Kids & Teen Yoga Instructor










In 2019 Fay Denwood invested in 3 training courses with Little Greene Yoga. 

  • Foundation Years (3-8yrs) Kids Yoga Teacher Training (split into 3-5yrs & 5-8yrs)
  • Alignment Based 8-12yrs Kids Yoga Teacher Training 
  • TEEN – Mind & Body (12-18yrs)

Fay successfully passed all 3 courses and has since been working privately and within the Schools in and around Edinburgh and loving it!

We caught up with Fay to find out how she was and her thoughts on her training one year on!


What made you want to teach children and teens yoga?

Before becoming a yoga teacher I was a paediatric nurse, I worked in various areas with children and their families from birth to 18 years; so I always enjoyed working with children, and teenagers particularly. The energy they have is great. Over the 11 years I was nursing there were notable shifts in admissions relating to mental health, we know there are higher numbers of children suffering from mental health issues in our current times; and a rise in anxiety, depression, self harm. I don’t profess to know all the reasons why, social media is often named as the cause but I think there is more to it than that, and teenage years particularly are challenging and hold a lot of pressure. And from my own experience, I think there are a lot of valuable tools and lessons in yoga that can help navigate these years, things like learning to breathe well and properly, the value of your own body and what positions can have a calming effect on your mind. I think if we can teach this at a young age, it is hopefully contributing to building a life long resilience.

You already had an adult teaching certificate, why did you feel it necessary to do extra training?

A yoga teacher training of 200 hours can’t really prepare you for going into a school or club and teaching yoga, and it isn’t meant to! Yoga is huge, I think sometimes we think 200 hours is all you need but its really just a foundation I think, maybe unless of course you are accustomed to going into schools anyway and managing groups of children, which I was not! Even with a lot of knowledge and experience of working and being with children not all yoga is appropriate for every age group, and I think if you really want children and teenagers to get the most out of yoga and keep doing it, you need a specific teacher training that can give you the tools.

Why did you choose Little Greene Yoga above other training providers?

I was looking for training in Scotland, and Little Greene Yoga had a wealth of experience and years of teaching children and teenagers. She also offered to call me first and discuss options and her course so I felt that she would be a very supportive mentor as well as a teacher. I have done training overseas, and in large groups of up to 50 people but I felt for this being in a smaller class, and with someone who has knowledge and experience of starting business in the same place with the same school system would be helpful, and it was!training that can give you the tools.

Do you feel the training prepared you for working with the various age groups?

Yes, I had been teaching in a couple of schools prior to taking the 8-12 years course with two groups of 7-9 year olds, so I was adapting from the 5-8 course I had already done which was going fine, but I got way more ideas, games and structures from taking the course and the kids really loved it. The thing is children grow up fast, and there is a big difference between a 5 year old and an 8 year old as any parent will tell you, so different things will appeal to them and how you hold their interest will be different with different ages, and that’s where the separate courses help.

Did you do the training in chronological order? Did it matter, do you think?

I didn’t and I don’t think it mattered. I did the teen course first, and this is different to the other two anyway, working with high schools is different to primary, running teen classes is different, so I didn’t feel like I should have done them in age order or anything or that that would have been any more useful. I did the 3-8 before the 8-12 course and I think that was probably better to do, as some things carry across into a few years older and it is a foundation in knowing and understanding anatomy and child development.

Did you start teaching kids straight away and was it hard starting up classes?

I did the teen course in the May and started my classes in the September, just because of the term ending it wasn’t a great time to start in June. I put a taster class out on Facebook to see how it would go and it filled up, so starting a teen class wasn’t difficult. I started teaching in schools too at lunch time and breakfast club classes, it’s not my preferred option for younger children but it gave me experience and there is work there for sure!

Did you feel LGY we’re able to offer help after the training?

Yes, Veronica has always been helpful and willing to offer support and advice since the courses finished, I’ve been in touch several times! Also, with small classes you get to know others on the course and share knowledge and experience, this can be really beneficial too and I’ve kept in touch with most people from the courses too.

Did you feel the training provided you with both the Teaching and Business tools necessary to help you succeed as a children’s and teen yoga teacher?

Yes, this is a part of the course that is done very well. Often when you leave teacher training it’s a brief chat and good luck in setting up your classes. Veronica does this in a lot more depth, and offers more space for sharing ideas, discussion, asking questions and guidance in how to begin and set up classes, whether they are private or in schools.

