Monday, 15 July 2013

Learning from kids

Just started teaching Monday morning hatha flow classes at a wonderful new place on Newington Green, N16. Genius idea of yoga classes with a creche so mums — and dads or carers — can enjoy their yoga, get toned and calm their frazzled nerves while the tots have fun in the creche downstairs. And afterwards everyone enjoys cake! It can be so hard to find the time to go to class with little ones around and they don't always let you do your own practice at home!

Most of the tots are young and mums are keen to get back in shape, toning their abdominals and strengthening pelvic floor muscles, so forearm plank, vashistasana variations and surprisingly even navasana (boat pose) are great hits! Occasionally noise of gurgling drifts up from downstairs giving parents a chance to practice pratyhara — withdrawal of the senses, and learn to take their awareness within! Something we all probably need to practice!

Today when the little ones popped in, the mats were still out, they plonked themselves down, hips and spines beautifully aligned. One arced his upper back stretching into a perfect backbend, while a little girl sat down, picked up her toes and lifted up into a supta konasana — reclining angle pose still holding her toes — clearly wondering why her mum needed to work on those wide-legged postures! Even the tiniest tot held his feet and drew his knees into his armpits while relaxing on his back — classic ananda balasana or happy baby to you! It's almost as if they pop out with an inbuilt knowledge of yoga and spend the first few months demonstrating tricky poses with ease! If only we could keep that flexibility and ease of movement for life!

*Classes have taken a break for Summer! Back in September. Keep practising!