A Mother’s Sweet Goodnight

YogaKids Teacher Julie Pate wrote this poem after a guided meditation taught at a YogaKids Transformations Training while on her journey to become a Certified YogaKids Teacher. Julie shares that her YogaKids journey transformed her life by transforming her career and relationships . Learn how you can transform your life and become a Certified YogaKids Teacher HERE

A Mother’s Sweet Goodnight
By Julie Pate

The sun has long since set on our day; we sit together as sleep approaches
It is dark, except for the soft glow of the bathroom light in the distance
The fan above gently brushes the warm air against our skin

Love floats through the room resting softly on his nose, and then my shoulder
So fully present in these moments; it feels as if the love can be touched, and held

With the day’s distractions gone, we can finally be here together
and savor each moment, like the last few tastes in a bowl of ice cream

His voice is young and full of wonder as he shares his triumphs and dreams
Tenderness passes from mother to son and back again
We close the day with a thankful awareness
and a hope for another day, to love some more.

A note from the author: “I hope this poem inspires you to cultivate a quiet moment with someone you love today.” And when you are in that moment, may you pause in awe of just how beautiful it is.


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Celebrate the Season with Edible Poses

Girl in Swinging Pretzel Pose

If you’re planning a kids yoga class about Thanksgiving, you might want to include a few fun facts about the holiday. You may also want to include poses that are inspired by food! Here are some facts to share and some of our favorite YogaKids’ “edible” poses! In addition, you can include this very cool Mandala coloring page featuring a few of our favorite healthy foods!

Fun facts about Thanksgiving

  • The first Thanksgiving feast lasted an entire 3 days
  • The average American eats 4500 calories on Thanksgiving, 2500 more than most of us need.
  • Turkey is the traditional dish served because in the 1600s, Turkeys were the most plentiful wild game.
  • Speaking of turkeys, did you know they can drown if looking up while it is raining?!

November 27th is Thanksgiving which is a special day to spend time with family and friends, but most people associate this day with…EATING! Here at YogaKids we have many food-inspired yoga poses. To help you burn off some of the extra calories you will probably eat on Thanksgiving day; try this series of edible poses.

Peanut Butter and Jelly
Reach up and grab the peanut butter and jelly jars that have magically appeared in the air. Rub PB&J all over your hands and smear it between your toes. Spread PB&J on our legs and you belly. Wash you face and hair in peanut butter and jelly. Stretch your arms up again, fold forward at the hip hinge, and lengthen your spine and upper body over your lower body to make a peanut-butter-and- jelly sandwich. Press the backs of your legs into the floor. Press your chest into your legs. Squish those two pieces of bread together. Can you reach your toes to wash them clean?

Sit with your legs wide apart. Get ready to make a delicious slice of Pizza. Roll out and stretch the pizza dough to the right by slowly sliding your hands down your legs from your right thigh to your right toes. Then repeat on the left side. Now spread some sauce on the slice by moving your hands from side to side on the floor in the space between your legs. Now let’s grate some cheese. Finger dance from the top of your head, to your chest, down your legs and sprinkle cheese all over that giant slice in front of you. Next add your favorite toppings. Make your pizza colorful and fun; olives, peppers, mushrooms, pineapple, red licorice sticks, whatever you want. Bon Appetite.

Start in child’s pose. Stay still and feel the warmth coming up from the popcorn maker beneath you. It is getting warmer and warmer. Your body is full of the heat and soon you will be ready to pop. Now if you are ready – jump high into the air and POP. POP. POP. Repeat and pop!

Table of Contents
Lie on your back. Bend your knees. Place your feet on the floor. Place your hands underneath your shoulders, fingers pointing towards your body. Press down with your hands and feet, lifting your body up until you are in table position. What is on your table? Set each other’s tables for a picnic, birthday party, smorgasbord, tea party, formal dinner, ice cream parlor, and any other ideas you can think of. Say each food or item aloud as you place it on your friend’s table.

Swinging Pretzel
Sit cross-legged. Take hold of your left ankle and foot and place them high up on your right thigh. Now you are in the half pretzel. If you can, do the same thing on the other side. When both ankles are on both thighs, you’re in full pretzel. Switch legs so that each gets a turn on top. Now swing your pretzel. Spread your fingers and palms flat on the floor just behind your knees. Press them down as you lengthen your arms. Lift your bottom and legs up off the floor. With strong arms and breathing, swing your pretzel back and forth.

