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fitness first

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Y o g a

f you think yoga is about flexibility, challenging poses, and a Zen attitude, you’ve got part of it.Yoga has physical and emotional benefits for people of all ages including children. “Getting kids involved in yoga and meditation is a life-long win for them. Both yoga and meditation teach kids the benefits of fitness, but they are also valuable coping skills that kids can key into during life’s challenges,” says yoga teacher Kerin Monaco.

Find Serenity, Strength, and SelfConfidence

Monaco started practicing yoga herself in high school to combat crippling anxiety that cropped up around SATs and college applications. She went on to teach yoga and recently began to 30 fitness first

for Kids and Families By Sara Barry

share yoga with her young family. When her daughter was 9 months old, Monaco started to practice with her on the mat, where they both loved the peaceful energy that yoga brings. That peaceful energy is one of the key reasons adults practice yoga, and that calm is great for kids too. That’s not the only benefit though. Yoga teacher Katy Dagle, says that for younger kids, yoga builds coordination, balance, and self-regulation. For older kids, yoga continues to help with coordination and balance and also helps build flexibility, strength, and self-confidence. The emotional benefits can be especially helpful in the challenging tween and teen years. In addition to these physical and emotional benefits, yoga can help develop values, such as honesty and nonviolence. These values are an integral part of yoga that is often overlooked, but they can be an added benefit to families practicing together.

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Get Kids Started with Classes

Both Monaco and Dagle recommend classes for kids. An experienced teacher helps children learn poses correctly and can offer modifications or adjustments to things that don’t feel right. Kids (and grown-ups) should be reminded to do what feels right for their body. Not every child can do every pose, and some days a familiar pose is harder than others. Yoga is noncompetitive. Teachers should help kids focus on their own practice every day and create a supportive environment. As Dagle reminds her students, “yoga is a practice not a perfect.” To find kids classes, check with local yoga studios, gyms, or YMCAs. Monaco took her daughter to My Gym, a franchise that caters to fitness for children 10 and under. Dagle’s studio offers classes for kids of different ages. Other options include Mommy and Me classes if you have a baby, and adult classes for January/February 2018

Suburban Family ~ Jan + Feb 2018  

Winter Fun, On Stage, Healthy Heart, Fueling Young Athletes, Fitness Race Guide, Dining Restaurants, Special Occasions Party Planner, Local...

Suburban Family ~ Jan + Feb 2018  

Winter Fun, On Stage, Healthy Heart, Fueling Young Athletes, Fitness Race Guide, Dining Restaurants, Special Occasions Party Planner, Local...