Yoga Kids Silly to Calm

Marsha Wenig
Year Released: 2007

Categories: Children and Teens , Yoga

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&Marsha Wenig leads this 28 min. children’s (geared towards age 3-6) yoga-inspired workout, each exercise is clearly described in a genuinely encouraging manner (no focus on perfection, just moving & enjoying it) & there is commentary on certain topics (animals, nature) that kids can relate to or be interested in. It seems less structured than Wenig’s “Yoga ABCs” w/ more focus on breathing, noises & body shaking, than actual poses. Though there are real yoga poses, mountain, downward dog, upward dog, tree pose & namaste, and the sanskrit word,shanti (peace), is discussed & cued to be whispered by the kids. My daughter (age 5) likes this video for the silly body movements & focus on making noises, and the outdoor setting (beach).

Equipment: mat

Cast: 8 children, boys & girls (preschool age+), the kids do a great job of performing the exercises w/ their best effort while having fun.

Setting: outdoors, alternates between the beach and meadow.

Workout: First, Marsha introduces the cast by name.

Untying the knot: alternate opening & closing mouth while hands mime pulling (untying) a string from the mouth> stick out tongue> move jaw around> untie neck muscles> head rolls, both directions> untie shoulders> move shoulders up & down> shoulder rolls, back & forth> untie ribs, hips move side to side w/ arms> untie hips, hip circles, both directions> Untie thighs, knees & ankles> shake body out.

Freeze & Flow: freeze body when music stops, shake body & dance when music continues.

Direction breath: start in mountain pose (standing w/ arms to side)> breath in & stretch both arms forward w/ palms together, out to side, overhead & breathe out to bend body forward> Same arms for 4 directions of map or compass: North (overhead), South (down), East (right), West (left).

Here comes the sun: alternate stretching one arm overhead & pulling down to (solar plexus) belly region w/ exhalation.

Bug, Pick & Chimp breath: start in crouched position w/ elevated heels and hands (in fists) in front of body> bare teeth & breath forcefully out (hee, hee)> then pucker lips for a hoo-hoo sound beat chest w/ fists> alternate between sounds & move forward w/ jumps or walking in crouched position.

Downward (diggety) & upward dog: start on all fours w/ bent knees (table-top position)> lift hips & straighten legs to transition into downward dog, then transition forward (lower hips to floor & hold) into upward dog> alternate between two poses> in downward dog position, lift bent knee to side & hold (to mark territory like a dog), both sides> child’s pose (from downward dog, bend knees, place forehead on floor & upper body on thighs, arms stretch to back).

Ankle, heel, toe walking: lift heels, walk on tippy toes while clapping hands overhead, then walk in zig zag> lower heels to floor & lift toes up, then walk on heels, clap hands to sides> roll ankles away from each other & walk on outer edges of feet, arms are stretched in back of body & hands clap> roll ankles towards each other, walk on inner edges of feet & body is low to ground, clap hands & touch the ground.

Open & happy feet: start in mountain pose, then pretend to walk a tight rope (arms to side, walk one foot in front of each other).

Tree pose (balance pose): start in mountain pose, then lift one foot (bent & turned out leg) & place on other leg for balance> arms start in namaste (palms together, hands in front of heart w/bent arms) then open overhead for hold, then open to sides> repeat on other side. Kids are asked to tell what type of tree they are.

Stork pose (balance pose): start in mountain pose, then lift one leg (bent knee) off floor & hold> lift opposite arm w/ bent elbow and wrist and hold> repeat on other side.

Flamingo (balance pose): start in mountain pose, lift one leg to back while upper body moves forward w/ arms to side (counterbalance body) & arms moving (flapping)> repeat on other side & make honking sounds w/ mouth (like flamingos).

Start in crouched position w/ elevated heels and bring hands to namaste position (place elbows on inside of knees) & hold> close eyes & hold pose.

Bunny breath: sit cross-legged or on knees & heels, make bunny ears w/hands> breathe (short) in through nose & out of mouth.

Dragon/fire breath: sit cross-legged w/ hands on belly, breathe in & release air 3 snorts/breathes through nose w/ belly snapping back to spine.

Take 5: sit in comfortable position (most kids are cross-legged) and hold one hand (balled in fist) in air> take 5 breathes in to extend each finger, then reverse (5 breathes out to curl fingers).

Peace breath: sit in comfortable position (most kids are cross-legged) relax muscles of face, breathe in & out, whisper the word “peace” (cues to think of people & places to wish peace for), & whisper “Shanti” sanskrit.

Polar bear pose: start seated on heels, then open knees to side> lower upper body to floor, place chin on floor> place hands/paws over nose (bent arms).

Twist & blow: start lying on back w/ bent knees (hugged to chest)> rock knees back & forth> stretch arms out to side w/palms up, then drop knees to one side w/ head facing opposite side> repeat on other side> repeat on both sides w/ closed eyes.

Lemon/sour ball: Hug knees into chest & bring head to knees and hold.

From previous position, extend legs on floor & arms to side w/ closed eyes, and relax body.