4 Apr 2019

Gathre Yoga, Mini Edition



I always get a flood of comments, replies, DMs and messages whenever sharing snippets of Rheo doing yoga and since most of them are the same or similar in some way, I decided to round up the basics of how and why we’ve implemented the activity as a norm.

For starters, people always ask when he started “doing yoga” and I guess I never really looked at it that way until the last year. He would always mimic poses I would do or stretches his dad did routinely, from a young age (don’t they learn to copycat so quick?)

With that, it seemed like there was a natural interest in the movement portion of yoga and I thought it was good reset activity for days he was getting “in trouble” a lot, after a lot of travel, or routinely each Sunday as part of our “slow down” day.

Getting him into real positions, sequences, and familiarity only took his interest to the next level and now he loves it so much that he’ll request it at bed time or in the morning when we talk about the day ahead.

In the summer, when we really started to get him into it, we were making the most of the sunny West Coast days and he was doing his yoga outside using one of our family Gathre mats. But we ended up getting him his own, proper yoga mat (also from Gathre – because they do it all!) for Christmas and it’s been the BEST!






My tips for getting your kids into yoga are:

Realizing the differences between you and your child — because there are very real, extensive, developmental differences between adults who partake in yoga and kids. Being honest about those and having realistic expectations (about length, concentration, execution, etc.) makes sure that it’s a fun and organic exercise for them, not a demanding request from you.

Create routine — having a structured idea on how you will go about the activity and making a routine of it, helps them know what to expect from the act as a whole as well as things like poses and positions, starting and ending, sequences, etc. Ex: Rhe knows that he begins and ends each “session” relaxed, ready to start/end, with “namaste.”

Be flexible — no pun intended! Sometimes he does an entire sequence spot on, sometimes he freestyles half of it. But he’s being active, stretching, doing one thing at a time, and most of all enjoying his involvement in the activity! Regardless of the day, we usually have a few minutes of crazy while getting his mat out and same when he’s done. Balance people, balance.

Affirmations — praise, reassurance and encouragement are key in all things kids do and I’ve found this to be no different. Some movements are hard for little ones to achieve but a reminder that the effort alone is great or applause when they’ve nailed it down the road, are good for self esteem and everyone does better when they feel empowered.

Choose fun resources — that are geared to their age and development, perhaps colourful or artistic or intriguing. Things like imaginative sequences, poses that imitate favourite things like animals or nature, videos to follow, games like poses “BINGO” or “Simon Says” are great for little learners.

Some resources that have made the practicing of yoga a real thing, that’s both fun and easy for everyone in our home include:

Yoga pose cards. We got these ones from Gathre (super cute, depict parent and child togetherness, thick and durable for little hands, can create your own sequence or just practice individually). 

And.

Kid specific videos. We love Cosmic Kids Yoga on YouTube (ideal durations, realistic poses, themes that are already a hit in the realm of children’s media like trending movies, shows, etc).


I’m so happy we decided to really pursue yoga as one of our few quiet-time, mindfulness, and independent activities because I’ve seen so much growth and benefit from it all.

It’s truly amazing the level of possibility our children hold, but with that, I’ve felt it’s also important to give them an outlet from our very big and fast paced world as well — and this seemed to fall into both aspects.
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