First off, take a look at this fun video of two Canadians, Rick Mercer (comedian/host) and Rick Hanson (Man in Motion hero/educator) blowing away all ideas of what one can and cannot do when one has a disability:

Pretty Amazing, Eh!

This Friday marks the beginning of the Paralympic Games  in Vancouver.   It’s another event that shows how ABLE all people are.  The first Paralympics Games were held in 1976 in Sweden and this Paralympics has  five sports:

  • alpine skiing
  • biathlon
  • cross-country skiing
  • ice sledge hockey
  • wheelchair curling

Here’s a link to a whole page of activities from Official Website of the Paralympic Movement. I’m looking forward to reading this worksheet in my kids classes:  A Fairytale:  A Class Discussion of Inclusion it’s a great story with discussion questions included.

I also want to try the Sitting Volleyball Skills Sheet with a soft volley ball for younger kids.

When it comes to yoga, are there any limitations that could prevent a child from joining a class?  Considering that kids yoga is already so imaginative I think kids yoga can be done by all.

The best tip for teaching yoga to someone with a disability:  talk to the person to  find out what works and what won’t work for their particular situation.  They’ll be able to tell you what they need to make it possible, what they want to try and what they can’t.  Don’t make assumptions!

If you’re stuck for ideas – a simple Google search of “wheelchair yoga” produces over 400,000 results!

Finally, this book  Susan Laughs by Jeanne Willis and Tony Ross is recommended for discussing disabilities with young kids.  It looks like a great book that I’ve just added to my wish list.  Let me know if you’ve seen this book or if you have any other ideas for including all kids in yoga classes.

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Toronto Weekend Certifications: 2018-2019

Location: Dovercourt House, Toronto Canada

  • Sat. - Sun. Oct. 26-27, 2019 - Family Yoga (4 Hours), Teaching Yoga to Kids (School Age) (8 Hours), Chakras for Children (4 Hours)

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Location: Art Gallery of Burlington, Ontario, Canada

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12 Comments
  1. Simply amazing and inspiring, as yoga usually is to me. I work with children with Autism and all spectrum disorders, I will pass this blog on to parents I work with, it sends a beautiful message of hope.

    Thanks;p
    Shane
    http://www.yourbeautifulchild.com

  2. Thank you for including the video. Rick Hanson has a great sense of humour. Both Ricks do. It was inspiring, but I know I could never bungee jump!! Having said that, I have parachuted. I don’t know how I did it. Seriously. Anyway, great post. Thanks.

    • Sarah – the video IS really wild. My mind was blown away just realizing he was going to bungee in his wheelchair, but then to actually see it….

      You’re way ahead of me with parachuting!

  3. Fantastic spirit and feeling of belonging at the Paralympics. The Alberta Provincial ones were held in my home town last summer. I’m really excited to be off to the National Down Syndrome Conference in May to teach yoga for Down Syndrome. Inclusion is important. Yoga allows for infinite adjustments and alterations to the poses to make it possible for all individuals to participate. Its one of the things I like the most about yoga.

    Visit http://www.yogainmyschool.com for a number of articles on yoga for special needs.

  4. Thanks you for your focus on kids with disabilities! These are great resources that I intend to check out and use with my own classes. I’m hoping the Paralympic Games are televised so we can follow along and surely be uber-inspired by the inner strength and determination of these amazing athletes.

  5. It will be great to be home this summer… maybe Liam and I can try some yoga when we come up! he’s all about being flexible, just not attentive…

  6. Great topic — thanks!

    • Thanks Reluctant Runner (aka – my sister). By the way – can I borrow your youtube video link – oops, I already did.