Sunday, August 7, 2011

Yoga: A miracle cure for toddler tantrums

When I first starting practicing yoga, I hadn't planned on becoming a mother.  So, back then, it never would have dawned on me to use yoga as a way to calm a toddler in the midst of a "I can't have what I want and you're gonna suffer," moment.  If Josias wants the knife I'm holding, if Josias wants to eat the dirty tissue he just happened upon, if Josias wants to splash water out of the dog's dish, he usually finds mama there to stop him. He has just realized that he can demonstrate his dissatisfaction by vociferous wailing  accompanied by violently throwing himself backward onto the hardwood floor.  Geez.

Luckily, I read enough parenting websites and blogs that somewhere along the line, someone suggested practicing yoga with a kids as a way to calm them.  I decided to try it.  When Josias starts freaking out over some perceived injustice, I say, "let's do our yoga."  He sits between my legs and we do a little routine of bound angle pose, staff pose, and  wide angle seated pose.  I add a few exaggerated inhales and exhales just to set the mood.

I know it seems too simple, but it works!  It doesn't really serve to calm him.  He finds mama breathing like a maniac and twisting herself into different positions hilarious.  It is kinda funny.  We both end up giggling and the tantrum effectively ends, or is at least postponed. Whatever works.  I wonder how long this parenting strategy will last?  Hopefully until he's in high school.


  1. Totally agree! Yoga for little ones has so many benefits beyond the normal benefits that we think about when we think yoga!

  2. Thanks for visiting, Stephanie. It doesn't work all the time, but it works enough that it's always worth a try! Yoga also calms MY tantrums :)