Other physical benefits of yoga include:
Increased muscle strength and tone.
Improved respiration, energy and vitality.
Maintaining a balanced metabolism.
Cardio and circulatory health.
Improved athletic performance.
Protection from injury.
Kids have strength and energy, they’re flexible, graceful, constantly moving, easily excited and they can have quiet times too. Kids do yoga every day. Yoga simply organizes what comes naturally to kids. Childhood is a period of physical change that will never be repeated. Learning to develop and maintain good health in childhood will set great patterns for later in life. There are countless benefits for kids who practice yoga.
Yoga is: a system of physical and mental exercises meant to synchronize body and mind for a healthier and more aware self about the connection or union between body and mind, about physical and mental balance about helping you move and think in a new way that puts thought into movement and movement into thought unique in its capacity to exercise the mind and body a ready made philosophy of ethical living adaptable to any age or ability
As you practice it becomes more a part of your everyday living – helps you “focus on the moment”.
One of the oldest systems of physical and mental exercises ever created. People found that being in nature, watching nature and imitating nature made them feel full of positive energy and good health.
Not competitive -- You compete only against yourself Some postures require great concentration so that your mind is totally focused on what you’re doing Some poses require a lot of energy and vigor – others can be calming and relaxing Long term effect is greater health, confidence and fitness
TWISTER POSE massages the liver – helping keep it toned and functioning optimally GIRAFFE WALK & BEAR WALK -- good for gross motor skills
Helps kids stay focused on task at hand TREE POSE & CACTUS POSE Kids are naturally stretchy /bendable - yoga will increase their flexibility even more BUTTERFLY POSE & SEAL POSE Good nights sleep important for kids of ALL ages – helps ease insomnia even bad dreams Practice deep relaxation
Just like adults kids have stress: betrayal of a friend parent’s divorce random violence school performance moving Physical signs of stress: irritability low energy or hyperactivity irregular eating or sleeping patterns aggressive behavior Yoga is a great place for kids to start learning stress mgmt. Also self esteem by accomplishing new tasks – I can do it attitude permeates their whole way of living VOLCANO BLAST POSTURE –for those expressing stress through anger
Helpful for constipation CAT POSE & COW POSE Joints & ligaments need to move to stay strong and flexible - Yoga will help keep them working at their best Healthy spine – a strong straight spine allows fluid & nutrients in our bodies to flow freely and easily Poor posture = blockages so healing energy can’t reach all parts of body ex: trying to drink through the “kink” in a straw MOUNTAIN POSE & SQUIRREL POSE
Babies spontaneously perform many yoga postures Interaction – playing, singing, having fun together **Adults should learn first under guidance of a certified yoga instructor
Often discover poses on their own before you have a chance to show them Let them play – you might see the invention of some great new poses
Accuracy & form are less important than just having fun Correct a pose only if safety is at stake Eager to learn at this age give information on benefits With imaginations that run wild – yoga with preschoolers can be a blast!
Very portable can do inside or outside Need comfortable temperature, well ventilated and not drafty Eliminate distractions (ringing phones, TV’s, loud talking) Try not to eat 1 or 2 hrs. prior to doing yoga
Energizing -- BUNNY BREATHING -- BIRTHDAY CANDLES Calming -- BALLOON BREATHING -- FLY LIKE A BIRD Breath is life -- we need oxygen to survive – full and complete breathing nourishes the body with oxygen, cleanses & eliminates impurities from the body Most people only use 1/8th of their lung capacity when they breathe Regular deep breathing techniques will train the lungs to work more efficiently Best way to practice & sit & stand is by lifting chest & spine upward – as if something is attached to crown of head gently pulling you upward. If your lungs don’t have room to work, you can’t breathe fully and your body can’t function at it’s optimal level
Choose posture appropriate for developmental level of the age of the group you’re working with
Always end with brief period of relaxation REMEMBER ALWAYS HAVE FUN!
Again ----- Always end with a relaxation period
Can you incorporate any yoga poses in your daily curriculum? Are you studying animals, how about the DOG, LION, SSNAKE, TURTLE, BUTTERFLY,FLAMINGO, BUNNY BREATHING Is you topic shapes? DIAMOND TRIANGLE How about nature? TREE, VOLCANO, MOUNTAIN POSE, REACH FOR THE SUN Just for fun, SHAKE LIKE JELL-O
Hand out – Yoga for Children Handout –Yoga Booklets
Yoga for children
NORTHERN KENTUCKY DISTRICT
Rebekah Duchette-Susan Guthier
Child Care Health
Thanks to: Mary Beth Clements RN
Jefferson Co. Health Dept.
What is yoga?
* An ancient art and science
* System of conscious breathing, movement
* The word yoga means union
* Postures require mental, physical energy
* Brings awareness to body, mind, spirit
Yoga is a way of ethical
living that stands for
sharing, good health, self
respect and respect for
Hatha yoga is a branch of yoga on which
most modern yoga is based
Ha means sun
Tha means moon
balancing and joining
What yoga is not . . . .
* Is not demonstration of ultra flexibility
* Is not for just one group of people
* Is not a religion
* Is not new
How did yoga start?
* Began in India thousands of years ago
* Observed and imitated nature
* Invented poses to copy nature
* Results: positive energy and good health
• Adjustable for anyone, work at own pace
• Helps “focus on the moment”
• Vigorous yet calming
• Develops strength and flexibility
• Tones muscles, restores balance
• Quiets mind, promotes inner peace
Yoga Facts cont.
•Body moves in unique way
all internal organs and glands get pressed,
massaged or relaxed in all kinds of ways
• Fine tunes nervous system
teaches body to better co-ordinate all its
•Enhances gross motor skills
Therapeutic Benefits of Yoga for Children
• 1. Mantra (Yoga sounds): Use of vibration
and vocalization is calming and helps to
focus attention. Encourages development
of language and the physical ability to
speak. Helps establish eye contact and
• 2. Breath awareness: Deep breathing has
a calming effect. Children are able to
learn to use their breath to self-calm.
Practicing breathing encourages the
development of breath support for speech
and postural stability.
• 3.Postures and exercises: Help with all
developmental aspects of gross motor
skills including general body awareness
and position in space.
• 4. Deep relaxation: Even a few brief
moments of quiet stillness can have
beneficial effects for children who rarely
stop moving. Use visualization
• 5. Meditation (Quiet/alert time): Improves
attention span, the ability to sit still and
concentrate. Helps remove anxiety and
frees the mind from clutter so that it is
more available for learning new things.
Using yoga songs and affirmations are a
good way to start, for example: “I am
happy, I am strong.”