Yoga Dog™ is a 22-minute children's edutainment program which engages the imaginations, emotions, and mobility of 3-7 year olds. It follows the adventures of “Yoga Dog”, an innocent, fun-loving pup who discovers the imaginative world around him with the help of his friends. Together, they overcome challenges, learn more about themselves and others by interacting with others and exploring the exciting world around them.
The show melds entertainment and fitness into a fun and engaging activity that kids love and parents trust. Intended for kids 3-7, it skews up to early teens for differently-abled children with special physical, mental, and emotional needs.
Yoga Dog™ has a unique visual style that incorporates holistic health and wellness with yoga. Each adventure features a mix of animated and live action costumed characters. Simple shapes and bright colors guide Yoga Dog as he learns how to work through problems, finds ways to manage his emotions, solves puzzling riddles, and help others in need.
Yoga Dog and his friends welcome viewers of all ages to join them on each adventure encouraging inclusion, selfawareness, self-regulation, nutrition, and hydration. Each episode is a thematic journey comprised of original songs, silly humor, and relatable story-lines giving children and their parents yoga tools – breathing, relaxation, and physical activity – that they can use in real life!
Yoga Dog™ is specifically designed to address the most pressing issues faced by parents in trying to raise healthy, well adjusted and well-behaved children through the basics of yoga. By focusing on this fast-growing and relatable form of exercise, Yoga Dog™ goals are easily understood on first impression because they are based on very simple, trusted yoga principles.
Yoga Dog™ is being developed by Kids’ Wellness Alliance, LLC as a complete product line of media, gaming, online content, books, merchandise, and live events. While the initial launch targets the domestic U.S. market, the show’s universal appeal and savvy production style make it easily adaptable to international markets as well.
Yoga Dog™ is being developed for ALL children. Our goal is to raise enough funding to provide Yoga Dog™ to every school in the United States and to every US Military Base in the world - free of cost.
Create a globally trusted brand that brings yoga to kids through fun, safe, and effective interactive play that resonates with a "mainstream audience"
Lay the foundation for a lifetime of healthy living by engaging children in yoga and physical exercise during their most formative years
Encourage inclusion, self-awareness, self-regulation, nutrition, and hydration
Make "play" a vital part of children’s lives and ensure that they are using their imaginations to step outside of their daily experiences
Ensure engaging story lines contain educational information that includes history, geography, science, social studies, language arts, and health lessons
Promote creative problem solving and positive conflict resolution
Yoga Dog™ is designed for all children, especially those 3-7 years old, to enjoy. Differently-abled children will also benefit greatly from Yoga Dog™ . We expect the age of interest to increase, up to early teens, for differently-abled children.
For children ages 3-7 years old:
Play is the best form of education at this age
Pre-schoolers experience enormous physical and mental development
Naturally curious, highly teachable and trainable so can readily respond to physical demonstrated and audible instruction
Formative times for language, more accurate perceptions, communication and logical reasoning
Enhance intelligence and creativity by proving interesting and appropriate stimulation
Introduce discipline and creativity through songs, repetitive movement, and fun, interactive learning
Teach ability to voluntarily control actions or emotions is a valuable lesson for life and future development
For differently-abled children:
Breathing techniques enhance self-regulation, modulation and organization as well as supporting respiration for language
Physical movement improves motor planning, balance, coordination, strength, and flexibility
Meditation and relaxation help decrease stress and promotes stillness of the mind for increased attention and ability to focus
Kids' Wellness Alliance is a children’s health and wellness edutainment company founded on the belief that kids deserve entertainment that honors their spirit and nurtures their minds and bodies.
Jennifer Foster is the Founder of KWA. Foster’s passion for creating entertaining and compelling media, coupled with her vision for raising the bar on children’s entertainment, are the driving forces behind Yoga Dog™.
We believe we can help drive down childhood obesity rates in America and give kids the tools they need to maintain healthy levels of self-worth to be as happy and healthy as they can be. We also believe that “play” is a vital part of children’s lives so we encourage audiences to use their imaginations to step outside of their daily life experiences, to be silly and have fun.
KWA! is headquartered in Orlando, Florida with partners spanning coast to coast from the large metropolitan cities to small rural towns Our motto at KWA! is “Laugh. Stretch. Play. Every Day!”. We truly believe that we can teach kids to unlock their own inner powers and potential through physical activity, positive engagement and play.
Shakta Khalsa is one of the world’s leading experts on children and yoga, having worked with both since the mid-70’s. An AMS Certified Montessori teacher since 1982, her two great loves are children and yoga and are the basis for her life work. Everything she does addresses the body, mind and spirit of the child.
