Born Yogis

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In case you didn't know, babies are born yogis!  

Currently, I have the joy of living each day and night beside a little pudgy baby-ball boy, my 8 month old son.  

I love watching his every move, and he's making a lot of them these days.  The little goober started dragging his sweet tiny body across our floors just after he turned 6 months!  And these days, if he can get a good grip, he just wants to stand. 

Each move he makes, I am in awe.  He is a born yogi.  Yogi toes, yogi moves, yogi breath.  This pudgy baby-ball is my teacher, my stress (gotta keep him alive), and my utter joy each day.  I learn so much from him!

It is this innate natural yogi-ness that draws me to baby yoga.  Our babies are natural yogis, and both parent and baby can greatly benefit from all that baby yoga has to offer.  Baby Yoga is about preserving their natural body awareness, deepening the parent-child bond, and supporting babies in their early days.

At Appleseed Yoga, our Baby Yoga class is different than any other baby yoga in Toronto.  We focus on the baby for the bulk of the class.  It is indeed your baby doing yoga!

In our Baby Yoga class you will learn how to courageously handle your baby in ways that they enjoy and help them towards their next stage of development.  Not only this, but baby yoga promotes more and better sleep for your infant, as well as stimulates all of their bodily systems and can help them experience decreased frustration and less extreme highs and lows. Yoga can also help infants by relieving digestive upset, constipation, gas and colic!  At the end of class, shared relaxation is mutually beneficial for parents and babies and can greatly enhance non-verbal communication. 

But what about the parent?  The post-natal body is a special one, and even those who have been practicing yoga for years aren't sure what is safe for their bodies.  As practitioners during this unique and sensitive period for women, Appleseed Yoga is committed to providing you safe space and instruction to rebuild your core in a healthy, balanced way.  Our Baby Yoga class gives you helpful support to effectively and honestly emerge from the post-natal experience.  

We look forward to seeing you and your infant at Baby Yoga.  

For the love of our families,

Megan

 

The Benefits of Family Yoga

Family Yoga is FUN!  But there are many benefits of family yoga beyond what meets the eye.

Why should you do family yoga?  How can it benefit your family?  

In today's world, there aren't many opportunities for families to connect.  It is rare to have a moment when you're not on the TV, iPad, phone, or at work or school.  And when that moment does come, when everyone has some time to spend together, some families aren't sure how to spend it.  Well there are plenty of options, and family yoga is a wonderful one! 

I started writing this post and after a while couldn't believe the list of benefits!  So in order to not overwhelm, here are just a few.

1. Family Yoga strengthens the family bond. Spending time together and touching physically, as well as connecting emotionally, spiritually and mentally, is strengthening, and sets the stage for spending more quality family time throughout the rest of the week.

2. Family Yoga creates a sense of support within the family!  Literal support in poses for the whole family, and this easily translates to further physical and emotional support outside of class.

3. Family Yoga gives you something to all do together.  Doing yoga together is about as high as you can get on the parent/child interaction meter.  It levels the playing field, and each family member's strengths begin to shine, with none being any greater or less than the others.

4. Family Yoga teaches parents how to play!  In a time where parents mostly feel like police men and woman, family yoga can take the tension out of a parent/child relationship and open the gates to fun and playfulness within and outside of class.

5. Children get to see their parents as learners, which sets a great example for them!  And parents get to see how their children learn and how they interact with other age groups, something we don't often see in school/work life.

The list goes on!  Stay in touch to learn more ways that family yoga can benefit every member of your family. 

Love and Light,

Megan

10 Tips for Doing Yoga with Your Toddler

I love the book ‘Itsy Bitsy Yoga for Toddlers and Preschoolers’ by Helen Garabedian.  It has captivated and inspired me in my toddler yoga teaching!  There are so many benefits to teaching your toddler yoga (that's a future post!). 

Now, if you have a toddler, you know this teaching yoga business probably would be quite the task. This is why I’m sharing with you Helen’s Top Ten Tips for Teaching your Toddler Yoga.

1. Practice yoga routines in a safe and relaxing part of your home.

2. Do the routine that best fits the moment and your child’s needs. 

3. Make the whole room the yoga mat.

4. Provide simple directions.

5. Model the poses and actions you desire.

6. Vary your energy to match the energy level of your child.

7. Mirror your child’s words and movement.

8. Encourage and acknowledge creativity.

9. Reward appropriate behavior.

10. Be specific when you praise your child. 

There you have it. 

Enjoy practicing with your toddler!

Namaste.

Trusting Your Baby

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One of the many things that motherhood has opened up to me, is the concept of trusting my baby. I have come to the belief that when I trust in my child, and their innate brilliance, I uphold humanity and also lead my child into trusting me as their parent. 

Too often I hear parents either pre or post-natally commenting on the nature of their child in a negative sense.  I suggest we rethink before making these judgements.

It has been said that babies come from the 'bosom of God'. How, then can this blameless and innocent being not be completely trusted? How can we see their behaviour as anything other than innately and divinely inspired?

Through the early days with my first child, I wasn't so steadfast in this belief. I would blame and judge his slightest behaviour, mostly as a result of feeling threatened in my beliefs, thoughts and actions. I realize now it was all about me!  It was my issues, my past experiences, the thoughts I cling to and the deep seated beliefs I'm afraid to question or let go of, that were really coming up.  I see this personal challenge, brought about by my blameless child, as an opportunity for refinement of myself, of who I am.

And then it became clear, this child is not being disobedient, he is just doing what comes naturally to him! Crying when I shove food in his mouth. Crying over the lack of acceptance I show when he simply doesn't want to sleep by my clock. And it came up in simpler ways too. I wouldn't understand why he wasn't eating and then 5 minutes later after much huffing, bribery and negotiations on my part, he would have a giant poop and before getting off the toilet would be saying: "Mom I'm hungry."

As I took a closer look at my interactions with this little baby, and opened myself up to criticism and refinement, I heard a voice over and over and over again: "Trust your baby, everything he does is for a reason."

And so the mantra was born: "I trust my baby, and my baby trusts me." 

If I expect my child to trust me when they're 13, to come to me with their hurts, fears and truths, then I had better trust them today, right now, in this moment.  Showing them that I trust them will teach them no other way than trusting in me.  This will positively impact each relationship they have.  And in turn positively impact the world.