Thursday, March 25, 2010

Breath of Fresh Spring Air

Spring has sprung this weekend! We've opened the doors at the studio and let the air flow through! I love this time of year! To take advantage of this fresh air, the Alluem Kids focused on the breath. They know the breath is important. Increasing our meditation time to 3 minutes, we simply focused on our breath. Often in meditation, our minds wander, which is why I like to give the kids a focus. This time around I had them to simply focus on their inhalations and exhalations. I asked them to say to themselves, "Breathe in. Breathe out." over and over. When their minds started to wander, they were to bring it back to the breath.
After meditation, we revisited the Hoberman Sphere, or as we now call it - the Breathing Ball - and worked on slow, deep breathing. The kids each took turns leading their small groups through deep breathing that they are becoming more familiar with. There are so many benefits of Breathing Exercises, such as the one we do with the Breathing Ball:
- promotes relaxation
- improves mental clarity
- lowers anxiety
- decreases stress
- increases blood flow
- combats allergies
- honors the calm space in your heart
Kids can use deep breathing at anytime anywhere - before a test, before a game, before a recital, before bed. The list is endless.
While the Breathing Ball represents our lungs and their function inside of our bodies, this weekend we had a little fun with the ball, too! The kids are familiar with the game Silent Ball often played in schools. This weekend in class we played Silent Breathing Ball! Starting in a close circle we silently passed the Breathing Ball from one to the next, focusing on a deep breath, expanding and contracting the sphere representing our lungs. If someone dropped the ball or threw a bad pass, they were out and were able to take a restorative pose, while the rest of the kids spread out further increasing the difficulty of the passes. It was a fun time for all!

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