Many parents want to spend the most time with their children for various reasons. They want to be a role model but also for kids to have plenty of fun, too.
There are various options to get the best of both worlds that don’t involve doing chores. One of the great ways is to do kids yoga with them. Yoga doesn’t only keep them fit and prepared for later in life, but it also teaches them to stay focused, be disciplined, reduce stress, and much more.
These easy-to-do yoga poses are not only fun but can be interactive and educational as well.
Kids Yoga Poses and Benefits
For anyone familiar with yoga, many studies offer the benefits of yoga as an adult. It’s known to:
- Lower stress
- Relieve anxiety
- Cope with depression
- Reduce back pain
But beyond that, yoga has been a popular part of our culture for decades. It’s readily available to people through yoga studios, and Youtube videos that provide adult yoga poses to easy kid yoga poses.
Even though it’s often presented for an older audience, it doesn’t mean yoga isn’t for kids. Your kid will get the same benefits as you are getting.
But for kids, it can be even more important as they are exposed to bullying – both on social media and at school – and are faced with other stresses and challenges such as:
- High parental and school expectations
- Body image issues
- Peer pressure
Yoga can be a solution to those things as those often wear down a kid’s self-esteem.
Yoga For Kids Also Provides Other Benefits
Beyond dealing with whatever life throws at kids, other benefits are especially helpful for kids. Some other examples are:
- More flexibility – Yoga teaches kids the basics of stretching and correct breathing which results in more flexibility. This prevents injuries and sprains.
- Helps with sleeping – 73% of teenagers don’t get enough sleep, according to the National Sleep Foundation, and poor sleeping patterns start when they’re even younger. Sleep is crucial and so if yoga helps with that, it’ll be to their benefit.
- It encourages teamwork – Sports are often the go-to physical activity for kids, but those environments can be over-competitive. While kids need to learn to win and lose graciously, not all kids can or want to participate in sports. Yoga is a middle ground for everyone as it works for everybody.
- Keeps kids calm – The emphasis on breathing in yoga instills in the mind that breathing is a way to calm down when their emotions overflow. Combined with yoga games and songs, kid’s yoga exercise provides an avenue for emotional stability and processing
- It’s fun – Looking at yoga poses, many of them are presented as animals, and they’re like that for a reason. For kids, it’s an opportunity for them to imitate the sounds. Combined with colorful mats, yoga can be entertaining for them.
20 Kids Yoga Poses to Try
Sit tall in a cross-legged position. Stretch one arm across your body and rest it on your knee. Stretch your other hand behind you and breathe in deeply. Breathe in and out three or four times slowly before switching.
The rainbow is a full-body stretch. While having both feet planted on the ground, raise both arms over the head and place one hand over the other. Take turns stretching the left and right side of your body, forming a rainbow.
3. Lotus Pose
Sit up straight in a cross-legged position. Softly place your hands on your knees, palms facing up. Breathe in and out deeply to calm your body. It’s a classic and an easy kid’s yoga pose that will teach them grounding and meditation.
Stand with your feet at a hip distance apart. Press your feet down into the ground to create a solid base. Stand up straight with arms at your sides with your palms forward and fingers spread wide. Keep a straight back as your lift from the crown of your head to the sky.
When it comes to fun kid yoga poses, who doesn’t like a little imagination? The airplane pose not only teaches balance but also helps strengthen the legs and core muscles.
Begin first with the mountain pose, then extend your arms out to the side. Once you feel balanced, slowly lean forward and lift one leg behind you. Hold this pose and encourage your little ones to make the noises of an airplane getting ready for take-off!
6. The Tree
The tree pose is perfect for practicing balance and stability. Stand with your legs apart and hands together like in prayer. Slowly lift one leg while lengthening your spine and bring your hands above your head. If your kids are having trouble balancing, they can keep their hands in a prayer pose in front of their chest.
Lie flat on your tummy with your elbows bent. Slowly lift your chest so your elbows are under your chest and your legs straight behind you. This is the perfect time to engage with your kids and ask them to name other reptiles they’ve studied in school or talk about the different species of cobras.
Stand up straight, then fold forward. Interlace your hands, swinging them side to side like an elephant’s trunk. This yoga pose is fun for the kids and allows them to loosen up.
