Shhh! It’s National Relaxation Day!

Today is one of YogaBugs’ favourite days of the year… National Relaxation Day! Children can live extremely active lives at their young age, with bags and bags of energy – leading to a hectic time of moving from activity to activity, with no time to relax.

It is vitally important for children to learn to relax, as this helps them to control their moods and behaviour – feeling calmer, more settled and allowing them to find a quiet and peaceful place inside them.

Breathing and relaxation techniques are excellent for children to learn at a young age, which they can then be able to use as they grow up in other potential situations, which may involve stress, fears, or even asthma or panic attacks.

Forming the basis of simple meditation, relaxation techniques are typically easy to teach to children. They can also encourage children’s imagination, by allowing them to block everything else out of their mind and relieve any negative feelings or emotions.

Here are some tips to help your child relax, as well as ways to help them during relaxation techniques:

  • Encourage children to make their bodies feel heavy as they lie on the floor.
  • Tell them to completely relax their muscles – a useful way to do this is by telling them to imagine their bodies were made of jelly, releasing any muscle tension.
  • Use calming music in the background.
  • Use easy and detailed descriptions of the relaxation technique you are using.
  • Allow them to take all their thoughts in and release any that may prevent them from relaxing.
  • Use a real life example – take them back to a place in their mind when they felt happy.

Another simple breathing and relaxation technique you can teach to your children is our simple finger breathing exercise, which can be viewed below.

National Relaxation Day

Remember, it is also important to relax yourself! While relaxation techniques may be taught in a child friendly way – it is extremely beneficial to join in with your child, or even find time yourself to try them – not just on National Relaxation Day, but whenever you feel the need to!

The Bugs Group’s Activity Sessions in Mell Square!

Last weekend, FootieBugs and DanceBugs were asked to run free activity sessions for children in Solihull by Mell Square, as part of Mini Mells!

Throughout the Summer Holidays, Mini Mells are running two free activity sessions ever Saturday over a four-week period to give children in Solihull the chance to get active for free! For the third week of Mini Mells – it was our turn to run the activities!

It is extremely important for children to remain physically active during school holidays and not fall into a habit of staying inside all day watching TV or scrolling through their phones!

DanceBugs ran the first session at 10:30am, where we practised the Cha-Cha Slide and then learnt lots of new dance moves and routines. We also had lots of fun using different equipment like hula-hoops and ribbons as a group together and you can see a short video of the session by visiting our Facebook page here.

After DanceBugs’ session it was FootieBugs turn at 12pm – where we played lots of fun football and multi-sports minigames. Children also went on a special FootieBugs story adventure, which helped to engage everyone in the session! Please visit our Facebook page to view some of the pictures of the session!

It was great to see so many children attending and joining in with both sessions on Saturday, breaking up the summer holidays with fun football and dance sessions! Both FootieBugs and DanceBugs would like to thank Mell Square and Mini Mells for inviting us to run the sessions and hope that we will be able to run more in the future!

If you would like to find out more information about Mini Mells, please click here.

To find out more information about FootieBugs or DanceBugs and our local community classes, holiday camps or birthday parties, please click here!

When the Bug faced the Dragons…

Last weekend saw the return of Dragons’ Den to BBC Two with a new series – and can you believe it is 11 years since YogaBugs appeared on the show looking for the Dragon’s investments! We recall when we came face to face with five of the fiercest businessmen and women in the world…

Dragons' Den

YogaBugs founder Fenella Lindsell (Nell) and her business partner Lara Goodbody stepped into the den in May 2007, although the programme didn’t air on TV until August in the same year. This was just four years after YogaBugs Ltd was set up, training YogaBugs teachers to deliver classes in schools and nurseries for young children to receive the benefits of story based yoga adventures!

This however wasn’t the start of the YogaBugs concept, which Nell first created in 1996. Having recently gained a four year old stepson, she was looking for a way to help engage with him – and found a way to do so by making up stories through yoga poses!

The concept grew massively and soon Nell’s YogaBugs classes were making more and more children exercise in a fun way, without even realising! The aim of YogaBugs was to be accessible for every child in the UK, helping to improve their overall health and wellbeing – and so a date with the Dragons was in order to raise investment.

Dragons’ Den sounds simple, pitch the business idea you have created to five people, asking for an investment in return for equity within your business, however it couldn’t be further from the truth! In reality, five titans of the business world will look into every aspect of your business and try to pick it apart to discover if it is worth their investment! To make matters worse, the television cameras are rolling and will be seen by millions of viewers!

