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Healthy Holidays for Kids: Mindful Movement Exercises, Part 1

The kids are home for the holiday break! While it’s wonderful having them around, it can be a challenge to get them off the couch or tear them away from their smartphones and tablets. With all the stresses of holiday preparations, you could probably use a time out, too. Why not make a fun, family-bonding game out of mindful fitness? 

Kids Yoga Mat and Ball

It doesn't need to be complicated or time-consuming. The props involved are lightweight, easy to move and store, and staying indoors means forgoing the snowsuit battle. Taking time for mindful movement breaks during the day will help keep both body and mind healthy, while effectively combating the lethargy from playing video games or watching TV. Keep it simple. Start with one exercise, then challenge the kids to come up with something on their own. Once they get into the groove, they may even forget all about the tablet in the next room! Finish off with a healthy snack like yogurt and dried fruit, and let them loose until the next mindful movement break. 

For the following exercise, you’ll need a Mini Stability Ball and the Eco Mat for Kids.

STARTING POSITIONSitting on the mat, place the Mini Stability Ball on your right side. Sit up straight with your legs on the floor stretched in front of you, or sit cross-legged, whichever is most comfortable. Place your right hand on top of the Mini Stability Ball. Let your left arm hang by your left side. 

INHALE: Reach your left arm up overhead.
EXHALE: Bend sideways, rolling the ball away from you with your right hand. Let your left arm stretch over your left year, towards the right.
INHALE: Return to a seated position, rolling the ball in with your right hand. Your left arm stretches straight up.
EXHALELower your left arm to your side. 

REPEAT: 3-5 times on each side.