Isn’t Yoga for Old People?

Francesca Silva

AMGT_yoga-for-old_03.03.09.jpgIsn’t yoga only for old people?

With those words, my 12-year-old niece came perilously close to being disowned by me.

Don’t be silly – Auntie Fran’s not old!” This was from my nine-year-old (smarter) niece, who obviously knows how to stay in my good books!

My two nieces were having a weekend sleepover at our house and were going stir-crazy indoors because the weather was not cooperating. We’d already exhausted all possibilities on Saturday night– a fiercely contested “Monopoly” game with my husband, followed by a movie with “loads” of popcorn.

On Sunday, my husband escaped with his brother to watch a hockey game, so that left me with two energetic nieces for the day. After a few hours of making crafts and baking cookies, I told the girls that it was time for me to get my yoga practice in as I’d hadn’t done any the day before. Hence the “yoga for old people” comment from my “live-close-to-the-edge” niece. “Old people” indeed – I’ll show her, I thought. But that thought was rapidly followed by a brilliant idea. Why not get them to try yoga with me?

After a few minutes of the usual protests that I totally ignored (I’m good at that), they sighed and reluctantly agreed to give it a try. (“But if we don’t like it after five minutes, can we do something else?”) So we moved the furniture and I rolled out my mat. “Where are our mats?” they wanted to know. Well, they weren’t using mine (after all, I needed it because I’m old and require more support) so they’d just have to make do.

Ready? I popped my beginner’s yoga DVD into the player and we began.

At first, both girls followed along easily, remarking that “this yoga thing is a piece of cake.” But when we started to do a few of the more challenging poses, they began to realize that it wasn’t as easy as it looked. To give the girls credit, they really focused on trying to do the poses, but I have to admit to a certain uncharitable feeling of satisfaction when my 12-year-old niece fell over while trying to do the tree pose while I managed to hold it perfectly (one of the rare times).

There was a huge sigh of relief when we were finally through but then they surprised me by asking if there were any DVDs or classes on yoga for kids and teenagers. That sent me scurrying to the Internet to come up with some suggestions for them.

Will they pursue this newfound interest in yoga or was that just the exuberance of youth trying something different? We’ll see.
[tags]yoga for kids, first yoga practice, yoga for teenagers, yoga dvds, yoga class for teens[/tags]

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