Join in the Fun and Reward of Teen Yoga

August 6-8, Thursday afternoon through Saturday, in a private home studio nestled in a canyon off the 5 freeway in Southern California, a special training will be happening……

Christy Brock Miele will empower a small group of participants with her 17 years teen yoga experience.

Sign up for this 3 day training on how to teach teenagers yoga here.

INTR0648Last year’s group is pictured here  You’d be amazed to learn all the wonderful ways they are reaching out to teenagers now.  This training is for adults who already know yoga and would like to offer a class to teenagers.

Now Available: Yoga 4 Teens Instructor Video Course

  • Do you believe that yoga would be helpful for teenagers to learn?
  • Do you practice yoga and have an interest in sharing it with teenagers?
  • Have you found that teaching teenagers yoga requires a unique approach?
  • Are you wondering how you could get your own teenage children involved with the helpful practice of yoga?

If you’ve answered affirmatively to any of these questions, the Yoga 4 Teens Instructor Video Course will thoroughly prepare you to teach teens yoga.  Begin today—shift your mindset, build your toolbox, and make yourself of service to the most enthusiastic, promising, and open generation who are teenagers.

For a full list of the details and how the course can help you develop into an awesome teen yoga teacher, click here.

To help you get started TODAY a special reduced price of $299 is available through July 31, 2015.   Enter TEENYOGACOURSEGO promo code upon checkout.

Watch the course intro video below.

Yoga for Teens in England: An Interview with Philippa Goldie

From your website, yoga4teenagers.co.uk, I see your mission:  “Our mission is to prevent the next generation from becoming stressed out hunchbacks in later life.”  That’s a great way to put it, especially when you’re talking to teens.  How do they respond upon hearing your mission?

They normally laugh as perhaps they don’t realise the reality yet… our classes are designed to be fun so this is part of it.

I love how when I’m talking to teens, I need to make my language succinct and clear, like your mission statement suggests.  Do you agree?
Totally! It’s very different working with teens we really need to enthuse them…
I read your bio and you’ve obviously enjoyed practicing yoga a long time? Yes I have always loved yoga; I just came to it – not for any reason and love how it works well with my swimming too.
How did you get involved with teaching teens?  I trained to teach with the idea of then going on to teach teens – I love working with teens (I am also a swimming teacher) and hope I can inspire them to carry on with yoga as they grow older.
blogpostphillipa2What do you enjoy about them?  They are mostly always willing to give things a go; they love relaxation and generally say what they like and what they don’t whereas adults are not always as open with their feelings – I like knowing where I am with people.
Your website says that you organize yoga classes in schools and after school organizations for teenagers.  How are you going about enlisting other teachers to help you? I have a couple of lovely colleagues who are trained in teaching teens too who help out with the obvious clashes – working round the school day can require some juggling.
If I asked myself the next two questions, it would totally depend on the teenagers, the situation, and the day.  But for the benefit of those who will read this and want to teach teens, answer these questions based on what comes to mind for you right now:
If you could only impart one pose teenagers what would it be? That’s hard – can I say standing – Trikonasana – a master pose that can take time to get perfect alignment but that stretches, strengthens and requires focus. Seated Navasana as it helps build core strength which they need more and more as they grow older & balancing Vrikasana a simple pose that requires core strength and stillness of the mind. And for fun – Bakasana, (Crow), Urdva Dhanurasana (Wheel), and Adho Mukha Vrksasana (Handstand)
 blogpostphillipa3

If you could only impart one yoga philosophy to teenagers what would it be? I’d say the Yamas & Niyamas of the 8 fold path – the Ten ethical precepts that allow us to be at peace with ourselves, our family, and our community. I always mention Ahimsa to teens – being kind to others and ourselves; nurturing ourselves is just as important as being nonviolent and kind to others.

Before we conclude the interview, tell us a little more about yourself and your path to teen yoga, Philippa Goldie.
For as long as I can remember I have loved both yoga and swimming and practised both regularly. When my children were born we moved to Bali where I practised with a wonderful yoga teacher Olop Arpipi, my children practised yoga in school – we all loved our practice.

