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Name of Activity:
Yoga/Tree Pose (Vrikshasana) Cool Down
Purpose of Activity:To have the students learn the Tree Pose (Vrikshasana) in yoga as a cool down exercise at the end of the class, which will help them relax and focus. Additionally, to help the students to consciously understand that they will be transitioning from a learning exercise experience to a coursework experience, whether it is Hybrid, fully remote, or in-classroom learning.
Prerequisites:Some students are not allowed to participate in yoga due to their religion. Therefore, you will need to notify the students and parents in advance that you will be teaching the Tree Pose in yoga as a cool down. You will need to have alternative plans for the students who are not able to participate. One prior lesson on the benefits of yoga and the Tree Pose, together with practice doing the pose. Benefits: -improves alertness and concentration. -helps reduce stress. -helps with flat feet and sciatica. -Improves balance, flexibility, stability, endurance, and coordination. -Strengthens and tones the entire standing leg, up to buttocks
Suggested Grade Level:3-12
Materials Needed:No material or mats needed, which lowers the risk for COVID-19 transmission.
Description of Idea
I have the students practice the Tree Pose (Vrikshasana) in yoga at the end of an aerobic exercise lesson or after a lesson which requires the students to do a lot of running. The Tree Pose helps them to consciously understand that they will be transitioning from a learning exercise experience to a coursework experience, whether it is Hybrid, fully remote, or in-classroom learning. The parents of students who are remote learners, enjoy practicing the Tree Pose with us. I usually have the parents compete against each to see how long they can hold the pose and the kids get a kick out of it.
I. Warm-up exercises
II. Aerobic workout 16/20 reps and 2 sets (5/10 reps for younger children)
Marching in place
Jogging in place
Invisible jump rope
III. Stretching exercises
IV. Tree Pose
Stand nice and tall with your arms relaxed by your sides.
Relax in this position for 5 to 10 seconds and slowly inhale and exhale.
Gaze softly at a fixed point in front of you on the floor, wall, or the laptop screen to improve focus and balance.
Shift your body weight into your left leg. This will be your standing leg.
Raise the other leg (right leg) up and bend your knee. You can reach down with your hand and clasp/grab your ankle. Place the sole of the foot against the inside of your left leg, either on the side of the calf muscle or upper thigh. DO NOT PLACE YOUR FOOT ON YOUR KNEE.
The toes of your right foot should be pointing downward.
Once you feel stable, slowly bring your arms in front of you and place your palms together. If you want to challenge yourself, bring your arms overhead with palms together.
Hold this pose 5 seconds. Gradually, you should try to increase the time of the pose from 5, 10,15 seconds, until you are able to hold it for 20 seconds.
Slowly come out of the pose and take two deep breathes. Then begin the pose with the other leg.
Praise the students for doing a great job!
After a few days of practicing, you can have the students compete to see who can hold the pose the longest.
Let the students know to take their time getting into the pose. It is easier to come into the pose slowly and with awareness.
Additional information: This lesson meets all the NYS PE Learning Standards
Standard 1: Demonstrates competency in a variety of motor skills and movement patterns.
Standard 2: Applies knowledge of concepts, principles, strategies, and tactics related to movement and performance.
Standard 3: Demonstrates the knowledge and skills to achieve and maintain a health-enhancing level of physical activity and fitness.
Standard 4: Exhibits responsible personal and social behavior that respects self and others.
Standard 5: Recognizes the value of physical activity for overall wellness, enjoyment, challenge, and/or self-expression.
Standard 6: Recognizes career opportunities and manages personal and community resources related to physical activity and fitness to achieve and maintain overall wellness.
The NYS Physical Education Learning Standards (2020)
Ask questions in a written form about the benefits of the Tree Pose.
Ask questions verbally.
Look at the student's form during class.
How long can the student hold the pose? (5,10,15,20 seconds)
Adaptations for Students with Disabilities
Non-ambulatory students can do the Tree Pose with support of a chair, or just have them do the arm movements. Have them practice inhaling and exhaling while gazing softly at a fix point in front of them on the floor, wall, or the laptop screen to improve focus and balance.
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