Start Out

Simple yoga moves for kids


Photo: Shutterstock

With yoga experts impressing us ordinary folk with headstands and complicated contortions, it is no wonder that some perceive yoga to be a challenging activity. However, as with all sports, there are easy basics that require minimal acrobatics, and will prove ideal even for the littlest ones.

Try out these simple poses, and teach them to your kids. They will help to improve core strength, balance, and flexibility in no time!

Airplane pose

Kids love airplanes, so it will not be difficult to entice them with this move!

Stand straight with your arms relaxed by the sides of your body. Raise your left leg and straighten it out behind you, tilting your upper body forward and towards the ground as you do so. Keep your upper body straight and your arms alongside your body as it moves forward.

Your body and outstretched leg should now have formed a horizontal plane, while your other leg should remain straight as it balances on the ground.

Relax and repeat the pose, this time using your right leg.

Bridge pose

Forget London Bridge. This pose, if done correctly over time, could help develop a core stronger than that of the structure found in the nursery rhyme.

To begin, lie on the ground in a relaxed position, with both hands by your side. Bend both legs, with your knees pointing to the sky and your feet flat on the ground. Move your feet in and as close to your buttocks as you can, then raise your hips high – as high as you can go.

Complete the pose by clasping your hands directly under your buttocks, interlacing your fingers. Straighten your arms. Your weight should be supported by both your shoulders and your feet.

Camel pose

Flexibility is key with the camel pose, and supple young ones are sure to enjoy this.

Start by kneeling on the ground, resting your buttocks on your heels. Keep your upper body upright, and your hands relaxed by the sides of your body.

Lift your buttocks off the ground in a gradual manner, till your body forms a right angle at your knees. Move your left arm behind your back and hold on to your left heel; repeat the same with your right hand and your right heel. While still holding on to your heels, look upwards as you thrust your chest forward and up into the air, till you feel the stretch in your back.

Downward-facing dog pose

The downward-facing dog pose provides a stretch to both the back and the hamstrings, giving your child a more complete workout.

First, move into a crawling position, with your hands and knees on the ground. Your upper body should maintain a horizontal plane, forming right angles at your armpits and hips.

With your hands still planted firmly on the ground, lift your knees. As you do so, stretch out your back, moving your upper body to form a triangle with your legs. The buttocks should form the apex of this triangle. Ensure, to the best of your abilities, that both your heels touch the ground as you stretch.