Yoga for Kids with Ms. Stix Artwork
Season 3 - Episode 6

Yoga for All Stars!

15 min - Practice
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Ms. Stix shares a sequence for young athletes to increase energy, flexibility, balance, and focus.
What You'll Need: Mat

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Dec 24, 2015
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(waves crashing) Hi. Do you like to play sports? Do you have a favorite team? So today, we'll find a practice that will help bring your energy up, your flexibility, your concentration and all of these skills will help you in your athletic activities, whether you play sports, whether you walk on the beach, whether you take a run, ride your bike, helping the body to open and stay flexible. So let's start on our hands and knees.

Spread the fingers wide and we'll warm up our spines, so get round in cat pose. Wobble. Inhale up into cow. Nice. Do that a few more times your own pace, feeling your spine, warming it up.

Excellent. Follow your breath. Yoga's a time to slow down and really notice how you feel. Perfect. From here, let's come back to downward facing dog.

If you play a lot of sports and do a lot of running, your hamstrings, those lines down the backs of your legs, can get really tight, so bend one knee. Stretch one hamstring. Other side. Do that a few more times. Breathing.

Then, pause in downward facing dog. Spread your fingers. Push back towards your heels. Lengthen your spine. Wag your tail a few times.

Then, go 'head and walk your feet up towards your hands. Pause, hang here. Shake your head yes, shake your head no. Take a deep breath and rag doll, soften. From here, bring your attention to the bottom of your spine, your tailbone.

Bend your knees and slowly roll up. Stack your spine. Chin to chest, head heavy. Picture your spine like a giant tower. Roll your arms open and take a deep breath here in mountain.

Feel your strength. From here, we'll do a few standing poses that will really open up your legs and keep your legs nice and flexible for your sports. So open up the legs wide and we'll move into a lunge pose, so turn towards one foot. Bring your hands down on the ground. Rock forward a few times back and forth, breathing.

Nice, pause. Excellent and then from here, walk your hands over to the other foot. Come into a lunge. Rocking forward and back. Breathing into your legs.

Nice, take a deep breath here and then walk to center. Place your hands on your waist and slowly inhale up. Nice. From here, let's move into a pose called warrior two. Really feeling your strength.

Turn one foot open. Bend this front knee. Open up your arms wide. Nice. Good, you might even look over that middle finger.

Beautiful. Now just for fun, let's pretend we're throwing a ball, so reach your back arm back and give yourself a throw. Nice. Come back to center. Other side.

Warrior two on this side. Bend that front knee. Look over that middle finger. Excellent. Hold onto your ball and give yourself a throw.

Nice. Come back to warrior two. Straighten out your legs. Bend your knees and either step or lightly hop your feet together. Mountain.

Lots of athletes get really tight shoulders, so let's open up our necks and shoulders. Take your time here to really notice where you feel it in your body. So go ahead and start to rotate your head in a circle. Breathing, and when you find a sticky spot, take a deep breath there, exhale through your mouth. Nice.

Feeling your body. Change direction. Beautiful. Come back to center and then start to circle your shoulders forward. You might even bend your knees and round your spine.

The shoulders are the most flexible body, oh, the most flexible joint in the whole body, so really feel that. They really move a lot. Change direction and if you close your eyes, it's easier sometimes to feel the sensations. Breathing. Nice.

From here, we'll move into what's called a batter's stretch, so cross your elbow around. Give yourself a pat on the back for doing it and then take your elbow, gently push your elbow back. Nice. Now, we all feel this pose. Feel the tension in your shoulder.

Feel it and relax around it. Your body will soften, noticing. Other side, so first shake that arm out a little bit. Cross the other elbow over. Give yourself another pat on the back.

Of course, this shoulder's different. It feels different. Notice it, breathing. No force. Deep inhale.

Exhale. Then, go 'head and shake that arm out. From here, we'll inhale the arms up. We'll find some side stretches. Clasp your hands.

Point your index finger up towards the sky. Get really tall like a tower and then relax your shoulder blades down your back like wings. Deep inhale, exhale, bend to a side. Nice. Breath into your ribs, your side waist.

Round through your feet, inhale up and then find the other side. Excellent. Come back to center. Release your hands and slowly release your arms down by your sides. Shake them out and feel the energy down through your arms and your fingers, flowing.

Let's do one more shoulder opener from here. This time, clasp your hands back behind you. Bend into your knees and roll your shoulders wide. Take a deep breath, look up. Take a deep breath of sunshine into your heart, your throat.

Then, we'll hinge forward. Bring your arms up. You might even bring them over your head. Relax your head. Bend and straighten a few times.

I like to imagine an octopus in this pose. My elbows loose, my knees loose, softening. Perfect. From here, release your arms down towards the earth. Shake your head yes, shake your head no.

Now, let's roll up one more time. See if you can go a little slower this time. Stacking the spine. See your spine grow like a plant up towards the sun. Roll the shoulders open.

Come back to your mountain pose, that place of center and balance. Breathing. So we'll do one more standing pose for strength. This is called side angle pose, so open up your legs wide. Turn one foot out and bring your elbow to your knee.

Hand finds your waist. This is also great for balance. Feel your feet rooted on the earth. Great for ankles too and stay right here or circle this arm in front of the face. From your back heel, all the way through your side waist and out through those fingers, feel yourself shining.

This is called a line of energy. Picture it. Breathing. Beautiful. Now, feel the strength in your legs.

Sports take a lot of strength. Inhale, reach up. Hand finds the side. So from here, let's find the other side, so turn the other foot open. Elbow to knee, hand finds your hip and then pause here.

Really feel your feet on the ground. Nice. Circle that front arm in front of the face to the center of the room and then from your back heel through your top lung and through the arm. Visualize that line of energy. Feel the stretch.

Breathe into it. From here, we'll reach up with that top arm. Hands find the waist. Bend your knees and step or lightly hop to mountain. Close your eyes.

Come back to center. Focus your body. Then, let's do three half sun salutes, saying hello to our sun, the source. Great way to build strength in your spine, your legs as well as link your movements with the breath. Let your breath guide you.

So let's bring the hands together at the heart. We'll do the first one together and then you can find your own pace. So take a deep inhale. Exhale. Inhaling and then push your hands towards the earth.

Circle to the sun. Exhale dive. Inhale, lengthen your spine. Feel the backbend. Exhale round.

Push through your feet as you inhale and bring some sunshine energy into your body. Pause. Let's find two more rounds here. Maybe you wanna move faster. Maybe you wanna move slower.

Listen. Take a full inhale. Exhale. When you're ready, inhale, breathing through the nose. Exhale through the nose, push your hands down.

Nice. Inhale up. Exhale, find the earth. Lengthen your spine as you inhale. Exhale round.

Push evenly into your feet. Arch to the sun and bring the energy of our source into your body. Pause. Last one. Take a full inhale.

Exhale. Inhale. Then, follow that pattern. Can always change the pattern or pause. Follow your breath.

Then, come back to mountain. Close your eyes and feel the strength, the balance, the concentration. All of us are all-stars. Let's open up the feet wide. Sink down into your squat.

Great for baseball players, great to open up your hips. Now, rock a little from side to side. Hands find the heart. Close your eyes and say thank you to yourself for practicing, for your energy, your strength, your focus. Deep breath here.

Peace.

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