"Yoga is a light, which once lit, will never dim. The better your practice, the brighter the flame." - B.K.S. Iyengar
A common misconception is that yoga is an activity exclusively for adults. However, yoga can be increasingly beneficial for kids of all ages. The benefits of yoga are well known to all, but particularly for kids, yoga offers the following benefits:
Yoga helps children in achieving a healthier body.
Yoga improves concentration.
Yoga increases a child’s confidence as well as self-esteem.
Yoga gives children improved balance.
Yoga enhances the flexibility of body.
Yoga strengthens the body and mind connection.
Yoga improves the quality of sleep.
To all adults reading this, go grab a yoga mat for you and your children and begin practicing yoga. Mentioned below are seven yoga poses for kids:
1. The butterfly pose – Badhakonasana As the name suggests, this pose is similar to that of a butterfly flapping its wings. Ask your child to sit straight with their spine erect, head facing forward and bend their knees and join bother feet such that they touch each other. Then hold both the feet with hands and ask them to flap their legs just like a butterfly. This post improves flexibility and strengthens the legs.
2.Cat Cow Pose – Chakravakasana Most kids love to imitate the animals and make animal noises so they would like to do this pose too. This pose involves rounding the spine and bulling the belly in and up. Afterwards press the hands and sit like a cat is stretching up and exhale. Now relax the lower back and lift the chin up towards the sky like a cow. Once the child gets the hang of it, he/she can go back and forth between the cat and cow pose. This pose helps maintain the spine and strengthens arms and shoulders.
3.The tree pose – Vrikshasana Also called the balancing pose, this pose is performed by standing on one foot and pressing the insides of the other foot on the inside of the standing leg. This pose can significantly improve the focus of children. As children try to balance their weight on one leg, their balancing power improves.
4.The dog pose –Adho Mukhasvanasana This pose is similar to a dog stretching itself while the ands are supposed to be kept in an inverted ‘U’ position. Ask your child to tuck the toes inwards, raise hips as much as possible and push the chest inside while the hands are stretched in U shape and head hangs inwards. This pose engages the core of the body and improves blood circulation of the body.
5.The warrior pose – Vibhadrasana This pose uses the core strength of the body and enhances it significantly. Ask your child to stand with the legs apart and arms stretched at shoulders. Now twisting the right foot outwards, bend the right knee in forward direction while keeping the left leg straight. T he pose can be helpful in reducing pain in the back and shoulders as well.
6.The boat pose – Naukasana The pose involves forming a boat like structure by using the body. In this pose, the hands and feet are raised parallel to the ground. The children are supposed to lift their feet while simultaneously raising their arms. The pose strengthens the lower belly and helps control the breathing.
7. The Resting pose – Savasana This pose is also called the calming post is the easiest pose and honestly is our favourite one. Ask your child to lie on his/her back and lie with his/her arms and legs stretched out. Then ask your child to concentrate on his/her breathing. This is a great pose to help children relax.
In case you are confused whether your child is doing the pose right or is not holding the form right, you can take help from tutorials or charts with pictures of each pose that are easily available on the web.
We, at Shanti Juniors believes that practicing yoga daily will help children to improve mental, physical and emotional health. Yoga can help children relax, relieve stress and anxiety, improve emotional regulation, increase empathy, and improve mood as well as help children sleep better.