8 stretches to do with your children

Kid-friendly stretches that you can do together

As your children grow, they should be encouraged to stretch. It's a great thing to do for all ages, from young babies to seven-year-old children.

Whether it’s because they’ve been sat hunched over a book or screen for too long, or they're about to start exercising.

Always make sure to warm up their muscles before stretching to make sure they don't hurt themselves. 

How dance classes for children can boost their development

Why is stretching good for growing children?

Stretching is an important part of encouraging children’s development. It has many physical, mental, and even emotional benefits.

Benefits of child-friendly stretching

  • Encourages participation in physical fitness
  • Prevents injuries before competing in physical activity
  • Helps your children manage stress
  • Allows them to calm their minds
  • Improves joint mobility and increases flexibility
Fun Activities To Help Your Children Learn

Top eight easy stretches to do with your kids

To help you get your children stretching, we’ve put together a list of child-friendly stretches that you can do together.

Stretches to do with your children1. Cat-Cow Stretch

This is where your child pretends to be a cow, where they are down on their hands and knees with a flat back.

They then pull their bellies up to arch their back like they’re pretending to be a cat. This doesn’t need to be disciplined, just encouraging them to move in the right way helps.

2. Child’s Pose

This is a great stretch if your child is feeling stressed because it helps them unwind. To do this child-friendly stretch they need to kneel on the floor. Their knees can either be spread apart or together, whichever feels most comfortable for your child.

They then lean forward until they can put their forehead on the floor (or as close to the floor as they can). The next step is to stretch their arms out in front of them and place their palms flat on the floor.

3. Big Arms

This is a nice simple one that you can get babies, toddlers, or older children to try.

You get them to stand up as tall as they can and stretch their arms out wide like they’re trying to give a huge hug.

Stretches to do with your children at home4. Reach for the stars

This child-friendly stretch can either be standing upright or lying down. You challenge them to reach as high as possible.

Making it a game where you encourage them to get their fingers and toes as far apart as possible will make it more enjoyable for them.

5. Tipping Teapots

This is where you perform the actions of the “I’m a little teapot” nursery rhyme. Encourage them to round their arm on their side like a handle and point with one hand to become a spout.

When they’re in this position, encourage them to bend to the side like they're tipping the teapot on the floor. Once they’ve done one side, get them to swap their arms around.

It's a great way to make sure your little ones are having fun whilst stretching. The more they enjoy the more likely they are to want to do it again. 

6. Downward-facing Dog

This is a yoga stretch which is child-friendly, bear in mind that they don’t need to be perfect.

Ask them to bend over and put their hands on the floor in front of their shoulders. Encourage them to try not to bend their knees as they stick their bums in the air.  

You’ll find that children find this position quite funny, especially when you encourage them to move about in this position.

7. Toe Touches

This stretch for children can be done sat down or stood up, whichever your child prefers.

They should try to touch their toes with their fingers without bending at the knee. For little children, you’ll probably find that they mostly bend, but that’s ok!

8. Cobra or Snake Pose/Peekaboo Stretches

This position helps them stretch their back and strengthen their spine. To do this child-friendly stretch, get them to lay belly down on the floor with their elbows bent and hands placed next to their heads.

Encourage them to push up on their hands until their head is in an upright position looking straight ahead. I’ve found that a great way to get little kids to enjoy this is by playing “Peekaboo” whenever they pop their heads up.

Benefits of early learning

Games that you could play to encourage your kids to stretch

You aren't alone if your little one doesn’t have a long attention span. One worry that some parents have is that their child won’t be able to concentrate for the full children’s dance class.

But you don’t need to worry about that at Tiny Toes Ballet, we are experienced at making the learning activities fun for children.

Here are some stretching games you can play with your child:
  1. Limbo – One of the easiest ways to get children to stretch different parts of their body without realising it.
  2. Simon Says – This copy game is a hit with children and a great way to get them stretching.
  3. Mirror Image Challenge – This is where two people/children face each other and try to stretch their faces and body as silly as possible. The other person then has to copy the stretches and funny faces.
  4. Dance classes for children – Whether you go to a Tiny Toes Ballet class to learn some handy tips or tricks, or just play pretend at home. It’s a great way to get their bodies moving and stretching.
  5. Pretending to be animals – This is a great way to distract them from all the stretching. Calling out different animal names, like dogs, frogs or even snakes is a fun way to get them to learn.  
  6. Acting out stories – Pick their favourite book and get them to act out the different parts of the story.

Why dance classes for children are great for stretching

Dance classes for children like Tiny Toes Ballet are great for making stretching fun. They’ll enjoy playing the games and acting out the stories so much, that they’ll not even realise they’re exercising.

You’ll have the opportunity to have fun with your children during class while knowing that they’re learning too. 

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