Veronica Greene founded Little Greene Yoga ® in 2006 and offers a Certified Children’s Teacher Training package (3-5yrs; 5-8yrs; 8-12yrs, Teen – Mind & Body & Postnatal Yoga)

TEEN MENTAL HEALTH & the Vagus Nerve

By Veronica Greene  (Printed in Om Yoga & Lifestyle Magazine MARCH 2019)

Teen Mental Health is at an all-time low, with anxiety disorders reported as the most common mental health condition.

Teen anxiety manifests in a number of different ways including:- Generalised Anxiety, Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD), Phobias, Social Anxiety, Panic Attacks and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
While the exact cause is not known, contributing factors are Genetics, Brain Chemistry, Stressful Events and Home Environments.

Anxiety affects everyone and doesn’t differentiate between age, gender, background or social group. It is a part of everyday life and is a normal reaction to stressful events or fearful situations and can in fact help us ‘perform’ or deal with an overwhelming situation. Anxiety triggers the Sympathetic Nervous System (SNS) or more commonly referred to as the ‘Fight or Flight’ response. Simply put hormones are released to prepare the body to either stay and face the threat or to run in the opposite direction.

Physical changes include dilated pupils resulting in better vision, to assess the situation; increased heart rate and respiration as the body supplies more oxygen to the muscles; trembling as the muscles become tense, ready to respond; loss of skin colour as the blood supply moves directly to the muscles and brain all in preparation for the “fight or flight”.

Incredibly useful response but for many Teens this response is now interfering with their everyday life.

Their body is triggering this response as a reaction to their perceived threat which maybe as simple as getting into school. The threat often triggered by a thought, resulting in an emotion, resulting in a stress response. It becomes a catch 22 situation as the stress response makes them hyper vigilant to the physical changes in their body causing more fear and activating more stress hormones.

Adults, care providers, parents talk freely about the issues and their perceived causes – social media, blue light from computer screens/mobile devices, fashion gone crazy, parents busy working, bad diet, not enough exercise etc.

It’s true that teenagers today live in a very different world to the teenage life their parents lived.

So what is the answer?

The reality is that there is no one path that can lead to a solution but a combination of love, support, space, knowledge and the realisation that they are not alone and not the first to feel this way.

Can Yoga help?
Yes, combined with conventional medicine and other experiential therapies to create a holistic approach between mind and body.

Bessel A. van der Kolk, clinical psychiatrist and author of ‘The Body Keeps the Score’ states that, “Body awareness is a necessary aspect of effective emotion regulation. Learning to notice, tolerate, and manage somatic experience may substantially promote emotion regulation.”

More specifically, there are certain postures in yoga which activate the Parasympathetic Nervous System (PNS), which is why we experience relaxation or calmness in a yoga class.

The PNS is often referred to as the ‘rest and digest’ system. It’s the polar opposite of the SNS where energy is conserved, the heart rate and blood pressure are lowered and the digestive system is activated.

The PNS is triggered by the Vagus Nerve. The Vagus Nerve is one of the 12 cranial nerves. It’s the longest, travelling from the brain stem to the abdomen. It helps control most of the thoraciac and abdominal organs – including the lungs, heart, espophagus, stomach, intestines & kidney.

There has been a lot of talk and information about the Vagus Nerve in the yoga world and how creating ‘tone’ in this nerve can help us to lead more calm and peaceful lives.

What does that mean?

In layman terms it’s a bit like using weights to develop muscular strength. The more weight we use, the stronger the muscles become.

With respect to the Vagus Nerve, the more we activate it the more proficient the body becomes at engaging it’s ‘Rest and Digest’ system, resulting in the stress response being deactivated. Effectively we are setting up the neural pathways for a calmer life!

So how do we tone it?

Meditation and relaxation techniques are all incredibly useful in helping ease anxious feelings and triggering the vagus nerve. However, in practice, getting teens to lie still can be challenging. Many will fidget or become distracted making the relaxation segment almost impossible. For many who suffer from extreme anxiety, lying still promotes more fear and a sense of panic. Some breathing techniques can cause an anxious teen to over breath thus hyperventilate and bring on a panic attack.

