Yoga is a fun and creative way for your kids to stay healthy, get to know their bodies and interact with other children their age. Some yoga poses for kids will even be recognised by them from their natural play.
Bridge pose, cat pose and happy baby pose are just a few yoga moves that are seen regularly in the playground, even with no knowledge of yoga. Introducing yoga as a fun activity from an early age will help to create healthy habits for your child for their future.
Yoga for children – what are the benefits?
In the world we live today children are exposed to stress at a much earlier age. Access to gadgets and phones can mean children are glued to screens more often than they are resting. This means they also don’t prioritise activities that involve being creative, as other distractions come across as more exciting. The role of the parent is even more challenging now.
Yoga can offer children a fun physical activity to help teach them about healthy living and the benefits of regular exercise, whilst learning to respect their body and it’s limits.
Yoga also teaches kids how to relax their minds, manage stress, improve concentration and focus, as well as set goals to work towards.
If children can be exposed to yoga and meditation from a young age, they will have a great chance to get to know themselves as they grow up. Yoga helps build confidence and inner strength and can help mould the values of a young mind.
Most kids love to mimic the many animal related poses that frequent yoga; the snake, the frog and the cat and cow poses, to name a few.
Kids yoga – how is best to get them started
Practicing yoga with your kids can be a great way for the family to bond. To keep yoga enjoyable for them and to keep them engaged, it is a good idea to be flexible in your approach.
- Adapt or change the yoga poses to suit your child’s mood.
- Don’t worry about focusing on their alignment too much because having fun is key.
- Go with the flow – if your kids like animals then bring in lots of animal poses, for example.
- Make stories to go with the yoga routine, as this will help them remember the poses, and have even more fun!
- Be mindful of the child’s energy levels by choosing a time of day that suits them.
- Don’t exhaust the practice by forcing a situation – it is best to build up gradually.
- If it is warm, and you have space, why not head to the garden for yoga practice?
- Be safe, of course – keep a close eye on excitable children that may get carried away.
Yoga poses for kids
These yoga poses are engaging and fun, and a great way to get children interested in the early stages of learning yoga:
- Cat pose – a gentle way to work the spine.
- Cow pose – this also gently works the spine.
- Three legged dog pose – most kids love handstands and this will be similar for them.
- Dragon pose – what kid doesn’t want to pretend to be a dragon!
- Frog pose – maybe they want to sign the frog song too?
- Lion pose – one to get a few lion laughs.
- Downward dog pose – good for learning the basics of yoga.
- Airplane pose – good one for balance.
- Snake pose – promotes flexibility.
- Happy baby pose – good for loosening the hips, and lovely and relaxing.
- Tree pose – great for balance practice, and stilling the mind to focus.
- Bridge pose – energising pose that can lead to the Wheel pose.
- Cow face pose – good for stretching and see if your child can spot the cow-face.
- Chair pose – great to build strength in the legs. This can be done with a partner holding hands.
- Corpse pose – for relaxing their busy minds.
- Child’s pose – for grounding, quiet and calm.
Kids Yoga London
There are a range of lovely yoga studios and creative teachers offering yoga for children in London. Kids yoga classes allow children to mix with other children their age. Some yoga poses for kids also involve working with a partner, which can encourage friendship, inclusion and teamwork.