Yes, I'm sticking with the sport theme this week as we gear up to back to school time and the fall sport season that follows shortly after. I know the Olympics are over, but those Olympic-sport themed Movement, Meditation, and Mindfulness sessions I recently posted have longevity! Use them as inspiration to create summer sport themed sessions for your kids. And don't forget to include some fun sport-themed mindfulness games like the one featured below, Beanbag Basketball!
Lisa Roberts xoxo
What is Beanbag Basketball? Beanbag Basketball is a fun game that demonstrates the benefit of taking a moment to pause and center oneself prior to doing anything that is a little challenging or requires complete focus.
How does it help? When we really need to focus on something, like scoring the winning goal in a sport, the mind can go a little wild with commentary about concerns, fears, doubts and worry – and those thoughts distracting us from the task at hand! This game demonstrates how easy it is to simply take a moment to connect to the breath, quiet the mind, and focus. Who knows, your child may take this learning experience outside of the sports/game analogy and remember to practice it before studying, taking an exam, or making a presentation at school?!
You will need:
· 3x *markers – these are your baskets and each holds different point value: 1-point, 2-point, and 3-point
· 3x beanbags
· Painter’s tape or masking tape
· Tape a line on floor using painter’s or masking tape
· Arrange markers (baskets) on the floor by point value as follows:
1-point: Relatively close and directly in front of taped line
2-point: Slightly off center and a little farther from taped line
3-point: Off-center and farthest from the taped line
· Stand behind the taped line with your three beanbags
· Toss one beanbag at a time toward the markers
· Calculate your total score before gathering up the beanbags
REPEAT using the Ready, BREATHE, Shoot! technique as follows:
1. Ready: Stand still, relax, and notice your breath coming in and out. Slow your breath down and be aware of each inhale and each exhale.
2. BREATHE: Focus on your target basket, and inhale steadily as you take aim.
3. Shoot!: Carefully toss your beanbag toward its target basket, exhaling steadily as you do so.
· Did you improve your score using this technique? Why do you think this happened? How do you feel?
· Making your own basketball markers is easy: Simply laminate postcard size images of basketball nets (clip-art is a good resource) with a point value written on each card (1, 2, and 3 points) per set.
· When working with large groups, create multiple sets so you can have several games going at one time.
· Use yoga mats as the “court” - place markers along the yoga mat and use short edge of the mat as the “line”.
· You do not have to use a basketball theme for this game! It can simply be any toss game from ring toss to cornhole games. Be sure to demonstrate the Ready, BREATHE, Shoot! three-step process AFTER the kids have played it at least once without the instruction so they have a baseline and truly experience the difference when using the breath to focus.