Can Nursery Children Do Yoga?Jul 16, 2021
Hello, I’m Vanessa, a BEAM ACADEMY children’s yoga instructor. Ive been teaching Yoga to children for over 7 years and most of my teaching experience has been with nursery aged children. I often get asked: “Can nursery aged children do Yoga?”. The simple answer is YES of course.
But I guess what people are thinking when they ask that is, how do you teach Yoga to such young children and how much Yoga do they really do?
At nursery age, especially between 3 and 5 children are really like little sponges. They will watch and copy most actions as long as they’re entertained and engaged.
At Beam we use songs, stories, games and more to engage their attention and make it seem like the children are playing, rather than taking a lesson.
Through story telling and make believe you can incorporate so many Yoga poses and even simple breathing exercises that are fun and beneficial to children. You’d be surprised at how good they are at doing poses like Downward Dog, Tree pose, Boat pose. They even enjoy doing sun salutations. At this age, they are already so flexible and open, so stretching comes very naturally. We are trying to maintain that healthy flexibility and also improve their strength and co ordination. So the poses we do don’t have to be super challenging. Any way that they can keep their bodies mobile is good.
We also focus on relaxation. Some people might think that these children don’t need relaxation, some of them are still taking midday naps! Sometimes in nurseries it can be hard to find a quiet moment that’s not just nap time when they’re already half asleep and unaware of their surroundings anyway. Of course sleeping is important, but learning to enjoy being quiet and calm is so important for everyone at all ages and it is something that does require practice. The earlier we can start, the better.
I’ve seen groups of children who start out not being able to lie still or quiet when I first meet them to knowing exactly what to do when I say its time for our relaxation. They will lie down quietly and listen to the gentle music I put on and afterwards the group will remain calm and quiet after we finish - sometimes only for a for few tiny moments, but I know that’s better than nothing.
Basically, nursery aged children can do Yoga and they really enjoy it. For me they are some of the easier age groups to teach because they are so joyful.
I did my Children's yoga course with BEAM ACADEMY - If you would like to start your journey teaching children's yoga, check out BEAM ACADEMY's 40 Hour Accredited Course here
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