Teddy Bear Breath - Kids Mindfulness Exercise
Getting started with breathwork can seem abit daunting. The breathing exercise below is perfect to get you and the kids trying some really simple breathing techniques.
You can also watch the full video, which talks you through the whole breathing exercise.
Who Is This Breathing Exercise For?
This exercise is for parents and teachers who are looking to begin some simple mindfulness for kids activities.In this blog I will guide you through a breathing technique you can use with younger children.
This is an ideal one as a starter for introducing breath work with our younger children, what we don't want them to do is feel that they need to be so focused on the breath it becomes forced and this is a really fun approach that kids aged between 3-10 will love!
Firstly, I would like to just point out that you have to really watch children under the age of about seven that if you ask them to breathe in and out, they can make it all very forced. So what we want to do is try and make them aware of their breath without forcing it. It should flow very naturally, and this can take a few practices. So do keep trying this one, as kids become more and more used to just thinking of how they breath in and breath out, it will all start to feel more 'normal'.
What Do I Need?
This is one of the tools that I have used in classes before, and it works really, really well. The nice thing is you can do this anywhere. Okay, so as long as they have got the teddy bear, they can be lying on a sofa, lying on the floor, lying on a bed. You can even take it outside. And it's something that all the family can do together.
So time for you to grab your teddy bears!
I want you to get yourselves and your children into a lovely comfy position, lie down, try and get all of the back of the body on the floor, bed or sofa. Wherever you think your child will be the most comfortable. Have legs out as well, get them nice and comfy, they might need to squish around a bit, shake the feet out, shake the hands out, until they have found a position that they will stay in. Then they can place their teddy bear onto their tummy.
What we are going to try and do is see if they can move their teddy bears using the power of the breath.
Teddy Bear Breathing Script For Parents and Teachers
So what I want you to do is take a nice deep breath in through your nose and see if you can get all that air to go all the way down to the tummy and when it goes to your tummy, your teddy bear is going to go up!
Now breathe out, and you will notice that the teddy bear is going to come down. Up when you breathe in, and down, when you breathe out now, we're not going to try and force the teddy bears to move. So what we don't want to do is take a super deep, deep breath in and just push the tummy up. We want just nice normal breathing.
I just want you to breathe normally, as you would if you were lying down in bed. Keep one hand on your little teddy bear and see if it moves every time you breathe in and moves again, every time you breathe out.
In and out, nice and steady.
How To Keep Kids Engaged?
To start with you are only going to do this for a few breaths. If they need to fidget, let them have a little fidget, or allow them to move around alittle if it helps. The key is to remain in the present, with the breath and the teddy bear. If your little one starts to really fidget, then it is normally a sign that they are bored or just had enough. Then it is time to stop.
When they have had enough get them to shake the hands, shake the arms, shake the legs and then roll to one side, sit up and maybe have a little chat and find out how that felt. Just using this simple breathing techniques really starts to bring the power of breath to kids, even the younger one.
Teaching kids about their breath can be very simple, this technique is a great one to start with. You can also watch the Video on Counting Breath too. The breath is a fantastic tool to help kids and adults regulate their emotions. Calming down the nervous system and bringing our attention to the present moment.
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