What is kid’s yoga?
You may have taken a yoga class yourself and wonder how could kids do this? Surely they’d get bored! How would kids benefit from yoga? You may even wonder how a kid’s yoga class would look like.
Kid’s yoga is non-traditional, it is very different to adult yoga. Kid’s yoga is fun!!
What to expect in kids yoga class
A children’s yoga class will look and sound very different to an adult’s class. Kids learn through play, bright music, and images. My classes are age appropriate and designed to be engaging, fun and calming.
In kid’s yoga classes, the activities are engaging for children and give them the tools to feel confident, peaceful and happy.
Children don’t have as much focus and attention span as adults which is why our program has variety and is tailored for each age group. Some of the themes and focus for example may be on nutrition/life lessons, stillness, balance, focus, peace, flexibility, health and wellbeing, the environment and the world around them.
Classes are filled with a mix of adventures and stories, (older kids are challenged by helping with stories or coming up with their own yoga poses), themed classes, games partner poses, music, encouraging happy thoughts through positive affirmations and mindfulness activities, with breathwork. Some of the themes are stories may be life lessons, oneness and of course are fun.
All classes will be engaging the mind and body.
We encourage lots of fun, children love the chance to bark like a dog in downward dog, hiss like a snake, meow while stretching in cat pose – for the older kids attention is more placed on how you feel and stretching in the poses, breath work with the poses and affirmations. Of course some of the older kids would still have some fun playing around in cat, down ward dog, trees, flowers and warrior pose.
In various animal and nature poses we engage the imagination and explore and deepen their awareness, for example we might in cobra pose, have them visualise and imagine that they are a snake, with a long spine, how would you feel and move without arms or legs. In tree pose, might ask them to imagine being a really old tree in the middle of a forest, imagine how deep and strong your roots are in the ground, how tall would you be, reaching higher to the sky above all other trees. Imagine the roots are growing out of your feet. Stretch like a dog, breathe like a bee or bunny, fun songs to get them up and moving.
Most classes follow a similar process, sometimes with a few variations depending on themes etc.
- A welcome and check in
- Warm up and/fun song to get the body warmed up and heart beating,
- Yoga dance
- Sun salute
- Story/themed poses
- Fun breathing
- Short rest/guided meditation – this can vary from candle meditation, legs up the wall or laying down with belly breaths or laying down with teddy bears/ on belly or/and eye pillows.
Yoga and mindfulness is calming and soothing, whether they are balancing and holding a pose moving through a series of poses, sitting in meditations/colouring/craft.
Breathing is another important element in our class, whether we use it to slow down with our yoga poses, visuals, or our old favourite Hoberman sphere, (breathing ball – pictured) which helps visualise and see also how our lungs work. Children practise deep breaths.
Breathing and relaxation at the end of class is very important, listening to peaceful music, or guided visualisation meditation. Kids really enjoy having a chance to close their eyes and relax their minds and bodies especially after a long day at school or kindy.
Breathing helps them to understand and connect with their breath when they are stressed and need to calm down.
The older kids are encouraged in some classes to make up there own yoga poses and routines along with being challenged with balance poses and partner poses and learning about aspects of the anatomy.
Regularly practising yoga
- Reduces stress
- Promotes positive body awareness.
- Compliments children who play sports, improving flexibility and stretching skills
- Benefits children that don’t like team sport or not really a sporty kids
- Boosts confidence and self esteem
- Decreases stress and anxiety and improves attention
- Improves co-ordination, flexibility and balance.
- Increases lung and breathing capacity when paired with breathing exercises.
Regularly practising yoga and mindfulness can help your kids connect, and develop inner awareness.
Give your kids the foundations of yoga early in life for calm and confident kids.
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