Megan Cook, owner of Balance Studio in downtown Ontario, pictured during a yoga class for kids. The studio is offering online classes for now. (Submitted photo)
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ONTARIO – A local yoga and cycling studio is turning to tech to offer kids free yoga this month.
Balance Studio in downtown Ontario is holding 30-minute yoga sessions online Tuesdays at 1 p.m. through the end of May.
Parents can sign up via the free scheduling app Mindbody. A link will give participants access to the class on the video conferencing tool Google Meet.
“We’re all dealing with regulations, new schedules and a different atmosphere so we thought it would be great to offer something for kids to do during the day with movement and mindfulness,” said Megan Cook, owner of the studio at 122 South Oregon St.
Cook is leading the classes from her home with the help of her own children. While there is no age limit – she’s seen yogis as young as 2 join the class – the sessions are better suited for children in kindergarten through fifth grade.
Parents are encouraged to follow along, especially if they’re signing up with little ones.
“Families can do it. If parents want to do it with their kids that’s a lot of fun too because it’s fun for kids to show their parents how to do the poses,” Cook said.
No materials are necessary for the sessions, except for a bit of space to move around. Cook said the sessions focus on breathing exercises and affirmations to help kids stay aware and grounded.
She walks them through movements including mountain pose and encourages them to repeat mantras such as “I am safe.”
The benefits of a yoga practice for kids are many, Cook said, especially now that they are spending so much time at home.
“It’s a great way to get them off their electronics or give them a break from their homework or online school,” she added.
Right before schools closed due to COVID-19, Cook had kicked off Mindfulness Mondays at Aiken Elementary in Ontario. She said students took to it with enthusiasm,
Cook’s studio, which has been closed since March, offers other programming for kids. A weekly “Focus on Fun” class on Thursday for $5 invites the whole family. The class is an introduction to a three-week theater camp Balance Studio has tentatively scheduled for July.
The studio will also begin taking pre-orders for an Art and Yoga series at the end of the month. Parents will be able to pick up boxes with materials curbside and will receive a link where kids can follow along with yoga and an art project.
Balance Studio, a yoga and cycling business in Ontario, has been closed to walk-ins since March. (The Enterprise/Yadira Lopez)
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