Yoga Mornings: Twists

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Yoga Mornings are quick 15-20 minute yoga classes that engage kids in movement and mindfulness while having fun.  These classes are designed to fit into my school's Start Smart program which designates the first 15 minutes of each day to be dedicated to some sort of physical activity.  I work with lower grades (1-2) and upper grades (3, 4, and 5) each week.  Each grade level focuses on the same types of poses, but they are modified for the different ages as needed.

This twisting lesson plan was a really fun one as it got kids to work on twists, balance and their core simultaneously. For the lying twist I actually added a "twist" to the pose by having the kids do Pilates-type core work, using their stomach muscles to move their legs from side to side while keeping shoulders on the ground.  This was really hard for so many of them!  The kids that were the most successful were those that went slow and steady, and I often stopped the class to have one of the students model.

This simple practice is also a great opportunity to talk about different types of breathing exercises (through the nose, through the mouth, Lion's breath, etc.) and also about finding symmetry and balance in your body.