In preparation for the pitch, Nell and Lara would practise in front of family members and their colleagues and film the whole thing to go back and look at what they could improve on! This helped them both feel ready to face the Dragons and that their pitch would be able to introduce them to YogaBugs and excite them enough to invest their money into the company!

On the day of the pitch, they arrived at the Dragons’ Den studio for 8am, but were forced to wait for an agonising nine hours and fifteen minutes before it was their turn! Nell and Lara were asking the Dragons for £250,000 in return for a 15% stake in YogaBugs. Their pitch went extremely well and the pair came out of the Dragon’s tricky questioning looking positive and subsequently received offers from three out of the five Dragons!

Dragons' Den

You can view the follow up to YogaBugs appearing on Dragons’ Den by clicking here.

Peter Jones, Theo Paphitis and Richard Farleigh were all willing to offer Nell and Lara the £250,000 investment they were searching for, however all three of them were asking for a return of 30% in the company, double what Nell and Lara had offered when they walked into the Den.

The pair believed that this was just too much of the business to give away and produced a rarity in the Den – declining the Dragon’s offers!  The Dragon’s reacted in disbelief and commented that Nell and Lara would “never get an offer like that again”. However, Nell and Lara did not regret turning down the Dragon’s offer – and did receive an investment offer for the money and stake they were looking for originally.

Fast forward 11 years and YogaBugs is now part of The Bugs Group, which also includes FootieBugs, DanceBugs and MultiBugs. The Bugs Group are currently working with thousands of schools and nurseries across the country – putting the fun in kid’s fitness!

Classes are taught in the same way YogaBugs was before Dragons’ Den – taking children on story adventures through different sports and physical activity. The Bugs Group are seeing more and more children begin to participate and exercise – which is replicating the benefits Nell saw years ago, improving children’s physical and emotional wellbeing through exercise and imagination.

For more information on The Bugs Group – please click here.

We’ve reached the halfway point in the Summer Holidays!

We’re now bang in the middle of the summer holidays and our Kids Summer Camps in Solihull are in full flow, keeping your children active and entertained throughout the summer break!

So far we’ve battled the heat wave with water fights, played tonnes of football games and created unique dance performances to the School of Rock and The Greatest Showman – and there’s still plenty more to come from both our FootieBugs and DanceBugs Solihull Summer Holiday Camps!

At the FootieBugs Holiday Camp, children have been learning brand new skills and working on their technique, as well as playing lots of fun mini games! There have also been some fantastic matches during our Competition Days – where all children have shown off the skills they have learnt each week in game situations! With the glorious weather we’ve had so far, we have also been able to spend lots of time out on the field in the sun, enjoying a few rounds of the new sport footgolf!

FootieBugs Kids Summer Camps in Solihull

 

So far, the themes at the DanceBugs Holiday Camp have been School of Rock, The Greatest Showman and Mamma Mia! There has been lots of fantastic work so far, which was clear to see in our end of week performances to parents! Please visit our Facebook page to view pictures and videos from the Holiday Camp so far! Sadly we only have one week remaining at the DanceBugs camp, where we will look to end the holiday camp on style with our final theme, Wicked!

DanceBugs Kids Summer Camps in Solihull

Both of our Kids Summer Camps in Solihull have been extremely busy so far, with days being fully booked! Make sure that your child doesn’t miss out on any of the remaining days at either of our Summer Camps and book on as soon as you can! To book, please either click the camp you wish to attend below, or call 0121 777 7792!

Kids Summer Camps in SolihullKids Summer Camps in Solihull

YogaBugs Provide Innovative Opportunities for ‘Outstanding’ Nursery!

YogaBugs are pleased to yoga sessions for nurseries up and down the country and we absolutely love to hear great feedback from our classes, especially for Ofsted!

During a recent Ofsted review of Castle Willow Nursery in Newcastle, the Nursery received an ‘Outstanding’ rating. We’re extremely pleased to be working with such a brilliant Nursery and we’re equally pleased to hear the feedback in their report of the Nursery!

“Children are provided with innovative opportunities to be physically active in their play. For example, they take part in highly exciting yoga sessions and learn to move their bodies in various ways.”

