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Cardio Yoga

This is an excerpt from Teaching Healthy Lifestyles in Middle School PE by Crystal Gorwitz.

Cardio Yoga


  • Colored construction paper
  • Photographs of students doing yoga poses (enough for students to use in groups of no more than three; number of poses determined by class size)
  • Yoga mats (one per pair of students)
  • High-energy music


1. Take pictures of students doing each yoga pose. Print the pictures and glue them onto colored pieces of construction paper.

2. Spread out the yoga picture cards (facedown) in the middle of the chosen activity area (e.g., the center circle on a basketball court).

3. Spread out the yoga mats in a large rectangle located outside of the center area that contains the yoga picture cards.


1. Have music playing when students arrive for class; instruct them to start moving in general space and then find a partner when the music stops playing.

2. Instruct the student pairs to find a yoga mat; one partner stands on the yoga mat, and the other stands off of the mat.

3. The partner on the mat runs to the middle area and selects a yoga pose card, then takes it back to the mat and performs that pose. Meanwhile, the other partner runs outside of the big rectangle of yoga mats (takes one lap).

4. The running student returns to the mat after doing one lap and gives his or her partner a high five. The students then switch roles—the partner who ran the lap now does the yoga pose, and the one who did the pose now runs a lap. The partners keep alternating yoga poses with running until the warm-up portion of the class is finished.

Read more about Teaching Healthy Lifestyles in Middle School PE by Crystal Gorwitz.