Have you ever wondered how do I plan a yoga class for kids or teens? What should I do differently than in an adult’s class? Or what a high quality children’s yoga class that is educational, meaningful and fun looks like?
These are the questions most people ask when they arrive at one of the Zenergy teacher training courses. You want to be the best children or teens’ yoga teacher you can be, but how do you plan classes that are fun, and at the same time have the kids and teens feel relaxed, calm and peaceful.
Welcome to the second tip in this blog series on how to get started as a children’s yoga teacher. I hope you find it useful and valuable on your journey to impacting the lives of children and teens.
When starting to plan your children or teens classes, think, ‘structure!’ Kids benefit and thrive from well-planned out classes that have substance and meaning. We all know that children cannot flow through a vinyasa sequence for 55 mins and end with a 5 minute relaxation, and neither can the teens. Think about how to engage short attention spans and busy minds, how to work with quick bursts of energy and how to guide them to a place of stillness.
Many classes I see for children nowadays are simply fun and games and they have little substance to them, and are often chaotic. Teens usually find yoga ‘boring,’ (especially the boys) because many classes for teens are based on an adult’s yoga class structure and the teens don’t have the stamina or lose interest quickly.
At the Zenergy Foundation course, you would be trained in a lesson plan structure that has 10 segments to the lesson. This works well because it helps children focus, it guides their energy to a place of calm, we have a variety of pace to help engage busy minds, and it creates a sense of ‘knowing’ for the children and teens in that they know what segment is coming next. Every week, perhaps they know they will learn a new breathing technique, that there will be a relaxation, a fun game, a new pose. For little kids this creates a safe place and builds a sense of confidence and security. For teens, it allows their minds to relax and have the rest and stillness they require in their fast-paced lives. Once you have a structure that works, then every week, change the content of what goes into each segment, but keep the structure the same. Remember to use variety as well as include all the tools that yoga provides – the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual aspects that are invaluable to children and teens today.