Yoga for kids is as beneficial for them as well as it is for adults. Get your children interested in yoga with picture books, games, and videos. They’ll develop your children’s interest in starting their own yoga practice.
Doing yoga with kids is a wonderful way to get in quality time. It:
- builds strength
- improves flexibility
- develops breath control and awareness
- relaxes and calms
- develops coordination
- increases body awareness
- improves mindfulness
- develops confidence and self-awareness
Yoga for Kids: How To Get Started
Practice yoga in front of your kids. That models how yoga is helpful and important in your life.
Invite your children to join you. BUT don’t worry if it takes a bit of time to get your kids interested. Let interest develop. Accept where they are.
Get children their own yoga mats. (Favorite colors help!)
Develop a routine. Practice at the same time of day, starting with a short sequence of poses (asanas) that you do in the same order.
Let your child choose the yoga poses (asanas) you’ll do together and in what order, as if she is teaching you a class.
If your school doesn’t already, see if they will incorporate yoga for kids into the physical education curriculum. My kids used to do yoga at school. I think it’s such a positive investment in their lives, and well-being, and helps them learn a valuable life-long practice.
Yoga for Kids: Best Books
Yoga Whale by Sarah Jane Hinder
If your kids are interested in yoga, this is a new, darling little interactive book of yoga poses that are named after animals. Specifically sea animals. Learn to do a Jellyfish or Dolphin pose or breathe like a Pufferfish. The illustrations show kids doing the poses; each accompanied by a little poem.
Yoga Bug Simple Poses for Little Ones by Sarah Jane Hinder
A darling board book that will get you and your little one reading and stretching into animal yoga poses — like the bee or the creepy crawly caterpillar. Kids pose on one side while the bug poses on the other. “Wiggle, giggle, jiggle / hands and feet. // Flipped Beetle.“
Yoga Animals at the Seashore by Christiane Kerr and Jason Hook, illustrated by Julia Green
This is a social-emotional and yoga story about a crab’s day. His fish friends support his many feelings–grumpy, alone, frustrated, etc.– by sharing yoga poses that can help. His initial emotions move into other emotions as he does the yoga poses. For example, he moves from tired to energized and from shy to brave. Each two-page spread tells the story plus shows the yoga pose with directions.
Breathe with Me by Mariam Gates
While not specifically about yoga, breathing is a big part of yoga for kids and mindfulness. It is a book that makes breathing accessible to children with powerful imagery that kids can understand. For example, when you’re sleepy in the morning and can’t wake up — try doing Rainbow Breath. Illustrated with a girl sitting under a rainbow we read about Rainbow Breath. Or when you’re nervous about something new, try Dandelion Breath. The book has five different ways to think about your breathing in total that are brilliantly relatable.
Hello, Sun! A Yoga Sun Salutation to Start Your Day by Sarah Jane Hinder
You’ll love this bright, cheerful introduction to Sun Salutations –– which is a specific sequence of yoga poses. This beautiful introduction shows children how movements and stretches can start the day off with breath, joy, and purpose. Wouldn’t this be a lovely start to your mornings? Read it aloud with your kiddos and give it a whirl.
Dinosaur Yoga by Miriam Gates, illustrated by Matthew Rivera
What child doesn’t love to imagine AND be active? Now, kids can pretend to be a dinosaur and learn how to do yoga poses! Your kids are going to be obsessed with this book…Breathe in through your snout and move your dino body into different poses. Colorful, lively illustrations show all of your favorite dinosaurs doing yoga poses. And just like the dinosaurs, you’ll feel better in your mind, body, and spirit with Dinosaur Yoga. It’s great for calming, stretching, growing core strength, and relaxing.
Good Morning Yoga A Pose-By-Pose Wake Up Story by Mariam Gates of Kid Power Yoga, illustrated by Sarah Jane Hinder
The tone, text, and illustrations gently guide readers through breathing, easy poses, imaginative intentions, and body awareness. Each page has a movement captured in an imaginative way: “a brave ski jumper ready to fly” as well as directions for body awareness and movement: “As I breathe in, as I breathe out, I bend my knees and sweep my arms back.” I adore the illustrations, the diversity of skin tone and gender included. You’ll see an illustrated page with all eleven poses in the back of the book. Finally, the book ends with a short visualization guided meditation. You might also like Good Night, Yoga by the same author.
Yoga Animals In the Forest by Christiane Kerr, illustrated by Julia Green
This is the story of a Bear’s day. Follow along as his animal friends show him yoga moves. When he’s sleepy, Rabbit shows him how to take deep breaths. Snake shows him how to warn others when he wants to be alone. Each two-page spread has an inset that says, “Can You Do It, Too?” with directions for kids for emulating the moves. Kids will enjoy the bear’s story and follow along with the different poses.
