Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Yoga Snack: Tree of Life

Today's Yoga Snack started with a bunch of Bumble Bee Breaths. We blocked our ears, inhaled deeply, and then buzzed, hummed, rippled our lips on the exhale. The kids were very focused and contemplative. On the final exhale, we all let out a resounding "Ahhhhhhhhhhh"

With the kids attention still focused, we did Bumpy Camel. Next we lay on our stomachs and pressed up into cobra, we all relaxed there for a moment and then everyone tried to lift their feet, some of the kids were even able to bring their feet close to their heads. Flipping onto our backs, we brought our legs up and bicycled both frontwards and backwards. After, we sat on our feet in an easy Hero Pose and in succession we 1. put our hands behind us and leaned back 2. dropped our heads back 3. leaned back on our elbows 4. lay all the way back. After I explained how to roll a little to one side to release our legs from underneath us, we stayed on our backs and did a few bridge poses. We then squatted down, keeping our heels up, and did 10 really great Frog Push-Ups. To finish, a large balloon breath in Tadasana and we were ready for Tree Pose (Vrksasana).

We started with our own Tree Poses, one leg and then the other. The kids were very focused and some even tried to walk their eyes up the wall to the ceiling to create a back bend in Tree Pose.

Next was Group Tree. We all stood in a circle, with our arms up by our sides, slightly bent, palm to palm with the people next to us. Then everyone tried Right Leg up, full breath, and then Left Leg, full breath.

For a final exercise, we did Partner Tree.
* Partners stand side by side with shoulders touching.
* Place weight on inside leg.
* Bend the outer leg and place foot on inside of other thigh.
* With inner hand, grasp partner's foot.
* Bring other arm in front and hold hands with your partner.
* Hold position and try to keep your back as straight as you can.
* Return to starting position.
* Repeat the exercise but change places so you use the other leg.

The tree exercises were a great success. The kids received a super high five for their attention and concentration today.


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