South Tyneside franchise triumphed against thousands of other UK businesses which offer sport and physical activities for youngsters, to claim the title and earn national recognition.

Kalma Baby offers a range of yoga and mindfulness classes for babies, toddlers and children aged from six weeks to 16 years – and their parents.

Pupils from SS Peter and Paul RC Primary School take part in a yoga class.

The Kalma Juniors sessions, for 3-12-year-olds, are held in community centres, schools and groups across the borough on a weekly basis and are aimed at improving children’s physical and mental health.

Figures show that one in 10 children have a diagnosed mental health condition, says Victoria Thompson, who launched the franchise five years ago.

“With these tragic statistics and the fact that 75 percent of all mental health problems are established by the time a child is 18, children’s mental health is our highest priority,” she said.

“We are reaching out to as many schools as possible to try to turn this around, however early intervention is key.”

Bella and dad Jake.

Victoria is hopeful that the recognition will help them expand and offer more classes for children and young people across South Tyneside.

“For yoga and mindfulness to be awarded as ‘Best Loved Sport’ is just amazing, as yoga is not often recognised to many as a sport,” she said.

“We are hoping that these highly commendable awards help us open doors to more schools and organisations, to be able to deliver our services to the children who need them.

Pupils from Marsden Primary School take part in a yoga class.

Victoria added: “We want to thank all the parents, our yogis, and our Kalma Baby team who have supported us every step of the way.”

Kalma Baby classes are held Monday-Saturday across South Tyneside.

Pupils from Forest View Primary School in South Shields.