Which edible poses are your favorite?

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The Importance of Connection

YogaKids class in Circle of Friendship Flowers Pose

YogaKids creator Marsha Wenig knew the importance of connection when she created the YogaKids program over twenty years ago. Marsha created 14 original Elements that YogaKids teachers weave into their classes to create fun, educational, creative lesson plans that are designed to help children thrive. Several of these Elements along with many poses, activities and techniques are designed to help children connect to each other, the world and to their own unique goodness.

Extensive research shows that having good-quality relationships can help us to live longer and happier lives with fewer mental health problems. A sense of connection helps children feel emotionally and physically safe and valued; they develop healthy social abilities and have a sense of sharing and caring for each other. The centerpiece of opening our heart is to remember that we belong to each other.

Professor Brene Brown says, “A deep sense of love and belonging is an irresistible need of all people. We are biologically, cognitively, physically, and spiritually wired to love, to be loved, and to belong.” The YogaKids program helps teachers offer children this sense of belonging and connection. Whatever we practice gets stronger and when children practice compassion and love, that part of them grows immensely and they tap into that part of themselves that is full of light, full of love.

The Ecological Echoes Element connects children to plants, animals and the environment. This Element allows teachers to weave in fun facts while teaching poses. In Downward Facing Dog pose, children might learn that dogs have the ability to detect changes in the human body and are used to help diabetic and seizure patients. While in Tree pose, students might learn that California holds the record for the oldest living trees, with some thought to be 4,000-5,000 years old. Children get the physical benefits of these poses, but also learn to understand their connection to the world.

The Bridge of Diamonds Element teaches children that they are like a diamond: unique and brilliant in their own way. And every child can build a “bridge” from themselves to the larger world. Many YogaKids poses can be transformed into partner or group poses. For example, in Tree pose, children can hold hands and notice how getting a little help from their friend helps them find balance. Bridge of Diamonds poses and techniques give children the confidence to open their hearts and connect to others.

Connecting poses help children feel a sense of community. Many YogaKids activities offer children the chance to work together, while simultaneously celebrating their own unique qualities. In Circle of Friendship Flower (pictured above) children kneel in a circle, holding hands. They inhale and reach arms up, then exhale and fold down into Child’s Pose.  In this pose, when children rise up and back bend, it symbolizes opening their hearts to life. Often when we get hurt, we fold in to protect ourselves, and in the effort, we close ourselves off to life and love. YogaKids helps us to teach children to rise up and stay open to life, open to love and open to seeing their own brilliance.

Poet Thomas Merton said, “Love is our true destiny. We do not find the meaning of life by ourselves alone – we find it with another.” YogaKids helps children find their true destiny and bask in the beauty of their own true nature.

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Gratitude and the Highest Happiness

Silver Outline of Person in Prayer

Santosha or contentment is part of yoga’s eightfold path. These eight steps help to guide us to a meaningful and purposeful life. As we prepare to celebrate Thanksgiving during the month of November, this is the perfect time of year to pause and observe Santosha and explore how practicing contentment and gratitude can help make life extremely rich.

Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra verse 2.42 reads, “From contentment, the highest happiness is attained.”  Contentment blossoms, when desire is removed. Yoga teaches us that the moment is complete; we don’t need to look for something else. Contentment is all about being grateful for what we have instead of desiring something else, or something more.

When we spend our lives seeking, always looking for the better experience (bigger house, brighter diamond or newer car model), we are placing requirements on our own happiness that we can never meet. Once we get those possessions that we seek, we usually barely enjoy them before we are looking for that next bigger and better thing.

Yoga Teacher TKV Desikachar’s definition of Santosha is “to accept what happens.” In other words, when it is cold, let it be cold. We experienced one of the coldest and wettest winters on record her in the Chicago area last year, and the talk all winter was on how awful it was. Many shifted into survival mode and stopped enjoying life.

Looking back, there was so much joy to be had. I connected with many of my southern states friends when they called or emailed their sympathy. I was motivated to plan a great spring break vacation, and had several days to spend with my kids when school was cancelled. Our house was warm and cozy all winter, our old cars still started every day, and many mornings we woke to see our neighborhood blanketed in some of the most beautiful snow we had ever seen.  

Each morning when I trekked out to my studio to teach yoga, I found my students were more grateful than ever to have a beautiful space to come to, a respite from the cold, and a community to share a practice with. The weather couldn’t ruin the winter, only our attitudes towards the weather could do that.

