Madison and I had a lot of fun practicing yoga moves with the help of the new GapKids Marvel – GapFit Marvel collection, after all, you need the perfect workout gear when working out.
Yoga has numerous benefits for both children and adults. If you practice yoga and would like to introduce the practice to your child(ren), or you yourself would like to get into it as well as involving the little ones, here are a few tips on how to start.
Keep it simple and quick
Children often don’t want to pay attention for long periods at a time, and that is very normal. When introducing yoga, keep it simple as far as poses go, and only do a pose for a minute before moving on with younger children (6 or younger).
You want to keep your yoga session around 15 minutes unless your child is over the age of 7, or thoroughly enjoys the practice. If they do enjoy it, be sure to mix in many minimally strenuous poses so that their body can keep up without being injured or strained.
Plan your yoga time
It’s best to do yoga after eating a light snack or right away in the morning. A full stomach can prevent your body from getting into the proper form and will hold you back from getting the full benefits of yoga. It’s also not good to let your child eat too much before yoga as they will quite possibly feel tired and not want to participate as they normally would.
Encourage them to use the proper form and breath, don’t force it
While doing yoga with your child, you will want to encourage the proper form, and help them, however you do not want to force them into it. Let their body naturally adjust as you continue to practice yoga and they will eventually be able to get into the proper form. (Practice makes perfect!) You also want to encourage them to breath properly during yoga, this will help them relax and will boost the effects of the practice.
Use positive reinforcement often
Before, during and after doing yoga you should be using positive reinforcement with your young ones. They need to feel like they are doing a good job and should never feel discouraged. If they are having trouble with a pose, be sure to let them know that it’s okay and that they will get better each time they do it.
Introduce it with a game of Simon Says or tell a story that includes yoga poses
Actually getting your child to participate is the first and can be the most challenging task. You will initially want to introduce it in a fun way such as a game of Simon Says, or telling a story that goes along with the poses and having them do the poses with you. Some children may jump right in and love it, others not so much. Be sure to let your child act naturally, don’t force yoga on them, if they want to do a certain pose rather than the one that you want them to do, that’s okay. There will come a time when they will participate and do exactly as you do. Age plays a big factor in this; if you have young children don’t get frustrated with them when they just want to run away and play, continue to introduce it each day and eventually they will want to join in.
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