This afternoon, as we were hanging out at home, I said to Maayan, “Let’s do some Yoga.” While I intended to show Maayan some moves, Maayan quickly shifted into instructor mode. “OK”, she said, “first like this.” Following my daughters’ lead, we lied face down for a minute and then on our backs. Then Maayan says, “OK, now we breathe like a bunny.” And we did short breathes through our nose and then out our mouth. In out, in out, short quick breathes like a bunny (I think). I wanted to continue with the lotus position, but Maayan’s little legs weren’t ready for it. So instead, Maayan did “criss-cross apple sauce“.
At Maayan’s preschool they do Yoga, but I didn’t realize to what extent. Maayan had a whole routine and I was very impressed. Toddlers are inherently flexible and open to new things, so doing Yoga is a brilliant activity for them. It’s a wonderful experience of being confident with your body, stretching your comfort zone and calming your mind. Many people would probably think that toddlers wouldn’t need such a thing. In truth, however, it is a something that they greatly benefit from. Not only is it a gift to use as one grows older but it is something that gives them confidence and calm in relating to their body.
Adults need to do more of this as well. Yoga, stretching and deep breathing is something that is very much catching on in the wider world, but needs to even more. If people take lunch breaks at work, part of that break should include some sort of Yoga and deep breathing. It would awaken the senses, expand the mind, balance the emotions and in general make the body happy.
If a person is not used to it, it might hurt at first. For beginners we recommend lying face down for several minutes, followed by being on your back for another several minutes. Complete this exercise by going criss-cross apple sauce and breathing like a bunny. No less than a total of 10 minutes – and you’ll be living like a toddler.
Life lesson of a toddler #23: Start doing Yoga and Deep Breathing, your body and soul will be grateful. At the very least, breathe like a bunny.