Teaching skills

Dealing with Emotional Overwhelm in Yoga Class

Emotional Overwhelm Josefin Wikstrom

Josefin Wikström and Stu gives some advice on how to handle emotional flooding in class, depending how the student is reacting. Always remind students that strong emotions might arise from a yoga practice and that it is OK and natural when we start to relax. Focus on long deep breaths with a relaxed belly. You can also ask the student to name 5 ordinary objects in the shala in order to come back to the present moment and re-connect to…

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Some Techniques for Dealing with Panic Attacks

Panic Attacks and Yoga Techniques

Josefin Wikstrom gives a short instruction with a few practices that can be helpful if you are suffering from panic attacks. Please seek professional advice if you are experiencing this frequently. It can also be helpful to add a ”mantra” behind the breath silently for your self. Here is a example: When you are inhaling thinking the words- ” I am here” and on the exhalation- ” I am safe”. Try to name a few ordinary objects in the room…

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Holistic Asana Practice

Matthew Sweeney

What does it mean to be holistic in terms of practicing (or teaching) Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga? Holistic means whole, or even part of a whole, and implies completion, integration and oneness.

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How to Make Adjustments SAFE

Safe adjusting

Adjustments can be an extremely effective part of the way a yoga teacher communicates with their students. Adjustments can be soft, energetic, enabling and supportive. They should feel GOOD. If an adjustment feels painful or horrible – then something is going very wrong. Here are my suggestions for ensuring your adjustments are safe and effective and compassionate.

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Top Ten Essential Books for New Yoga Teachers

The Heart of Yoga

Here are my suggestions for the top ten books recommended for newbie Yoga teachers. I’d be very interested to hear other people’s suggestions and ideas…

‘Heart of Yoga’ Desikachar – very beautiful classic intro to yoga. ‘Teaching people not poses’ Jay Fields – great tips on how to find your voice as a teacher.

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Why do adjustments?

Adjustments

Giving adjustments is the main thing I love about teaching. It’s amazing how so much communication can take place in relative silence. I see adjustments as a way to help and support people during their yoga practice. I see adjustments as a dialogue, with my hands and intention I ask the student ‘do you want to go this way?’.

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Matthew Sweeney Interview

Matthew Sweeney Interview

I finally caught up with Matthew Sweeney again. this time in Bali. In this interview we get to talk about what it means to have a therapeutic practice, his moon sequence, teacher qualities, observation of moon days, bandhas and more.

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Broken Gods, Breaking Hearts: Pedestals, Boundaries, Pitfalls

Me too in yoga world

To start with words from a song by Katy Perry: “lost my discretion…caught my attention” (‘I kissed a girl’). This article is an attempt to make sense of our relationships within the yoga world (particularly that of teacher/student). It proposes specific ways of dealing with some of the difficulties that arise within these relationships. And it is significantly inspired by what has been happening with John Friend and Anusara.

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Beginners Luck

Teaching yoga

Teaching is a special skill and teaching beginners well is probably the hardest of all. Here are some of my suggestions for teaching beginners in a way that is positive and nurturing and compassionate.

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The Voice of a Yoga Teacher

Voice of Yoga teacher

Yoga teachers can use many different tools to lead their students through a class, such as visual demonstrations and hands-on adjustments. Arguably, most important tool is verbal cues. During more than two thirds of a yoga class, students listen to their teacher’s voice. Every voice is different and you cannot make everyone love your voice, but you can work with your voice effectively. You can avoid sounding like a jarring horror film actor, a sultry sex hotline employee or a…

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