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    rainbow breath

    In a quiet space, sit comfortably on the floor across from your child. Take notice of your breath. Closing your eyes, inhale deeply and exhale fully. Imagine the colors of the rainbow coming in with your breath and filling your body with peace. Continue breathing fully in this manner for 4-5 more breaths. Note: If you’d like to take this practice further, envision any negativity you want to get rid of as you exhale.


    dancer's pose

    Stand 3-4 feet across from your child with your feet a hip's width apart. Lift your right foot off the ground by bending your right knee. Place the top of your right foot into the palm of your right hand. Your right arm should be straight and down at your side with your palm facing out. It is important that you hold your foot with your right palm facing away from your body. Now that you are holding your right foot while balancing on your left, on the inhale, reach your left hand out in front of you, parallel with your shoulder, while also raising and extending your right foot and arm behind you, with your right foot pressing into your right palm. (Note: You will create more balance and height if you press the top of your foot into your right palm.) Your gaze should be over your left fingertips. Hold for five deep inhales and exhales. If you fall out, gracefully come back into the pose. Slowly come back to neutral, and repeat these steps, but this time on the opposite side. 

    This is a great strength and balancing pose.


    sphinx pose

    Lie across from your child face-down on a carpeted area or yoga mat. Keep your legs straight and together with the tops of your feet on the floor. Press your body, from your hips to the tops of your feet, into the floor as you slide your elbows under your shoulders and raise your upper body, keeping your forearms and palms on the floor, just like a sphinx! Gaze at your child and hold the pose for five deep inhales and exhales, feeling your lower belly lifting off the floor. (Note: keep your shoulders down and away from your ears.) Release back down and do two or three more rounds.

    Talk to your child about the role of the sphinx as a guardian at the temple gate. This pose is excellent for building the upper body and lengthening the spine.  


    butterfly fold

    Find a comfortable space on the floor. Sit 3-4 feet across from your child. Bring the soles of your feet together, and slide them in toward your body, as closely as you can comfortably. Wrap your palms around your feet. Straighten your spine. Bring your shoulders down, away from your ears. On the inhale, stretch your body up. On the exhale, fold down toward the ground, keeping your spine straight. Your goal should be to bring your forehead to the floor, but this isn't necessary. Go as far as you can, comfortably. Hold the pose for five deep inhales and exhales. On your inhales, lengthen your spine. On the exhales, try to bring your forehead closer to the floor. Remember always to keep your spine straight, and don't overdo it!

    This pose is great for opening the hips and lengthening the spine. Imagine with your child what it might be like to be a butterfly at rest. 


    camel pose

    Find an open space, preferably on a carpet or on a yoga mat. Assume a kneeling position across from your child. Place the palms of your hands on either side of your lower back with your fingers pointing toward the floor. On the inhale, slowly and carefully arch your back and gaze up at the ceiling or at the wall behind you, depending on your flexibility. Be sure that you continue to press your hips forward with your hands. Hold the pose for five deep inhales and exhales. Repeat two or three more times. If you feel that you are flexible enough, try to reach for your heels during this pose.

    A word of caution: listen to your body and respect its limitations. This pose is great for opening the heart.