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5 Ways to Introduce Your Kid to Yoga




Recently someone asked me what what were the benefits of kids doing yoga and if it was possible for them to do so. This answer is YES! When I tell you that yoga is for everybody, that also includes children. For kids, yoga can help with finding their balance/coordination, boost their self-esteem and their concentration skills. Just like adults, they can benefit from the physical practice too by building their strength.


Now let me just preface this! I do not have children but kids in general will stay engaged with something if it truly interests them. I will link all of my resources and what I found below for anyone who is interested in learning more.


Here are 5 ways to introduce yoga to your children.


1. Let your kids see your practice

If you are an active practitioner, have your kids join your journey too. Naturally, they will try to mimic your poses ( or at least ask questions...especially if they are young). By letting them follow along, they can see yoga as a part of your daily routine and they may want it to be a part of theirs too.


2. Keep it simple

Building on point number 1, keep the poses simple and easy to relate to. A lot of the asanas (postures) relate to animals, nature or shapes so start by doing those ( ex: downward facing dog, cat/cow, fish pose, tree pose, triangle pose) As the child gets older or more interested in yoga, you can introduce them to different variations or new postures.


3. Find a style that is right for them

There are so many different styles of yoga and branches of yoga for kids to explore. Some might like Vinyasa (flows that connect movement to breathe and are often unique each time it is taught) or some may prefer more structure and repetition like Ashtanga. They could take a totally different path and prefer learning about yoga or lean towards the more spiritual side & seek out meditation. Whatever it is that they gravitate towards, help them define their own journey.


4. Remember they are kids, not adults

As an adult who has been practicing for a few years, my mind tends to wander sometimes after 45 minutes of practicing. Now, lets think of a child's mind ( a young child's mind at that). 45 minutes to a hour might seem like an eternity! Especially if this is a completely new concept for them. One way to determine how long you and your child can practice is basing it off their age. For example, if your child is 4, practice for 4 minutes. As they get older or become more focused/aware, you can add more time to their practice


5. Have fun

At the end of the day, just be safe, have fun and get creative. Change up the scenery of where you practice, add some different breathing techniques in, create a designated yoga day/time for practice, let them "teach" you a sequence or let them even make up their own pose and name it so it's uniquely theirs.



Like I said early, yoga is for everyone and it's not too early to get your kids involved. Also, extra tip, check out some local yoga studios and see if they have kid focused classes.


Resources

Houston Kid Yoga Classes

- https://bigpoweryoga.com/pages/big-kids

- https://www.cmhouston.org/event/yoga (Children's Museum of Houston)


Yoga Youtube Videos for Kids

- https://www.youtube.com/user/CosmicKidsYoga

- https://youtu.be/vMMRb10LtGM ( Yoga with Adriene. She is my favorite youtube instructor by the way)

- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rWP4Xl4IDYA (Calm Down Sequence)


Articles

- Kids Yoga: Tips for Getting Started

- How to Teach Kids Yoga

- 7 Best Yoga Poses for Kids



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