Baltimore Mom, yogi and special education teacher Bridget Strama wants to help kids calm, focus, and self-regulate emotions through yoga. What better way than to educate parents and teachers? She’s offering a Taste of Children’s Yoga for Adults on January 12th from 6 PM – 8 PM at the Veronica Chenowith Activity Center in Fallston.
Why should you take the class? Two words: sneaky yoga. Read our interview with Bridget to find out what that means… You may want to check out the partner poses for kids Bridget shared with us, too!
Chatting with Bridget Strama, Child’s Heart Yoga
CP: What inspired you to offer this class?
I want to offer a few tips for helping parents, teachers and therapists give children tools to calm, focus and self-regulate their emotions. Adults will also come away with some ways they can introduce or deepen their own practices of yoga. I feel that two hours will give them a starting point and hopefully their journey will continue after that- – with or without me.
I founded Child’s Heart Yoga four years ago and have been mainly teaching children. I would love to see every child learn to use the tools that yoga provides in navigate the world. What better way than to share it with parents and teachers?
CP: It’s not just for parents — but for teachers, too. What can teachers expect to learn at the class?
Teachers can learn some brain breaks for children, as well as some breathing, meditation and mindfulness techniques that can increase focus and attention, as well as foster a spirit of community in a classroom. I taught special education for 20 years before leaving to grow my business and I know it’s hard enough to be a teacher today. I have many personal stories of incorporating yoga into my classrooms over the years. I know it works!
CP: One of the techniques participants will learn is how to calm and focus their child. How does yoga help with this?
Many yoga poses require concentration in order to balance or hold. Learning different breathing techniques, both with and without poses, is a wonderful tool that children and adults can both utilize in everyday situations to handle stress and induce calm and focus. There is much anecdotal evidence to support yoga in classrooms and every day life for kids. We will cover some of it in the workshop.
CP: How has yoga helped in your own parenting?
Without a doubt, meditation and breathing techniques have made me a more patient and positive parent. My own regular yoga practice that incorporates poses, breath, mediation and relaxation is one that I can do on my own or use as bonding time with my seven year old twins. My daughter loves yoga and frequently practices on her own or “teaches” her friends. My son says he isn’t “into” yoga, but I still notice him using breathing and calming techniques almost daily. I call that “sneaky yoga!”
CP: What if a parent has no experience with yoga themselves? Will this class still benefit them?
You need no experience to join this two hour workshop. My motto is that yoga is for everyone. It doesn’t have to be intimidating and it will always meet you where you are on any given day. Following that, I love to introduce yoga to newbies. Please don’t let a lack of experience or intimidation of what you think a yoga practice is to hold you back.
CP: This two-hour workshop just a taste of a bigger workshop coming this spring. What will that workshop cover? How can parents or teachers find more information?
This workshop is just the beginning! I have taken training with Shakta Khalsa, founder of Radiant Child Yoga and known as the mother of children’s yoga, to guide adults into deeper self practice of yoga as well as learning how to teach yoga to children. Coming in June, this 20 hour class will cover all age groups, from infants to teens, and how to appropriately teach them yoga . Children’s yoga doesn’t look at all like an adult class. We use music and games and many fun techniques to help children grow in their own practice. Participants of that training will have books, digital downloads and tons of examples to aid their practice with kids.
Radiant Child believes that children are big souls in little bodies and it is my goal to honor and promote that, as it’s so easy to forget in our day to day lives. Also, those who attend the two hour workshop will be eligible for discounts and early bird registration for the 20 hour Radiant Child Teacher Training.
Editor’s Note: Bridget will be teaching three 20 minute yoga workshops for kids at our Healthy Heart Play Date on January 27th at The Bryn Mawr School!