Sunday, January 29, 2012

8 Limbs of Yoga for Kids - Week 1: Yamas

This 8 week session, the Alluem Kids and I will be exploring the 8 Limbs of Yoga! So often when we think of yoga, we only think about the poses, the physical...but there is so much more to yoga! Yoga is a way of life and these 8 Limbs act as guidelines to living a purposeful and meaningful life and there are so many good lessons within for the kids!
The 1st Limb of Yoga are the Yamas. The Yamas focus on our behavior and how we act in this world. It draws attention to the way we treat other people, animals, the earth, our belongings and the places we go. For an example, the kids and I talked about yoga studio etiquette. We should always treat a space the way we would want our own space to be treated. Removing our shoes to keep the floor and our mats clean. Entering quietly, rolling out our mats, sitting down and stretching or lying down and resting. Being respectful of the people in the room around us. Treating others the way we would want to be treated. Smiling and saying hello. Introducing ourselves to a new student. The Yamas also teach us that what we do in the world effects everything and everyone around us. This is the yoga we can practice every day!
A fun way to show this was with a Group Knot! Everyone stands in a circle shoulder to shoulder raising their right arm to the sky. Reaching across the circle we grab hands with a friend. Then raising our left arm to the sky we reach across and grab hands with another friend. We can now see that we've turned ourselves into a human knot! Now to untangle! The things we need are communication, patience and awareness of how we move. The person's whose hand you are holding is ultimately the most important. That hand effects the next person which effects the next person and so on in a chain reaction! So much fun!

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