The Big Dog Little Dog Yoga class was born out of a request on Facebook. On the Harpenden parents’ group someone was asking whether they knew of any yoga classes they could do with their kids.
I did some Googling to see if there was already something like it out there but I couldn’t find anything. There’s lots of classes for mum and baby or toddler but not actually with your kids so I thought it would be fun to start something.
I know that I enjoy having my two children Lincoln (age 4) and Grace (age 3) ‘help’ me in my practice at home so the new class format takes in some of that including physical partnering, bits of acro yoga, children ‘adjusting’ their parents in poses and relaxation. It also includes some experiential anatomy – this is a dance term and it’s when you learn where things are by feeling. You use touch and movement exploration.
The class is my son Lincoln’s yoga teaching debut – he’s 4 (start em’ young, I say…) and he will be demonstrating the postures with me. When we practice together I feel that it brings us closer physically and goes beyond normal cuddling.
It’s also purposeful because there’s a physical exchange. So in a twist, we must both rotate our bodies equally to get the benefits of the practice. Or he might need to back bend so I can forward bend. It’s the reciprocal nature of a partnering practice but you’re doing it with your child.
The class offers a chance for the relationship to be one of equality. You’re not just the bossy, nagging mum, dad, grandparent or carer. It also takes you out of the taxi service role of taking your kids to classes. You can do it together and both stay fit, flexible and healthy.
Lincoln was asked why he enjoyed doing yoga with mommy. He said, “it’s fun.” And you can’t argue with that.
Big Dog Little Dog Yoga for children (aged 4-7) and their parents/carers. The next term starts 8 June in Harpenden Hertfordshire. For more information, visit April’s website (it’s a work in progress) or email her directly to book.