Come this time during a Chicago winter–when spring isn’t yet close enough to taste and winter is in full swing with its cold temperatures and gusty winds–everyone in the house feels like it’s time to get moving. Here are some classes that will move your muscles beyond what it takes to shift positions on the couch.
Bloom Yoga Studio offers many different types of yoga classes suited to meet the needs of the entire family – all the way from the mother-to-be to baby to siblings and even dad. Here’s a smattering of classes offered:
Preparing our bodies to give birth isn’t something to be neglected, and prenatal yoga helps the mother-to-be tone and strengthen her body while learning what it means to flex and relax both the physical body and her mind. It’s a wonderful , low-stress workout that is safe for baby and highly beneficial for the ever-morphing body of a pregnant mother. While relieving musculoskeletal tension, it also reduces stress and anxiety through awareness of the body coupled with breathing.
Mom and Baby Yoga
New moms, flush with post-partum hormones as well as the new, strong feelings that come with motherhood , often need encouragement to venture out of the house with their little ones and get moving. Mom and Baby Yoga is a perfect first class with which the new duo can get involved in a baby-and-mom friendly environment. The two can begin to socialize with other mom and baby pairs while mom engages in movements and motions that decrease postpartum soreness and restore the abdominal and pelvic muscles. When hormones are in great flux, as they are post-labor, the movement also increases the production of serotonin, which decreases the blues.
Parent and Tot Yoga and Family Yoga (ages 5 and up)
While yoga touts healing and relaxation as two of its major benefits, the goodness doesn’t end there. It also builds muscle strength while improving blood circulation and flexibility. A wonderful, physical family activity, yoga teaches members of a busy family how to listen to their bodies, build strength and re-balance the body as well as the mind. Kids are great yoga students because it not only teaches calming techniques but it also helps little ones connect their physical bodies with their environments.
Different from yoga, Hip Circle Studio offers classes that will get the heart rate going quite a bit more. The classes at this studio are geared toward parents/caregivers, infants and younger children.
Simply choose the baby sling of your liking, and jump in! While mom dances and gets her heart rate elevated, baby will enjoy exposure to world music and learn about natural rhythms through experiencing the dance while pressed against his mother’s moving body. Also, this class is not just for mom and baby; dad or any caregiver is welcome to come shake it with baby, too!
Through the art of belly dancing, pregnant and post-partum moms will warm up, stretch and learn specific trimester and post-partum movements. Pregnant mothers will learn specific bellydance moves to be used as comfort measures during labor as well as being privy to how belly dance can be utilized as a parenting tool.
Zumba, with its Latin-influenced dance and music, doesn’t just get the heart pumping when the whole family is invited to the party; it also gets the whole family smiling. The choreography at this class is suited for all ages; non-walkers are encouraged to be worn in a sling and enjoy the party while being attached to mom or dad.
Family Dance Workshop (March 17, 2012)
Specifically designed for parents and little ones ages 3 to 8 years old, this dance workshop aims to get everyone involved moving. An interactive creative movement class, parents and children alike will be encouraged to experiment in the art of dance. Best of all, little ones will get to shake out some of the winter crazies that have set in.
Family Hip-Hop (April 21, 2012)
Through hip-hop style dance and music, parents and children ranging ages 6 to 13 will explore new rhythms together while attempting to gain new coordination at this workshop. For the parent who wants to connect with their kiddos’ musical tastes, this could be a perfect class to engage in together while getting both body and conversation rolling.