Monthly Archives: June 2015

Relax, kids…

Standard

There are many books and audio CDs and downloads for children’s yoga…The truth is, that your engagement with your child in a calming, meditation practice will inspire them more than any fancy packaging or clever marketing…If you demonstrate that you find meditation calming, if you can model how to relax, you will be providing your children with an invaluable tool…

You could begin by making a mala (traditionally, these are 108 beads, with a guru bead or tassel) – mala beads are usually strung in multiples of 9 and usually made of natural materials…for a quick craft with your children, use any thread, and use pasta, wooden beads, or plastic beads (or if you have extra time, you could even make your own fimo or air drying clay beads)…the guru bead is the point where you stop passing the beads through your fingers and go back the other way so use something larger or with a strikingly different texture, just let it add to the tactile experience of using the mala…

Mala beads for children

Mala traditionally have 108 beads

Once you have a mala…sit quietly with your child, mala in hand and get comfortable…Talk them through closing their eyes…breathing softly in and out through their nose…ask them to see how their toes, feet, legs, fingers, hands, arms, body, back, head feel today…tell them to ask their bodies to feel soft and relaxed…Once you feel they are calm, ask them to open their eyes and for the first time, simply pull the beads one by one through between their thumb and forefinger…Then ask them to keep doing this forward and back, bead by bead without crossing the guru bead (but don’t worry if they do!)…

Now, once they are comfortable sitting quietly and feeling each bead pass through their fingers, encourage them to choose a simple word to repeat with each bead – my sons both love to use Om, and we also chant Om mani padme hum often as a lullaby…Sometimes they might choose love, peace, joy…it can be any word that instils a sense of happiness and rest for them today…

Try it yourself, you can chant out loud, or in your head, you can whisper or sing out…Try it with your kids…Have fun with it and relax…

OMx