The following 3 postures are practical solutions to engage a TEEN in ‘relaxation’, to ignite a sense of calm while toning the vagal nerve.

All of the techniques use props, which gives the ‘mind’ something else to focus on without becoming a distraction. These are tolerated well – even the most anxious teen will participate and find peace for a moment or two.

Head Hammock

  • Loop a belt – the folded belt should reach from hip to heel
  • Lie on your back with knees bent
  • Place the belt buckle at the nape of the neck, passing either side of strap behind ears
  • Put the ball of your foot in the other end and extend that leg towards the ceiling
  • Other leg can remain bent or straight depending on tightness of hamstrings or comfort
  • Hold for 3 minutes (each leg)


Supported Bridge (Chatushpadasana)

  • Lie on the floor with your knees bent
  • Lift pelvis and place one block, lengthwise across the sacrum making sure the pelvis is parallel to the floor and not tilted towards the ceiling
  • Repeat 3 times adding a block, rolling the shoulders under each time checking that the pelvis is neutral and parallel to the floor
  • With 4 blocks under the sacrum, press the upper arms to the floor, bringing chest towards chin.
  • Hold for up to 5 minutes


Alternate Nostril breathing (simplified finger position)

(explain that you will introduce the breathing pattern but that everyone breathes at a different rate)

  • Sit in a comfortable position with your back supported – could be on a chair or crossed legs with back to a wall.
  • Place the thumb of your right hand over the right nostril and the first 2 fingers over the left nostril
  • Draw right arm towards body and support the elbow with the left hand
  • Breathe in through your nose then out through your nose
  • Close the ‘thumb side’ (right nostril gently with thumb) and breathe in through the ‘finger side’.
  • Close ‘finger side’ release ‘thumb side’ and breathe out ‘thumb side’
  • Breathe in ‘thumb side’, close ‘thumb side’, release ‘finger side’ and breathe out ‘finger side’
  • Repeat around 5-10 cycles with 1 cycle being an inhalation and exhalation on both sides.

Veronica Greene founded Little Greene Yoga® and offers a Certified Children’s Teacher Training package (for 3-5yrs; 5-8yrs; 8-12yrs & Teens) www.LittleGreeneYoga.com


LGY TEEN – Mind & Body Teacher Training course is packed with practical tips to engage with teens and create a successful Teen yoga class.


Yoga in Schools

Yoga in Schools


The 3 R’s, Yoga & So much more

By Veronica Greene  (Printed in Om Yoga & Lifestyle Magazine SEP 2018


Teaching requires human interaction. The relationship between teacher & student is one of the most important relationships outside the family unit. It requires trust and mutual respect. This is so evident in the early years when a child starts school. Every parent knows that their bond with their child changes as their child develops a new bond with their school teacher. For the first year their sentences often start with “my teacher says….” Successful teachers know their subjects, their students and pick up on their emotions and the atmosphere in the classroom.
However increasing workload means teaching staff are often using online teaching resources to educate the children, allowing them time to catch up on their paperwork!
Often as I enter a classroom for my teaching slot, the class teacher proudly announces that the class are ready for yoga as she has left them in front of the smartboard watching a yoga video. The children are often over stimulated by ‘performing’ their yoga while there is no interaction between classmates or any connection with the children and their bodies.
Developing positive relationships and connecting with our students has a positive and significant impact on students’ lives both academically and socially. This is a missed opportunity for the teaching staff to build a deeper connection with their students – that shared smile as the child becomes unsteady in a balance pose; the shared feeling and look of relaxation on student and teacher as they come out of a relaxation; and the shared sense of achievement as that trickier pose is mastered.

Training our school teachers how to use yoga successfully will not only help them build deeper connections with their students but can also help deal with their own stress levels.

Many teachers relish the thought of learning yoga while others are put off by the thought that it’s another task to be completed in their already busy, school day – so now the 3R’s have been extended to Reading, Writing, Arithmetic and Yoga!

However these can be combined and I don’t mean learning long division while standing on your head, although that would certainly make it more fun!

This doesn’t mean taking time out for a daily yoga class but integrating yoga throughout the school day, providing skills for life and perhaps making the job of a teacher just that little bit easier!

Yoga can increase learning potential and outcomes in schools.

Imagine – It’s been a long day and the children are fading fast but teacher has a schedule and was really hoping they could get to grips with long division. A couple of yoga postures, which can bring energy into the body and fresh, oxygenated blood to their brain, and the whole class are in a different learning zone!