Khalsa is a trained yoga professional at the highest level (ERYT -500) and highly respected as a children’s yoga trainer for adults who want to become children’s yoga teachers. Named one of the top five Kundalini Yoga teachers in the world, by Yoga Journal, she studied under the direct guidance of Yogi Bhajan, Master of Kundalini Yoga.
She is the Founder of Radiant Child Yoga, an internationally-respected, Yoga Alliance approved, training program for children’s yoga. RCY holds the vision of creating a world of peace through the union of yoga and children. Training is offered around the world and is taught either by Shakta or a selective group of qualified trainers. Since being founded in 1998, over 15-thousand people have received RCY training. Courses range from basic children’s yoga to specialized Yoga for ADHD, Autism and Differently Abled Children.
Khalsa is extraordinarily well connected with professionals who specialize in children’s education, health and wellness. She is widely regarded for the special training she offers to Teachers, Pediatric Professionals, Behavior Specialists, and Occupational Therapists who work with children with CP, Down syndrome, ADD/ADHD, Autism, Anxiety, and other physical and mental challenges.
Khalsa is also the author of several well-known yoga books - both for children and adults - embracing creative storytelling and playful fun as effective learning tools. She has produced several children’s yoga-related original music CD’s and DVD’s that are an integral part of RCY training and are available online to the general public. Her students, collaborators, and dedicated social media community bring an immediate audience and fan base to Yoga Dog™
Khalsa’s role on the Yoga Dog™ team is Subject Matter Expert and Creative Collaborator. As an equity partner in Yoga Dog™, she will work, in tandem, with the KWA! creative team to organically weave in yoga poses, breathing techniques, mindfulness and meditation practice into every story line. Shakta’s professional experience and personal insight are invaluable.
Khalsa’s involvement in Yoga Dog™ brings a wealth of credibility to our mission. She lends her stellar reputation, and years of experience in the children’s yoga space, to help promote Yoga Dog™ within the existing professional and consumer based children’s yoga market. Khalsa’s uncanny ability to connect with children also makes her a perfect candidate to be the voice of the animated character “Glow” - Yoga Dog’s fairy-godmother-like conscience.
IDEAS is a government certified “small business” Innovation Studio using the central premise that powerful stories create powerful experiences regardless of whether the final product is a training Website, TV show, creative design concept, immersive learning environment, exhibit, theme park, or corporate image piece. IDEAS’ core competency falls in Storytelling, Experience Design, Branding, and Media Production.
IDEAS is a multi million dollar company whose clients are a healthy mix of repeat, multi-year engagements, and brand new relationships. With 25 full time team members and 50+ talented freelance professionals, IDEAS’ staff includes a collection of creative talent with more than four hundred years of aggregate experience in the creative development, production, and post production of high-quality television, film, audio, multi-media productions, and themed environments for Healthcare, Corporate, Government, and Entertainment clients.
IDEAS was recently recognized as a recipient of the 2013 Florida Companies to WatchSM award. In its 3rd year, Florida Companies to Watch is presented by GrowFL at the University of Central Florida in association with the Edward Lowe Foundation. Florida Companies to Watch is an awards program that celebrates privately held second-stage companies headquartered in the state. To be eligible, applicants must employ between 6 and 99 full-time equivalent employees and have between $750,000 and $50 million in annual revenue or working capital in place. Awardees are selected for demonstrating the intent and capacity to grow based on employee or sales growth, exceptional entrepreneurial leadership, sustainable competitive advantage, outstanding corporate culture, inspired community giving and other notable strengths. This year Florida Companies to Watch attracted more than 600 nominees, and 106 companies were selected as finalists. IDEAS was chosen along with 49 other finalists to receive the distinction of being named to the 50 Florida Companies to Watch of 2013 list.
IDEAS believes in our vision so much that they are a vested partner in Kids’ Wellness Alliance, LLC and provide all development services for Yoga Dog™ in turn for equity. Beyond the internal resources at KWA!, IDEAS will be the exclusive provider of turnkey creative and production and post production services including producing, scripting, shooting, animation, audio/editorial services, duplication, and production management for Yoga Dog™ IDEAS’s Instructional Designers will also help develop, and review, all content to ensure alignment with state and national standards for children’s educational content.
While the entire IDEAS team will likely support KWA! programs at some point, Key Creatives on Yoga Dog™ will be Duncan Kennedy, Mary Anne Metaxas, Brian Nutt, Greg Roux and Rob Hill. Individual bios can be found HERE
Each season of Yoga Dog™ will consist of 18 episodes, each with a 22-minute run time which can be easily adapted for broadcast television. Yoga Dog™ features a combination of live action, costumed actors and animated characters who interact with practical (produced physically) and special effect props. Action takes place in both stage and virtual (animated) environments.
