Opening Circle

Faculty will provide a preview of material to be covered and activities in the coming week. Faculty will identify and define the teaching methodologies to be used with trainees over the course of the coming week.

Through assessment and journaling, trainees will assess their own learning, and identify areas where further study is desired. Participants will have an opportunity to ask questions about past and future material and activities.

Asana Foundations

Faculty will demonstrate and lead trainees in practicing a group of asanas. During and following practice, instructor will facilitate an analytical discussion of how to practice the asanas with correct alignment. Trainees will gain an understanding of key principles of alignment for safe practice. Each week will focus on a different group of poses, for example …

  • Sun Salutations and opening warm up
  • Open Hip Poses, external rotation
  • Square Hip Poses, neutral rotation
  • Arm Balances and Inversions; Deeper Quad Stretches
  • Backbends
  • Forward Folds
  • Inversions and Closing Poses

Trainees will be able to demonstrate poses with correct alignment, identify common errors for each posture, and list ways to move toward proper alignment.

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The Whole of Yoga

Faculty will facilitate discussions of the yogic way of life, including philosophy, lifestyle, and ethics. Instructor will reference readings including classical yoga texts. Topics to include, for example,

  • Yoga history; traditions to modern day practice; ethics for yoga teachers
  • The Four Paths of Yoga, The Eight Limbs, Intro to Meditation (witnessing)
  • Yoga sutras and the nature of mind. Meditation and stilling the mind
  • The Workings of the Universe; The Three Gunas
  • Prana, Nadis and Chakras
  • Mantra, Chanting and Meditation
  • The Five Koshas (The Five Sheaths); Yoga Nidra
  • Yoga and Ayurveda – Doshas and Lifestyle
  • Yogic and Ayurvedic diet; Shat Karmas (cleansing techniques)

Learners will be able to speak knowledgeably about the history and traditions of yoga, as well as its adaptations in contemporary practice.

Mythology of the Asanas

This fun, enlightening and heartwarming class will bring new meaning to your practice by taking you beyond the physical sensations. Thousands of years ago, yogis created each pose to look and feel like something or someone as a way to connect to the universe. Behind each physical shape, there is an ancient story with a lesson and energy for us to experience and explore.

Learn why Ganesha threw a tusk at the moon and why we become the lotus flower when we meditate. Discover what we must fight in our warrior poses and why we surrender in child’s pose. Develop a deeper connection to self through the energetics of the poses, and fall more in love with your practice by embracing the notion that since the beginning of time, we are all divine spirits having very human experiences.

Expect to develop a new, more meaningful connection to your practice as we share our own interpretations of the stories and experience new sensations as we explore the shapes.

Asanas – Going Deeper

With the guidance of the instructor, participants will explore this week’s asanas in greater depth, identifying critical elements of alignment to promote safe practice. Participants will begin to develop a relationship to both the form and the function of the various categories of asana.

Trainees will observe and experience how each category of asana shares a common foundation. Trainees will begin to develop the language to reinforce and build on those common foundations.

In this module, trainees will:

Explore the benefits of individual poses and families of poses
Identify contraindications to various poses
Experience poses from an anatomical perspective
Examine the preparatory and follow-up poses for each asana
Recognize the foundational building blocks of each pose as springboard for variations

Anatomy & Physiology of Yoga

This module includes focus on the anatomy involved in a group of yoga poses. Faculty will teach the effects of specific yoga practices on the workings of the body. We will cover the basics of anatomy and what muscles are strengthened and stretched in each asana.

Focusing on a group of asanas, instructor will use visual aids and demonstrations to show how the body is affected by asanas, vinyasa, and pranayama. Learners will also practice the postures involved as the instructor helps them form an awareness of the effects on their own physiology. Learners will learn how to approach the practice of yoga with an awareness of the anatomy and physiology involved, and use that knowledge to maximize the benefits of practice and prevent injury.

Learners will be able to describe the involvement of anatomy in asanas, pranayama, and other yogic practices, as well as the immediate and long-term effects of yoga practice on the anatomy and physiology.

Pranayama & Meditation

Faculty will demonstrate and lead trainees in practicing various pranayama and meditation techniques. Learners will incorporate some of the more basic breath and mindfulness techniques into their yoga practice.

Mentorship

Students will meet individually with mentor Missy Hebson for 20 minutes near the beginning of the program. She will help students plan a practice schedule. Missy will also read and respond to students' learning journal entries.