Getting Children Started with Yoga

Teaching your kids about yoga is not just about imitating animals with poses also known as asanas, but about creating a sanctuary that's sustainable over time. So grab your yoga mat or towel and let’s get started!

Make It Fun!

Yoga should make kids happy! It should be spontaneous and entertaining. We are competing with video games, cell phones and TV these days. We have to make yoga as fun as possible, that’s why we’ve created the OM Warrior Kids adventure series. Where kids can have fun and stay engaged while learning the basic principles of yoga. Go on a yoga journey around the world; to the zoo, under the sea, or to the wild forest. Kids' yoga is not just about yoga. When children do Warrior III, they are airplanes going to Australia. Kids are not only learning about yoga, they are also learning geography, the animal kingdom, the alphabet, dancing, science, arts and crafts!

 

Teach Them to Breathe

One of the simplest and most powerful practices you can teach your children is breath awareness. Here are a few ways to teach your child deep breathing:

USE BUBBLES
Blowing gently to create bubbles is a good way to be playful and breathe deeply. Kids have to blow carefully and slowly to make the bubbles, which is a major reason why I like using it to help kids take deep breaths.

USE A PINWHEEL
Kids can practice breathing out slowly or more quickly, using the speed of the pinwheel as a measure. Then they can figure out which way works and feels best for them.

HOBERMAN SPHERE

Breathe in and expand the sphere, breathe out and push the sphere back in (this mirrors what should be happening to their belly).

BUMBLEBEE BREATH
Breathe in and pretend you are smelling a flower. As you breathe out, make a humming bee sound. Try different ways of making the sound - longer or shorter, high or low sounds. Also, try our hot air balloon breaths here!

WHALE BREATH
Sitting criss-cross applesauce, sit up tall and take a deep breathe in, hold it while you count to 5 with your fingers then tilt head up to blow it
out of blowhole. You can also put your hands up on top of head to create the blow hole to “blow” out.

Play Games

Here are some fun ideas!

TOE-GA

Great for focus and strengthening toes!

What you Need:
 Colored craft pom poms
 Small bowls or containers

How to Play:
Give everyone a little bowl or container and tip out all the pom poms into the
middle of the space. The children have to use only their toes to pick up the pom
poms and put them in their bowl. They keep going until all the pom poms have
been collected. The winner is the one with the most pom poms in their bowl. You can also do this with other small objects – marbles or acorns. Pom poms are nice and squidgy though, so are easier to pick up with small toes.

YOGA WHISPERS

A quick way to bring peace to a large group of children! This is the game ‘broken’ telephone and here it’s adapted for kids yoga.

What you Need:
• at least 3 children to play

How to Play:
Start by whispering the name of a yoga pose into the ear of one of the children.
This then gets whispered around the circle/along the line to the final child who then has to ‘perform’ the pose. Hopefully, it will be the one you started with! You can also whisper an affirmation which the last child has to say out loud. Beware! Kids love changing it, but it’s always lots of fun!

YOGA STATUES
Also known as Yoga Freeze. Energizing, fun and a great way to learn poses!

What you Need:
• Music
• Space to Dance
 Yoga Cards

How to Play:
Play the music and everyone dances around the space. Press pause and call out a yoga pose. All the kids take the pose and freeze in it. This is a great way to help the kids learn the poses as well as test them to see how well they can remember them. This is a great yoga party game! Have fun seeing if you can make them move - try making a silly face to make them laugh!

Have Fun!

Finally, it is important that you have fun! Do the activities together. Play, sing, and dance along with your kids!