Regular exercise for children can prevent illness, decrease stress and boost confidence. According to one study, physical activity can even improve academic performance.
“Instead of saying, ‘Ugh, I have to go to the gym,” we want them to say, ‘Exercise is fun; I love to sweat’,” – Ethel Baumberg
To jump-start a child’s healthy lifestyle, fitness expert Ethel Baumberg recommends introducing fun fitness activities at an early age.
Baumberg co-founded Flyaroo Fitness, a one-of-a-kind program where preschool children can discover their own passion for staying active
“We teach them that being healthy and active is part of their formative years, it isn’t negative. Instead of saying, ‘Ugh, I have to go to the gym,” we want them to say, ‘Exercise is fun; I love to sweat. This is so much fun,’ or ‘I love doing a push-up’,” Baumberg told us. “When they get older, they still have that mentality and they keep it going.”
If you want your kids to stay active throughout their lives, they need the encouragement of those closest to them. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, social support from family and friends has been consistently and positively related to regular physical activity.
At Flyaroo Fitness offers family fitness classes where parents can work out with their children and learn how to train them to enjoy staying active.
You can try these 8 kid-friendly yoga poses at home:
1. Airplane Pose:
Lift your leg at a 45 degree angle and point and flex your toe like a propeller (to make it more challenging, rotate your foot in a circle mimicking the propeller). While working on balance, lean side to side with your arms out like the wings of plane flying over the ocean.
Start off in a superhero position, fluttering your arms and legs as if you’re swimming out to sea. Using your imagination, describe the big wave coming and jump up onto your board, going into plank position, jumping your feet to your hands, and up into a Warrior 2 or Surfer Pose at FLYAROO Fitness. Try putting more weight into each leg as you navigate the ocean, strengthening the legs and working on balance to end in a Warrior 3 or Airplane Pose.
3. Sand Shark:
There’s a shark in the water and it’s you! Hold a plank pose, tightening your core and rocking your body side to side. Lift one leg off the ground, pretending to swim along the shallow water with your fin. Switch legs to strengthen both sides of the body. To make the exercise more challenging, attempt to lift your arms up over your head, alternating between arms and legs.
4. Palm Trees:
When we think about the beach and ocean, our minds often drift to a vacation spot. Our favorite vacation spot is Hawaii where palm trees grow. Pretend to be a palm tree by standing on one foot, bringing your right foot alongside your left calf. Bring your hands to your side and hold for five deep breaths. To make this pose more challenging, bring your arms out in a Y shape over your head. To make it even more difficult, close your eyes!
Slowly bend your knees and put your hands behind you on the floor making a table. As your feet and hands push your body up, use your imagination and crawl around the beach pretending you’re a crab. To make this more challenging, lift one leg at a time towards the sky.
With your legs shoulder with apart, slowly bend down until your hands reach the floor. Try to keep your knees straight as you bend. Once you reach the floor, walk with your hands out in front of you.
Bend your leg and lift in front of you at a 90-degree angle. Flutter your arms up and down as you balance on one foot.
8. Flying Turtle:
Turtles are slow, but here at FLYAROO Fitness, we are quick and enthusiastic about constantly moving our bodies. We start in a superhero pose with our arms and legs lifted. By bringing our arms back so our fingertips are reaching for our toes, we’ve changed the pose to strengthen not only the core, but the shoulders and back. From here, kids are encouraged to tickle their toes, working on their flexibility. In order to effectively make this pose more powerful, we work our way back into plank pose, jumping our feet into our hands, and finally end with a Starfish Jump. Jump up in the air with your arms and legs.