The reverse will work too – the class has just come in from playtime, they may even have consumed some sugary snacks! The kids are hyper, and their attention is all over the place! 5 minutes of postures to calm and focus and once again the children are in a different zone, as is their teacher!

This all sounds too good to be true! Yoga, however, has been proven to help cognitive, emotional and behavioural outcomes. It provides the children and teaching staff with a self-regulation toolbox to help manage or alter their impulses or responses.

Peer Mediation has been introduced successfully in schools but combining it with yoga magnifies the outcome!

Many Primary and Secondary schools have successfully introduced Peer Mediation into their weekly schedule. At the end of the week, before Golden Time (where the children get to do a fun activity of their choice), the Peer Mediators visit the classrooms. The mediators are volunteers from the upper school who have had training on helping younger pupils resolve conflict. Peer mediation empowers the children and helps develop a sense of community within the school, however, discussions can become a little heated as emotions run high, posing a threat to resolution.

I have worked with a number of schools teaching the mediators how to instruct some calming yoga postures, to the whole class, at the start of their mediation session. This not only calms the children down, before the session begins, but helps the mediators stay in a calm place leading to more successful dialogue.

Improving literacy skills, even in boys!

There are a many reasons why boys are often categorised into the ‘don’t like to read’ group. Simply put, many of them don’t want to be sitting at a desk and learning to read as it’s ‘boring’! Of course it is to a 4year old boy. He wants to be running about and playing with his friends not sitting for hours at a desk.

Yoga can help achieve both the learning outcomes and the need for activity.

Young children learn holistically – by visual, auditory and kinaesthetic means, often at the same time! Some are more visual or auditory than others but by combining the 3 you are encompassing all and magnifying the learning outcome. Acting the stories out using yoga postures not only helps make the connection in the young brain but also releases feel good hormones as the child has a lot of fun.

Little girls are very visual thinkers and love to tell you the colour of their horse, the length of eye-lashes and how bushy the tail is. Little boys are more auditory and kinaesthetic. They want you to listen to the noise the horse makes, have it neighing on its two hind legs and if they can have a sword, welding Zoro riding it then their little hearts and imaginations are bursting with knowledge and joy!

On the most basic level the child no longer has the association that reading is boring. Instead, the neural pathways are set up that reading is fun and the path is open for successful learning and a positive association with stories and books.

There is no end to the uses of yoga throughout the school day but what is clear is that training the teaching staff to use it has more positive impact than watching a video online.

Over the past 15 years I have trained many teaching staff. The response and success on the teaching outcomes is huge. What’s not clear is whether the impact is due to

  1. yoga opening up the children’s minds and bodies, facilitating greater learning
  2. the children achieving more due to their “connectedness” with their teacher
  3. the teaching staff simply being less stressed as they are practicing yoga throughout their day.

Either way it’s a win-win situation!


Veronica Greene founded Little Greene Yoga® and offers a Certified Children’s Teacher Training package (3-5yrs; 5-8yrs; 8-12yrs, Teen – Mind & Body & Postnatal Yoga)

Let’s Get Physical to Connect to the Mind!

Why the physical aspect of yoga is so important for teenagers & children

By Veronica Greene  (Printed in Om Yoga & Lifestyle Magazine AUG 2018)


Many yoga studios and teachers in the Western world are often criticised for practising only the physical aspect of yoga, offering instruction on postures and breathing alone!

It’s almost as if doing yoga for physical benefits alone is not following the true path!

Is this wrong to concentrate on the physical and is it the same for teenagers  and children?

‘Mindfulness’ has become the key word in Primary & Secondary education, which is absolutely wonderful. Yoga is, of course, the ultimate mindfulness tool!

Mindfulness is about staying in the present moment, accepting and appreciating everything as it is. It’s a perfect practice to deal with the everyday stresses of school life.

Some teenagers and children, however, do find it more difficult to concentrate, focus their minds and feel the positive effect.

Alignment based Yoga, which takes physical awareness to a deeper level, is often referred to as ‘meditation in motion’. This can help achieve mindfulness for those who struggle to sit still. Here attention is directed to particular parts of the body while the child is in a yoga pose. The awareness is on how the body feels, all the sensations, keeping the child very focused on the present moment. This focus takes the child’s attention inwards and contributes to the withdrawing of all other senses and distractions.


