the littlest yoga teacher


the other day, i was teaching a group of 15 kids. the youngest was three. the oldest ten. overall, the group skewed very heavily towards the ten. there was one three.

i was teaching them how to jump lightly from downward dog to the front of their mats. J960x640-123511

the kids were all very impressed. 😉

then, the little one piped up, “like this?”. and she jumped from down dog into a seated straddle. really quite impressive for such a little peanut.

i was definitely amazed and asked her if she learned that in gymnastics. no. tumbling? no. “i taught myself,” she exclaimed. and then went on to humbly offer “want me to teach you?”

how could i turn that down? of course, the answer was yes. at which point, this tiny little girl summoned not just me, but the entire group of “grown up” kids to follow her. “everyone stand up!” she squeaked very loudly. “put your hands here and your feet here and jump!”

okay, so maybe the instruction could use some polishing, but amazingly enough, the whole group did exactly what she said, everyone landing on their tushes in a straddle just like she did.

“now you!” she ordered to me, as i hadn’t jumped yet.

okay, i replied, but i need you to move back a little so i don’t kick you (she was sitting right next to me).

she scooted back and proceeded to jump from downward dog into titibasana (arm balance in a straddle split).

after i landed the jump, i turned to her and asked “like that?”

at first, she was dumbfounded and just looked at me with her mouth open. then, like any great teacher, she smiled, vigorously nodded her head and assured me, “yeah! yeah! just like that!”…as if she had just taught me how to do this remarkable feat.

her next enthusiastic and encouraging words…”want me to teach you another…?”

too. cute. for. words.

About YOGAthletica

the day before i found yoga--had you asked me--i'd have told you that i wouldn't be caught dead doing yoga. sitting around and humming? not my idea of a good time. a minute into my first yoga class--had you asked me--i'd have told you i will practice until the minute i die. and i've been in heaven ever since. more than anything, yoga taught me that it was okay to be imperfect, okay to fall. and, man, do i wish someone told me that when i was 3 instead of 30. so i started mini yogis yoga for kids, hoping to help children to be more accepting of themselves, more accepting of others, and better human beings overall. that was march 2002. since then, i've taught tens of thousands of children how to use yoga as a tool for daily life. and i've also taught about 1000 teachers around the world to date (12/11) how to teach yoga to kids. i figure between the children i've taught and the ones my grads have taught, we've likely reached hundreds of thousands of kids. just looking to make a difference in this world....

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