 

YogaBugs have been working with the Castle group, made up of five Nurseries across Newcastle, since June 2017. We visit Castle Nurseries at Willow Avenue once a week, running two 30-minute sessions back to back with different age groups.

 

Click here to see a video from Willow Avenue Nursery, in which a YogaBugs session features!

 

The sessions run with the 2-3 age group and also the 3-4 age group. Each week we take children on fun story themed yoga adventures, using their imagination to put them at the heart of the story and learn through play. Children can be taken on a journey to the jungle to meet different animals one week, to meeting Goldilocks and the three bears the next!

Yoga Sessions for Nurseries

Gemma Viveash, the Manager of Castle Nurseries at Willow Avenue, is delighted that YogaBugs sessions will be carrying on at the nursery in the future.

 

“The children absolutely love the sessions – I am so pleased that we are able to continue.”

 

We’re proud to continue to work with a fantastic group of Nurseries and to keep up their ‘Outstanding’ rating in the future and we’re looking forward to taking the children on many more story themed yoga adventures!

For more information on the Castle group of Nurseries in Newcastle, please click here.

For more information on YogaBugs, our yoga sessions for Nurseries and other programmes, please click here.

The Bugs Group are teaming up with Mini Mells in Solihull!

Last Summer, Mell Square ran their Mini Mells Solihull kid’s activity clubs to provide children with free sporting activities on Saturday mornings and this Summer it is back and The Bugs Group are extremely excited to be involved this year!

Mini Mells Solihull

On Saturday the 11th of August, both FootieBugs and DanceBugs will be hosting the activity sessions – with one football and one dance session both lasting 40 minutes each!

With childhood obesity stats continuing to rise, it is vitally important for children to remain active during the school summer holidays so that the physical benefits seen throughout the academic year are not reversed. Mini Mells is a fantastic way for children to not only stay active, but also have a great time and potentially meet new friends!

The Bugs Group General Manager Lisa Applebee was delighted to have been asked by Mell Square to help run activities as part of Mini Mells: “It’s great to be a part of the Mini Mells programme and provide the children of Solihull with free opportunities to be active. We can’t wait to run the FootieBugs and DanceBugs sessions on the 11th of August and hope to see as many people there as possible!”

Our DanceBugs session will be first up at 10:30am, which will be followed by ourFootieBugs session at 12pm. We’re expecting both sessions to be very busy, so make sure you secure your child’s place to join in the session for free by signing up on Eventbrite using the links below!

We would love as many children as possible to have the opportunity to join Mini Mells Solihull this summer and join in with our sessions!

To book your place for the DanceBugs session on Saturday the 11th of August at 10:30am in Mell Square, please book here.

To book your place for the FootieBugs session on Saturday the 11th of August at 12:00pm in Mell Square, please book here.

Childhood Obesity Figures Reach All-Time High

 

Another academic year has been completed and with it, a new set of statistics showing children’s obesity levels when leaving school. Unfortunately, the latest figures show the highest number of obese children leaving primary school since records began.

The newest data (representing the end of the 16/17 academic year) shows that one in 25 children in year 6 were either obese or severely obese, where as this figure lay at one in 32 during the 06/07 academic year.

Despite initiatives from the government over the last few years to try and counter childhood obesity, there has still been a steady rise in overall numbers of obese children.

Figures are also showing that the rate of childhood obesity is rising at the end of primary school faster than it is rising before children to start school.

There is now a clear need for government policies to be implemented sooner rather than later, as the overall heath and wellbeing of obese children is at a major risk.

Children leaving school already overweight or obese are around five times more likely to be obese as an adult and also increasing their risk of potentially life threatening diseases and also potential mental health illnesses.

The Bugs Group believes that one of the main contributors into childhood obesity is due to inactivity levels.

More and more children are now leading a sedentary lifestyle and not participating in the government recommended 60 minutes of physical activity per day.

Beyond the compulsory two hours of PE a week at school, children may not either have the opportunity or motivation to further participate in sport and physical activity.

The current NHS guidelines also show that children should participate in three different physical activities per week, which are: aerobic exercise, exercises to strengthen their bones and exercises.

At The Bugs Group, we try and incorporate all of these elements into our activities and sessions, which run as community classes each week or during school time as PE Curriculum or After School Clubs.

Our FootieBugs, YogaBugs, DanceBugs and MultiBugs classes all incorporate elements to strengthen both muscles and bones in young children, as well as improving their aerobic capacity.