Each episode begins in the family "house". From Yoga Dog’s perspective, viewers see a enormous door where his human family exits each day. POV (point of view) is ground level so we never see more than 3-4 feet off the ground. As each pair of legs/feet leave, the family member gives a cheerful "Bye Yoga Dog!" then a "Have a great day Yoga Dog" and finally Mom (wearing yoga pants and flip-flops) turns and says "You be a good boy buddy, I’ll be back in a little bit".
As the door closes, we finally see more than just the tip of Yoga Dogs’s nose, he turns and looks right into the lens and enthusiastically says “Hi Friends! Are you ready to have a great day?” and then he sets up the theme for his adventure.
From this point on, Yoga Dog talks to the viewers directly and encourages them to do what he’s doing. Yoga Dog’s imagination is limitless in terms of where he can go, who he can meet and what he can accomplish. He also interacts with the other characters, who all have distinct personalities, those characters can only talk to Yoga Dog - not the viewers. Remember, this is Yoga Dog’s imagination so he’s the only one who knows the viewers are there. He faithfully guides the viewers through each adventure as companion and "best friend".
Once the premise for the episode has been established, Yoga Dog, with the help of his friends, encounters several situations along the way that teach or give him the tools to discover how to overcome the challenge or accomplish the objective for that episode. These lessons center on one or more yoga activities for Yoga Dog (and the audience) to perform in order to learn ways to achieve their goal or overcome the obstacle.
After several of these encounters, Yoga Dog is able to resolve the situation or challenge and celebrates with the friends he met along the way. As the show draws to a close, he recalls the lesson learned by summarizing the adventures they had that episode. The show concludes with a closing song celebrating what they accomplished and winds down to a calming close intended to leave the audience member happy and relaxed.
As Yoga Dog settles into his dog bed after his big adventure, his nose faces the door as he calmly awaits his families arrival. Keys rattle and the enormous door to the family home begins to open. We hear Mom’s delightful, friendly voice say "Yoga Dog, Sassy, Fish...I’m home!". All is safe and good in Yoga Dogs world, reinforcing for children a message of peace and security.
Yoga Dog™ features both live action (actors) and animated characters. Live actors are dressed in colorful leotard costumes with headdress (mane, ears, etc.) and partial facial mask (muzzle, tusks, etc.) embellishments to exaggerate their animal characteristics. Animated characters have similar simplified and exaggerated appearances to maintain visual consistency.
Yoga Dog is the lead character. He is lovable, innocent, and all dog. He likes meeting new friends, is easily distracted, and in many ways reflects the enthusiasm and excitement of a young child. Yoga Dog was once a pound puppy and now lives comfortably in a wonderful house surrounded by plenty of toys, fresh water, and a loving family of his very own. Mom runs a Yoga Studio, hence the presence of yoga stuff in the house...and his name. (live action)
Sassy Cat is Yoga Dog’s foil, not quite a nemesis, but definitely a provocateur. She knows how to push his buttons, but like a big sister, will always come to his aid at the last moment – even if she was the original instigator. She lives in the family house with Yoga Dog and takes pleasure in reminding him that she was there first. (live action)
Fish is a recurring character appearing in most episodes. He is strictly for comic relief and dramatic reinforcement. This is based on his having only 2 reactions; oblivious distraction inside the fish bowl, and wide-eyed startle at something happening outside it. (live action)
Just Bee is a recurring animated character that appears in most episodes. She is aloof to the mundane and wise about the universal truths that only a bee would be privy to as it plays its part in the pollination cycle. (animated)
Glow is Yoga Dog’s inner light/conscious as a glowing aura orb floating in the air that appears like Jiminy Cricket when Yoga Dog has a choice to make. Glow reminds Yoga Dog of his favorite thing...tennis balls...which causes him to enthusiastically react "BALL! BALL!" every time she pays him a visit. Always calm and soothing and with fairy godmother-like wisdom, Glow imparts self-reflective guidance to Yoga Dog by probing him to take a deeper look into what he’s feeling or thinking. (animated)
Caterpillar Choir is a group of recurring animated characters that appear in most episodes. There are 3 of them and they harmoniously, and hilariously, provide segues and emphasis as needed during the show. (animated)
Additional animated characters join the show based on the episode’s storyline or the mix of activities that happen during a show. Most of these characters are based on established yoga poses and movements and take their names accordingly:
Animals: Cow, Mouse, Frog, Lion, Bear, Monkey, Bird, Dolphin, Butterfly, Fish, etc. Environmental: Sun, Tree, Water, Wind, Moon, etc.