Gratitude asks us to fall in love with our life as it is, and will keep us centered in joy and abundance. This Thanksgiving, take time to not only count your blessings, but to look for the joy in the perfect moments that will unfold right before you.

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Losing Daylight: Help Children Stay Positive During this Season of Change

losing daylight - child playing in fall leaves

It’s finally fall! While the season brings with it exciting things like pumpkin patches, cider, candy apples and Halloween, it also means it’s beginning to get darker outside earlier. Losing daylight has the potential to impact kids and their mental well-being.

The term that accompanies the sadness which corresponds to the change in seasons and loss of sunlight, is Seasonal Affective Disorder. Known as S.A.D. for short, it affects the young more often than the elderly. S.A.D. is identifiable through negative thoughts, an increased amount of time sleeping and isolation once grey skies appear, and can lead to more serious depression.

It’s important for us to help children fight through S.A.D. and find ways to stay positive and motivated throughout fall and winter. If you’re not sure where to start, here are some ways to ensure kids are as happy as possible, no matter the weather outside.

Make Home Cozy

As the weather becomes colder, people spend more time indoors at home. Embracing the seasonal change and making home a comfy haven is one easy way to promote happiness in kids. Having your home be a relaxing place to spend time can have a tremendous impact on a child’s mood. Have plenty of soft blankets around to cuddle under while watching T.V. or having a movie night. With constant adult supervision, light a few candles to create a cozy atmosphere. Check any negativity at the door and ensure you and the kids have a calm space to bask in and forget the weather.

Keep Active

When the weather is dark and grey, it’s easy for kids to feel less motivated. Don’t let that impact the time they spend being active. Activity is not only healthy for their bodies, it’s also beneficial for mental health. Exercise, in any form, helps release endorphins and feel good brain chemicals like serotonin and dopamine to help regulate moods and fight sadness and depression. One great exercise to start is yoga. Combining the physical poses and stretches with the mental focus and meditation, makes yoga a great exercise for children’s happiness.

Aid in Restful Sleep

Sleep is always important, but it becomes even more so when battling sadness and depression. We want to make sure kids are getting the right kind of sleep. This means a good and restful nine to eleven hours per night, depending on age. To help kids accomplish this, make sure they’re comfortable in their beds. This all starts with a good base; your kids mattress should foster a good night’s sleep and benefit the way they like to sleep. Then look to their surroundings. Instead of allowing them to sleep with the T.V. on for noise and light, buy a white noise machine and night light. Listen to what their preferences are and work with them to create it. Beware of oversleeping though, as this is a sign of S.A.D.

Get Creative

When they’re feeling sad, give kids an outlet to express themselves. Children are inherently creative, so giving them the tools to showcase this helps to grow that skill while also teaching them to channel their feelings. Have a dedicated craft box filled with supplies for your child to turn to when they’re feeling sad and need something to uplift them. This also offers the perfect opportunity for you to spend time together working on a project. Having your child explain their craft to you can also give you insight into their feelings so you’re able to understand why they’re sad and think of more ways to help.

Set an Example

You are a child’s biggest role model. In their eyes, you have all the answers and the ability to make anything better. Set an example as the seasons change and show your kids how to be happy. Embrace the fun activities that come along with fall and winter, instead of focusing on the increased grey skies and darkness. Spend more time with them to make them feel less lonely and talk to understand how they’re feeling. Being a positive presence in their lives during this time of year can truly make a difference in the way they view the outside.

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Ozone Shield Craft

ozone craft

A Visual Vignette classroom idea for integrating important Earth science from YogaKids Apprentice Rebecca Lizotte:

Stand in Mountain Pose with the Earth (a print out, globe, or ball) in the center of the group. Imagine your climbing a gigantic ladder up to the cloud into the stratosphere. (Ladder to the Clouds pose). Share the following about the Earth…

The stratosphere is between 5 and 31 miles above the ground, where the earth is protected by a brave group of tiny defenders called ozone molecules. They band together and form a shield around the globe called the ozone layer. She then had the group hold hands and protect our earth like the ozone molecules. These molecules let in the suns life giving warmth but shield off the sun’s harmful ultraviolet rays.

