The benefits of yoga for kids are numerous and well-documented. Yoga can help improve kids’ focus and concentration, boost their self-esteem, and calm their minds and body (6). But how do you get kids interested in yoga? One of the best ways is to make it fun! When kids enjoy something, they’re more likely to stick with it. And if you’re wondering, “what’s the easiest yoga for kids?” We’ve got you covered. Let’s take a look at the 10 fun and easy yoga poses for kids that they’re sure to love.
1. Seated Mountain Pose (Parvatasana)
This pose is great for promoting good posture and teaching kids to find stillness.
- Sit up tall with your legs crossed in front of you.
- Rest your hands on your knees with your palms facing up.
- Take a few deep breaths and feel your spine lengthening.
2. Cat-Cow Pose (Marjaryasana-Bitilasana)
This pose is a fun way to get kids moving while also teaching them how to connect their breath with movement. It is one of the easier animal yoga poses for kids that also helps stretch the spine.
- Start in a tabletop position on your hands and knees.
- As you inhale, arch your back and look up toward the ceiling.
- As you exhale, round your back and tuck your chin to your chest.
- Repeat this sequence for a few breaths.
3. Tree Pose (Vrksasana)
If you’re teaching yoga for kindergarteners, this is a great pose to start with. It helps kids develop balance and concentration while also strengthening their legs and feet.
- Stand up tall with your feet together.
- Shift your weight to your left foot and bring your right foot to rest against your left ankle, calf, or thigh (whatever feels most stable).
- Bring your palms together in front of your chest.
- Take a few deep breaths and feel your body grounding down through your left foot.
- To release, lower your right foot back to the ground and bring your palms back to your sides.
4. Deep Breathing (Pranayama)
This is a simple but powerful breathing exercise that can help kids calm their minds and body.
- Sit up tall with your spine straight.
- Place one hand on your stomach and the other on your chest.
- As you inhale, feel your stomach expand.
- As you exhale, feel your stomach fall back in.
- Repeat this cycle for a few minutes.
5. Standing Mountain Pose (Tadasana)
Tadasana is one of the best standing yoga poses for kids as it helps improve balance and posture.
- Stand up tall with your feet together and your arms by your sides.
- Gaze forward, finding something to focus on in front of you.
- Inhale deeply, lifting your shoulders up and back.
- Exhale, relaxing your shoulders down.
- Repeat this cycle a few times.
6. Star Pose (Nakrasana)
This pose is fun for kids and helps stretch out the entire body.
- Stand up tall with your feet apart and your arms by your sides.
- Inhale and raise your arms out to the sides, making a “T” shape with your body.
7. Ragdoll Pose (Puppa Paschimottanasana)
This pose is a great way to release tension from the back and shoulders.
- Start in mountain pose; feet together and arms by your sides.
- Fold forward at the hips, leading with your chest.
- Let your head hang heavy and your arms dangle toward the ground.
- Take a few deep breaths, feeling the stretch in your back and shoulders.
- To release, slowly roll your spine back up to standing.
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8. Warrior II Pose (Virabhadrasana II)
This pose is great for building strength and confidence.
- Stand with your feet together and your arms by your sides.
- Step your left foot back about 3 to 4 feet, keeping your heel down.
- Turn your left foot out at a 45-degree angle and your right foot in at a 90-degree angle.
- Bend your right knee so that it’s directly over your right ankle.
- Reach your arms out to the sides, parallel to the ground.
- Gaze over your right hand.
- Hold for 5 to 8 breaths before switching sides.
9. Boat Pose (Navasana)
This pose is great for building strength in the core and teaching kids to find balance.
- Sit up tall with your knees bent and your feet flat on the ground.
- Lean back slightly, keeping your back straight.
- Lift your feet off the ground and bring your knees in toward your chest.
- Reach your arms out to the sides, parallel to the ground.
- Hold for 5 to 8 breaths.
10. Resting Pose (Savasana)
This is the perfect pose to end your kids’ yoga sequence. It allows the body and mind to relax and integrate all that was learned during the practice.
- Lie down on your back with your legs and arms spread wide.
- Allow your whole body to sink into the ground.
- Close your eyes and take a few deep breaths.
- Stay here for 5 to 10 minutes.
