Monday, September 14, 2009

Open Your Heart

Our first class with Alluem Kids was themed around opening our hearts. For many students, it was their first class. Some came encouraged by a friend, others through their parents. You could tell by their faces they did not know what to expect. I encouraged them right in the beginning to ask questions whenever they arose. A typical yoga class for a child is the complete opposite of a typical adult class. There will be very few times when it is completely silent - and conversation is expected. Children have questions and they should not be ignored, even the silliest ones.
After discussing what yoga meant to everyone, we did several heart opening stretches. Children spend most of their days slumped at their desks, developing poor posture. A simple reminder to bring their shoulders up, back, and down can do wonders! Sitting in Baddha Konasana (Bound Ankle or Butterfly Pose), hands behind them resting on their floor, they opened their hearts up. Each child stated their favorite color and shined their colored Heart Lights to the sky, leaning into the natural curve in their spine, lengthening with deep inhales. We talked about what it means to keep an open heart...not only physically, but also to keep an open heart to other people in our lives or going new places or trying new things. It's good to be aware and open to all new things in our lives, especially at their age.
During Savasana (Deep Relaxation), a placed a Heart Message on their each of their chests. A simple piece of construction paper cut into heart shape with a reminder to "Keep An Open Heart". When the kids "woke up" from their relaxation, their little smiles upon seeing their gift said it all.

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