This week we’re talking about tree pose. It took some prodding and bribing to get Harlem on to the mat but once he was in the pose, he was having a great time and didn’t want to stop doing yoga.
Benefits of tree post for parents and adults:
- Strengthens legs and spine
- Stretches inner thighs, chest and shoulders
- Improves balance
- Improves conctration
- Quiets the mind
- Parent kneel next to toddler
- Toddler holds parent’s shoulders, parent holds toddler’s waist
- Help toddler lift one foot up to their ankle, shin, or thigh
- If toddler is stable, have them bring their hands to prayer hands at their chest, out to the side, or up overhead
- Let go of their waist for a second until they can gradually play with their balance
- Switch sides
For kids 4 and up:
- Stand in mountain pose (standing up tall with arms down by their sides)
- Imagine that one foot is the root of a tree, growing deep into the earth
- Find a point to focus on, either on the floor or wall ahead
- Bend one knee (the one that’s not the root!), turn it to the side, and bring the sole of the foot to the rooted ankle, calf, or thigh
- Reach arms up high over head like they’re branches
- For an extra challenge, sway left and right like a tree in the wind
- Bring foot back down carefully
- Stand on both feet and feel what it’s like to be grounded again
- Switch sides
- Take a turn while your child is watching
- Show them how you take 3 deep breaths on each side
- For an extra challenge, hold your kid in your arms as you balance on one leg!
Discussion points afterwards:
- How does it feel to be a tree?
- Did your breath help you focus?
- How can you use your breath to help you focus and balance even when you’re not doing yoga?
- What are some of the different trees around the world?
- How do trees benefit the earth?