Objects: Bow, Wheel, Plough, Table/Plank, etc.
The show takes place in two realities. The first is the home interior setting where Yoga Dog lives as a member of a family "pack" with humans and other animals. The viewers never see the humans faces and they are not an integral part of the show with the exception of their brief role at the beginning and end of each episode.
The second show environment is a fanciful and imaginative alternate reality where Yoga Dog can go anywhere and do anything. This is an animated environment where all live action characters are shot on green screen. They interact with other live action and animated characters against a layered animated background. This treatment allows for limitless environment possibilities.;
Episodes also include short animated interstitial segments that aid in the transition or segue to the next scene. These short animated segments can include any of the show’s live actors as simplified animated characters to propel the storyline. They are also a perfect opportunity for targeted messaging from sponsors.
Intertwined within the storyline of each episode are a series of activities that viewers are encouraged to join in and participate alongside with the characters on screen. These activities thematically follow the storyline and provide a physical connection to the story. These connections can be physical forms of exertion that propel the storyline, more subdued motions and movements that follow the emotional or mental pacing of the story, or centering and focused activities that ground viewers and give pause to fully ascertain a specific part of the story prior to making a choice or deciding a course of action.
These activities are an integral part of Yoga Dog™ and are based on accepted Yoga principles and practices. They not only differentiate this show from other competing entertainment brands but also give it a unique sense of fun and purpose often missing in children’s programming.
Each episode will contain the following core yoga elements:
Exertion: High-energy movement and exercises that increase heart rate and promote aerobic exercise, develop major muscle groups, and safely encourage body motions within a confined, manageable space.
Stretching: Yoga poses that lengthen the body, increase flexibility and balance, and provide developing young physiques safe alternatives in developing core muscle strength.
Breathing: In addition to breathing awareness and attention during all activities, specific breathing exercises will also show viewer how to calm themselves, harness their energy and focus their strength.
Relaxation: Activities and techniques share with viewers different ways to allow the body and mind to relax after physical activities and mental stimulation, both as a means to enable recovery from exercise and as a useful tool to manage emotions.
Focus: Activities also include various forms of mental stimulation and control. Through meditation and other forms of mental focus, viewers discover how to be mindful of their thoughts, in control their own bodies, and calm their moods.
Each episode has a central storyline involving a conflict or situation that needs resolution. Conflicts are usually simple misunderstandings, unexpected emotions, or confusion about a situation. While they drive show drama and viewer engagement, they are age-appropriate and not intentionally upsetting. Resolution of these conflicts results is a life lesson or moral at the end of each episode for viewers to take to heart and apply in the real world.
Humor: Each Yoga Dog™ show is full of silly humor and comedic canine references that keep the humor grounded in the absurdity that is a dog’s perspective of reality. For example, Yoga Dog does not say some words, but only spells them out like the human’s in his family pack do when they are around him (O-U-T, C-A-R, W-A-L-K). He knows what they mean, but has never heard the actual word.
Music: Continuous instrumental beds and percussive tracks drive the varying levels of exertion and story drama throughout each episode to maintain viewer engagement and provide a musical background for character action and yoga activities. Sometimes characters will be introduced with a short musical fanfare or lyrical snippet before commencing with dialogue. These musical introductions are determined by the storyline or could be associated to a recurring yoga character.
Songs: Opening and closing theme songs frame each episode and create thematic space for Yoga Dog™ amid real life chaos and distraction. Episodes may also have short musical refrains or interludes to reinforce core principles or recurring activities. Often, these short refrains can include simple choreographed movements that children can follow, enjoy performing, and remember for next time. Sometimes activity instruction can be lyrical/melodic depending on the situation and activity.
Yoga and kids are a perfect match. Children’s yoga is about exploring and learning in a fun, safe and playful way! It is constructive play that helps the mind and body relax and perform at optimal levels. When presented in a child’s language, yoga can help children counter stressful influences and navigate life’s challenges while improving their overall health and wellness.
Children’s yoga often includes engaging stories with follow-along demonstrations so kids can act out the story through movement. In place of silence, there is cheerful cacophony, fun music and experience enhancing sounds. Instead of long, measured poses, movements are often quicker to suit shorter attention spans. Yoga also encourages children to use their imaginations, and explore possibilities beyond their own life experiences, in a safe and nurturing environment.
Yoga DogTM is being developed to address some of the most pressing child development issues of our time, including:
Trauma and Post Traumatic Stress