Benefits Of Yoga For Kids
Many don’t realize that kids can experience stress. Although they may not have the responsibilities of an adult, they can still feel pressure from school, friends, and family.
Research shows that children as young as 3 years old can suffer from anxiety (1).
Fortunately, yoga has been shown to be beneficial for them in the following ways:
1. It Can Help Them Destress
Yoga’s deep breathing and relaxation techniques can help children let go of the day’s worries and tension (4). It’s a great way for them to unwind before bedtime.
2. It Can Boost Their Confidence
Yoga can help kids feel good about themselves. When they achieve a difficult pose, it can give them a sense of accomplishment. As they continue practicing, they’ll become more flexible and strong. This can lead to improved body image and positive self-esteem (2).
3. It Can Enhance Their Concentration
Focusing on breath work and specific poses can help kids learn to concentrate (4). This newfound focus can carry over into other areas of their life, such as schoolwork and sports.
4. It Can Help Them Sleep Better
Yoga can help kids wind down before sleep. The relaxation techniques they learn can quiet a racing mind and calm restless bodies. As a result, they’ll fall asleep more easily and sleep more soundly throughout the night (3).
5. It Can Improve Their Behavior
6. It Can Ease Their Pain
For kids suffering from chronic pain, such as headaches or stomach aches, yoga can be an effective form of relief. The relaxation techniques they learn can help them relax their muscles and ease their pain (5).
7. It Can Help Them Manage Their Weight
Yoga can help kids develop a healthier relationship with their bodies. As they become more in tune with their breath and movement, they may be less likely to overeat or make other unhealthy choices.
8. It Can Foster A Love For Exercise
Yoga can be a fun and enjoyable way for kids to get moving. As they experience the benefits of yoga, they may be more likely to continue practicing it into adulthood.
9. It Can Help Them Connect With Others
Yoga can help kids feel connected to others. In a class setting, they’ll interact with other children and adults. This can help them feel less isolated and more like a part of a community.
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Tips For Teaching Yoga To Kids
If you’re interested in teaching yoga to kids, there are a few things to keep in mind:
Keep It Fun
First, it’s important to make the classes fun and interactive. This will help keep the children engaged and motivated.
Keep It Simple
It’s also important to keep the poses simple. Don’t try to teach them too much at once. Start with a few basic poses and build from there.
If you teach them too much at once, you risk overwhelming and frustrating them.
Make It Age-Appropriate
When selecting poses, make sure they’re age-appropriate. Young children, for example, may not be ready for more challenging poses. And, some poses may need to be modified for different age groups.
For example, younger children may need to use props, such as blocks or blankets, to help them achieve the correct alignment. Older children, on the other hand, may be ready for more challenging poses, such as inversions.
Give Them Autonomy
Children love choosing their poses. Whenever possible, let them pick the pose they want to do. This will help them feel more empowered and motivated.
You may also allow them to choose when and how often they practice. This can help them develop a healthy relationship with yoga and avoid burnout.
Encourage Them To Listen To Their Bodies
It’s important that children learn to listen to their bodies. If a pose doesn’t feel right, or if they’re in pain, encourage them to stop.
Remember, children are still learning. They may not be able to do the poses perfectly– and that’s okay. Just encourage them to do their best and have fun.
The Bottom Line
Yoga can be a great way for kids to get moving and improve their health. It can also help them concentrate, ease their pain, and foster a love for exercise. If you’re interested in teaching yoga to kids, keep it fun, simple, and age-appropriate. Most importantly, encourage them to listen to their bodies.
This article is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional advice or help and should not be relied on to make decisions of any kind. Any action you take upon the information presented in this article is strictly at your own risk and responsibility!
- Anxiety and Anxiety Disorders in Children and Adolescents: Developmental Issues and Implications for DSM-V (2011, ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)
- Perceptions of Children Who Participated in a School-Based Yoga Program (2010, tandfonline.com)
- Sleep, Cognition, and Yoga (2021, ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)
- The benefits of yoga in children (2018, sciencedirect.com)
- The Use of Yoga as a Group Intervention for Pediatric Chronic Pain Rehabilitation: Exploring Qualitative and Quantitative Outcomes (2020, ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)
- Yoga for Children and Young People’s Mental Health and Well-Being: Research Review and Reflections on the Mental Health Potentials of Yoga (2014, frontiersin.org)