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A few basic rules for teaching yoga to children - Extra activities - Educatall

A few basic rules for teaching yoga to children

In my opinion, all children should be introduced to yoga so they can reap the many benefits associated with this activity. The best part about enjoying a yoga session with children is that you will benefit from the session as much as they will, even if it only lasts a few minutes. Are you interested in introducing your group to yoga? Here are a few basic rules that should be respected to ensure a calm and revealing practice.

  1. Gradually build up your practice. Children need time to adapt to the various poses and master them before taking them to the next level. Observe, guide, and help children perform the different poses if necessary.

  2. In the beginning, your sessions shouldn’t last more than a few minutes. Slowly increase the duration of your sessions as children progress. Keep in mind that young children have a limited attention span.

  3. Breathing is key. Teaching children how to breathe properly is essential if you want them to relax. Know that experimenting with a limited number of poses that are executed with proper breathing techniques is better than performing several poorly executed poses.

  4. Embrace and accept imperfection. Children do not need to perfectly master poses. Don’t forget they are experimenting. Competitiveness should never be present in a yoga session. Poses will be imperfect, and your session will be too. Focus on experimentation instead of perfection.

  5. Always provide a physical model for children. A yoga teacher should never simply dictate instructions. You must be a participant. As you state the instructions, execute the poses. This will make it easier for children to imitate you as they listen to what you are saying.

  6. Use visual aids. In the educatall club, you will find several illustrated yoga poses. Present the pictures and arrange them in the order in which you will perform the poses during your session. Pictures represent important allies for successful yoga sessions.

  7. Use mats, cushions, or naptime mattresses to delimit a space for each child. Explain to children that they may use their space as they wish, but also that they must respect the space of each group member.

  8. Yoga should be an enjoyable experience. Discipline should therefore not be a factor. Put your interventions on hold and have fun!

  9. You may play music during yoga sessions. Music can have a calming or energizing effect on children, depending on your intention.

  10. Yoga can be used strategically during the day: before naptime, when children arrive in the morning, after naptime, after a high-energy activity, when children are overexcited, etc. Do not hesitate to include yoga sessions in your daily schedule. Children will learn to look forward to it…and you will too!

 

Maude Dubé, Specialized educator

 


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