Quiet Relaxation Time & Strategies
Society today keeps quite the pace not only for adults, but for children as well. Adjusting to the fast pace of life can be tough for kids, especially when they’re growing cognitively, physically, and especially emotionally, so quickly and in such a short span of time! Setting time aside for quiet relaxation is extremely important in Kindermusik classes, but even more important at home. From babies to older children, quiet relaxation time is vital in learning how to quiet one’s mind, calm one’s body, and truly relax…a lifelong skill that will carry them through their adolescent, teen, young adult and even adult years.
- Your voice – it’s free and you have it with you all the time! Keys to remember, low tone and steady pace.
- Touch – soothing touch or massage is always something that is readily available! Keys to remember, eye contact can even be considered a sort of touch that really connects with your child.
In addition to taking deep breaths, getting exercise, visualizations (such as visualizing their favorite color), laughing, stretching, listening to music, and cuddling, one particular strategy that can be effective is called progressive muscle relaxation – meaning to tense and then relax different muscles in the body. These techniques can help children identify what it feels like to relax in an intentional manner, as well as how good it can feel too! Almost like a form of muscle memory, they can then apply that same concept to other muscles or their entire body when the situation calls for it:
1. For the face - Ask your child to “smell something stinky,” scrunching their nose up. Then have them smile and relax their face. Repeat several times.
2. For the hands and arms - Ask your child to imagine squeezing a ball in one hand and then dropping the ball on the floor, allowing their arm to fully extend and go limp. Do several times alternating between both arms.
3. For the legs and feet – While standing, ask your child to “dig their toes into the sand at the beach” and then release them back up trying to identify if they felt the muscles up through their legs. Repeat a few times.For a video of what this can look like when on the go, click the link below.