What’s the Appropriate Age for Children to Start Doing Yoga?
I’ve been asked this question a lot by parents. I must say I’ve had kids ranging from 4 to 9 years old coming to my kids yoga class. However, I have allowed even younger kids to join my class, with one of their parents present.
I am inspired to introduce yoga to children at their earliest possible age, in order to encourage them to express themselves mentally and physically in wholesome, fulfilling new ways, through the combination of breathing, singing, performing poses and team building activities. Far beyond merely performing poses, Yoga for children is all about learning to acknowledge their own expression of enjoyment of space.
Having children doing Yoga, is a stepping stone for them to learn, and recognize just how everyday life is based on Yoga. In order to achieve this, I’ve introduced a simple method for them to observe and to express themselves, in knowing that Yoga is part of our life, Yoga is everything and their everything is actually Yoga practice some way or another. This approach allows younger children to not be afraid to express themselves and have fun throughout the process.
For instance, commonly I’ll have children perform the poses to the rest of the class and modify the asanas in a fun way, as well as give them kid-friendly names, which further allows them to be in their comfort zone when at times they are hesitant or withdrawn. Nevertheless, I have come to realize that allowing them to observe is one of the best ways to discover just how expressive kids can be, especially when it comes to sound; they will usually be singing or chanting mantras at the end of the class, regardless of how withdrawn or shy they seemed at first.
Yoga is, therefore, inseparable from life: It is movement, it is about breathing, and it is about helping each other. Yoga is everything. Being able to incorporate the Pilates principle with Coordinative movement helps children strengthen their body in a loving way. Breathing and Meditation helps them listen to their inner voice and stay calm, and set the main steps to the exciting, lifelong journey of awakening to their true essence of simply being happy within.”
Kids Yoga at Ubud Yoga Centre
Kids yoga is held every Saturday from 10-11am at Ubud Yoga Centre. Kids are welcome from around 4 years old, and parents or a nanny can sit in if children are shy on their own. However, parents are also encouraged to practice while their kids do, and there is a Bikram Yoga Express class held at the same time.
For more information visit www.ubudyogacentre.com