Unfortunately on earth, years ago, humans made chemicals that attack the ozone layer, called CFCs. These chemicals were used in refrigerator, air conditioners and aerosol spray cans. Once we figured out that these chemicals were harmful to the ozone layer, most countries in the world stopped making them. But we still have to be aware of the bad ultraviolet rays. Ultraviolet rays are bad for your eyes and your skin. That’s why it’s important to stay out of the sun or wear sunscreen and sunglasses when we go outside.

Have your class make an Ozone Shield Pomander Ball using an orange, whole dried cloves and toothpicks. Students perforate the orange with the toothpicks and creatd the outline of a shield with a circle (sun) in the middle. Have the kids insert the cloves (ozone molecules) along the perforation. Pro Tip: To preserve, place the pomander in a paper bag to dry out for a few weeks. The cloves will draw out their moisture. Throw away if mold appears.

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Help Children Experience More Joy with Lemon Toes

Lemon Toes pose

Progressive muscle relaxation (PMR) was developed by Dr. Edmund Jacobson, and is a technique in tensing and relaxing the muscles. This technique leads to an increase in relaxation throughout the entire body, essentially, physical tension melts, which in turn relaxes the mind and emotions. YogaKids creator Marsha Wenig developed the Lemon Toes technique to take a very adult practice and make it kid-friendly. In this version of PMR, children imagine their toes are straws, sipping sour lemonade up from their toes to every part of the body. Children sip, pucker, breath and relax.

Cultivate Contentment

Santosha is one of the niyamas, yoga’s observances, and it means contentment. Life can be very challenging, and Lemon Toes helps kids understand that pain comes and goes. Children develop tools to cultivate contentment even in challenging times. In Lemon Toes, we experience the sensation of constriction, tightening and compression in the entire body, followed by a feeling of ease. This can be very comforting to children as they begin to trust that pain in life is inevitable, but suffering is not. Living a joyous life is less about avoiding challenges, and more about how we deal with and think about life’s challenges. Lemon Toes helps kids experience tension and realize that they are still OK. It gives them trust in the universe.

Author and happiness expert Shawn Achor says that only 10% of happiness is based on our external world meaning where we live, what fun “stuff” we have, the weather etc… 90% is based on how our brain processes what happens to us. We could be sitting on a beach in Hawaii sipping a fruit drink while someone rubs our feet and still be miserable — or we could be walking in Chicago on a cold dark windy April morning and experience much joy. Lemon Toes helps kids process discomfort as a natural part of life, and helps them to experience less fear and anxiety around discomfort.

Welcome Opposites

When we experience pain, it is important to also find the opposite of that — or ease. Dr. Deepak Chopra spent time in a monastery in India, and part of their practice was to go out into the streets barefoot and beg for their food. Deepak told his teacher that walking barefoot was extremely painful and his teacher told him to focus on the foot that is in the air. In Lemon Toes, kids experience constriction and then the opposite of that, extreme ease. The ease is much sweeter after the constriction than before. Children are able to notice their being more easily and the practice is very mindful. Welcoming the opposite of sensation improves focus and concentration.

Body Sensing

Mindfulness refers to staying in the present moment; it leads to a deeper sense of peace. When we shut of the mind’s constant stream of thoughts (many of which are negative), we tap into that place in ourselves that is full of peace. Body sensing is a mindfulness technique used to draw focus inward. We can’t sense the body and think at the same time so thoughts begin to melt away. Lemon Toes draws the attention inward, and children improve focus, concentration and reduce stress.


Lie on your back. Imagine that your toes are straws, sipping sour lemonade up from the bottom to every part of your body. Hold your breath as your toes curl and pucker. Breathe out as you relax your toes. Work your way up your legs, belly, chest, and arms, sipping, puckering, breathing and relaxing. Make a sourpuss face. Tighten up your nose, eyes, cheeks, teeth and forehead. Let our hair curl. Hold it, squeeze it tense it. Release. Finally, tighten your whole body at once. Hold it for 5-10 seconds. Completely release, relax. Feel the difference between sour, tight and ten

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Yoga Tools for Temper Tantrums

child screaming

When my son was 3, he was diagnosed with a dairy allergy. Not long after the diagnosis he had a meltdown over a Sponge Bob ice cream cone at a local zoo. Despite my efforts to entice him into a non-dairy treat, he insisted on the ice cream, and as the discussion continued, we both became more and more agitated. Eventually the incident ended in a full out screaming fit with my son lying down on his back and kicking his feet, while making balls out of his little fists. As a small crowd of people watched, I tried desperately to calm him down, eventually getting so angry myself that I picked him up and dragged him back to the car literally kicking and screaming.

