Upcoming Retreat in Goa February 2018
The sort of workshops I offer come under the title of “Working with What You’ve Got” and are arranged relating to the major joints of the body (Ankles, Hips, Shoulders/Wrists and Spine) and associated posture groups (Forward Folds, Hip rotations, Backbends, Shoulders, Twists and Binding). The workshops introduce anatomical concepts in an accessible and fun way and are very practically based with the intention of allowing students to discover those muscles and areas of the body that are restricting them and demonstrating ways that they can work on those areas with more specificity. The idea is that through greater understanding of how different areas of the body influence the finished postures students or teachers can learn release restricted areas, to sequence more efficiently and also reduce the risk of taking stress into vulnerable areas by moving in the right places. The workshops are suitable for all styles of yoga because rather than looking at specific alignment that might relate to one style or the other I take the route of exploring what might stop you achieving a desired alignment. All level of student is catered for by providing the information in multiple layers and allowing students to practically explore at their own level.
Workshops are 2.5 to 3 hours. The most popular workshops are the following four:
Hips: Looks at the construction of the hip joint and how individuals may differ, the muscles around the joint and how they will influence movements in certain directions. So many yoga postures involve a certain degree of freedom in the hips and sometimes it can be hard to determine what is stopping us reaching our desired position. Practical exploration of groups of postures under the headings of forward folding, hip rotations and hip ab/adductions will allow students to discover where they need to focus their attention and how to effectively work on increasing the ranges of motion. Postures commonly used for exploration include, Baddha Konasana (Butterfly), Upavishta Konasana (wide legged forward fold), Squatting, Paschimottanasana (seated forward fold), Firelog and Virasana variations (Heros pose). We will also consider how many postures may fall unbeknown into the category of forward folding and explain what will be the likely expression of restriction.
Shoulders: Here we examine the shoulder girdle and shoulder joint, issues that influence range of motion and the potential for injury. Quite a few practitioners experience either restricted range of motion at this joint due to postural patterns, or pain during specific movements in yoga. We will consider common restrictions and how to work on them as well as alignment cues to find more comfort and help minimise the risk of repetitive strain issues. There will also be discussion and practical implementation of shoulder related postures such as, arm balances, down dog, chaturanga, binding, reverse prayer.
Spine and SI joint: It is not uncommon for students to feel a degree of discomfort when performing backbends or when embarking on taking on some of the more challenging foot behind head postures. By understanding the construction of the spine and the surrounding muscles it becomes evident as to the types of movements that it is designed to perform in certain areas as well as the potential mechanism of injury. We clarify the common spinal injuries such as herniated and bulging discs as well as discuss the possible causes of SI Joint pain. The groups of postures discussed and explored practically are backbends and twists, and the importance of the integration of movements at other major joints of hips and shoulders will be demonstrated. We will endeavour to during the course of the workshop to allow students to determine where their own restrictions are and how to work with them. For those students that feel they are already too mobile we will look at how to build strength and stability.
Fascia and Biotensegrity: There is lots of interest in the emerging information about fascia and how it might influence the yoga practice. In this workshop we explore what is meant by fascia, what its purpose is and what use we can make of our growing appreciation of fascia. We also look at a proposed model (biotensegrity) for trying to understand how we might incorporate this knowledge into a more comprehensive explanation of human movement and stability. The practical component of this workshop explores connectivity and integrated bodies.
Arm Balance Workshop: Arm balances can be fun and exciting to play with even if they are not part of your normal practice. They build strength, co-ordination and focus but they can also put pressure on the wrists and shoulders if we are not ready for them. In this workshop we will take an anatomical look at the skills, proficiencies and ROM we require, before exploring the technical detail of how to perform the different arm balances. There will be a large percentage of practical experimentation with the exact content being tailored to suit the general ability of the class. Instead of handstands will be looking to include:
Koundinyasana A and B
Eka Pada Koundinyasana
Eka Pada Galavasana
As well as a variety of lifts
Personal Training Skills for Yoga Teachers
Using yoga anatomy to enhance the quality and effectiveness of personal yoga programs
(A Workshop for Teachers Only)
This workshop is designed to provide the skills necessary for teachers to be able to tailor yoga programs to the needs of their personal clients. We are not talking Yoga Therapy but instead the ability to assess and determine how best to progress your student in the direction they desire or require.
It is clearly evident that we are not all made the same and along with that comes differences in strength, flexibility, endurance, psychology and much more. To raise the quality of your teaching and deliver the best programs for your students you need to be able to make informed decisions about where they are now and what is required to take them to the next level.
By providing specific skills in the following key areas this workshop aims to assist you in becoming a more professional and effective teacher:
• Foundation in evaluating asana (postures)
• Basics in body reading
• Determining strength and restrictions in clients
• Progressions and working with restrictions
• Practical implementation of concepts
• Guidelines on beneficial sequencing and program requirements
Special London Workshop with Bollywood Dance and Yoga Teacher Josefin Wilkstrom
To inquire about me coming to your studio to run a workshop or training use the contact at the very bottom of the page on the left.