Exploring asana through somatic intelligence and integrated movement. This first weekend will be an experiential exploration of your own practice through the lens of the teacher. You will learn how to offer functional anatomy & physiology inspired by contemporary understanding of the body in a way that is accessible to students. We will explore techniques to bring awareness consciously into the physical body. We will start to look at physical facilitation of asana often described as ‘adjustments’. We prefer to see this as ‘enhancements’ or ‘kinaesthetic education’ -we will continuously weave this through the course.
We will explore various breathing techniques in depth as a tool of conscious embodiment and how to teach these. Healthy breath equates to a healthy spine and a healthy mind, breath is the vehicle of embodiment, how will you best use this and help your students to find this for themselves. Pranayama (which involves retaining the breath) is psychologically inappropriate for some, understand how, when and where to practice pranayama effectively, so that you can teach it safely. We will explore the effects of these practices on our nervous system and their role in the process of awakening.
understand the function of mind through the lenses of evolutionary biology, transpersonal psychology and contemporary and ancient yogic philosophy. How to work with:
Mental stress and its consequences – from everyday neuroses of the worried well to clinical mental health issues.
Understand emotions as a function of mind. Emotional literacy and emotional intelligence, how to work with the transformation of these potent forces of being human.
Working with groups with specific needs – children, those working with addiction, mental health issues etc.
The psychology of teaching, transference, counter-transference and projection and how to work with these.
Understand the content of mind and how to use this to generate positive belief, healthy optimism, resilience and strategies of wellbeing in yourself and your students.
Utilise your own belief structures to facilitate healing and powerful mind states with which to craft the live you love and live from your highest potential.
MEDITATION & MANTRA
explore various key meditation techniques from Yoga-Tantra, Buddhism, Mindfulness oriented practice, Patanjali and Taoist tradition as well as practices rooted in contemporary neuroscience. Learn the science of meditation and why the world is switching on to this art of potentiation.
What are the shadow sides of meditative practice? Who shouldn’t practice and why?
Understand the principles behind meditation and begin the journey of mastery of this awesome practice of simply sitting, simply being.
Mantra – work with sound and vibration through mantra & chanting. The whole cosmos is vibration. Deepen your practice and understanding of why and how to practice effectively. As a profound tool of liberation and basic sanity, this needs to be understood and fully utilised by any teacher.
Self-inquiry (svahdyaya) and Self-reflection (vichara) can enable transformation and revelation through increasing awareness. The group is a powerful container for gaining insight about ourselves and each other. We will partake in sharing circles, small group work and one-to-one feedback sessions. The fundamental tenet of yogic and humanistic psychology is that there is ‘self actualising’ potential in every human being. Yogic and transpersonal psychology offer you methods to integrate the ego and personality in a healthy way so that peak experiences that can arise from practice are assimilated gracefully. Increased awareness enables you to see how your beliefs, past and present become your body and your behaviour, this awareness gives you the opportunity to change. “Any pattern that is discovered and fully faced- changes” Ferrucci (2004)
we will demystify Patanjali, the Bagavad Gita, the Upanishads the Vedas & Tantric philosophy along with contemporary philosophy such as Ken Wilber’s seminal work. Philosophy is important for us to gain a deeper understanding about where our teaching comes from. Yogic philosophy can be complex but is can also be is rich in poetic metaphor and profoundly inspiring. We will also look at the history of yoga, the role of men & women in Yoga historically and consider the evolution of yoga in modern western culture.
THE SUBTLE BODY
we will explore the anatomy of the subtle body/energy body including the chakras, the koshas, the bandhas, the vayus and mudras. It is important that you understand these from direct experience, not just from theory or as an esoteric notion. The subtle body includes exploration of the ‘unseen world’ which includes intuition & psychic perception. Accessing subtle energy will enable you to teach from a place of depth and clarity. We will examine the potential of teaching through resonance, including the effects of your embodied presence on students and non verbal communication.
Yogasara courses are rooted in the Tantric vision. We will demystify the teachings of Tantra so that they can be translated into contemporary life with authenticity. We will engage in some tantric meditation, body-work and cultivate intimacy with ourselves and each other. We will work within healthy boundaries whilst encouraging loving connection. Tantra acknowledges sexual energy as a powerful force for awakening.
VOICE AND EXPRESSION
developing and refining skills in embodying your voice as the teacher with confidence and authority to inspire your students. Words have power, use them wisely. Communication is an art that is also non-verbal, develop congruence and clarity in walking your talk. Movement Medicine & voice work with guest teacher Yasia Leiserach will be part of this weekend.
a weekend exploring Body Mind Centring (BMC) and Structural Integration – contemporary models of human function. Our guest teacher in BMC will introduce you to embodiment in a visceral way- you will enhance your understanding of asana, and gain access to the bodies systems from the inside out.
Structural integration – we utilise the principles of Kinesis Myofascial Integration. (KMI) Sarah and Christopher are both trained in this contemporary modality. KMI invites you to dive deeply into your own body with increased awareness. By understanding fascia and the interconnectedness of the body as a cohesive system you can feel yourself and see your students in an Holistic way. Your increased understanding will inform, direct and lift your teaching from the mundane repetition of formulaic asana into a diverse, inspired, insightful & multifaceted approach to conscious embodiment, as a gift to the evolution of humanit
We will use KMI techniques for Kinaesthetic education.
in this weekend we will explore restorative practice and a more receptive approach to practice– how and why including;
Therapeutic application – using practice for healing. Working with injuries and rehabilitation.
Honouring the menstrual cycle – most practitioners are women and many approaches to yoga do not honour this enough. Women can enhance their wellbeing no end by embracing these powerful cycles of life. Men need to understand this too if we are to cultivate a culture of honouring and respect.
Pregnancy – understanding pregnancy and incorporating pregnant women into your class.
Yoga Nidra- theory, practice and teaching.