Most parents of toddlers can relate to this story. Shortly after the zoo incident, I started yoga teacher training with YogaKids. In the ,training I learned many techniques to calm the body and the mind. I soon began to incorporate what I learned with my own children and it led to a harmonious journey into peaceful parenting the YogaKids way.


Take Steps to Prevent Tantrums

Setting clear boundaries, offering rewards for good behavior, and staying away from triggers will help to prevent tantrums. My son’s ice cream meltdown could have been prevented if I had steered clear of the ice cream stand in the first place. It would have also helped if, as a family, we avoided ice cream when together. Finding special non-dairy treats that my son liked and having those at-the-ready would also be a helpful tool to promote peace and happiness.


Stay Calm

During a temper tantrum, it is very easy to get angry and frustrated yourself, but this will only fuel the situation. If you stop and observe how you feel during the tantrum, you may find an inner calm present behind the stress that eases the tension in the situation. If you find calm, that energy will help to calm your child. Your child will come to understand that they can trust you to be peaceful and calm no matter what, and will find this comforting. Observing your breath is a great tool to focus on while the tantrum is happening. Once your child has calmed down, speak softly with kindness and empathy. Let your child know you understand why they were frustrated, and practice peaceful breathing or a mindfulness technique after the tantrum is over. This will build your child’s “peace muscle,” your child’s ability to tap into that part of them that is full of ease and joy.


Tantrums Can Help Your Children Get Their Feelings Out

As long as your child is safe, tantrums can help them to release frustrations. Small children often have a hard time articulating how they feel, and they may not have developed coping skills to handle life’s everyday stressors.  It is very healthy to release tension instead of keeping negative thoughts in. Crying, jumping up and down, or lying down and kicking can help to release tension. If we don’t express frustrations often, they lay dormant and can block positive energy and affect our ability to enjoy life.


YogaKids Tools for Temper Tantrums

YogaKids offers many tools to help kids release excess energy, move their bodies in healthy ways, and calm down and find peace.

Volcano – This pose offers a healthy outlet for tension.

Begin in Mountain pose; bring the fingertips together at the chest. Jump the feet apart. Place your palms together at the center of your body. Breathe in. Watch your hands as you raise them over head. Breathe out as you explode your arms outward. Lower them to your sides and return your hands to heart. Erupt and release again and again. Make big, exploding volcano noises.

Rocket Ship is another healthy way to blow off steam in a fun way.

Begin from a Squat, inhale and shoot your hands and body upward to the sky and make blast off noises. Come back down and do it a few more times.         

Peace Breath – Once stored energy has been released, Peace Breath is a great way to calm the nervous system.

Close your eyes. Relax your face muscles. Let your skin drape over your bones like a soft blanket. Breathe in. Breathe out and whisper the word “peace.” Repeat 3 to 6 times

Swim Ducky Swim is a technique that can be used at the end of a yoga practice, at bedtime or anytime you have 5-10 minutes to calm down and help to increase focus.

Lie down on your back. Place a rubber ducky on your belly. Breathe gently in (your belly button rises) and out (your belly button sinks down.) As your belly rises and falls like the waves, your ducky surfs the waves as you inhale (breathe in) and floats as you exhale (breathe out). Give your ducky a slow and gentle ride with your breathing. You can used any small stuffed animal or favorite toy for this exercise.

Learn ALL the YogaKids poses and their benefits as a Certified YogaKids Teacher!

Courage in Heartbreak: Healing After a Pregnancy Loss

Jua Sandra Nnafie - van Dijk

“You don’t realize how strong you are until being strong is the only option you have.”

Adapted from a quote by Bob Marley

If you are reading this, that means that I found the courage to share the story of my pregnancy loss.

If you are reading this, that means that we are one step closer to sharing and opening up to stories about pregnancy loss.

Thank you for reading.

I am sure that my journey in the YogaKids program has given me the strength to get back up, after I took a big fall into the dark in early November 2018. As part of an assignment in the YK program, reading Judith Hanson Lasater’s book Living your Yoga was what helped me start reliving my own yoga.

When I was almost eleven weeks into my fourth pregnancy (or sixth if you’d count my two earlier miscarriages), my gynecologist gave me the heartbreaking news that I would most likely lose this baby within the next two or three weeks. BOOM! Just like that, I fell from cloud nine all the way into the deepest, darkest black hole I had ever known.

