Last summer my 8-year-old daughter Grace attended Tara Rachel Jones's week-long yoga camp at the Arlington Center and absolutely loved it. She was, and continues to be, at an age where doing a camp or activity without a friend takes some cajoling. After the first day of yoga camp, though, she bounced home happily and eagerly back every other day. She absolutely loved yoga camp with Tara.
Tara's camp is much like her children's yoga classes at the Arlington Center and Majestic Yoga: welcoming, accessible, and warm. She introduces the basics of yoga philosophy and of asana practice to children in a way they can relate to, and provides a safe place for them to explore breathing, their bodies, and ways of thinking about the world.
Yoga camp included craft time, where Tara provided the craft materials, and a healthy snack each day. There was a "formal" yoga class, which, like Tara's ongoing classes, used animals as a central unifying theme with which to access yoga postures. There was also plenty of play. Grace left camp each day noticeably calm, centered, and happy. I feel certain that this sort of practice can have real impact when it comes to grounding children as they grow. I love the antidote that Tara's classes provide to society's focus on looks and materialism; at yoga, Grace was reminded of the power of moving her body in a supportive, non-competitive atmosphere.
Tara's yoga camp will run July 9-13 at the Arlington Center on Massachusetts Avenue in Arlington (the class is not yet listed on the website yet so give them a call). Camp is for children ages 6 to 11. It runs from 1:30 to 5:30 and the cost for the week is $140. Space is limited to 14 children, so I encourage those who are interested in sign up soon! You can learn more about Tara and her philosophy about teaching yoga to children here.
Image credit: Flower Yoga with Tara