Benefits of Yoga for Kids with David Lynch

“It’s as important as any other subject in school,” says filmmaker David Lynch, director of the award-winning Elephant Man and Blue Velvet. “I think kids need to be exposed to it, particularly in America where they’re surrounded by artificial light.”

Trained for over 30 years by his own guru, Lynch teaches Transcendental Meditation (TM) to children – an increasingly popular practice which some experts believe can even halt attention deficit disorder.

In the US there are whole schools that teach meditation,” he says on a visit to London. “It’s taught in some New York schools and it’s fantastic.”

Lynch believes this is not only a great way of teaching relaxation techniques, it also creates a sense of togetherness.

“In the [yoga] exercises you have to be with other people,” he says.

“It’s a connection that is important in all humanity.”

Lynch is in sensational shape at 62 years old – a testament to his belief in yoga and TM. He even manages to maintain a thin figure despite gorging on homemade chocolate brownies throughout the interview.

“I eat healthy food but I don’t deny myself any of life’s pleasures,” he says. “I think people should do as they please as long as it doesn’t hurt anyone else.”

Lynch has been making yoga instructional videos for children that he distributes through his foundation.

“I’d like to do more. I’m not in it for the money,” he says, adding that he doesn’t charge David Beckham when teaching him yoga. “It’s so important but it’s not accepted yet.”

Lynch has released a documentary on Maharishi Mahesh Yogi called Invincible Wisdom.

“He’s a great humanitarian,” says Lynch. “I hope to make more movies about him, maybe right before he dies.”

At the Raindance Film Festival, the film received mixed reviews, with many dismissing it as propaganda for Yoga and TM. However, Lynch defends the movie vehemently.

“I think people should be more open-minded about it,” he says on his return to Los Angeles, where he is planning another documentary called Motivation. “Education would really blossom if we took this seriously.”

Lynch started practicing TM at four years of age and has never looked back, using it to overcome his dyslexia. “I learned in school that I was not good at anything,” he recalls, adding that this has driven him to excel in other areas.

“Any kid who feels like they’re different should be taught meditation,” he says. “It helps them adapt and learn better.”

Lynch says he is now able to keep his cool even at work. Recently, he was involved in a heated argument with Mel Gibson’s girlfriend, Oksana Gregorieva. The discussion turned physical and Lynch had to physically restrain her.

“She was kicking me like crazy but I didn’t react,” says Lynch who claims not to know why she attacked him. “I just said, ‘Be calm.'”

“You have to not react,” he adds. “It’s a good feeling when you do this.”

According to his foundation, meditation can also help children with attention deficit disorder by improving their concentration and ability to learn.

Lynch even suggests that a daily 20-minute meditation session can do away with police brutality.

“The violence would be cut down a lot if they taught meditation in schools,” he says firmly. “When people are enlightened it’s very different.”