Activity Levels

Yoga is, also, often advertised as a non-competitive activity, encouraging those who don’t like sports to exercise and help deal with childhood obesity. The government website www.gov.uk quotes 2018 childhood obesity statistics as more than 1 in 5, on beginning primary education, to almost 1 in 3 children, on leaving primary education.

Generally speaking, children today are not as active as children were 20 years ago. Contributing factors are concerns over safety, more parents working and an increased interest in online activities. More and more children stay socially connected with their friends by playing their computer games online. Hand held devices/tablets are putting strain on young bodies from the hours of sitting in one position, contracting muscles down one side of their body!

Our bodies are, however, designed to move and quite frankly if we don’t use it we lose it.

It’s empowering to move and it’s particularly empowering for children to be able to stand on their hands as well as their own two feet – they feel free, strong, the sense of achievement is huge and it’s not all about strength! It’s about your body being properly stacked – knees above ankles, hips above knees, shoulders above hips and the cherry on top is your head perfectly balanced on top (this of course is reversed for handstand).


Correcting Imbalance

Children and young adolescents can and do develop muscular imbalance. Remember that none of us are totally symmetrical but developing body awareness at any age can help avoid imbalances which put strain on our joints and spine and of course cause pain.

Most parents will have seen their child kneeling with one foot tucked under; carrying their bag on one shoulder and rotating their upper body while doing so; standing with weight on one leg? This is magnified when the child moves onto secondary education and spends longer at a desk, in front of a laptop!

All of these habitual problems can be changed once we become aware.

Long term effects could result in shortening of one side of the body, rotation of the pelvis and even scoliosis of the spine.

Remember one of the jobs of the skeleton is to protect the internal organs – mis-alignment can ultimately affect our organs too!

At the age of 8 children have the awareness and ability to feel and understand their bodies at a much deeper level. Yoga can now be taught with more focus on alignment and connecting their bodies to their mind and emotions.

When taught using age appropriate techniques the results are incredible!

This all sounds too good to be true! Yoga, however, has been proven to help cognitive, emotional and behavioural outcomes. It provides children and teachers with a self-regulation toolbox to help manage or alter their impulses or responses.

Stress Injuries

Children and teenagers who are already very active can also benefit from yoga.

A recent increase in the number of young people participating in competitive sports has resulted in an increase in stress injuries. These stress injuries can be difficult to diagnose and difficult to treat.

Some of the more common injuries include Osgood-Schlatter disease, Shin Splints, Stress Fractures and Tennis Elbow!

These injuries occur when too much stress is placed in an area of the body resulting in inflammation, muscles strain, tissue damage and sometimes fracture. This is often contributed to an over developed muscle pulling a joint out of alignment.

Osgood-Schlatter disease is an inflammatory injury of the growth plate on the tibia, top of the shin bone just below the knee. This point, the tibial tubercle, is the bone attachment for the quadriceps (front of thigh muscles). Those who participate frequently in sports, which rely on powerful contractions of the quads, have a higher incidence of Osgood-Schlatter’s. Such sports include football, netball, hockey, gymnastics & ballet.

Although highly active children are at greater risk of developing this inflammatory condition it can also develop in children who go through a very rapid growth spurt.

A generalised simplification of this condition is that the quad muscles become tight and the tendon at the attachment point of the bone becomes highly inflamed, causing much pain. This muscle tightness is caused by either overused muscles shortening or the muscles not growing at the same rate as the skeleton!

The onset of this condition is always associated with a growth spurt in adolesence. Most common in the ages 10 – 16, but could be later depending on development.

Similar conditions are Sever’s disease and Sinding-Larsen-Johannsen disease.

Traditional treatment is to rest and stop the offending activity however the average time for resolution is around 21 months when the growth plates close.

Giving up a sport/activity for this length of time, limits the child both physically and socially.

There are a number of proven physio techniques which use stretching to lengthen these shortened muscles, bringing balance to the knee and allowing the inflammation to subside. These programs can reduce the recovery time from 21 months to just 1 month. Of course, a good stretching program can alleviate this and prevent these injuries from occurring, but children and teens find stretching boring.

An alignment based yoga program, which is fun and uses proper biomechanics, can rectify the imbalance and perhaps prevent it occurring in the first place.

