Children’s yoga ‘sprouts’ in Truckee
Today’s yoga class is small, with only three students, but each child concentrates on breathing enough so that the sound of a bee hive resonates through the Bikram yoga studio.
“I do yoga here, and she really wanted to do it,” said Reinkens’ mom, Lauren, from outside of the studio. “Since the beginning, she was really, really drawn to yoga for a reason I can’t explain.”
Truckee moms Tanya Rose Paul and Alaina Reichwald opened Sprout Yoga for Kids in the Truckee Bikram Yoga studio in January. Both of the women are certified children’s yoga instructors through Radian Child Yoga Program.
Paul and Reichwald started doing yoga with their own kids at home and with a kindergarten class at Glenshire Elementary School in November. They said they were surprised how engaged, peaceful and into yoga the children were, especially the meditation part.
“Just like yoga is natural, the kids gravitated to yoga naturally,” Paul said.
The teachers use methods like basic yoga postures, creative journaling, music and animal imitation to engage the children in their classes. They offer instruction for 2 to 9 year olds on a month-to-month basis. Soon, they want to offer classes to older children, a group that they say is in need of yoga more than any other age group.
“Everything is so physical and competitive at that age,” Paul said.
Part of the teachers’ philosophy is allowing the children freedom to do what they want, while abiding by three basic rules: Be good to yourself; be good to others; be good to the world around you.
“Everybody’s telling them what to do and when,” Reichwald said. “We don’t tell them what to do or that what they are doing is wrong, we guide. We let them make the right decision for themselves.”
When asked what they would say to parents who are skeptical about the benefits of yoga for young children, Paul and Reichwald acknowledged that some parents might question enrolling their children in yoga.
The only way for parents to know for sure, Paul said, is if they allow their children to try yoga.
“Maybe some of them are skeptical at first, but then they see how their children react to yoga, and they’ll know how good it is for them,” she said.
Reichwald and Paul were introduced to yoga as adults.
“The yoga itself was marginally interesting, but the meditation blew my socks off,” said Reichwald, who took her first yoga class in college.
In addition to teaching children’s yoga, Paul is a certified Bikram yoga teacher, with more than 500 hours of training under her belt.
With their new business, yoga has become an ever-present part of Paul and Reichwald’s lives.
“Really, it’s like, what would be more fun than this?” Paul said.
And, like any new entrepreneurs, they are enthusiastic about Sprout’s possibilities. Since Sprout opened, they said their enrollment has more than doubled.
In the coming months, Paul said they plan to add Saturday classes, workshops, summer day programs, more arts and crafts…
“Maybe we could add a cooking class,” Paul said, laughing. “Really, the possibilities are endless.”
Sprout Yoga for Kids is located in the Pioneer Commerce Center in the Truckee studio of Bikram Yoga Tahoe. Call them at 550-0110. E-mail them at email@example.com.