Contrary to popular belief that yoga is just for adults, yoga can be a great way for children to feel healthy and happy as well. What is particularly great about yoga for kids is that it can be practised both alone, with a friend, or in a group, therefore developing skills to work alone, as a pair or in as part of a group.
Take a look at the following advice on yoga for kids to make yoga fun and safe for children.
* Don’t expect your child to achieve yoga poses that they manage on the yoga DVDs and don’t criticise your child if they are not managing to hold the perfect yoga pose. Let your child go at his own pace and give him plenty of praise for his attempts.
* Children’s balance, generally speaking, is not as stable as adults, and tots may therefore require a little support when doing yoga. Place a chair next to your child to help support her throughout the yoga session, or encourage her to do the movements next to a wall.
* Creating an atmospheric environment to practise yoga will help stimulate your child’s enthusiasm for the activity and can prolong concentration. Always do the yoga sessions in the same place in the home. To make it more atmospheric and distinctive, dim the lights and play some soft music in the background.
* Make it fun by playing games such as converting the ‘Simon Says’ game into a ‘Yogi Says’ version. Incorporate singing into the yoga sessions and use your imagination such as making animal sounds, anything to make the yoga more fun!
* As young children tend to get bored more easily than adults and have shorter attention spans, don’t make the yoga sessions too long. Instead aim to make each session about 15 – 20 minutes long.