A Kids Yoga class is very different from a yoga class for adults. In Kids Yoga, children have a non-competitive and fun way to practice yoga and mindfulness through the use of songs, games and stories. Children will discover yoga postures in a playful way.
During a Kids Yoga class, children will learn to relax and have fun while at the same time they develop strenght, coordination, flexibility and balance as well as greater body awareness, better focus and concentration. During the class, they will go on a magical journey around the world and learn about many cultures, animals and places. They will also learn about themselves: their strength, boundaries and what they can do with their body and mind. But most importantly for kids, yoga is fun!
In a Kids Yoga class, there are different themes that fit in with a child’s perception of the world. A lot of asanas (yoga postures) are inspired by nature and animals. When children imitate the movements and sounds of animals and nature, they have a chance to imagine themselves as other living things and imagine taking on their qualities. When they practice the lion’s pose (Simhasana) for example, they can experience not only the power and behaviour of a lion, but they can also experience this strength in themselves. The physical movements in Kids Yoga introduce children to yoga's true meaning: union, expression, and honour for oneself and one's part in the delicate web of life. When they stretch like a dog, balance like a flamingo, breathe like a bee or stand strong and tall like a tree, the importance of respecting all of life and the principle of interdependence becomes apparent.
As well as using themes based on nature and animals, theme classes could also be around virtues with the older children. For example: gratitude, compassion, strength, self-control, caring for others and the environment, courage, respect and contentment. They already hold these morals inside of themselves, they just need a little encouragement to realize and appreciate them. These themes also connect to the Yamas & Niyamas which are explained in Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras. Through working with these ethical guidelines, children can learn about yoga philosophy in a fun way.
Kids yoga is not only beneficial and healthy for children of all ages, but most importantly, it is a lot of fun!
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