As a swimming teacher I was already sharing one of my passions -I decide to train to teach yoga and on completing my training I trained further in teaching to teens and now teach yoga in schools and privately in Bucks and Berks here in the UK.

I love my job and feel very privileged to work with young people. I strongly believe today’s youth find benefits in yoga and mindfulness for both calming, fitness and postural reasons – never before has life been so busy and this generation are the first to spend so much of their lives bent over a screen of some size and form. In addition people don’t ‘switch off’ now – we are constantly available!  Yoga also helps prevent injuries in other sports. I love being with young people…and that is why I set up Yoga4Teenagers

Life now connects me to India, I spend a lot of time there each year and am lucky to be able to learn further from teachers of all traditions.

I have studied Anatomy & Physiology, Thai Massage at The Nerve Touch Centre in Chiang Mai, Thailand, am trained in Indian Head Massage and hold Reiki 1.

Thanks for your time Philippa Goldie.  On behalf of those of us who are passionate about yoga for teens, we wish you the best in your outreach efforts.
blogpostphillipa1

Do You Love Yoga AND Care About Teens? Announcing Yoga 4 Teens Instructor Video Course

Are you pleased with how yoga has helped you? Do you care about teenagers? If you answered yes to these two questions, then teaching teenagers yoga could be your next act of service.

This is the true joy in life — being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one; being thoroughly worn out before you are thrown on the scrap heap; being a force of nature instead of a feverish selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy. ~George Bernard Shaw

There’s a lot of truth wrapped in humor in this quote by George Bernard Shaw.  It’s a mighty purpose to teach teenagers yoga— and one I’d like to encourage others who agree to do.  Why not be “a force of nature” and guide some young people in your community?  I’ve prepared this comprehensive Yoga 4 Teens Instructor’s Video Course that will get you motivated and fully prepared for how to tailor yoga to the teen demographic.

We invite you to watch the introductory video below to learn more about making a difference in the lives of teenagers.  If you know someone else who might be interested in this course, we are obliged to your kindness in sharing.  You can also learn more about this soon to be released teen yoga certification online course here.

If you are interested in taking this course, post a comment.  We will be sending out a discount code in a few weeks to those who post comments.  Include some information about who your teen yoga audience might be and where you live.

 

Three Meditation Tips

I was recently asked to provide three meditation tips for beginners by a person who is compiling a grand list of tips to help motivate people to meditate.  Great cause, I thought.  And great reason for me to record my thinking at this moment.  Below this lovely picture of tree in bloom,  I present three tips.  Your feedback and responses will be enjoyed, if you’d like to comment on this blog.

IMG_0253

 

Do some enjoyable light body movements first.

I refrain from calling it exercise or yoga, so as to invite an unstructured sense of getting the energy moving in your body, whatever you need that day.   Breathe while you get some energy flowing—like arm swings, hip rotations, light twisting side to side, or other movements that feel good to you. Moving and breathing first helps you to let go of the normal mind state and shift into feeling a sense of peace.

 

Keep an overall purpose in mind.

Think of it as building the skill of being still. In this fast and busy world, the opportunity to sit in stillness is a way to center on what is precious to us and to let go of what is not.   The word “meditation” conjures up some idea of what it “should” be, for most people. There are lots of approaches for meditation – the definition is broad. Whatever approach you choose, keep an overall purpose in mind: being open to the presence of God (or the Universe, if you prefer), the knowledge that all is well, and the truth of constant change.

 

Give yourself credit for time-in.

It’s so common for us to discount ourselves by claiming our mind won’t cooperate. Or else, we do the opposite; count ourselves as already “there” or “doing it”. Instead, approach each time as a fresh experience, a “practice” if you will. It’s staying committed to the process that matters. Build a good relationship to your meditation practice, free of “should”s and “shouldn’t”s.

 

If you’d like to receive email notifications of blogposts, sign up here.

What Yoga Poses Can Help Teens with Exam Stress?