Rachel’s Day in the Garden: A Kids Yoga Spring Colors Book by Giselle Shardlow of Kids Yoga Stories, illustrated by Hazel Quintanilla
A sweet picture book that follows Rachel and her dog, Sammy, from waking up to a rainy day in the garden. As she experiences life, we listen to the words, look at the gorgeous illustrations, and try the poses in the circled insets. The narrative has a perfect text-to-picture ratio, and multi-media collage artwork is absolutely amazing. The book ends with four pages that have keywords, poses, and illustrations of how to do each. LOVE this book!
Yoga Bunny by Brian Russo
This story reminds us that sometimes yoga is about being patient and staying with our truth. Bunny wakes up to do yoga. As his friends walk by, Lizard first, Bunny invites them to do yoga, too. Lizard is too grumpy, Fox is too hurried, and Bird doesn’t want to. Just when Bunny thinks no one will do yoga with him, but his friends join him. They finish doing yoga in a peaceful hug of friendship. Bunny’s patience left the door open so that when his friends were ready, they could join.
Yummy Yoga: Playful Poses and Tasty Treats by Joy Bauer, photographs by Bonnie Stephens
What an adorable book! Yummy Yoga features yoga posed by fruits and vegetables as well as kids. Do the pose, then lift-the-flap for a delicious kid-friendly recipe such as a berry-banana smoothie or a corn-on-the-cob recipe. Poses include triangle, lotus, plank, warrior II, tree, cat, downward dog, and forward bend.
108 Awesome Yoga Poses for Kids by Lauren and Brian Chaitoff
I’ve read and used many different yoga books with my kids, but this one stands out from the crowd as the most exceptional. I love the large size, the clear poses and their connections, and all the information on each page, including anatomical focus, how to move, and about the connection. The themes include animals, nature, vehicles, food, and more — so if you’re trying to do the unicorn pose, you’ll work on you legs, learn about the unicorn, see how to do the lunge, and see a photo of the author doing the pose. Won’t this be fun to use with children?
Yoga Animals: A Wild Introduction to Kid-Friendly Poses by Paige Towler
Gorgeous full-color illustrations show impressive animals as well as a child doing a matching yoga pose. Lyrical text like “Playful puppies run and fetch, tumble, tussle, stop, and stretch” make the animal’s antics come alive. Also, read directions for how to do the yoga pose. Bunny, lion, giraffe, crocodile…there’s a menagerie of animals and yoga poses to do!
Yoga For Children by Lisa Flynn
Parents and teachers, this thoughtful guide is for you. The author helps you develop your child’s confidence through the practice of mindful yoga. This book gets high ratings from me because it is easy to read and implement.
Yoga Pretzels 50 Fun Yoga Activities for Kids and Grownups by Tara Guber and Leah Kalish
We used these sturdy yoga for kids cards over one summer. We would rotate picking out the cards/poses to do and in what order. I loved it!
Yoga for Kids: Videos
Yoga for Kids by Yoga Today (YouTube)
This is a short 8-minute active Kundalini yoga session to help kids get out some energy.
Cosmic Kids Yoga Adventure (YouTube)
These children’s yoga sessions last between 11 to 20 minutes and are taught by a woman who shares an imaginative adventure story. As kids listen to the story, they will follow along with the poses. Appropriate for younger kids who will like the cuteness of her approach.
Once Upon a Mat
If you have kids ages 2 to 6, try this video. An instructor narrates 9 separate short yoga stories (safari, outer space, rainstorm) while guiding kids through poses and breathing. Very well-done and developmentally appropriate. I like that it’s a teacher in the video, not kids because little kids don’t usually model the body positions correctly.
Kids World Yoga
This series of beginner, intermediate, and advanced videos are meant for older kids ages 6 to 14 and is taught by tweens. These are surprisingly intense, fast-paced workouts with the beauty of Sedona, Arizona in the background.
Yoga for Kids: Games
Spin the spinner. Choose a card from the corresponding color, blue, red, green, or white cards. Do the pose. If you can hold it for 10 seconds, you keep the card!
The first player to collect a card from each color wins the game!
We also just like to shuffle through the cards and pick poses to do. The white cards are for partners which makes for some fun teamwork.
The cards are easily stored inside the yellow spinner case.
This game gets you moving– love it!
Each player is dealt seven green cars of poses and one red mission card. The green cards have the poses which are accurately named in the English and the Sanskrit.
The mission tells players the goal for the game. Below, you’ll see this mission: collect 5 cards where the yogi has one leg bent and the other extended.
And, of course, you have to DO the poses on the cards you collect, too.
You’ll be impressed at how this game stretches children’s bodies and thinking skills.
Plus, younger kids would have just as much fun if they skipped the mission cards and did the poses.
Yoga Dice for Boys and Girls
Roll the dice and try the pose. Advance if you can hold the pose for a certain number of breaths!
You Might Also Like: