by Jen Armstrong
When you feel the need for something to calm your child’s (or your own!) body and mind, then trying these few poses, or even just one, can help you to relax and unwind. They are also a great way to calm your children in certain times of the day, such as bedtime, when a gentle way to lower their levels of physical and emotional arousal is greatly beneficial.
This is just a simple seated pose with crossed legs, and can be done either on your own or sat together back to back in the partner pose variation.
Easy pose story: Sit up tall, close your eyes, and place your hands on your knees or lap. As you breathe in nice long deep breaths imagine you are both blowing up a big bubble of love and happiness, and every time you breathe in more, and more again, it gets bigger and bigger still… until it pops! Remaining still and breathing out a nice long slow breath, enjoy imagining the warm feeling of shared love and joy raining down on you.
CRESCENT MOON POSE
This is a side bend pose which can be done either stood up, or may I suggest lying down in this case. This can be a nice pose to do on the carpet/mat before getting into bed, and you can also do this one together!
Crescent moon story: Imagine you are a little moon raising high into the sky as you lift your arms above your head palms touching. Imagine that as you are raising your arms into the air you are reaching higher and higher into the sky, and then bend your body over to the right as you try to touch a star on your right and then the same on your left side (although maybe this time you can tickle the other crescent moon laying next to you :)…) After, maybe head to your window and see if you can spot the moon to wish it a good night before getting into bed yourself.
This is the kid’s version of child’s pose. Still the exact same pose that we do in adult yoga but you can add a little story to it. This is a good one before bed to help totally calm and relax the body and the mind and prepare for sleep.
Rock pose story: Imagine you are a little tiny rock at the bottom of a river. You sit there quietly and peacefully all hunched up in a little ball and sometimes you can feel the ripples and current of the water washing over your back (this is where you can get their blanket and waft it over them to simulate the water). Sometimes you feel big waves washing over you, and then slow calm waves. But the river always calms as nighttime draws in, and slowly, slowly comes to stillness.
If you enjoy the calm and stillness of a present moment, as will they.