... continued from "Raise the bar" pt. 1, Blog post dated Oct 9, 2016
Why not coalesce 40 years of practice, three yoga teacher certification courses and years of research and travel into a simple arrangement that people could easily understand ~ just think how much time and money this could save!
Today's Yogi craves yoga based in ancient philosophy and proven by modern science, not gimmicks.
Combining the ancient ways of traditional yoga with modern mindfulness techniques requires education to prepare seekers for spiritual experiences that produce life-changing affects. The basic highlights of what yoga is and is not includes:
The ancient science of body, mind, and universal principles
Techniques which increase self-control, calmness, intuition, inspiration, and motivation
A system to maintain balance in health and wellness
Tools to release painful experiences such as PTSD and addiction
Prescribed by medical professionals to support and help healing
Mostly mental pursuit but includes physical components
Ethics and morality
Science of consciousness and reality
Yoga is not
Stand alone exercise, stretching, veganism or a social movement
Religion, cult, new-age or "feel good" jargon
expensive studios or trendy clothes
only for young, flexible people, old hippies
against Christianity or other religions
As mentioned in my previous post, It's time to "Raise the bar" for yoga studios. Eliminate gimmicks & yoga jargon ~ while stabilizing class size and boosting profits (part 1).October 8, 2016, Sandra Zuidema, adding traditional yoga methods, not currently taught in yoga class, creates value for students and society. Not only will students benefit but the yoga business also brands as authentic yoga. So, how does this look in Yoga Class?
Let's take a look
Fives ways to elevate Yoga Practice
Set foundation and intention
Have each student read the first book of "Yoga Affect" to get a of foundation of knowledge. This will allow them to relax during your expansion or personalization of the information during asana or group meetings (Step Three).
Having the students sign up for a fixed period of sessions with the same group of people each week is helpful to setting their intention and building a community between all attendees.
Traditional Asana Practice
Begin each class with the chanting of OM, plus other seed mantras, breath work, static or passive styles of yoga asana consisting mainly of postures on the mat, then transition into vinyasa flow or the asana practice suitable for each group. The last part of the practice is Shavasana and meditation. This introduces the traditional methods slowly in the beginning of the practice and at the end; the physical practice that students expect remains at the center of the practice. This way we begin to create a space for the student to open their mind but at the same time get what they expect from their practice.
Longer static holds bring intense physical sensations and a desire to retreat. That moment is an opportune time to see an alternative possibility and presentation of new ideas. Here is where an intention to the practice is set and yoga theory mentioned. You can present the theory in many different ways; reading from the text, outline or bullet points or synopsis. Mindfulness methods, ethics, and analogies guide students into the deeper places of sensations, discomfort, or disturbance. The yoga teacher facilitates and supports the process.
Periods of pause are provided for integration are an essential part of the entire experience. Allow time, silence and space for words to be heard, understood, and absorbed. This is where the student concentrates, meditates and focuses inward bringing ideas together. The teacher holds the space and does not interfere.
Students are ready to begin the flow portion (active) of the practice, the stage is set for mindful awareness and being fully present. Theory is summarized and reflected upon. The student validates his own thoughts and experiences with the intention of understanding and not judging it; accurate reflection is validating. This helps sort through thoughts and emotions.
From this point, students go to Shavasana then seated mediation. They participate by witnessing their states of consciousness and their quality of mind by receiving sensations occurring in the body.
This level of yoga is rarely taught in yoga teacher training and I have never seen it offered in public yoga studios. This practice cultivates mindfulness.
It begins an experience of the theory of duality and non-duality, which is central to Indian philosophy and Patanjali's Yoga Sutras.
Giving yoga students more information about yoga philosophy and combining it with a personal connection with their teacher and other like-minded seekers creates an active community and yoga business. Give your students a place to discover themselves and create new relationships.
To get started
Order the Book and Journal. Read the book, write in the journal, and discover more about your inner Self. Once you encounter "Yoga Affect" you will want to share it with others.
See how easy it is to open your mind and learn about yourself. Then you can consider how to implement the system into your studio.
To learn more about how you can raise the bar in your yoga studio and benefit from my book and journal please visit my website: http://www.SandZuid.com.
(1) Yoga Affect: A Primer for a Beautiful Life, 2016 Sandra Zuidema. and Yoga Affect: A Guided Journal, 2016 Sandra Zuidema.
Sandra Zuidema is the author of the Yoga Affect Series. Yoga Affect: A Primer for a Beautiful Life and it's companion journal, Yoga Affect: A Guided Journal, both available on Amazon.com. To learn more about the series and please visit the website SandZuid.com