Yoga for Children with Autism | Occupational Therapy

Yoga for Children with Autism | Learn the benefits of yoga for autistic children | Easy to do, perfect for beginners or experienced

Little man is not one to sit still.  He does a ton of spinning around and bouncing into everything and everyone!  This is just another aspect of his autism.  Over the last year and half, we have been working with speech and occupational therapist that come in home.   Recently, his new occupational therapist introduced us to the benefits of yoga for children with autism.

The Benefits of  Yoga for Children with Autism

Yoga is a benefit to everyone, but I had never thought of how it may help my two children with autism.  Even if I had, I would have never thought I could keep little man’s focus long enough to teach him yoga.  His therapist showed us several moves, and he instantly loved it!  For a two-year-old, that is pretty impressive work on her part!

Since then, we have started practicing yoga ourselves.  I have been wanting to get into yoga to try to help with my constant back and neck pain. Little man enjoying yoga was the perfect final push to get me going!

 

So Why Yoga for Children with Autism?

All children can gain enormous benefits from yoga.  Most of us understand the physical benefits it provides.  Yoga helps children (and adults) with their strength, coordination, and flexibility.  Yoga also helps with concentration, awareness, calming and relaxation.  These are the ideal attributes a child with autism can truly benefit from!

Yoga, Autism, and Listening?

It may be hard to imagine, but I can already see the positive benefits of yoga on our son’s listening skills.  Though he still doesn’t answer his name nine out of ten times, he does listen well once we start yoga.  He becomes relaxed and wants to do more yoga poses.  He is able to follow instructions and is much more peaceful afterward.

Yoga for Children with Autism | How his occupational therapy turned into a great bonding exercise for us

 

 

Yoga, Autism, and the Stubborn!

For our daughter, it has been more of a struggle.  At nine, she is very set in her ways and stubborn.  I am in the process of scheduling a yoga session twice a week in her routine.  The great thing about yoga, is it can actually build as a routine!

There are other benefits that I am looking forward to that build over time.  Yoga is a great way for children to gain better posture (to avoid that video game back!).  Yoga also brings about a healthy body awareness. This gives them confidence in themselves as well as bringing a sense of strength.

We absolutely love the journey we have started with yoga for children with autism.  It is perfect to add to our sensory diet, and helps get Momma healthy too!  Let’s face it, I needed a real excuse to wear those yoga pants from Fabletics other than the car line!

 

 

Yoga Poses for Children with Autism

Little man and I truly have a blast doing yoga.  Now, I will say I am no wear near a yoga guru!  I am bound to fall over a minimum of four times every time we do yoga.  My yoga partner is a two-year old, so I am pretty clear of judgement.  Unexpected comments and being asked if I farted, well that is just to be expected!

Check out some of our yoga pose for autism below.  Remember, this is also a great relationship building exercise.  Have fun with it!  Go outside or turn on some fun kids songs and do what makes you both calm and happy!

Yoga for Children with Autism | Poses

  
  
  
  
  
Yoga for Children with Autism | How his occupational therapy turned into a great bonding exercise for us. Perfect for children and beginners!

Do you do yoga for your autistic children?  

Let us know what works for you in the comments below!

TheMomKind

Alicia Trautwein is an autism parenting coach living in Missouri. She is the creator behind The Mom Kind, a website dedicated to parenting neurodiverse families.  She is featured in the "Amazing Moms" coffee table book by Hogan Hilling & Dr. Elise Ho.  She shares her expertise along with her experience in parenting children, both with and without autism.

71 thoughts on “Yoga for Children with Autism | Occupational Therapy

  1. I have just sent this over to a family member who has a child with Autism. I never knew this would be such a help and great therapy. Never really put yoga and children together

  2. I’ve never really thought about teaching a child with autism yoga, but it sounds like it can really work well! I’m trying to get my 2 year old to enjoy yoga as well and should schedule it more often.

  3. A good friend of mine’s daughter is autistic. She’s 15 and they’ve been doing yoga together for years now. It really helps her stay calm in situations that she finds stressful, because she pulls from an inner strength that not many without autism can even pull from.

