Today is part two of our yoga-inspired visit to Australia for kids with Giselle Shardlow, the author of Kids Yoga Stories. Her yoga-inspired children’s books get children moving, learning, and having fun. Giselle draws from her experiences as a teacher, traveler, yogi, and mom to write her stories found at www.kidsyogastories.com or on Amazon.
Australia in Action! Part Two
In Part One, we traveled around Australia by acting out ten Australian landmarks through corresponding kids yoga poses.
Join us again for Part Two with another ten Aussie icons.
Let’s jump in!
The poses are listed in a specific sequence to invite flow from one pose to the next. Feel free to add or take out any of the poses to suit the needs and interests of your child. Being creative is always encouraged.
Ten more Australian-inspired kids yoga poses:
1. Coolendel Campground on the Shoalhaven River, New South Wales
Wombat – Downward-Facing Dog Pose
(On hands-and-feet, waddle like a wombat)
A wombat waddling through your campsite at night is a funny sight. They won’t stick around long once they see your flashlight. But a quick glimpse is enough to make you want to go wombat-searching every night under the moonlight.
2. Ku-Ring-Gai Chase National Park, New South Wales
Kookaburra – Pigeon Pose
(From Downward-Facing Dog Pose, bend right knee and place it behind your right hand, tuck your right foot slightly in, and pretend to perch on a branch like a kookaburra)
The birds of Australia are spectacular, and so are their songs and bright colors. Kookaburras regularly visit picnic areas, where they perch on branches, ready to snap up your lunch. I still remember singing, “Kookaburra sits in the old gum tree…” as a child.
3. Royal National Park, New South Wales
Goanna – Lizard Pose
(From a plank pose, bend one leg, and bring it to the outside of your front foot)
Seeing gigantic lizards slithering up trees can be frightening at first. But once you have experienced this awe-inspiring sight and realize that they don’t find you particularly interesting, you can start to enjoy goanna sightings without a pounding chest.
4. Bondi Beach, New South Wales
Swimming – Locust Pose Variation
(Lay flat on your tummy and move your arms and legs like you are swimming)
I lived in Sydney for seven years and never actually got into the water. Shocking, really, I know. The beaches are beautiful, but the water is cold! But swimming is a popular national pastime and earns many medals in the Olympics.
5. Australian Coastline
Shark – Shark Pose
(Lay flat on your tummy, lift your chest and legs, and clasp your hands behind your back)
There are still a few reports of shark attacks on the Aussie coastline. That’s why the swimming beaches have expert surf lifesavers and you are encouraged to “swim between the flags.”
Tasmanian Devil – Cat Pose
(On hands and knees, walk like a Tassie Devil)
As we traveled around Tasmania, we were constantly on the lookout for a Tassie Devil. No such luck. It was better to visit a dedicated Tassie Devil farm, where we even saw babies. Pictures show these animals with their fierce teeth and scary growl. Up close, they are not quite as scary.
7. Blue Mountains, New South Wales
Echidna – Active Child’s Pose
(Sit back on your heels, extend your arms out in front of you, and pretend to burrow your hands into a dusty hole like an echidna would)
Echidnas are definitely my favorite Australian animal. Maybe it’s because of their cute waddle or their cuddly, hedgehog-looking face. I saw my first echidna when we were off-roading in the Blue Mountains. He ran to the side of the road and stuck his nose into a dusty hole. It was as if he thought we couldn’t see him if his nose was hidden!
8. Sydney, New South Wales
Sydney Harbor Bridge – Bridge Pose
(Lay on your back with your knees bent and feet flat, arms resting to your sides, and lift your buttocks to create a bridge)
Tourists flock to Sydney Harbor to take pictures of the sparkling sun reflecting on the water, the Opera House standing on ceremony, the boats ferrying people back and forth, and the infamous Sydney Harbor Bridge, which is the location of the world-renowned New Year’s Eve fireworks display.
9. Central Australia
Ayers Rock – Table Top Pose
(Lift up into a reverse table top with flat palms and flat feet, and pretend to be Ayers Rock with the sunset shining over you)
Ayers Rock is a place like no other. It is a sacred place for the aboriginal Australians and a popular tourist attraction. Be prepared for hot weather, because it is located in the outback.
10. Cape York, Northern Territories
Playing Didgeridoo – Easy Pose
(Sit cross-legged, pretend to blow into your didgeridoo)
My husband has aboriginal roots in his family ancestry, so playing the didgeridoo has become symbolic of getting in touch with his culture. The sound of this extraordinary instrument vibrates through our house. You can buy beautifully handcrafted authentic didgeridoos in Aboriginally-owned tourist shops in Sydney or other cities.
I hope you enjoyed learning about Australia through movement. Please check out Part One for the first ten Australian landmarks and matching kids yoga poses.
Would you add any other Australian icons? Please email me at giselle at kidsyogastories dot com to let me know.
Join the Luke’s Beach Day virtual book launch in June 2013 to celebrate an Australian-inspired yoga story. Get details and free kids yoga resources in your inbox by signing up for Giselle’s weekly Kids Yoga Stories Newsletter on her website, or check her out on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.
Thank you, Giselle, for teaching us about beautiful Australia and yoga!