Encouraging the children to participate in yoga will not only balance these overused muscles but teach them how to recognise tight areas in their body.

Although children do develop these overuse injuries the majority are more likely to break a bone than develop ligament or tendon injuries. These are usually ‘mis-adventure’ injuries caused by falling off a scooter, bike or out of a tree. The resulting injury is more often to the arm, elbow or collarbone due to the nature of the child extending their arm to save their fall. The injured child can then be in a cast for 4-8 weeks.

All LGY 8-12yr teachers are provided with training on how to safely include a child with a cast within their 8-12yr alignment based yoga class. Each teacher is examined on the techniques they would use ensuring a duty of care for the child in the cast and the rest of their class.

This training is also provided is our LGY TEEN Teacher training courses where we also educate on how to help young adults modify their yoga practice to encourage quick healing of the overuse injuries, mentioned above.

Many teachers would exclude the injured child from the class but with the correct training you can safely continue to teach yoga to the child. They will be excluded from all mainstream activities at school so excluding them from their extra-curricular activities could be detrimental to their developing body and mind. Muscles begin to atrophy within in the first 2 weeks of inactivity, so 6-8 weeks without exercising would see quite a loss in muscle mass.

Once the cast is removed the child will struggle to regain their full range of movement. With an alignment based yoga program the child could quickly and safely regain muscle and movement without causing extra strain on other joints and return to full activity in a shorter time.

So, yoga for the physical side not only helps develop a balanced body but when practised at a deeper level creates a balanced mind, even in a child who struggles to focus. BKS Iyengar states “Yogic science does not demarcate where the body ends and the mind begins, but approaches both as a single, integrated entity.”

So the question is not why just practise the physical side of yoga it should be “how deep do we need to practise before the spiritual consciousness kicks in?”

Veronica Greene founded Little Greene Yoga® and offers a Certified Children’s Teacher Training package (3-5yrs; 5-8yrs; 8-12yrs, Teen – Mind & Body & Postnatal Yoga)

What about me time – Once your Baby is born? (Postnatal Yoga)

Part 1 – Focus on chest, back & abdominals

By Veronica Greene (Printed in Om Yoga & Lifestyle Magazine JUNE 2018)


Congratulations! Your baby has been born! You are relieved, excited, apprehensive but mostly exhausted. You were really looking forward to getting your body back but even though the baby bump is no longer there, you still don’t recognise the person you once were. That’s not just the physical you but also the emotional you.

The past nine months were spent looking after yourself and the bump inside your tummy. If you’re a first time mum then you had all the time in the world to pamper yourself and if not you still would’ve managed some ‘me’ time.

Now the focus has swiftly shifted from you, the expectant mother, to this beautiful bouncing bundle. You’re exhausted and no wonder – the strain of nine months pregnancy, not to mention childbirth are very apparent.

You stand in front of the mirror and assess the ‘damage’ from the front, back and sides. Many of you don’t like what you see and others simply don’t recognise what they see. Let’s look closer beyond the extra pounds which will go, with time, and shouldn’t be the main reason to undertake any postnatal exercise. Your posture on the other hand, does need urgent attention. Stand sideways and look in the mirror. Your pelvis is tilted forward, your buttocks are sticking out and your belly falls forward. This is due to the exaggerated curve of your lower back created by the weight of your growing baby inside your uterus. Your baby is now out, but you are left with overstretched stomach muscles and shortened lower back muscles. The muscles around the hips will become very tight as these will now be the main muscle group used in walking. Unless the muscles are rebalanced this will lead to backache, and pinched nerves. Your pelvic floor will be difficult to re-strengthen due to pelvic misalignment (this will be covered in more detail in Part 2).

Your body cleverly compensates to try and realign by dropping your chin to a position which is not neutral. Your upper back and neck muscles have to work overtime to maintain this position causing upper back strain, neck and jaw pain and headaches. Your shoulders will be rounding forward and your chest folding in. This is partly due to the repositioning of your head and partly due to the extra weight of your baby and breasts. This rounding of your shoulders now continues as you sit and nurse/feed your baby every couple of hours.