  4. I’ve only ever heard benefits about yoga (for all) so I’m glad to hear it’s working for you son. Thanks for all the positions which I’m going to try with my little ones.

  5. This could be a lot of fun. My son has autism, but I’m not sure if he’d like this or not. I personally can’t do Yoga because it give me the giggles. But maybe he’d enjoy it.

    1. You can do it Momma! I am not any good at all, and I am sure there are some die hard yoga fans that look at my images and cringe, lol! It’s all about spending time with your little one and helping them find some calming techniques and building the muscles! 🙂

  6. This is wonderful and I know it could help other families! My daughter and I love yoga and I need to get back into with her.

  7. This is interesting and good to see that it helps autistic kids.
    Though i do yoga with my 3 year old daughter and do most of the poses that you mentioned. She loves it, especially lifting on my legs and being a plane. We even do Yoga clock song that she loves and even sings.
    Good luck with your kids.

  8. This is the first time I’m hearing of this but it totally makes sense! I bet the calming and relaxing effects of yoga can do wonders for the little ones.

  9. This is so interesting, I never heard of yoga being beneficial for autistic children before. I think it must really help to focus them, my daughter isn’t autistic but has a lot of tendencies, she may benefit.

    1. I am sure she would! Our middle daughter is ADHD, so we are starting to work with her and yoga. All the kids seem to really enjoy it, and everyone of us can benefit from exercise and calming techniques 🙂

  10. This looks a lot of fun! If it helps to improve the flexibility and strength that is really beneficial! If they are enjoying themselves, that the real bonus for me!

  11. What a great idea!! I never would have thought that Yoga could help out with Autism. Sharing this with a few friends! Wonderful post.

  12. A very helpful article on yoga for children with autism. Lovely tips and I would like to share with all my friends. For me all children should do yoga once or twice in a week. Great post!

    1. That is so awesome to hear! He is quiet the character 🙂 He has definitely made me slow down and enjoy these small moments! (and I love that my teen did such a great job as our photographer, she caught a ton of fun moments!)

  13. Nice post and I really liked the last photos! I think yoga should be something for everyone to relax, so maybe I should start i with my kids also ?

  14. This is very interesting and thinking about the benefits yoga has on both mind and body, no wonder that it can be very suitable for children with autism. It’s great that you’ve transformed your own sessions into fun yoga with your son.

  15. Yoga is great for kids. I will have to share this with my friend. Her Daughter is Autistic and could really benefit from yoga.

  16. I was aware of all the benefits of yoga but this is the first time I am reading of it’s benefits for children with autism. I guess it’s a great way to help your child and introduce this amazing practise early on. Thanks for sharing this post.

  17. What a wonderful idea for your little one! Yoga is such a great, gentle form of exercise that keeps up flexibility and can be fun for kids to join in with. I loved your personal yoga poses at the end there! So cute and fun!

  18. I know from experience how difficult it can be to find ways to work with kids with Autism. This is so awesome that they have something that helps promotes health benefits and at the same time helps kids with these special needs.

  19. I know a boy with ADHD and he struggles to concentrate and sit still so I am bookmarking the post to send to his mother. This is so interesting and could be such a powerful aid for concentration and focus.

  20. What a wonderful idea, teaching children with autism the love of yoga! I know, in my case it truly helps calm my mind. Whenever I’m feeling stressed, if I come back to my breath, it takes the edge off every time! x

  21. I’m always so amazed by the amazing health benefits yoga has on everyone who tries it. That’s amazing that he enjoys it and relaxes. When I do yoga I def feel more centered.

  22. Yoga is a great way to keep the kids happy and relaxed.I also try kids yoga with my kid.Although there are yoga poses,my kid loves to create his own poses.However,finally it is a great bonding time with him!

  23. Yoga seems like a nice bonding experience. I believe that exercise, especially yoga, will be of great help for kids with autism. I will share this to my mommy friends who has kids with autism.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *