While most don’t think of yoga as a child or young person’s hobby, there is no reason why it shouldn’t be. Yoga is proven to have a wide variety of benefits for children. According to research from Harvard, children who practice yoga have improved balance, strength, and cardiovascular health.
If you’re interested in getting your child involved in yoga or want some company when you practice, we have 30 yoga games for kids so that you can play with your child. These games are also suitable for larger child-focused classes. If you are interested in improving your child’s health and having fun, read on.
1. Yogi Says Game
‘Yogi Says’ is a great game to improve kids’ concentration. It is also simple to play, based on ‘Simon Says.’ Thankfully, you do not need any equipment to play this game, only space and time. There are a few steps to this game, according to Cosmic Kids.
- Line up and face the Yogi.
- The Yogi thinks of a pose and calls it out.
- If they say ‘Yogi says’ before the pose, you have to make that pose. If they don’t, you have to stand still or hold your previous pose.
- If you make a mistake, you lose.
- The last one standing is the winner!
Yogi Says is a great way to improve kids’ concentration and give everyone a good stretch. Here is an example of the game being played.
2: Let’s Tell Yoga Game
“Let’s Tell” is a great game for larger groups (8 or more). The goal of this game is to collect cards with your team. However, you cannot say what is on the card, instead, you have to explain what is on the card without using the word within a set time.
You will need a few things to play this game. Firstly, a stopwatch to track time and image cards to play. The steps to playing this game are as follows:
- Divide your players into two or more teams of four.
- Place a stack of image cards in a place where both teams can reach them.
- One player from one of the teams picks out a card. They become the narrator. This player looks at the card before giving it to another team.
- The narrator tries to explain to their team what the image on the card was. For example, they could describe a warrior as ‘someone who fights in a war.’
- The other team keeps an eye on the narrator to make sure they do not say the name of the image.
- If the narrator’s team guesses correctly, they get to take the card. If they do not, the card goes to the bottom of the deck.
- Another team repeats the process.
- Once all cards have been handed out, the teams must make a yoga flow based on the cards they have. For example, if a team has a warrior and a dog card, they may start in Warrior 1 before moving to Downward Dog.
3: Pose Detective Yoga Game
Pose Detective is an interesting game that can help children remember all of their yoga poses. You do not need any equipment for this game, and it is simple to play. This game is best played when you and your group have some experience with a wide variety of poses. The steps to play Pose Detective are as follows:
- The Yogi thinks of a pose and what positions are involved in it. For example, a Yogi might think of Tree Pose and how it involves standing on one leg.
- The Yogi then asks all participants to show them a pose similar to that one – i.e. a pose that involves standing on one leg.
- Players that do any pose that involves standing on one leg (such as Dancers Pose) win a point.
4: Animal Guessing Yoga Game
If you have ever played charades before, this game should be familiar to you. Like many good yoga games, the Animal Guessing game does not require much equipment – only image cards. To play the game, you need to do the following:
- Make a yoga card deck that has only animal images.
- Sit in a circle and choose one player. This player then picks a card and memorizes it.
- Other players ask questions about the animal to try and figure out what it is. For example, ‘Is it big?’, ‘Can it fly?’, ‘Where does it live?’
- Any player that wants to guess the animal raises their hands and does a yoga pose that looks similar to the animal.
- If the player’s guess is correct, they get a point.
If your child or their friends are interested in animals, this can be a great way to get them into yoga.
5: Add One Yoga Game
This game is a great way to test your memory. The ‘Add One’ game is simple, but deceptively challenging – while you don’t need any equipment, this game can test even adults. The rules are simple:
- Stand in a circle and pick someone to start the game.
- The first person performs a pose of their choice.
- After this, the next person to their right makes that pose and another one after it.
- Continue this process until you have gone around the circle once.
6: Wind In The Trees Game
‘Wind in the Trees’ is a fantastic exercise for improving your leg strength and general balance. One of the best parts about this game is that it can be as calm or as exciting as you want. To play the game, follow these steps:
- Split your class in half.
- One-half of the class enter the Tree pose. They will act as trees.
- The other half of the class begins to run between and around the other half, pretending to be wind.
- Make sure to switch the wind and the trees so that the trees don’t get tired.
7: Hot Potato Yoga Game
It’s an exciting yoga version of the hot potato game. You will need a few things to play this game, including some music and small animal toys. Do the following to play this game:
- Sit in a circle and start to play some music (The Yogi in charge will handle this).
- Begin passing around one or more animal toys. These toys represent different yoga poses, such as butterfly and cobra.
- When the music stops, the person holding the toy must do the pose that the animal represents.
8: Yoga Stories
Children love making and telling stories, so why not make some stories using yoga. This is a great way to boost children’s creativity. There are only a few rules in this game:
- Create a circle with your group.
- Have one player start a story by saying a word or sentence (whichever works best for your group).
- Whenever mentions an animal related to a pose, every member of the group must make that pose.
- Continue around the circle until everyone has added to the story.
9: Yoga Race
A fun game, the yoga Race is a fantastic way for children to practice self-control and pay attention to small details. The game is easy to play, but it is more enjoyable in larger spaces such as sports halls. The rules of the Yoga Race are as follows:
- The Yogi and pupils start on opposite ends of the room.
- When the Yogi turns around, pupils can start to walk toward the other side of the room.
- When the Yogi turns around, they shout out a pose. Pupils that do the pose correctly can stay in place. Any that don’t have to move back.
- The first person to reach the opposite wall wins.
10: Sandwich Race
The sandwich race is one of the more physically demanding games on this list. If you want to boost your heart rate, this is one of the best games. The aim of the game is to get the most points by being faster than the other team.
All you need to play is a lot of space. The rules of the sandwich race, from Cosmic Kids, are:
- Have your group line up, one person facing another in the sandwich pose.
- Name one side Team 1 and the other Team 2.
- Number each pair of participants.
- Call out a number. That pair has to run to the top of the line. Whoever gets to the top first gets a point for their team.
- Repeat until every pair has gone at least once.
11: The Wave Yoga Game
Another fun and simple game that will really get your group working together. If you have ever been to a football match and been part of ‘The Wave’, this is close to that with an exciting yoga twist. This game is especially good for larger groups. All you need to do to play is this:
- Put your group in a circle or line, whichever you prefer.
- Walk to the right end of the line or circle and make a pose.
- The person to the left of you has to make that same pose.
- Go along the circle or line one by one as fast as possible.
12: Yoga Challenge
Yoga challenge is a fun way to remember various yoga poses and can be more interactive than Yoga Detective. This game gets better the more familiar with yoga your group is. The best way to play the game is this:
- Stand at the front of your group.
- Give your group a challenge. This could be something like ‘I challenge you to do a pose where you touch the ground.’
- The first person who does this challenge correctly can then give their own challenge.
- Continue until everyone has gotten the chance to give out a challenge.
13: Museum Yoga Game
If you have young children in your group that still like hide and seek, Museum Yoga is a great way to combine both. However, the game is slightly more complicated than others, so be sure to explain the rules to your group as clearly as possible. These are the rules:
- Have your group form a circle. Make sure each person has enough space to pose without bumping into someone else.
- Pick one person to be the watchman. They will stand in the middle of the circle.
- While the watchman is looking at you, you have to stay in a yoga pose of your choice. When they look away, you can change poses.
- If the watchman catches you moving, you have to sit down.
- The last statue standing is the winner.
14: Yoga Beachball
If you want to improve your group’s coordination, yoga beachball might be one of the best options on this list. All you need to play this game is a beachball and some markers to write poses. Here’s how you play the game:
- Write several poses on a beachball.
- Get your group in a circle and start throwing the beach ball around.
- When someone catches the ball, they have to perform the pose on the ball closest to their right thumb.
15: Freeze Dance Yoga Game
This simple game is great for children (and adults) that love to dance. All you need to play is some music and space to let your group dance to their heart’s contents. The rules for Freeze Dance Yoga are:
- Get your group together in a circle. Make sure they have enough room to move.
- Start the music and start dancing.
- When the Yogi stops the music, they call out a pose. Instead of dancing, students stop in that pose.
You can watch the game being played here.
16: Create Your Own Pose
As mentioned before, children love to use their boundless creativity in fun ways. By giving your class a chance to create their pose, you give them the chance to lead and express themselves. To play this game, do the following:
- Get your class in a circle.
- Give your group some time to think of a pose.
- Pick out a member of your class and ask them to show the pose they have created.
17: ‘Floor is Lava’ Yoga Game
If you have ever played ‘the floor is lava,’ you can imagine how fun this game will be, especially for small children. To play this game, you need a way to play music, yoga mats, and yoga cards. The rules are as follows:
- Create a circle out of all the yoga mats you have.
- Put a yoga card on each of these mats.
- Start playing music. While the music is playing, your group has to jump between each yoga mat to avoid touching the floor.
- When the music stops, you do the pose on the card on the mat you are on.
18: Yoga Bingo
While combining bingo and yoga may seem strange at first, it is a winning combination. This game is a fantastic way to practice many poses engagingly. To play yoga bingo, you need some bingo cards with poses on them (available from Pink Oatmeal). The rules are as follows:
- Call out a yoga pose for your class.
- Everyone in the class performs this pose.
- Anybody with the pose on their card marks it off.
- The first player to get five in a row wins the game.
19: Rock/Tree/Bridge Yoga Game
This yoga game is fantastic for when you want to burn off energy at the end of a class. All you need is space, but this game is more fun with more participants. The rules for this game are:
- Split up your class into teams of three. Start at one end of the room you are in.
- The first team member performs Child’s Pose (they act as the rock).
