In this time of uncertainty and social isolation, I want to help you out with 4 different creative yoga games to keep your children entertained, stimulated and educated while being at home.
I know a lot of families, mine included, are experiencing a bit of ‘cabin fever’ and the stress and overwhelm with the ‘unknown’ can be a lot to bear, so with that in mind, why not get the whole family together for some much-needed fun!
Being a Kidding Around Yoga [KAY] teacher means that games and activities are an important part of my classes! You can learn more about me here.
Children learn through play. In fact, KAY is fabulous as it teaches yoga as play, and as the kids play, they integrate the lessons, cutting through any stress or worries they might have without making anything serious about it… which is so important right now.
Learning through play teaches kids how to pick up this ‘play activity’ in times of difficulty and it also helps themselves to feel better physically, mentally and emotionally. Kids will start to see things from a different perspective and this really works!
But, it’s all about finding that perfect balance, because if a game or activity is too challenging kids can become frustrated or anxious and even stop participating altogether, but on the other hand, if the game or activity is too easy, kids will lose interest and want to move onto something else. So, when choosing games and activities at home with your kids to be mindful of the different ages and abilities of everyone.
OK, so here are 4 creative yoga games that you can do with your kids at home that not only teach yoga but also support their learning and development.
This is a fun game that I play with the kids in my class. Not only do they love it, but it’s also great for their focus and to develop their foot strength. First, you will need to get yourself some pom pom’s, you can find these online or in your local craft store.
How To Play Toe-ga Yoga Game?
There are a few different ways you can play this, but for the home version, you can just dump all the pom pom’s on the floor in the centre of your play area. In class, everyone starts on their mat, but if you don’t have a yoga mat you can use a towel. Put a family favourite song on, and when it begins everyone starts picking the pom pom’s up with their toes and then takes the pom pom’s back to their mat or towel.
You can even put your hands in reverse namaste to give them an extra stretch and to keep them from using their hands! Continue for the length of the song or until all of the pom pom’s have been picked up. Now on their mat or towel, with all of their pom pom’s the kids can have fun creating shapes. This activity keeps them busy for a while!
How To Play: Do you remember the game Simon Says? Well, it’s just like that, but no one gets out. This is a fun way to teach and practice lots of poses. But you gotta remember my golden rule, what you do on one side you gotta do on the other side!
For example, “Yogi says be a triangle” and then everyone will stand in triangle pose, after 5 seconds you can then swap to the other side. In the photo above Remy is being a table. You can continue playing for as long as you like!
This is another one of my kids favourite songs that we teach in Kidding Around Yoga. Keep in mind if you don’t have the KAY music you can play at home without music.
How To Play: Find an appropriate area (inside or out in the garden) and say, “Let’s go for a jog through the jungle everybody, knees high! We are jogging through the jungle. Let’s keep jogging for a few more seconds”. If you have space you can utilise the whole room or grassed area, if not you can layout a mat or a towel and get everyone to jog on the spot on their mat or towel.
You can ask your child “What do you see in the jungle?” Whatever pose they see in the jungle you will all move into that pose until you get them to go back to jogging through the jungle. Some great poses for this are lion, snake, dead bug, turtle, cobra, butterfly, warrior. But anything goes!
I remember playing this game as a kid myself at birthday parties, (minus the yoga pose). There is something so exciting about not knowing when the music is going to stop, which makes this game so much fun!
How To Play Freeze Dance Game?
It’s time to freeze dance yoga style! Find your favourite music and put a song on, making sure it’s something fun and upbeat. While the music is playing everyone will freestyle dance. When the music stops, everyone must freeze into a yoga pose.
You could either select a pose for everyone to go into and yell it out, or the kids can choose their own. As a tip, I do only recommend standing and balancing poses for this game such as ragdoll, mountain, star (see photo above), chair, tree, warrior, dancer and triangle. And be mindful, what you do on one side you gotta do on the other!
The best yoga games are the ones where the kids are engaged and having fun! Try not to get hung up on their technique. Also, if your kids are easily distracted like my boys – that’s ok too, be guided by them and how they’re feeling. Ask yourself, is it better to play these games in the morning or the afternoon?
To add more excitement to your games you can have your kids dress up in their favourite costumes and or use props. For example, my boys love PJ Mask’s and so they will wear a mask when playing, I also have my yoga box of tricks that they get into which is full of silk scarves and novelty headbands, even undies on the outside of your pants – anything goes!
So, what do you think? Can you play these 4 creative yoga games at home with your kids?
I would love to hear if you played these games at home and if your kids had fun? As always, I love hearing from you, reply to this email and say hey!
If you’d like to learn more about Kidding Around Yoga with Hayley, check out my website here.
P.S Would you like to create and nurture healthy family values for your children? Check out my blog post How to create a flourishing family