Children try yoga moves

Janet Williams had barely started studying yoga when her instructor pegged her as a future teacher of the centuries-old posture and breathing exercises.

Children try yoga moves featured in a new book What I See

Children try yoga moves featured in a new book What I See

Janet Williams had barely started studying yoga when her instructor pegged her as a future teacher of the centuries-old posture and breathing exercises.

That was in 1988 when the Sault Ste. Marie native was a second-year English major at University of Western Ontario.

“When I was doing the yoga I felt, ‘This is amazing.’

“When I left, I felt so good,” said Williams.

“I was so calm and so relaxed.”

Her teacher’s prediction was accurate. Williams started teaching yoga in 1996 and has studied the art not only in Canada, but also in Australia, England and Spain.

Earlier this decade, friend and former schoolmate Gratia Giovanatti suggested that with Williams’ educational background — she’s also a York University faculty of education graduate — she pen her own yoga book.

It took eight long years, but her first work is now published.

What I See, I Can Be: A Guided Yoga Flow for Children was released Sept. 1 through her own publishing effort, Light Connections Press.

The book and accompanying CD of “soothing” music encourages teachers, parents and youth group leaders with no yoga experience to lead youngsters aged three to nine in 13 different moves.

“We have to model (physical activity) to our children,” she said.

“If we do not show how important exercise is, how important to move your body is, how are children ever going to know that’s an important thing?”

Children, said Williams, benefit from strengthening, stretching and concentrating during traditional exercises with kid-friendly names such as dog, tree and cat.

“The kids love it. They want to move their bodies. They’re designed to move their bodies,” she said.

“Children cannot grow into healthy adults if they haven’t moved during their childhood.”

Williams hopes her work can be used by elementary school teachers during mandated 20-minute daily physical activity in their classrooms.

The activities are non-competitive and, with their calm approach, won’t send kids back to their seats too wired up to concentrate on the next subject.

“It’s a lovely thing to do with a child,” said Williams.

“They can’t possibly do it wrong. You can’t do it wrong.”

Williams, now based in Mississauga, has plugged the book to daycares, schools and yoga studios in several southern Ontario communities, including Guelph, London and Oakville, as well as parenting and family literacy centres in Sault Ste. Marie.

“There’s no reason why every child around the world can’t do this,” she said.

“I look forward to spreading it as far as I can … Everybody’s got a role to play in helping society and I think this is mine.”

An accompanying colouring and activity book, poster and resource material for teachers are also for sale.

On the Net:

www.ChildrensYogaBooks.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A nurse gets a swab ready at a temporary COVID-19 test clinic in Montreal, on Friday, May 15, 2020. Health Canada has reversed course on home test kits for COVID-19, saying it will now review applications for such devices. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Alberta declines Ontario’s request to send health-care workers

Alberta is “not in a position” to send health-care workers out of… Continue reading

Meghan Huizing has been selected by Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools as a finalist for the Alberta School Boards Association (ASBA) 2021 Edwin Parr Award. (Photo courtesy of Red Deer Regional Catholic Schools)
Red Deer Catholic names finalist for Edwin Parr Award

Meghan Huizing from St. Gregory the Great Catholic School in Blackfalds has… Continue reading

GrammaLink-Africa members are participating in the Stride to Turn the Tide campaign until June 30. (Contributed photo)
Red Deer group walking to raise money for African grandmothers

A group of central Albertans will be walking every day until the… Continue reading

Westerner Days could be in line to have patrons in attendance this summer as the province teased reducing COVID-19 capacity limits on outdoor events. File photo by ADVOCATE staff
Province provides hope for attendance at summer events

The province has given a positive update to organizations that hold summer… Continue reading

Red Deer Public Schools will not pilot the new draft curriculum at its elementary schools. (File photo contributed by Red Deer Public Schools)
UPDATED: Red Deer Public Schools says no to piloting new curriculum

Alberta Teachers’ Association support school boards

Downtown Iqaluit, Nunavut, is shown after 2 p.m. sunset on Tuesday, Nov. 24, 2020. Nunavut has declared an outbreak of COVID-19 in Iqaluit after 12 new cases were reported overnight. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Emma Tranter
COVID-19 outbreak declared in Iqaluit as infection numbers rise after first case

COVID-19 outbreak declared in Iqaluit as infection numbers rise after first case

Three vials of the Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine are pictured in a new coronavirus, COVID-19, vaccination center at the Velodrome-Stadium in Berlin, Germany, Wednesday, Feb. 17, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Michael Sohn, pool
Pfizer supply bolstered as Moderna cuts delivery, Ontario turns down Trudeau’s help

Pfizer supply bolstered as Moderna cuts delivery, Ontario turns down Trudeau’s help

Lights on an internet switch are lit up as with users in an office in Ottawa, on February 10, 2011. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Analysts say CRTC ruling will help regional carriers with new limits on Big Three

Analysts say CRTC ruling will help regional carriers with new limits on Big Three

In this May 26, 2018, file photo, people listen to Michael Franti perform at the BottleRock Napa Valley music festival in Napa, Calif. Canadian music festival organizers hoped this summer would mark a return to concerts, but as COVID-19 cases rage on many have already dropped off the calendar. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Eric Risberg
Facing the music: Summer concert festival organizers see no path ahead in pandemic

Facing the music: Summer concert festival organizers see no path ahead in pandemic

FILE - Ali Stroker accepts the award for best performance by an actress in a featured role in a musical for her performance in "Rodgers & Hammerstein's Oklahoma!" at the 73rd annual Tony Awards in New York on June 9, 2019. Stroker teamed up with middle grade author Stacy Davidowitz for a new children's book "The Chance to Fly," published this week. (Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP, File)
Singer with disability shines in Ali Stroker’s new kids book

Singer with disability shines in Ali Stroker’s new kids book

Retired Ohio sheriff and tiny K-9 partner die the same day

Retired Ohio sheriff and tiny K-9 partner die the same day

Musicians play Sikh hymns during Vaisakhi celebrations at Guru Nanak Darbar of Long Island, Tuesday, April 13, 2021 in Hicksville, N.Y. Sikhs across the United States are holding toned-down Vaisakhi celebrations this week, joining people of other faiths in observing major holidays cautiously this spring as COVID-19 keeps an uneven hold on the country. (AP Photo/Jason DeCrow)
Sikhs mark toned-down holiday amid continuing virus concerns

Sikhs mark toned-down holiday amid continuing virus concerns

Have an opinion you'd like to share? Submit letters to the editor through our website, via email or the postal service. (Heather Colpitts/Black Press Media)
Letter: MLAs who are against tougher restrictions have no plan for consequences

The group of UCP MLAs pushing to end lockdowns are exacerbating what… Continue reading

Most Read