As a yoga instructor working with children and adults, my main intention for any workshop is that all participants, young and old, enjoy themselves. If the children are happy and smiling, I experience a session as successful, and whether they manage to do the exercises successfully or not is secondary to me. I would never pressure a child to do AcroYoga, the best we can do is to merely invite the child to join us.
If a child is unwilling to do an exercise or be still, it’s okay. It’s also fine when a child (or parent) adapts an exercise into something different, as long as this is done safely.
During a session I encourage kids to feel free, to fulfill personal needs like having a drink or taking a break, or going to the toilet. It’s okay. We are here to enjoy each other!
Parents, please read these guidelines before setting out.
AcroYoga is a really fun form of yoga. AcroYoga is based on co-operation between parent (base) and child (flyer) and together we learn how to fly and climb high.
To avoid falling and getting hurt, make sure you of the following:
- There is lots of clear practice space around you.
- Furniture and other objects with sharp edges are moved from the direct play area
- If you feel insecure about a move or posture ask a third person (adult/teenager) to help you with spotting: the spotter stands by to support the child ‘flyer’ and can help to coach the ‘base’ parent.
- For soft landings, place additional yoga mats around you, or practise outside on the grass.
- I recommend some basic yoga experience for adults or parents.
- Take your time to explore the exercises. If needed, just pause the video and watch the workshop with your child.
Children: Parents & kids AcroYoga workshops are suitable for youngsters between 6-12 years old. In my experience all the exercises are possible with younger children. But a workshop might take too long for younger children’s attention spans. In this case, I suggest dividing a workshop into shorter sections, or taking a break between exercises.
Other participants: I named this course ‘Parents and Kids’ AcroYoga but any caregivers, older siblings or friends, grandparents, aunties or uncles can participate.
Please note: Each workshop is designed as part of a structured series that gradually builds upon the previous workshop to develop participant’s skills, confidence and ability. To grow safely together with your child in AcroYoga I recommend starting with the first workshop and watching the videos in sequence.
I experience children as my teachers. Children are very true to their feelings at any given moment. I see this as a true yogic quality, and wish to be as honest as a child to myself.
I view it as natural when a kid who doesn’t want to do something protests! Therefore instead of trying to convince a child to do something against their will, it can be very informative to check in with your own feelings as a parent: why do you want your child to do this exercise, and what does it do for you?
I hope that reading these guidelines at the start of the class or workshop helps everyone relax and enjoy themselves, even if things are not going the way you think they should be going.
Good luck and have fun!
x Esther Hertog
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