I recently read Yoga Journal’s article, Wake Up + Revive with 3 Sun Salutation Practices. It shows Sun Salutations from the Kundalini, Yin, and Ashtanga perspective. I love how one flow can be transformed using different yoga styles.
It got me thinking about kid’s yoga and our different styles of Sun Salutations. There are so many ways to transform this flow. This is good if you want to do Sun Salutations every class, but you also want to keep them new and interesting. If I am working with a group for an extended period of time, I always do Sun Salutations for each class so that the children can see their progress week after week.
8 Ways to Practice Sun Salutations with Kids
-Play music (“Mr. Sun”, Kira Willley’s “Dance for the Sun”, and the Beatles “Here Comes the Sun” are all fun).
-Use affirmations with each pose in the flow ("I am calm", "I am strong", etc.).
-Teach the Sanskrit names of the poses. For the first round, use English. For the second round, use Sanskrit.
-Take the class outside and do Sun Salutations in the sun!
-Focus on the breath by only cueing with “Inhale” and “Exhale”. This will work well once a group knows the poses by heart.
In a “Round”:
-Similar to singing in a round, where each group starts at a different time, have each person around the circle start their Sun Salutation when the person next to them is in Extended Mountain. You can do one round this way so that there is an endpoint, or have them keep going until you ring a bell telling them to wrap up their last round of Sun Salutations.
-Use picture books like Rhyme and Shine: Yoga Sun Salutation for Kids by Karen Thygerson and Luke’s Beach Day, by Giselle Shardlow for visual aids. (Here’s a beach-themed lesson plan based on Luke's Beach Day.)
Need even more Sun Salutation ideas? Check out this blog post from Full of Joy Yoga.
Have fun and Happy Sun Saluting!