The way we teach our sessions through the use of storytelling and imagination, as well as constant feedback and encouragement to help boost confidence, helps children to gain positive experiences of sport at physical activity at an early age. This in turn increases the likelihood that children will enjoy getting physically active and choose to stay active, reaching recommended activity levels and therefore massively boosting their both physical and mental health.

For more information on any of The Bugs Group’s classes and programmes, please visit our website here.

How England have inspired the next generation of football superstars!

 

On the day of England’s biggest match for 28 years, World Cup fever is at an all time high and people really are starting to believe that football may be coming home.

If there’s one thing certain about England’s World Cup campaign, win or lose against Croatia, it’s that the team’s spirit, determination and performances have inspired the country, most notably the next generation of football stars.

Young footballers now have a new set of stars to look up to and imitate on the playground. Children now want to head every ball clear like Harry Maguire, whip in a perfect cross like Kieran Trippier and of course, score goals for fun like Harry Kane.

As well as England’s superb achievement, the World Cup has also been a fantastic tournament across the board, full of fantastic goals, exhilarating games and the dreaded penalty shootouts!


The World Cup has captured the imagination of the country and feels like it has brought everyone closer together. Most importantly, it has reached people who may not have previously had an interest in football and inspired them to start get involved.

We would love to see more and more children taking up the sport, learning the basics and improving their skills. Throughout the upcoming school holidays, the FootieBugs Summer Holiday Camp in Solihull will give children these opportunities, with days jam-packed full of football action.

Children will be able to relive the drama of a penalty shootout themselves, smash in free kicks like Ronaldo with our target challenge and learn skills and tricks like Mbappe’s magical touch and back heel during the semi-final against Belgium.

As we are also having wonderful summer weather wise (so far!), we will be able to play football mini-matches on the field, games of footgolf and also have fun water fights!


Each Friday at the camp is a competition day! On competition day children work together in teams to collect points through mini-games and matches, with the winning team taking home fantastic trophies and prizes! All children attending also take home a FootieBugs certificate and a medal, making every child feel like a World Cup superstar!

The FootieBugs Summer Holiday Camp in Solihull runs at the Solihull Sixth Form throughout the summer holidays, from 9:30am-3:30pm (extended hours available from 8:30am-5:30pm). Prices start from just £15 per day and there are limited spaces available! To book onto the camp, please either call 0121 777 7792 or click the button below!

Book The Bugs Group Holiday Camps in Solihull

Our Summer Holiday Camps in Solihull are Fast Approaching…

It’s that time of year again, The Bugs Group’s Summer Holiday Camps are fast approaching! We have three fantastic Summer Holiday Camps in Solihull to keep children active and entertained during the school holidays and provide you with the highest quality of childcare! There is currently just over one week left to take advantage of our earlybird discount, where prices start from just £12 per day!

 

Here’s a taste of what to expect at our Summer Holiday Camps in Solihull, starting on Wednesday the 25th of July!

 

FootieBugs Summer Holiday Camp

The FootieBugs Summer Holiday Camp will be packed of fun football games, matches, as well as technical practices to improve their skills and footballing ability! After the fabulous World Cup in Russia, children will be excited to imitate their favourite stars of the tournament, celebrating like Cristiano Ronaldo, scoring goals like Harry Kane and performing skills like Neymar Jr!

Some of the games and activities at the camp will include:

  • Penalty Shootouts
  • Crazy Catch Volleys
  • Water fights
  • Sky High
  • Lightning
  • Crossbar Challenge
  • Free Kick Target Challenge
  • Skills Circuits
  • Matches
  • Tournaments on Competition Days every Friday!

We are also excited to announce that we will be introducing the fun game of FootGolf to our Holiday Camp! Children will play rounds of FootGolf on the field at the Solihull Sixth Form, trying to make their way around the course in the fewest shots possible!

Here are the themed days at the upcoming Summer Camp:

Monday Funday – Fun games all day to start off the week!

Fact Tuesday – Children will learn and bring their own facts on their chosen team!

Wacky Wednesday – Earn points for the wackiest hairstyles and clothes!

Thirsty Thursday – Children create their own healthy smoothie to bring to the camp and earn rewards for their team!

Flag Friday (Competition Day) – Points are given for the biggest and most creative flag! Children will also compete in their teams in competitions to win trophies, with all children receiving a medal and certificate!

