Yoga For Kids – It’s Beneficial For You AND Your Little Ones!

By: Dr. Daniel Turo, DC

There are many benefits to yoga for both the body and mind, some of which include improved circulation, increased core strength, pain and tension relief in the spine and muscles, improved posture, increased flexibility, neutralized stress, improved concentration and immunity, increased self-acceptance, and the list goes on and on. While these benefits are helpful to your average adult, did you ever consider how essential they could be for your CHILDREN?

Breathe. Be Present. Give. Love. Find Balance. Reflect. Practice Calmness. Creativity. Intuition. Find Strength. Listen. JUST BE.

Yoga can do amazing things for young children and provide them with a solid foundation, both physically and mentally while they are still small and blossoming. As kids figure out how they fit in this big world around them, it can be overwhelming and, at times, challenging. One way to help keep everything in balance is by…you guessed it, practicing yoga! Since yoga helps individuals seek balance, this can be extremely helpful for your little, energetic kiddos. By guiding them towards the initial steps to stretch and strengthen their bodies, we can help small children grasp a healthy habit they can maintain for years to come, as they develop and grow. According to the Kiss Guide to Yoga by Shakta Khalsa, ( yoga even helps children with learning and developmental differences such as ADD/ADHD, Autism, and other Sensory Processing Disorders.
Yoga can help children learn to use intentional techniques to better their health (while having fun!); including:

Breath: to enhance self-regulation, modulation, and organization, as well as support respiration for language
Movement: to improve motor planning, balance, coordination, strength and flexibility
Meditation and Relaxation: to decrease stress and promote stillness of the mind for increased attention and ability to focus

Here are a few animal yoga poses to try with your kiddos! They are so much fun and the perfect combination of pretend play with active exercise. Remember to move slowly through these poses, practice taking calming breaths through the stretches, stop if you feel a pose is too uncomfortable for your child or causes any discomfort, and importantly, HAVE FUN! A happy and healthy child = One happy parent!

Snake Pose: Shoulders down, neck long. Palms flat on the ground. Hips and legs stay on the ground. Long stretched legs. “I am open to change.”

Dog Pose: Hands spread. Chest to thighs. Tailbone pushes up. Legs straight. “I have time for me.”

Camel Pose: Knees on the ground. Bend back.

Turtle Pose: Knees bent. Legs stretched out. Back and head toward the ground. “I am calm.”

Cat Pose: Shoulders down, neck long. Palms flat on the ground. Hips and legs stay on the ground. Long stretched legs. “I am open to change.”

Butterfly Pose: Heels together. Arms out. Head and chest toward the ground.

Flamingo Pose: One foot planted on the ground. Other foot planted above or below the knee. Hands at chest or overhead.

Lion Pose: Hips on the heels and the palms resting on the knees. Inhale and lengthen the spine. As you exhale, stick out the tongue and roar like a lion (Haaa!)

Cat/Cow Pose: On your hands and knees, drop your belly and look up to the sky for the cow pose. Then breathe out and arch the back like an angry cat for a cat pose

Monkey Pose: Leaping from squatting to standing and moving arms up & down.


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