Warmup poses Sitting Pose

This first pose (Figure 2.1) is used to ease into the yoga session and let your child know that the yoga session is about to begin. Because children with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASDs) often have difficulty transitioning from one activity to another, this first pose is a consistent way to start the day's yoga practice. The pose provides a few minutes when you and your child may relax, let go of stress and worries, and prepare for the practice.

As a modification, use a firm pillow under the hips, to make your child comfortable and provide support. If your child has very tight hips or weak abdominal or low back muscles, he may not be comfortable in any type of cross-legged position, with or without a pillow. If this is the case, he may sit on a low stool to practice the seated positions in this and the following poses (see Figure 2.2). Once your child is in the pose, you may tell him to imagine that he is a Buddha: still and peaceful.

1. Begin by sitting erect at the front of your mat.

2. Cross your legs in any comfortable position. You may need a blanket under your hips for comfort in the seated position.

3. Take a moment to concentrate on how you are feeling. Listen to the sounds of your environment.

4. Close your eyes and take a deep inhalation into your belly through your nose.

5. Hold your breath and release it slowly. Contract your belly towards your spine to exhale all of the air out of your body.

6. Take this deep breath and release it three times, each time thinking about how your body feels. Be relaxed and motionless. Pay attention to how you are feeling.

7. Continue to breathe deeply through your nose and release your breath through your nose. Try to make both your inhalation and exhalation long and smooth. Breathe deeply for several moments and proceed to the next pose.

Unite Mind Body Spirit With Yoga

Unite Mind Body Spirit With Yoga

Practitioners of yoga talk about a unification of body, mind and spirit acquired through practicing the yoga exercises and techniques. Learn more within this guide.

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