In an overstimulated world learning to quiet your mind and take the time to care for you body is a valuable skill for kids to learn. These days kids are living in a very busy, screen filled world. The pressure to succeed in school, organized activities, competitive sports, video games and even social media can take a serious toll on the stress levels of developing minds and bodies. Luckily kids yoga can be a fun and easy way to get your children to slow down in a productive and beneficial way.
Kids yoga can help ease the pressure they feel from living in aculture that hurries them from one activity to the other. Yoga teaches kids self care, coordination, concentration and increases balance. Whether your kid is an athlete, musician, or academic, the skills they learn from yoga can help them perform better. Kids yoga can also have a seriously positive impact on mental health and attention related issues like ADHD.
The best part about kids yoga is that it’s cost effective, non competitive, and inclusive. Yoga teaches self acceptance and can be practiced almost anywhere with just a yoga mat. There’s no better way to introduce kids to yoga than starting with fun animal poses. So many yoga poses are inspired by animals and are silly enough to get kids interested.
The children’s book, Zoo Zen: A Yoga Story for Kids by Kristen Fischer teaches kids animal yoga poses while helping them learn to count. The story follows heroine, Lyla as she learns different yoga poses from her animal friends at the zoo. Kristen uses rhyming and counting to make it easier for kids to remember how to do each pose.
Here are five kids yoga poses from Kristen’s book to get your kids moving. If you’re feeling ambitious try incorporating savasana at the end of the routine. It’s essentially a short nap. Fingers crossed they fall for it.
1.) Lions Pose Simhasana
Here’s a fun kids yoga pose that focuses on breathing techniques. They’ll love getting the ok to stick out their tongues and roar!
- Kneel on your yoga mat (or a towel) and sit back on your heels.
- Press your palms into your knees and spread your fingers out wide like lions claws.
- Breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth while you stretch your tongue to your chin.
- Breathe out through your mouth and let out a roar!
Book Excerpt: “Lions stalk and they prowl, / in this pride there are four. / Hands pressed to her knees, / Lyla bellows a roar.” Next come five camels who bend their knees back when they sit. Lyla kneels too and grabs onto her heels. She bends backwards while relaxing her neck and in no time “she’s got the knack.” But Lyla needs a bit of a rest. Six alligators lounging in the river show her it’s easy to relax on her tummy.