DanceBugs Summer Holiday Camp

As always, the DanceBugs Dance and Acrobatics Holiday Camp combines fun dance moves and routines across a large range of styles, whilst also introducing musical theatre aspects such as singing and acting – helping children to express themselves around different themes each week! Here are the themes for each week at the DanceBugs Summer Camp:

Week One (25th July – 27th July): School of Rock

Week Two (30th July – 3rd August): The Greatest Showman

Week Three (6th August – 10th August): Mamma Mia!

Week Four (13th August – 17th August): Wicked – The Musical

Throughout each week, children will work on their dance moves and create their own routine on each theme! On each Friday, children will then perform the routine to their parents in the end of week show, showcasing the new skills they have learnt during the week! After the performance, all children will be awarded with a DanceBugs Superstar certificate and rosette.

MultiBugs Summer Holiday Camp

With over 30 different sports, games and activities played each week, the MultiBugs Holiday Camp is perfect for children that love a range of sports and a variety of games! Sports played at the camp will include children’s favourites such as football and tag rugby, as well as others that they may not have played as regularly, including dodgeball or basketball! Other fun games and activities at the camp include:

  • Lightning
  • Sky High
  • Crazy Golf
  • Footgolf
  • Crazy Catcher

Similarly to the FootieBugs Holiday Camp, each day at the MultiBugs camp will be themed during every week and will end in competition day every Friday! The competition day will be full of fun games where children work in teams to collect points to try and win fantastic trophies and prizes, with every child taking home a medal and certificate.

The Bugs Group’s Summer Holiday Camps in Solihull run during weekdays from 9:30am-3:30pm, with extended hours available from 8:30am-5:30pm. The FootieBugs and DanceBugs Holiday Camps will both be running at the Solihull Sixth Form, while the MultiBugs Holiday Camp runs at Tudor Grange Secondary Academy. To book your child’s place at any of our Summer Holiday Camps in Solihull, please call 0121 777 7792 or click the buttons below!

New Childhood Obesity Stats show Shocking Number of Children ‘Severely Obese’

 

New studies have found that the Childhood Obesity crisis within the UK has now deteriorated even further. Research shows that 22,000 children in their final year at primary school can now be classified as ‘severely obese’ – the worst classification possible.

 

The figures also show that there is a rapid increase in the number of children classed as severely obese when starting school, which is 15,000. This worrying increase throughout primary school could be due to a number of different factors, most likely due to inactivity levels and a higher consumption of unhealthy food and drinks.

 

Children that are severely obese at a young age can have a number of worrying health issues. Children may develop breathing problems, including asthma and difficulties breathing during exercise, as well as an increased risk of joint problems such as osteoarthritis. There is also a greater likelihood that children will be overweight or obese as an adult, potentially developing heart problems and other illnesses.

 

On top of the physical health implications that come with children being severely obese, there are also a number of mental health issues children may suffer. Obesity can also lead to psychological problems such as a low self-esteem and low confidence and in some cases, bullying. As children leave primary school and transition to secondary school,  they may already be more vulnerable to psychological issues such as anxiety – and low confidence or bullying due to obesity will have a further negative effect on their overall wellbeing.

 

While policies such as the Sugar Tax are aiming to cut down consumption of sugary drinks, reinvesting the money into school sports programmes, more must still be done to help reverse these figures to reverse these childhood obesity trends. A collective effort needs to be shown from both schools and parents to encourage children to put down their phones/games consoles and get outside and get active, as well as providing more opportunities for children to exercise.

 

The Bugs Group work with schools providing fun and outstanding school sports sessions, through curriculum PE – as well as extracurricular clubs and lunchtime activities to encourage children to exercise and be physically active. The Bugs Group also run local community classes throughout weeknights and weekends, offering opportunities for children to participate in sport further – including Holiday Camps during all school holidays.

The Bugs Group fighting against childhood obesity

We are committed to fighting the current Childhood Obesity crisis by not only providing fun physical activity for children, but also educating them on a healthy lifestyle and creating positive experiences of a healthy lifestyle – increasing the likelihood of continuing to be active as they grow older. We work with children from the ages of three plus through FootieBugs, YogaBugs, DanceBugs and MultiBugs – ensuring that all children have the opportunity to enjoy a range of sports and exercises!

 

To find out more about The Bugs Group, please visit our website here.

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