As a mom of three and a teacher for over 18 years, I frequently see a recurring theme of anxiousness in children, and it is completely normal. Kids get nervous or stressed. Any different event such as starting a new school year, taking tests, trying new activities, and meeting new people can bring about uncertainty, unease, and worry.
When we worry, we take short, shallow breaths which continue to ignite the feeling of unease in our bodies. Slowing down our breathing and taking long, deep breaths naturally brings on a sense of calmness and peace.
Try these three breathing exercises with your kids. These calming techniques are effective for any age, and can be done anywhere – in the morning, during a car ride, sitting in school, or before bedtime.
Roll your shoulders back and down so they are away from your ears. Breathe deeply in through your nose as you raise your shoulders up by your ears. Breath out and lower your shoulders. Repeat movement 3-5 times and feel the tension melt away.
Darth Vader Breath
This is a favorite with children as they associate an image with this breathing exercise. Breathe deeply in and out while exhaling strongly through an open mouth.
Close your eyes and imagine you are an ocean wave. Breathe in and out deeply as if you are an ocean wave crashing on the beach. Alternate the frequency of your breath to become shorter and longer waves.
By introducing a few breathing or calming exercises to kids, you will be giving them lifelong skills to become calm and focused, and better manage their anxiety when facing new situations.
Hop over to Mindful Teachers to read our guest post on the Top 3 Breathing Exercises for Kids. These can be done anywhere and are great for kids.
Are you interested in learning more about how to effectively teach yoga and mindfulness to children? Learn more about our new online Kids Yoga & Mindfulness Teacher Training.
Kids can do yoga too! One of my passions is teaching yoga to kids and helping others learn how to use yoga with kids in fun and engaging ways. Kids yoga doesn’t need to be overly complicated or time-consuming. You just need a sense of humor and willingness to have fun!
You don’t need to have many supplies or materials to teach yoga to kids, but being knowledgeable of some different items and having a few tricks up your sleeves, helps with keeping the interest level high with kids. Shorter sessions and having a few props that accompany the poses are very beneficial. Child size equipment is also useful for children practicing yoga, and child size mats, balance balls, and accessories will enhance their practice.
I always enjoy highlighting a few favorite props and resources that I use while teaching yoga to kids including a breathing ball and great read aloud books that inspire yoga poses and movement with kids.
I am also a new fan of grippy socks or sticky socks for kids. These inexpensive little accessories help with balance, stability and allow young yogis to practice anywhere–even without a mat.
When I teach my kids yoga classes, I always have the students remove their shoes and socks. Normal socks are slippery and make it difficult to hold poses. It can sometimes be a slow process of helping preschool aged children put on their socks again after class, but if they had these yoga socks it would definitely go faster because they could leave them on for the whole class.
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Are you ready for the solar eclipse?
Read my guest post over at Daily Cup of Yoga to see how you can celebrate this new beginning as a family with some fun aligning yoga poses.
Join Go Go Yoga for Kids for a wildly good time at Blank Park Zoo on August 26th at 9:00 AM for free zoo kids yoga. Perfect for ages 3-11.
We will learn many zoo animal yoga poses, play games, practice partner poses, make a thunderstorm, and have lots of fun.
Get your free Top 9 Yoga Poses for Kids guide and a chance to win your own kids yoga class.
While at the zoo, join us for the 2nd Annual Indie Author Book Expo featuring over 30 local Iowa authors. We will also be there with our Bestselling Go Go Yoga for Kids book and The Kids Yoga Challenge Pose Cards.
Find out more here.
One year ago on an a hot August afternoon, I clearly remember sitting in a coffee shop while waiting to pick up one of my kids from soccer practice.
Just the day before I had submitted Go Go Yoga for Kids: A Complete Guide to Using Yoga with Kids for publication on Amazon. For the first time in over a year I felt a sense of a loss. After months and months of being in the trenches with the time consuming writing and publishing process, my book would soon become available in “.”2-3 business days
With the weekend looming ahead I knew it would be mid next week until I saw my book truly available. At that moment I had nothing pressing to do. It was an odd feeling.
Killing a little time in that coffee shop that day, I typed in my book title into the Amazon search box. There before my eyes, I saw my book cover slowly appear. Go Go Yoga for Kids was published and live!
The feeling of “what to do next” was quickly replaced with elation and then alarm. I couldn’t wait to share this book that I had cultivated over for years. I truly wanted to help and inspire others to use yoga with kids, but would anybody care?
You did. Thank you. Go Go Yoga for Kids reached Best Seller status within a month and has maintained it for the past year. With almost 100 5 star reviews, it humbles me that I have been able to help adults and children see the benefits and fun of yoga.
I couldn’t have done any of this without these 3 kids. They help with everything. They are my guinea pigs for all ideas, as well as labeling, boxing, shipping, modeling, taking pictures, videos, proofing, listening, coming to events, and cheering me on. I couldn’t do it without them.
They even threw a surprise birthday party for Go Go Yoga for Kids. Complete with the presents, cake, and the puppy. Love them.
This book has led to an amazing year filled with learning and growth with The Kids Yoga Challenge Pose Cards, Kids Yoga Teacher Training, and so much more. What is next? Your needs, ideas, and stories inspire me. What would you like to see?
Let me know here. Thank you for being a part of it.