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Thursday, May 21, 2015

Hey soul sister! Can yoga calm sibling rivalry?

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Blood is thicker than water, but try telling that to two siblings going at it like cat and dog. Heather Gobbee has seen her fair share of the ugliness and beauty that stem from this unique relationship.

A kids and family yoga instructor at Bend & Bloom Yoga studio in Brooklyn, New York, Gobbee says, “Things go well and don’t go well in class.  It can be unpredictable.”
Age, birth order and maturity often play a role in the experience. With the three to five-year-old age set, “I’ve had kids who wants to be near their big siblings and do partner poses together, and others who get distracted and just want to play,” says Gobbee.
If one sibling is more developmentally challenged than another, “It can be frustrating for a child,” says Gobbee. But, on a positive note, “Partner yoga requires teamwork. They have to figure out poses together, which keeps them engaged and supportive of one another,” says Gobbee.
If siblings bug eachother during a yoga session, Gobbee tries to keep things positive.
“I address their unique strengths and remind them of how lucky they are to have a brother or sister with such qualities,” says Gobbee.
While yoga can help foster a lovely bond between some siblings, parents should be cautioned about forcing yoga on them as a bonding activity.
“There may be times when one sibling genuinely needs a break from another. You’ve got to know your child,” says Gobbee.


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