Training

Article – “The Gift of Teaching Yoga to Children”

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Have you noticed that children are naturally able to create gratitude and humility in others! This is because they come from a place of natural innocence with no hidden intentions. With every yoga class I teach, the children reflect something for me to take away and apply to my life. 

This was reinforced during my recent trip to Kannur, Southern India. We were invited by a dear Indian friend to attend a beautiful sacred Hindu dance ceremony called a “Theyyam.”  Many families and children were present to either help with the ceremony or receive the blessings. The children welcomed us with their smiles and questions. No different than children anywhere in the world, they shared their natural innocence, spontaneity and joy with us in this sacred moment. I felt a real sense of community with and between families and observed their curiosity in seeing Canadian women in Sarees.  They had a good giggle and so did we! We discovered each other’s cultural uniqueness and embraced it without judgment.

For me, this experience was a form of Bhakti yoga, the yoga of devotion and love, reflected in the beautiful Indian bhajans (devotional songs), mantras & ceremony.  In this sacred space, the mind naturally becomes less chatty and more calm and peaceful.  The young Indian girls shared their kindness and laughter with us. It was infectious and my heart was bursting with joy as we melted together in harmony and love.  As a parent, yoga teacher or educator in Canada, have you not experienced this quality of children?  It is a universal quality.

Teaching yoga to children is a way to re-connect with you authentic self and to your own unique voice. Club Yoga teacher training asks you to jump in and immerse yourself just like a child does in every moment. It requires you to draw upon the energy of the children, to trust your own unique expression to deliver a dynamic, rich and flowing class. Teachers in training have fun exploring the use of yoga props, story-telling, drama, music, art, yoga games, pranayamas, meditation etc. following the base of a sound class format. The children engage naturally with the teacher, united in the flow of the class.  This required the teacher to be present and open to co-creating a class with them.

There are an infinite number of themes and yoga elements to bring to a class.  How would you bring in Bhakti yoga to a class?  The yoga class is multi-dimensional and can bring elements of different types of yoga.  In Club Yoga, we have the children do karma yoga by offering snacks to other children after class or assisting the teacher will an element of the class e.g. showing tree pose. 

As a parent, yoga teacher or educator, you will experience joy, gratitude and humility that you have helped open a space for children to excel and be in touch with their true nature.

For more information about teacher training programs and parenting workshops see the website www.clubyoga.ca and to register call Anamda at 613-228-9235 or email info@clubyoga.ca.  The next Level 1 certified teacher training will be held on June 7, 8, and 9th at the Bioenergetics Institute.  Anamda Sly is a community nurse with over 30 years of experience in health promotion/teaching and is a graduate of the Bioenergetics Institute holding two certificates in Club Yoga teacher training (children & teen yoga).

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