INGLEWOOD, Calif — Her son’s uniform isn’t the only thing Sommer Ware makes sure is freshly prepped before 9-year-old Chazz heads off to school each morning. She also prepares him mentally and emotionally asking him, “How are you feeling? You’re not feeling it?"
When Ware describes her son's personality, she says, “My little lovey bug is energetic, has a great sense of humor, he’s super silly.”
But like most boys his age, Chazz can also get nervous, anxious and easily distracted.
After a long year and a half of remote learning, Chazz is still getting re-adjusted to his old routine, which means waking up early to go to school and sitting still in the classroom for hours.
Hoping to alleviate some of his stress and jitters, Ware introduced Chazz to yoga and meditation.
The mother-son duo recently attended a wellness event at SoFi Stadium called Vibrate Higher.
South LA families learned some basic yoga poses, as well as sound bath meditation.
Our Own, a nonprofit organization focused on providing mental health, nutrition and fitness resources to underserved communities, launched the event to help the youth manage stress and improve their mental well-being as they return to school.
Leading the session was Marley Ralph, a yogi since 2017.
She believes yoga has the power to relax students’ body and mind, saying it helps them concentrate and re-center themselves in stressful moments.
“It reminds you to breathe, that’s what we have, that’s our life force," Ralph said. "So if we’re able to just tap back into the breath, into those moments, we’re able to come back into the present moment and remind ourselves that we’re living, we’re breathing, and that we have the option to keep moving forward.”
This was Chazz’s first time trying yoga and he’s still learning to find his balance on the mat.
But Ware feels good knowing her little guy is open to implementing ways to find balance within.
“He understands that there’s different things that he can do with his body when he needs to slow down," Ware said. "He’s very high energy so it’s good for him to be present and mindful.”