Yoga isn’t just for moms who want to lose their baby weight or stay in shape. In fact, this discipline is great for everyone, especially kids since it can help them with their fitness, relax them and even turn them into more focused students. Since there are many ways yoga can benefit your child, why don’t you consider teaching your little one a couple of poses and turning yoga into a family session? Here are several fun ways you can do yoga with your kid.
Start slow and teach them some easy poses
Although children are natural yogis, actually doing yoga can be strange to them. Therefore, it is important you start slow instead of immediately moving on to complicated poses. Keep in mind that your kid might lose track of their breathing or a routine, and that is perfectly fine. Encourage them to tell you what they like or dislike and arm yourself with patience, since many kids get frustrated the first time they try yoga. However, it is important that you encourage your child to try again because his or her flexibility could take them into poses they didn’t know were possible. For starters, try teaching your little one the downward dog and cobra pose before trying something more complicated.
Forget about (some of) the rules
Whether your child will fall in love with yoga or not, will greatly depend upon your attitude. Even if you take this discipline very seriously and you strive to do every pose perfectly, you need to take things more casually when it comes to working out with your kid. Although breathing and doing the poses correctly is important, don’t get frustrated if your little one messes up. The only thing that matters is that you are engaged, and enjoying the experience together.
Forget about the sound of silence
Yoga has that meditative side that helps us relax and boosts our mental health. Deep breathing and a quiet environment help us reconnect with ourselves and improve our state of mind. As a mother, you surely know that kids are hardly ever quiet, but that doesn’t have to ruin your workout. In fact, let your kid express their joy or frustration through various noises. If they want to bark every time they go into a downward dog or giggle when they find themselves in a weird pose, that is fine. Hey, laughing yoga is a hit right now across the world, so some noise won’t do any harm for sure.
Give some partner poses a shot
While you can practice yoga side by side with your kid, you can also try and balance in poses together. No matter how old your child is, these poses can not only work your bodies but even make your bond stronger since they require a close physical as well as spiritual connection. If your little one is still a baby, try the pose where you sit on the floor with the soles of your feet together. Put your little one in between your legs in the same pose. If they are still too small and are not sitting up on their own yet, simply let them use your belly as a backrest. Make your spine straight, rub the soles of the child’s feet together, then open up their legs so they form a V shape. Close the feet, rub them again and repeat. Make sure you make fun sounds when opening their legs and your baby will love this! You can also try bringing their toes to their nose one foot at a time. If your child is a toddler or older, you can try a downward-facing dog for couples. Simply stand back to back and come into the said pose. Your kid should then step up and rests their feet on your lower back, therefore, making an L shape with their body. Since you will be able to see each other under your legs, you can either make silly faces or have a serious conversation. You can hold this pose for as long as you want to. If your child is a toddler instead of coming into a downward dog just come onto all fours.
When doing yoga with your child it is important you find the middle ground between fun activity and the deeper purpose of the discipline. While talking, making silly faces and laughing are perfectly fine, do your best to teach your kid the basics of the poses and breathing, so they will fully benefit from these exercises.