The human spine is unique among all mammals. It has 2 kyphotic curves – the thoracic spine (upper back) and sacral spine (tailbone) and 2 lordotic curves – the cervical spine (neck) and lumbar spine (lower back). It acts as a pillar to support the excessive weight of the skull while protecting the spinal cord. It is this curvature of the spine that helps it distribute weight evenly. These curves are now out of balance – no wonder you’re physically exhausted and feel you can no longer carry the weight of your own head!

In summary, your post-natal posture has excessive curvature in the thoracic, lumbar and cervical spine. This is not as depressing as it sounds. The following yoga based programme is designed to stretch your tight muscles (chest, lower back & hips) and restore tone to those that are over-stretched (abdominals).

Simply, the programme is designed to return your body to its pre-pregnancy posture. Once familiar, the complete programme should take about 20 minutes.

Postures can be performed on their own, at any time of day, or in the order given. There’s no need to roll out a yoga mat and no yoga experience is necessary. Each will open your chest providing fresh, oxygenated blood to your brain helping you feel better and more alive – the prefect programme when there’s no me time!


Constructive Rest Position

(opens chest, releases neck muscles and pelvis while lengthening back muscles) This is the go to pose if shoulders or lower back are aching or there’s no time for anything else!

  • Lie on back with lower legs resting on chair
  • Knees directly above hips, hip distance apart with 90 degree angle at back of knees (if chair too low then put cushion under legs)
  • Toes point up to ceiling
  • Stay for 5-10 mins working on abdominal breathing
  • (breathe in, let the tummy lift up , breathe out let the tummy drop down)

    Constructive Rest


Constructive Rest with Abdominal Strenthening

  • As above, now activate the tummy muscles while breathing out by pulling navel towards your spine.
  • Repeat above in 6 counts – each count draw the navel a little closer toward the spine.


Chest Stretch to chair

(opens chest, lengthens lower back, strengthens abdominals)

Chest Stretch

  • Kneel in front of chair, place elbows on chair seat, shoulder distance apart.
  • Move knees back until body is parallel to floor and knees directly under hips.
  • Tuck toes under
  • Stretch buttocks back to wall behind
  • Gently draw tummy and bottom ribs up towards spine to prevent dipping into lower back
  • Steady breathing. Each time you breathe out try to open the armpits towards the ground


Seated Abdominal Exercise

Seated Abdominal work

(works the transverse abdominis)

  • Sit at front edge of the chair
  • knees hip distance; ankles directly under knees; feet point forward
  • Place hands on tummy, shoulders relaxed with elbows at your side
  • Breathe in let tummy bloat out , breathe out let tummy move in)
  • As above, now activate the tummy muscles while breathing out by pulling navel towards your spine.
  • Repeat above in 6 counts – each count draw the navel a little closer toward the spine.


Seated Neck Stretch

(stretches neck muscles (scalenes) – when tight can elevate the first rib, causing compression on nerves leading to headache and numbness in arm)

  • Stretch arms down and grab chair seat to keep shoulder blades down
  • Breathe in and as you breathe out drop right ear directly towards right shoulder. Hold for around 30s while maintaining even breathing.
  • REPEAT other side


Seated Hip Stretch

(stretches inner thigh, deep hip muscles and buttocks)

  • Bring right knee towards chest, let the knee roll out to the right and place right ankle on left knee.
  • Press buttock bones into chair, stretch crown of head to ceiling while flexing right foot (flexed foot will take the movement into hip and protect you knee)
  • To intensify – bend from the hip crease, drawing chest towards the shin bone (hold 30s)
  • REPEAT other side

seated twist


Seated Twist

(opens chest; stabilises hips allowing deep twist and stretch to upper back)

  • As above ,right ankle on left knee
  • Place left hand on right knee, right hand through back of chair
  • Press buttocks down, stretch head to ceiling and lengthen spine
  • rotate chest to right (hold 30s)
  • REPEAT to left




Wide Leg Twist










Wide Leg Twist

(opens chest; lengths inner thigh & spinal muscles)

  • Sitting at the front of the chair, legs wide, toes turned out, position knees above ankles
  • place elbows on thighs
  • lean forward from the hip crease
  • Place right hand on right hip
  • turn chest to the right (hold 30s)
  • Repeat other side

Veronica Greene founded Little Greene Yoga® and offers a Certified Teacher Training packages for Children Yoga (3-8yrs & 8-12yrs), Teen – Mind & Body and Postnatal Yoga.