Yoga is a fun way to get your child participating in full body movement, at any age and ability!
Yoga is known for its many health and wellness benefits, and the benefits apply to kids too! Yoga for kids improves flexibility, strength, balance, body awareness, respiratory and GI function, as well as reduces stress and improves self-confidence.
These 6 animal yoga poses for kids are brought to you by NAPA Center’s very own Lindsey Moss! Lindsey is our lead physical therapist at our Boston clinic. She practices yoga regularly and has seen the benefits of the mind/body connection in her own life as well as in those of her students. Join in on the fun and try these animal yoga poses with your kiddos!
Working on hands and knees engages the core while simultaneously addressing shoulder girdle and pelvic strength. To make it more challenging, give your cat a “tail” by extending one leg back. Too difficult? Place a ball or pillow under your child’s belly for added trunk support.
This full squat pose works on increasing full foot contact with promoting posterior weight shifting, as well as working on range of motion in the hips, knees, and ankles. If the full range is too much, have your child sit on a ball or low seat/bench to start.
This tall kneeling posture engages the glutes and core, with a focus on opening the front line of the body. Maintain a neutral head and neck position with hands on your hips or at your heart to reduce back bending if this is uncomfortable.
This posture works on balancing on one foot while working the arms and legs across midline. Place the lifted foot on a box for added stability. If the bind in the arms is too much, take a bear hug with one hand to the opposite shoulder. This can also be done while sitting.
This is a great pose for balance while working on weight bearing through the hands and feet with the added stretch across the back of the legs. If there is a lot of tightness in the legs, bring the hands onto a bench or chair for greater access to the pose. For an added challenge, lift one leg in the air and let that tail wag!
Promotes a good stretch to the inner thighs while strengthening the thighs and glutes in a wide squat. Place a ball or chair under the hips for support. Lift one or both heels for a challenge on your toes!
Lindsey Moss is the PT manager and lead trainer at NAPA Boston. She is trained in NDT, Kinesiotaping, and DMI. She graduated with her doctorate in physical therapy from Northeastern University in 2009. She practices yoga regularly and has seen the benefits of the mind/body connection in her own life as well as in those of her students. Lindsey enjoys many outdoor activities like running, hiking, and bike riding, but nothing beats a relaxing New England beach day.