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Yoga for Teens and Tweens: Discover How to Make Yoga Classes Engaging for this Age Group (Interview)

Are you curious about how to effectively teach yoga to tweens and teens?

Today, we’re talking to Claire Louise Smith from Ambassador Yoga as she shares the art of structuring yoga for teens classes, which is vastly different than kids yoga and adult yoga. Learn the essential ways to make these unique yoga and mindfulness classes for youth engaging and effective!

The Quest for an Effective Tween and Teen Yoga Program

Many years ago, Claire’s local yoga studio community in Ontario, Canada, asked for teen empowerment workshops. But the challenge was clear: how to create yoga classes that resonate with this unique age group. Through trial and error, Claire and her team discovered a powerful formula for working with ages ten through fifteen—one that blended the Eight Limbs of Yoga with physical postures:

  • Physical Postures: A carefully curated selection of poses, complete with explanations of techniques and their incredible benefits.
  • Eight Limbs of Yoga: The mystical realm of mudras, mantras, philosophy, and the art of breathing techniques. A holistic approach to unlocking the secrets of yoga wisdom.
  • Reflection Time: A serene pause to sit, reflect, and share ideas in a moment of introspection. It’s an opportunity to celebrate their accomplishments and express their feelings.
  • Connection: A bridge to connect with the challenges and issues of their own lives and others through the profound philosophy of yoga.
  • Self-awareness: A moment to pause, learn about oneself, and discover the delicate art of balancing energy levels.
  • Mindful Resting: A soothing resting pose at the end of the class, surrounded by comfy bolsters and pillows. It’s like a cozy cocoon of relaxation.

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3 Essential Tips for Teaching Yoga for Teens and Tweens

From her years of experience with teaching yoga to young adults and creating a teen leadership program, Claire shares her top tips for creating a successful experience: 

1- The Art of Class Structure of Tween and Teen Yoga Class: Finding the Sweet Spot

Claire knew that neither the playful games and songs of children’s yoga nor the rigorous physical practice of adult classes quite hit the mark for tweens and teens. So, what’s the secret? It’s about finding that sweet spot in between!

Kickstart the tween and teen yoga class with time to reflect on their week. They can choose comfy bolsters, blankets, or their favorite cozy spot.

Teaching Lesson:
This could be a series of physical postures, complete with explanations of why they’re beneficial. Or it might be a deep dive into specific breathing practices or yoga philosophy, like the Yamas and Niyamas. Take them on a journey of exploration.

Wind down with a tranquil resting pose, followed by reflection time. But here’s the best part–sharing stories! Share your thoughts and feelings. Let your voice be heard. Discover the tapestry of shared experiences.

2- Structure and Levels of a Tween and Teen Yoga Program: The Journey of Mastery

Claire discovered that drop-in classes didn’t quite cut it for this age group. Instead, she crafted a 10-week series divided into eight curriculum levels—just like leveling up in other sports like karate or swimming! Each level comes with a workbook, allowing students to dive deeper into the ancient wisdom concepts taught in class.

In the popular Tween and Teen Leadership Program, students got to step into leadership roles, volunteering for children’s yoga birthday parties, summer yoga camps, and other kids’ yoga classes. This not only let them share their yoga wisdom but also nurtured their leadership skills, from leading yoga activities to organizing snacks.

3-Specific Resources and Props for Tween and Teen Yoga Classes

Claire shares her favorite resources for teaching youth yoga. Her bag of tricks includes wooden chimes and Tibetan tingsha chimes for mindful listening, bolsters and blankets for the ultimate restorative yoga experience, and teen affirmation cards to build self-esteem and share feelings.

Now you’re ready to embark on your own rewarding journey of teaching yoga to tweens and teens. It’s not just about yoga; it’s about empowering young souls, nurturing their self-awareness, and fostering a sense of community. So, unroll those mats and let the adventure begin!

Watch “How to Teach Tween and Teen Yoga Classes” Interview here

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Yoga for Teens and Tweens: Discover How to Make Yoga Classes Engaging for this Age Group | Kids Yoga Stories

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