Feb 21, 2018

Helping Kids Stay Active Indoors with Yoga

Indoor play seems to be one of the most popular topics I'm asked to talk year after year. Whether it's for rainy days, too-hot summer days, long weekends, or these winters that just don't seem to end.

I've shared lots of my favorite toys and games for indoor play, without breaking everything in the house, as well as DIY's that will keep kids active indoors. But today I wanted to share something I don't touch on too often, which is how to get your kids exercising in a more traditional sense, like through yoga.

My friend Jenny Silverstone shared this great piece on Mom Loves Best about all the benefits yoga can have for our young ones. I love this infographic she put together addressing some of them:



Jenny also has a few tips for introducing your kids to yoga, including:

Be a leader.

I think this is so important. Jenny notes that kids mimic your behavior, which is totally try. Even if you've never done a Sun Salutation in your life, try out yoga with your kids, and be willing to laugh at yourself when you have trouble balancing. 


Keep it fun and easy. 

Don't worry about the technical aspects of yoga. Focus on the simple concepts like breathing and being mindful of your own body. One great idea Jenny has is to try out poses that mimic your child's favorite animal, which I love!


Don't chase perfection.

When you're new at yoga, or any new hobby, it can be hard not to compare yourself to the professionals. Remind kids to listen to their bodies and do their best, and the more they practice, the more they'll see progress.  


Add in songs and dances.

Playing your child's favorite music will make this so much more fun for them and YOU. I love when my local yoga studio has theme nights like 90's music, or all Beatles hits.


Let your child be the leader.

Kids love to play pretend and be the "adult" in the room. Once you've practiced yoga a few times, let them choose the poses and sequences for you to follow along with. 



DIY Yoga Mat Idea


As with any exercise, sometimes it's easy to get wrapped up in the more material side of the activity like buying the coolest yoga pants or the hippest gym bag. Finding a fun outfit to wear that makes you feel good and a mat in your favorite color is great, but don't worry about looking "Instagram ready". It's important to teach this to your kids as well.

But if your kids like practicing yoga, and want to get more into it, try having them create their own yoga mat and style for their practice. I love this activity from my friends at Hallmark Channel for making a DIY kids yoga mat. Check out the video below:




Just like yoga isn't a favorite for all adults, it won't be a favorite for all kids, but it might be a great fit for yours and worth giving a try. Jenny also shares some precautionary instructions, which are important to review before getting started.

You can read her full article over at Mom Love Best, which breaks down all the benefits of yoga for kids and has some great ideas for beginner poses they can try out.

Thanks for sharing all these amazing ideas, Jenny!
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