- The second team member leaps over the rock and performs Tree Pose (they act as the tree).
- The final member jumps over the rock and runs around the tree. They then become the bridge (Downward dog pose).
- The first player, the rock, gets up and crawls under the bridge.
- Repeat the pattern until one team gets to the other end of the room -they are the winners.
20: Stuffed Animal Balance Challenge
This game is especially good for young children with plenty of toys. The stuffed animal balance challenge is, as you can imagine, a great way to improve your class’ balance. Make sure to let your class know when you will be playing this game so they can bring in their favorite toys. The rules are simple:
- Start your class in a stable pose, such as the Cow or Cobra poses.
- Move between different poses in a flow.
- Your students must find a way to balance their toys.
- The last one balancing their toy wins.
21: Yoga Jenga
Jenga is always a tense and thrilling game, and adding yoga to it is a great way to practice a wide variety of poses. To play, you need a Jenga set, and a marker to write the names of poses on each block. The rules are:
- Write the names of different poses on each block.
- When somebody pulls out a block, everybody has to do the pose on that block.
- If the tower falls, everybody has to do a challenging pose for a few seconds. For example, the Crane and Peacock poses are especially tough.
22: Wheel of Poses
Another straightforward game that can be used as a warm-up or as a way to memorize poses. You need a spinner (such as the one from Pinkoatmeal) to play this game. The rules are:
- Get your class to form a circle around the spinner.
- Pick someone in the class to spin the wheel. Everyone has to do the pose the pointer lands on.
- Continue until everyone has gotten the chance to spin the wheel.
23: Copy Cat
Copy Cat is another fun yoga game. The goal of this game is to pay attention to your partner and synchronize your movements. The best way to play the game is this:
- Split up your class into two lines. Make sure everyone has enough space to pose.
- Choose one line of students to be leaders. The other line will be followers.
- Leaders begin by making a pose slowly. Followers then must mimic these movements as closely as possible.
24: Crabs Cleaning Up
Crabs Cleaning Up is a game that will give your legs and arms a tough workout. You will need a bucket and something to throw in it; small toys or beanbags are good options. To play the game, you need to:
- Place several beanbags all across the room you are playing in.
- Get your class to start moving around in the Crab pose.
- The goal is for the players to pick up all the beanbags and put them in the bucket.
This game has many benefits. Aside from improving your class’ hand-eye coordination, this game can also give you the chance to teach your class about how yoga can relieve pain. You will need one or more Operation sets to play this game. The rules are easy to understand:
- Play Operation as normal; removing pieces from the board.
- When a student successfully removes a piece, ask them if any yoga poses could make the patient feel better.
26: Arm Hockey
This game is going to get a sweat going, especially if you have a competitive class. All you need to play this game is a ball.
- Start by making a circle. Make sure that your feet are touching the people next to you.
- You should have a gap between your legs which will act as the goal.
- Roll the ball around and try to score points while protecting your goal.
- If the ball gets into your goal, you lose. The last one standing is the winner.
27: Ball Under The Bridge
This game can be a fantastic way to build arm and core strength. Like the previous game, all you need is a ball to play.
- Make your class form one long line. Everyone in the line will be in Crab pose.
- The person at the end of the line rolls the ball underneath everyone ahead of them.
- The goal is to roll the ball from one end of the line to the other without hitting anyone.
28: Musical Mats
A yoga version of musical chairs. This game is fantastic for larger groups that love to move around. To play this game, make sure to have plenty of yoga mats on hand and a way to play music. The rules are as follows:
- Make a circle out of all the yoga mats you have. Have one less mat than players.
- Put a yoga card with a pose on each mat.
- Players run around the mats while the music is playing. When the music stops, they must get onto a mat and perform the pose.
- Any player without a mat is eliminated.
- Remove one mat and continue playing until only one player is left.
29: Go on an Adventure
This is another game that makes use of children’s near-infinite creativity. This game of pretending is played through yoga and is a great way to introduce new students to yoga. The rules are as follows:
- Have all your class line up in front of you.
- Begin describing a scenario – such as crawling through a tight cave.
- Make a pose that fits the scenario, such as Cobra pose for slithering through an enclosed space.
30: Red Light, Green Light Yoga
Red Light, Green Light is another classic kids’ game that can be given a fun yoga twist. To play, you need to do the following:
- Stand at the opposite end of the classroom to your pupils.
- When you call out “green light,” your students can start to move toward you.
- When you call out “red light,” they must stop and do a yoga pose.
- Any student that doesn’t stop in time is eliminated.
As you can tell, there are many different kinds of yoga games for kids. Many of the games listed above, such as Red Light, Green Light, and The Wave, will be familiar to you and your class. These games are a great way to introduce new people to yoga. Other games, such as Yoga Stories and Yoga Challenge, are great for improving your class’ knowledge of yoga.
If you have any other yoga games for kids that you enjoy, make sure to let us know in the comments section.