Here’s a novel concept: a class for kids that helps them get their wiggles out — via music and dance — while also developing physical strength and coordination (and instilling a little inner peace on the sly) — via yoga. That’s Yo Re Mi, a program developed by the husband and wife team of Rachel and Dan Costello, a certified yogi and preschool music educator, respectively. The duo has been leading classes in Manhattan in Brooklyn for two years at various after school programs and community play spaces, and now Yo Re Mi (and its team of certified yogis and professional musicians) is coming to two outposts of The Little Gym.


photo: Charles Lavoie

What it Is

Yo Re Mi is a musical yoga program that pairs poses and movement inspired by the ancient practice with  both original songs and the occasional familiar tune (for example, a classic Motown song). Every class takes kids on a “journey”  — to another country, around New York City, etc. — and along the way, kids and adults stretch, move, imagine and play.

The classic “Salute to the Sun” becomes the “Sun Dance” and finds kids reaching for the sky, hissing like a snake, jumping like a frog to an original song, while a child in “Tree Pose” might be decorated with artificial blooms as she unwittingly develops balance. Similarly, the discipline’s “lion breath” breathing technique (in through the nose, out through the mouth) becomes “dragon breath” and Shavasana or “corpse pose” serves as a focusing and relaxing, end-of-class ritual — along with a traditional “goodbye” song. (Rachel Costello reports that more than one parent has enlisted “dragon breathing” to help quell a toddler meltdown.)


photo: Charles Lavoie

Beyond Asana

Yo Re Mi also includes plenty of high energy activity, from jumping and freezing to a dance party at some point in every class. Familiar props of any music class — such as shakers and tambourines — are busted out frequently as well.


photo: Yo Re Mi

Who’s It For?

New classes exclusively for children three years old and younger (and their caregivers) are now available at the Brooklyn Heights and Tribeca locations of The Little Gym. Mixed aged classes for kids up to about seven years old take place at various spots in Manhattan and Brooklyn. (Check out the Yo Re Mi web site for more info.)

If you’re attending with your little one, will you have to bend like a pretzel as well? Not if you don’t want to; the only big no-no is sitting on the edge of the room chatting on the phone. (You know: just be present.)


photo: Yo Re Mi

When Can We Get Our Ohm On?

Registration for classes at The Little Gym is happening now. You can also check out Yo Re Mi at The Brooklyn Children’s Museum, where they will be leading a MetLife Early Learner Performance on March 21 and 22.

Yo Re Mi

The Little Gym of Tribeca
124 Hudson St.

The Little Gym of Brooklyn Heights
221 Atlantic Avenue
Brooklyn Heights
Online: https:

Have you tried a new class recently? Tell us about in the comments below!

—Mimi O’Connor