“I just can’t believe you got him to be so still like that.”
“I’m so surprised that she really likes the relaxation part at the end!”
This is some of the feedback I have received after teaching kids yoga from parents who are in awe that their child not only likes Savasana, but LOVES it.
Savasana. That total Yogic relaxation at the end of class. To be honest, it can be hard for even the most advanced adults Yogis to come to inner silence and total surrender after rounds of energizing sun salutations.
We are, after all, in constant motion. Driving, walking, texting, talking, chewing, typing, the list goes on. Then there is the movement within our mind. The thoughts that seem to keep going…schedules, feelings, regrets, worries, joy filled moments, work, bills…it’s a lot to think about. So when we give ourselves the gift to slow down when we are not accustomed to it, it can take a minute to get there. To arrive in that feeling of stillness.
Kids are no different.
Between multiplication charts and friends’ birthday invitations to soccer games and swim lessons…their little minds and bodies are also on the constant go, go, go.
Although it was over 6 years ago, I’ll never forget a moment during my Next Generation Yoga Teacher Training where I observed Jodi Komitor teach a class of second graders in a local elementary school. One of the young boys sat up and said, “I wish I could do that all the time,” after feeling that sweet place of stillness in savasana.
Savasana comes from the Sanskrit words, Shava, meaning corpse, and Asana, meaning pose. It literally translates to corpse pose and the documented benefits include stress relief…but there are definitely more. I once heard a teacher in India tell me that savasana is the self acceptance pose. He said, “When we surrender our bodies, we are no longer struggling to be anywhere else but on the mat. We breath and we accept ourselves as is.”
And for kids…that’s huge.
To be able to feel that and just be as is… away from the peer judgement, the parental expectations, the sibling responsibilities, the classroom rules…they are surrendering to the present moment. I feel honored every time I can lead students into this surrender. I am giving them a tool to know when they can feel most clear. That they can always find that place inside, the one that arises when they are not moving.
It is a lifelong gift that they can hopefully carry with them wherever they go.
I am never surprised at their sweet smiles in savasana when I read them relaxation stories or just allow them to breathe as I play sounds of the ocean.
So yes, kids love savasana because they can slow down and just be as they are. Kids love savasana because it is a place of truth and connection for them. And who wouldn’t love that?
Next Generation Yoga Teacher
Puja received her Yoga Alliance 200 hrs. Vinyasa adult certificate in 2011 and completed two Next Generation Yoga Kids Trainings in early 2012. But her true training in Yoga began as a child, beside her grandfather.
Prior to her certifications in yoga, her work includes being a dentist for children and she has opened a sustainable dental clinic in rural Uganda, Africa for the underserved. She is now a mother of 2 sweet kids who remind her of what happiness is about every day. She is the co-founder and writer of Chai Mommas, a blog about the love in parenthood and works as content curator for Deep Origins, an e-commerce platform for spiritual items. Her publications include the children’s books Laila’s Lullaby and How To Breathe Like Lions and Dragons. She is also the author of guided meditations for The Deep Dive Meditation Pack and Project:Yourself, a course and membership platform of immersive multimedia training sessions that unify ancient wisdom and modern science.
Yoga is a way of life for Puja; the true union of mind, body and soul. As a certified yoga instructor, this is what she offers to her students, in each breath, movement and mantra. She believes that teaching yoga completes this union with joy and gratitude.