I have a husband who loves me dearly and I have three amazing children. This fourth baby, however, had been a forever wish inside my heart. That wish would now go up in smoke. The three weeks that followed were so confusing. Still pregnant, but not really. My mind and heart were swinging from hope to despair to deep sadness. For the first time in my life as a yogi and a mom, even my own yoga practice couldn’t keep my thoughts calm and collected. I did have over 15 years of yoga experience, but this sudden shift from happiness to sadness was too much to handle.

I felt lost and alone. Honestly, I felt like giving up on trying to feel happy again. I had to keep going for my family though. I had to find a positive vibe somewhere. But where?

Only three people knew about my pregnancy. My husband, my mom, and a friend in school — whom I had told at only 7 weeks pregnant, driven by a gust of pregnancy enthusiasm when I heard she was selling baby stuff. I had been keeping my nausea, fatigue and mood swings hidden from the rest of the world for 11 weeks. I had already been fantasizing about how I was going to break the happy news to my friends and family. Now, I was all of a sudden keeping something else a secret. I was secretly carrying a life that was slowly being “absorbed back into my body.” That’s what my doctor said. It hurt, but I wasn’t showing my pain to anyone. Nobody knew I was pregnant, right? So, no one could know I was having a miscarriage during those long, agonizing three weeks.

It wasn’t until a few weeks into my grieving period that it hit me: we do not tell people we are pregnant, so we do not have to share the sad news if we have a miscarriage. (I think you may have noticed that I put my other two pregnancies that ended in a miscarriage in parentheses. I do count them as pregnancies, but would others do the same?) Why I wonder? Why can we only share happy pregnancy news?

Is it wrong or weird to feel sad about losing someone I never even met?

Well, on November 15 2019, when I lost my pregnancy, all my belief in my own yoga and meditation practice went down the drain. Not a single method could calm me down. I cried so much, so loud and non-stop. I was sadder than I had ever been and nothing could help me to take away this feeling. Not a single moment did I think that my breathing could calm me down. I have lost loved ones before, but never in my life had I experienced this much hurt and pain before. For the first time I really felt heartache, there where my heart lives. It hurts. So much.

There I was, lying in bed, listening to my family living, and trying to hold onto my heart, almost trying to squeeze the hurt out of my heart. What was I to do? How could I ever get back up and running, full of smiles and energy, like I always am?

For no particular reason, I remembered the next YogaKids assignment I needed to complete. It involved reading Judith Hanson’s book. Just like you started reading this post, I started reading her book. And….it turned out to be a step in the right (or should I say ‘light’) direction.

I took the liberty of using the assignment as part of my grieving process. It was as if each chapter in the book touched upon another part of the pain I was feeling. Each chapter seemed to be offering me another way of dealing with all the emotions racing through my heart and all the thoughts twirling in my mind. After each page, I felt that I was reconnecting with myself a little bit more. Baby steps.

Tears ran down my face while reading the book, and writing up my assignment, but I allowed myself to feel the hurt, the anger, the disappointment, the shame. I tell you, I feel a lump in my throat even as I am writing this post. The pain is still there. I have found ways to deal with it, most of the times. I have found a way to start living my yoga again.

Thank you, YogaKids, for offering me a way out of total darkness.

Thanks to all of you for taking the time to read my story.

I feel stronger every time I find myself able to share this experience with others. Even though I do not know you, it feels we are now sharing a heavy load, which makes it a little bit easier to carry.

I would like to finish by suggesting that if you went through a miscarriage yourself, please find people who will listen to your story and who will support you while you are grieving your loss.

Sorry for your loss. Sharing the pain really does help.


With a smile,



“Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen.”

Winston Churchill

Learn more about the YogaKids program here.

YogaKids Poses to the Rescue

girl meditating

Is your child feeling angry? We have a pose for that  Is your child feeling anxious, we have poses, breathing exercises and techniques for that! Are you kids fighting with each other, we have a pose for that! YogaKids has tools for all of life’s challenges, and when used regularly, yoga can help you and your child find joy, good health and peace!


If your child does poorly on a test, misses the goal in a soccer game or is upset about getting braces, they may lack confidence which can lead to low self-esteem, feelings of worthlessness or lack. Reach for the Sun is a YogaKids pose that would be a great way to start the day, or can be used after a disappointment or challenging situation. This pose brings energy to the solar plexus which is our area of personal power. It also includes a slight back bend which will improve mood, and help to build joy, optimism and confidence.