Sit straight up while pulling up your knees to your chest. Wrap your arms around your knees and point your forehead to your knees, breathing out. Breathe in while lifting your head. Repeat this as often as you want.
10. The Downward Dog
Start with your knees and hands on the ground. Next, slowly curl their toes and straighten their knee while you lift your hips in the air. Encourage your kids to keep their heads between their arms. This pose helps practice stillness.
Lie on your stomach with your arms in front of you. Slowly push your chest and head up, straightening your arms. Throw in some fun animal noises and try imitating an otter!
Kneel on your shins, with your chest to your thighs. Take a couple of breaths in and out before springing your body forward. Encourage your kids to roar like a lion and stick their tongues out toward their chin. This helps improve speech and relieve tension from the chest.
Sit up straight with the bottoms of your feet together. Slide your arms underneath your knees, touching the floor with your elbows. Breathe in and out slowly while trying your best to put your forehead to your feet. Encourage your kids to go as far as they can go without over extending themselves.
Stand tall with your feet slightly apart. Bring your hands to the prayer position. Inhale and push your hands to the sky. Exhale and move your hands to the side and back to the center.
Start by standing tall. Slightly bend your knees, and place your right leg over your left one. Cross your right arm over your left one in a twist. Slowly breathe in and out three or four times, then switch sides.
16. The Shark
Lay on the floor with their belly down. Have their forehead on the floor with both arms by your sides, and imagine that your legs are a fin. Lock your hands behind your lower back and on the count of three, lift your head and heart forward and up. To make it fun, ask your kids to move their legs like an actual shark’s fin!
Start in a deep lunge stance. The foot of the leg in front should be facing forward, and the other foot should be at about a 45-degree angle. Tell your child to extend both arms in opposite directions by following the legs on the same side. Arms should be parallel to the ground with palms facing down.
Lie on your back with knees bent and feet flat on the ground. Keep the knees hip width apart and arms alongside the body with the palms facing down. Have their fingers touch the back of the heels.
Then tuck the chin into the chest, and as you breathe in, lift the bottom off the ground and press up.
Count to 3 and jump into the starfish pose with your arms stretched out and feet apart. This easy yoga pose can turn into a fun little game to play, where each whenever someone yells the word “starfish,” everyone jumps into that pose.
20. Cat Stretch
Place both hands on the ground and rest on your knees. Alternate between arching the back up while pressing the head down (cat) and gently arching the back while pressing the head and shoulders up to the sky. Animal noises are encouraged!
Fun Yoga Games For Kids
Take the Yoga Poses Outdoors
Many of the poses are inspired by nature and our animal friends. Take these yoga poses outside and turn them into a fun, educational exercise. For the tree pose, ask your child why trees are important to our environment or do fun activities like creating a “kindness tree” and writing down one act of kindness on each leaf. This also helps instill the importance of gratitude.
Yoga Pose Detective
This game is ideal once kids have gotten familiar with a variety of yoga poses. The idea is to call out various options and let kids choose any of the poses they know that match whatever description provided. This is an easy and fun game to get kids to do kid yoga poses for three or more people involved.
Yoga Pose Musical Dots
Another fun kids yoga exercise is the yoga pose musical dots. All you need is some construction paper, a pen, and scissors. Take the construction paper and cut circles out of the different colors of construction paper. From there, write the different yoga poses on every circle.
Akin to musical chairs, play some music your kids like, and have them walk slowly around the circle. Once the music stops, your “chair” is to perform the particular pose that you’re standing in front of.
5 Benefits of Kids Yoga Poses
By no means is this list complete, as there are dozens of different poses for kids and adults to be trying out. But the goal is getting kids to have fun with various easy-to-follow yoga poses, and this collection is more than enough. We assure you that there will be plenty of fun with the various games and yoga poses your child can do and will have them laughing in the end!
Featured photo credit: Rainbow Yoga via rainbowyogatraining.com
|||^||John Hopkins Medicine: 9 Benefits of Yoga|
|||^||American Academy of Pediatrics: Study: 73% of high school students not getting enough sleep|
|||^||Namate Kid: Airplane Pose|
|||^||Banyan Botanicals: Yoga Pose: Lion Pose|
|||^||Yoga Journal: Bridge Pose|
|||^||Children Inspired By Yoga: Starfish Pose|
|||^||Flow and Grow Kids Yoga: Yoga Poses for Kids: Tree Pose|