Children and Yoga
In the following 2 articles, Yoga for Kids | Guidelines and Benefits and Comprehensive Guide to Teaching Children’s Yoga, I shared a great deal of information on yoga for children. Included in those articles are a large collection of kid’s yoga poses and details on how to successfully teach a children’s yoga class. Those articles have helped many kid’s yoga teachers and some have requested that I provide more information regarding children’s yoga as there is not much reliable information regarding this topic on the web.
So today I am going to share with you 6 tips on how to encourage kids to learn and practice yoga. Although I am a certified kid’s yoga teacher, these tips actually come more from my personal experience than from the knowledge I gained in the teacher’s training course. These are techniques I use to actually get my 2 little boys to do yoga and as it has worked with them, I am sure it will go a long way in helping you with your children too.
6 Tips for Teaching Yoga to Children
Yoga for Children: – Tip #1:
Set Time for Yoga
Set aside a definite time for doing yoga. If you have tried to maintain a regular yoga or meditation practice, you know that consistency is difficult and that the key to resolving this is to have a set time to do yoga.
As yoga needs to be done when the stomach is empty, it requires a bit of planning, so it is good to have a set time either before eating or a few hours after eating to practice.
Teaching Children Yoga – Tip #2:
Keep Children’s Yoga Resources Handy
Children are often inspired by their peers and like to try things they see other kids doing. So keep a yoga for kids book handy. Make sure the book has plenty of illustrations and is easily accessible. My kids love leafing through such books and then trying the poses and exercises they see.
You can also use YouTube or the internet for this. Find kids yoga videos or show them the yoga illustrations I have on my website. This is another way to get them motivated.
Yoga for Children – Tip #3:
Let the children unleash their creative side and allow them to create unique poses that they have come up with. Of course, you will be teaching them the regular kids yoga poses, but allowing them some freedom to come up with their own postures and movements is fun and engaging for them.
To not let such activity disrupt the flow of their yoga session, you might want to save this part for last.
Children’s Yoga – Tip #4:
Do Yoga Shows
Children love to put on shows, so use that as a motivating factor by planning for them to do a yoga show for you from time to time. As my boys are growing up now, they are 5 and 7 respectively, they get excited about the possibility of being featured on daddy’s blog if they learn their yoga and do it well. In the same way, allow them a stage to showcase their skills and it is a fun way to inspire and motivate them.
Teaching Yoga to Children – Tip #5:
Kids Yoga Class
Consider enrolling the children in a kids yoga class. These are becoming more and more common, and are also part of many private and public school programs now as well. My son, Shivum, had a weekly yoga class in his school and it was one of his favorite activities there.
Teaching Kids Yoga – Tip #6:
Explain the Benefits of Children’s Yoga
How many times have you told your kids to eat this or that because it makes them stronger or will help them grow? It is natural for kids to want to grow and blossom, so giving them information on all the ways yoga is going to benefit them is only going to make them more eager to take up its practice.
You will find a full list of benefits in the article: Yoga for Kids – Guideline and Benefits.
Teaching Yoga to Children Summary:
Just a reminder that much more information, specially with regard to teaching kid’s yoga classes can be found in the guidelines article linked to above. Here I have given you tips on how to inspire and motivate your children to do yoga. Yoga is one of the great gifts we have been given, and your children will be forever grateful if you can pass it on to them as well.
PS: I have a new Mastery of Meditation and Yoga Facebook Fan Page. Please stop by and Like it. Also, if there are specific topics you want to learn more about, leave a message for me there and I will be glad to write about them on my blog. I appreciate your love and support.
PPS: As always please feel free to share any tips you have used to teach yoga to children in the comments section below. I am sure parents and yoga teachers will appreciate your input.