Children are capable of accessing joy and creativity in a special way. They are energetic and up-for-anything every day. Many parents want to connect with their kids, but find it difficult to do activities that feel engaging for all ages. Activities targeted at children can leave adults feeling bored, tired, and listless. Activities targeted for adults can mean children are watching an Ipad for an hour. I created an enjoyable and valuable event for both parents and kids at the same time.
Our family partner yoga class was a homerun for parents and kids. We warmed up by moving our bodies and using our imaginations to mime several activities: climbing a ladder, playing tennis, skiing, paddling a canoe, and shooting a basketball. Next, we learned ten partner poses that kids and parents can do together! Then we turned the whole room into a game board where we challenged ourselves to remember and practice the poses together. We were ready for some quiet concentration after a lot of activities. All of the yogis and yoginis received mandalas to fill in with colored pencils. For our final relaxation, parents took restorative poses on their mats while kids learned about reflexology points on the feet. Kids gave their parents foot massages while parents chilled out.
Partners were made up of dads and sons, moms and daughters, and dads and daughters. One dad (age 40 years) said that he had not colored since he was a child. He added that he enjoyed getting on the yoga mat on the floor and coloring with his daughter during our class. Sometimes kids stress out parents and parents stress out kids. Finding an hour to connect, play, and relax together was truly a treat.