You may be curious why I relate Star Wars to ingenuity (but if you've seen the films, then maybe not)... well let's just think about the release of the films. The first trilogy made its debut between 1977-1983, a time when my parents were in their early 20's. Of course, the cool kids back then went to see all the new films and fell in love. Many Star Wars fans would have also purchased the action figures, ship replicas, and other paraphernalia. Ten to maybe fifteen years later, they passed this love and stuff onto their children - aka my generation. At this time, some of us may have been too young to appreciate the brilliance of these fantastic flicks, however come 1999 - 2005 when the second trilogy was released, we fell in love too. Fast forward another ten years, and here we are today. The official release date of the 3rd trilogy! Be it known, that my generation is now passing our love for the Star Wars Saga onto our children. It is a beautiful cycle. Thank you George Lucas! Now we get to play with cool Star Wars toys, drink from wicked-awesome Star Wars cups, plan the best ever Star Wars birthdays (that we wish we had when we were 6), I can go on but I think you get it! Brilliant right!? We are all invested, it's part of us!
In preparation for today, Evan and I made sure to get Jaxon (5 yrs) up to speed by watching all the films together in the past 2 months. So to prepare you for the next couple months of Star Wars mania, here are some great ideas for a Star Wars themed lesson! We'll include some fun breathing exercises, poses and games to practice with your little Jedi... or Sith!
Star Wars Inspired Yoga Breathing Exercises
Start seated with legs crossed in a comfortable position, hands resting on your knees. Begin by breathing deeply into your stomach, inflating it big like a balloon on your inhale. PAUSE at the top of the inhale and begin to exhale, slowly releasing all the air. Practice this a few times before adding in the mantra... Inhale (while saying in your mind) "may the force", exhale "be with you".
Darth Vader Breath:
Interlace hands and bring the backs of the knuckles up to rest under your chin, elbows lifting to be in line with your shoulders - this is the inhale position. Exhale and draw your elbows in towards your mid-line as you make the classic Vader breathing sound by drawing your tongue up to your pallet and making a small O with your mouth to let the breath out.
Star Wars Inspired Yoga Games
Connecting to the Force:
The force is all around us. Obi-Wan Kenobi explains that the force is the source of a Jedi's power. It is an energy field created and sustained by life itself, and it flows through the universe, binding it together (sounds kind of like Prana, no?) so for this game we will connect and become one with it and our partner. Find someone to connect with, you will need two wooden dowels, unsharpened pencils, pieces of bamboo, or just plain old sticks. Face your partner, standing about 2 feet apart from one another and connect by placing the dowels between the tips of your index fingers (If this is too tricky, you can also connect via palms, both are shown in the photo).
Understanding the Force:
This intuition building game is also played in partners. Begin sitting with legs crossed facing each other, with knees almost touching. One partner will be the leader, practicing some creative movements for their partner to follow. This mirroring game can become quite meditative, as the children are so focused on the movements their partner is guiding them towards. Be sure to switch and allow everyone a chance to lead and follow.
Harnessing the Force:
Now that we have a better understanding of the force, we can begin to use it! Partner up with a new friend to try this out... wait! Try? Do or do not, there is no try. So how about you just do it. I promise it's fun and will bring out your creative side! One partner is going to become a lump of clay by coming down into a child's pose. The other will use the force (or their hands, and/or words) to help their friend come into some sort of pose! It can be one you know of, or something super cool that you've created.
Star Wars Inspired Yoga Poses
- Death Star - Jump legs apart, arms out to sides, wrists in line with shoulders.
- Jedi - Warrior 1
- R2D2 - Downward facing dog
- Leia's prison cell - Eagle pose
- Luke's Land Speeder - Seated side stretch, lean left then right to steer, forward fold to go super fast!
- Leia's Message - Standing forward fold & half lift "help me Obi-Wan", squat down heels lifting "you're my only hope"
- Jedi Knight Training - Mini warrior series: Warrior 2, reverse warrior, humble warrior
- Mos Eisley Cantina - Partner tent pose! Standing about 2 feet apart, reach hands up, palms connecting. Keep arms strong and engaged, while pressing hands into each other. Take two steps back, and lean in towards one another. You'll know you're doing it correctly if it feels as though you will fall flat on your face if your partner moves!
- Millennium Falcon - Wide leg forward fold
- Storm trooper - Low lunge
- Epic Duel between Obi-Wan and Vader - Repeat mini warrior series: Warrior 2, reverse warrior, humble warrior
- X-Wing Fighter - Side Plank
After your Star Wars Adventure is complete, and you've destroyed the death star, be sure to include some relaxation activities and a resting period with a guided visualization. Some ideas could be progressive muscular relaxation, self massage, listening to the sound of a Tibetan bell, EFT, etc.
If you have the time and resources, it would be lovely to create light saber pens as well! Here is the tutorial, it was such an easy craft to do - and very inexpensive too.
Well friends, I hope that you enjoy this Star Wars post! Please, comment with your ideas as well....but no "Force Awakens" spoiling if you are going to see it today.
With so much love, I wish you farewell. May the force be with you!