Reach for the Sun – Begin in Open Mountain pose. Breathe in and reach up. grab a piece of sunshine and pull the power into your solar plexus-your inner sun. Exhale with a “HAH” breath. Repeat with the other arm. Repeat ten times.



When peers are critical, judgmental or just plain mean, kids can be left feeling helpless and sad. Sun salutations help to bring positive energy into the heart, are energizing and uplifting. Practice before or after school for a jolt of joy.

Sun Salutations – From Mountain, raise arms overhead and stretch upward. Fold forward into Ragdoll. Step back with right leg into a lunge. Step back with left leg to Lizard. Slowly come down to the floor with your knees, chest and chin. Bring your hips down to the floor, and lift up into S is for Snake. Curl your toes under and stretch into Down Dog. Step forward with right leg into a lunge. Step forward with left leg into Ragdoll. Stretch arms outward and return to standing. Raise arms overhead and stretch upward. Repeat cycle, leading with the opposite leg. Repeat one to ten times.



Kids often have a hard time dealing with life’s challenges and have not developed the skills to cope with disappointments, disagreements or not getting what they want. If anger is kept inside, it can lead to much suffering, and affect long-term health. Volcano is a pose designed to discharge feelings of anger in a healthy way.

Volcano – From Mountain pose; bring the fingertips together at the heart. Jump the feet apart.  Watch your hands as you raise them over head. Breathe out as you explode your arms outward. Lower them to your sides and return your hands to heart.  Erupt and release again and again. Make big, exploding volcano noises. Jump your feet back together when you’re finished erupting. Repeat ten times.



Staying in the present moment is often a great antidote to fear. Fear is often a product of worrying about some future perceived threat. Peace Breath is a way for kids to stop and notice how they feel in the present moment.  They focus on their breath and notice the softness of their own lips as the say “peace” or feel the gentle rise and fall of their belly.

Peace Breath – Close eyes and relax the face muscles. Let your skin drape over your bones like a soft blanket. Breathe in. Breathe out and whisper the word “peace.”  As you say the word, feel the peace inside you. Send peace to the animals, trees and plants. Send peace to your family and friends. Send peace to countries in the world that are at war. Send peace to all the people you love. Repeat 3-10 times.



Grieving is an important part of accepting that a loved one, pet or friend has died. When feelings of grief become overwhelming or don’t dissipate over time, yoga can help kids feel happy, uplifted and joyous. Direction breath is a children’s version of a pose called the Breath of Joy, it brings awareness and light to the heart.

Direction Breath – Stand in mountain, inhale and stretch arms forward, out to the side and overhead.  Exhale and bend forward into Rag Doll.  Repeat about 10 times.



Worrying about school, friends, sports or life’s challenges can cause anxiety. When feelings of anxiety distract kids from being able to enjoy life, Eyes Around the Clock is a technique that can help kids learn to focus attention on the present moment instead of living in possibility of a future problem.

Eyes Around the Clock – Imagine a clock hanging in front of your eyes.  Move your eyes from 12 to 6 and back to again.  Look right to left from 3 to 9 and back.  Look diagonally from 1 to 7 and back, then 11 to 5.  Now start at twelve o’clock and look at each number around the face of the clock. Then start again at twelve o’clock and move in the opposite direction. Try to keep your head still and move only your eyes.



Opening the chest, and taking in a full inhale has been found to improve mood, confidence and our outlook on life. Dromedary Delight is a back-bend that can help kids feel open to the magic of life. Warm up the spine before doing this pose, and encourage kids to pause during the day for a gentle version for quick pick-me-ups. This can be done seated at a desk, or standing with hands gently clasped behind the back. Pause in the pose for several breaths.

Dromedary Delight – Kneel on the floor with your legs and knees hip width apart. Press the tops of your feet into the floor, push your thighs forward, bring your hands to your lower back, fingers pointing upward, and lift your chest. Breathe evenly in and out as you extend your rib cage and broaden your chest. Continue to lift your chest with each breath as you curl your toes forward and bring your hands to your heels to imitate a camel’s hump. Delight in the dromedary for ten seconds. Rest in child’s pose after each back-bend. Repeat. Increase the duration and repetitions of the pose as your spine and chest become more flexible.

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