Yoga for the Littlest Bookworms

International Yoga Day, celebrated annually on June 21st, is a global event dedicated to promoting the practice and benefits of yoga. As more people embrace this ancient discipline for its physical, mental, and emotional health benefits, the interest in introducing yoga to children has grown. Children’s books on yoga provide wonderful gateways for young minds to explore the world of yoga through engaging stories and vibrant illustrations. These books not only make yoga fun and accessible but also teach valuable life skills such as mindfulness, flexibility, and relaxation.

Yoga Kids / Niños yoga

From Barefoot Books, available in both English and bilingual Spanish/English editions, Yoga Kids / Niños yoga teaches kids to be brave like a bear, calm like a bunny, strong like a puppy, and happy like a tiger. Each title takes toddlers through a series of yoga poses. Brave Bear is invigorating, Calm Bunny is soothing, Happy Tiger is uplifting, and Strong Puppy is a sun salutation. Written by Tessa Strickland, with Spanish translations by Maria A. Perez, and illustrated by Esteli Meza, these titles have been professionally evaluated by yoga instructor Amy Hrobak who teaches kids yoga in Massachusetts.

Jungle Gym: Animal Yoga

Another board book, this one from Flowerpot Press and illustrated by Brian Fitzgerald, Jungle Gym: Animal Yoga renames classic poses as various animals and encourages children to try each of them imitating the animals. The colorful illustrations make each pose achievable and expect to see your toddlers practicing on their own.

Counting to Calm: My First Self-Regulation Book

While Counting to Calm: My First Self-Regulation Book from Soaring Kite Books isn’t exactly yoga, this first in a series is indeed a lovely picture book that seeks to “introduce topics that empower and nurture the development of the whole child.” Written by Prasha Sooful and illustrated by Betania Zacarias, it provides a ten-step process that will help young children to refocus their minds and energy in much the same way as yoga does.

Yoga Adventure!

A joyful song written and sung by Jamaica Stevens and JAMaROO Kids has been illustrated by Rocio Alejandro and turned into a delightful picture book: Yoga Adventure! is more than a picture book as it comes with a a QR code to takes readers and singers through the story on Barefoot Books’ website. Journey around the world practicing yoga with a group of children from diverse backgrounds and with abilities!

Mula and the Lovesick Snake

Mula and the Lovesick Snake, written by Lauren Hoffmeier and illustrated by Ela Smietanka, from Sweet Cherry is a fun picture book and the fourth in a series of titles starring Mula the Tiger, her friend the Fly, and a variety of other jungle animals. It incorporates yoga into the plot to guide children into using yoga to slow down, calm down, and figure things out. At the end it shows each pose in more depth and encourages the children to try the poses out for themselves. The colorful illustrations are sure to hold interest.

Every Bunny Is a Yoga Bunny

Every Bunny Is a Yoga Bunny, written by Emily Ann Davison and illustrated by Deborah Allwright, from Nosy Crow, also comes with a link to a recorded version for the child who either can’t yet read it or just wants hear the story repeated while they turn the pages. Yo-Yo Bunny just can’t find a way to remain calm. She fidgets, she wiggles, and she giggles. But after getting lost one day, by remembering Grandpa’s yoga shapes she calms down and finds her way home. She is still a giggling, wiggling, fidgety bunny but she also knows how to become calm when she needs to be. This title includes step-by-step instructions to several poses at the end.

My Mindful A to Zen

Y is for YOGA.

Quietly focus,

stretch and breathe. Yoga takes care

of body and mind.

From Lantana Publishing, My Mindful A to Zen features 26 alphabetical haiku poems helping kids with concepts of mindfulness such as Gratitude, Positivity, and Yoga. Written and illustrated by Krina Patel-Sage, this title offers powerful messages of the importance of wellbeing.

Yoga Pretzels

Rather than a book, Yoga Pretzels presents a deck of action cards from Barefoot Books, making it a worthwhile addition to our collection of titles. Written by Tara Guber and Leah Kalish, with illustrations by Sophie Fatus, these 50 cards offer yoga activities for kids and the adults in their lives. Guber and Kalish are both experts in the yoga for kids’ movement and have been recognized nationally. The deck is also available in a Spanish edition as Pretzels de yoga.

As we celebrate International Yoga Day, it’s heartening to see the growing collection of children’s books dedicated to this ancient practice. These books serve as a fantastic tool for parents, educators, and caregivers to introduce yoga to the younger generation in a fun and engaging way. Through the power of storytelling and captivating visuals, children can learn about the importance of health, balance, and mindfulness. By integrating yoga into their daily lives, we can help them cultivate a sense of calm, improve their physical fitness, and develop a deeper connection to their own well-being. Let’s embrace the spirit of International Yoga Day by sharing these wonderful resources and encouraging our children to embark on their own yoga journeys.

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