A friend of mine recently brought her two children, Eli age two and Mia age four, to one of my Monday 9:30 am Family Yoga classes at Yoga on 7th.
She told me ahead of time that she would be surprised if Eli participated but that she would bring him along with Mia. Eli ended up joining right in and later my friend sent me a message that made my day.
"Eli has been practicing and showing off bridge pose to everyone and anyone around! Very cute. They both loved the class and can't wait for next week."
There isn’t a lot of yoga available for very young children. When I talk about the classes I teach for families with children from two to five, one of the most common questions parents ask me is "How young is too young for kid's yoga?"
I think the answer to this question depends on the child and what the class is like. In my experience children as young as two years old enjoy learning simple yoga postures and participating in my yoga classes.
I use my background as an Early Childhood Educator to give me ideas for age appropriate songs, games, stories, and little projects to incorporate into the classes and keep the children engaged.
In my own experience some of the benefits for really little children include:
• learning body awareness and control (even learning the names of body parts for very small kids),
• learning to participate in a class,
• learning to follow instructions,
• having fun and being creative,
• learning to notice their breath and breathing,
• expanding vocabulary,
• learning patience (before moving on to the next pose, we do the other side of the body, etc).
• finding poses that are calming, for those many times that toddlers become frustrated. Doing legs up the wall is a great tool to be able to avoid a tantrum – and it's calming for the grown up too!
I liked hearing from one of the parents that after just three classes together she can follow up at home on the work we are doing in class, and that yoga can help her little guy "settle down."
The current session of Family Yoga runs until November 23rd at Yoga on 7th. The time is 9:30-10:30 (we have a snack together towards the end of the class). Drop in is $10 per family, or four classes for $30 for registered families.
Children can attend with who ever is with them on Mondays; parents or other family members, younger siblings or caregivers are welcome. It has been fun having a grandmother participating with her granddaughter in this session.
For registration and other class details contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or 604-364-7630.