It’s that time of year — Spring Break is here.  But before teenagers can enjoy a welcome break, most of them must endure test-taking and exams first.

Studying hard brings many benefits, among them getting smarter!  However, the pressure to do well in limited time with great expectations often creates a great amount of stress for teens.

Christy Brock Miele, found of YogaMinded.com and teen yoga teacher trainer, has some suggestions for how teens can ward off exam stress, keep a clear mind, and be their best, in the most relaxed sense.

These yoga poses are not time-consuming, but can make all the difference to help teens manage pre-exam and studying stress.

Bee Buzzing Breath (Brahmari) – Bee Buzzing breath can be done from any position, but it is ideal to be sitting up straight with a lifted (not collapsed) chest and eyes closed.  Take a deep breath in, and then hum while exhaling.  Relax and observe the after-effects before repeating another time or two.   IMG_2093You can’t do this breath seriously and not feel calmer!  The sound of the bee buzzing breath literally takes your attention and draws it away from the brain down to your voice box and heart area, giving a mental break.  Also, performing long exhales is very calming for the nervous system.

 

 

 

Eagle Pose (Garudasana)IMG_2094This pose can be done in entirety standing or from a seated position, doing just the Eagle arms.  By steadying the gaze on one spot and engaging the arms (and legs) in a “locking position”, the pose of the eagle takes the energy of the brain and redistributes it to the body, easing mental pressure and reinvigorating cardiovascular flow.  You’ll feel steady and clear, like an Eagle surveying the land.  This pose also provides welcome relief of tension that builds up around the neck and upper back with excessive studying.  Click here for more details on how to do Eagle pose.

Cat/Cow spinal movements (in a chair or from table top on the floor)IMG_2092

IMG_2090

When you flow with the breath and engage the body, there is an immediate release of mental tension.  Getting the spine to move will free the buildup of tension in the brain, resulting in feeling refreshed and renewed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Seated or Standing Forward Bend (Uttanasana)–  Sitting to the front of the seat of a chair with feet wide, bend forward and let the head and arms hang.  Blood will flow to the head.  This circulation to the brain is refreshing and rejuvenating.  A good picture is here.  Alternatively, standing forward bend can be done with head supported on the chair, which is excellently shown here. It literally cools the brain to have the head supported. Both approaches incorporate a chair which is typically available before test-taking and invite the restoration of an equanimous mental state.

Child’s Pose (Balasana)

IMG_2096If getting on the floor is an option and your studying at home, curling in on oneself as Child’s Pose offers redirects focus inward (as opposed to getting caught up in a mental stress loop) and can dispel faulty notions of stress.   Child’s Pose evokes such a sense of comfort and safety.  The relaxing benefits of Child’s Pose are enhanced in this picture with the use of a bolster and a sandbag on the lower back.  Without these props, Child’s Pose is still a great study break.

 

 

 

Downward Dog (Adho Mukha Savanasana)IMG_2095
This is an inversion that also calls weight bearing activity of the arms and a good stretch of the legs.  Downward dog is a remedy for all kinds of stress anytime! Ways to get into downward facing dog pose are discussed here.

 

 

Best wishes to all the teens out there undergoing intense study periods.  Remember some amount of stress propels you to be your best and grow.  May you studiously prepare for your tests and also benefit from the strong internal knowing that all is well!

Get Access to the 12 Yoga Poses all Teens Should Know.

For a complete resource on all things teens and yoga, refer to Yoga 4 Teens, An Instructor’s Guide to Teaching Yoga to Teenagers.

Get “In” On the Discount Days with YogaMinded

Although admittedly late to the game, YogaMinded has not forgotten Cyber Monday! Our resources for teachers are available over the next three days (until Thursday) for 30% off.  Now is the time to grab some of our materials that will infuse your teaching with new knowledge.

Heck, you could also just get more comfy and cozy in our YogaMinded t-shirt, available in both black and white.

Apply coupon code: CyberDaysDisct.

Season’s greetings!
teaching-teens-yoga-vol3

TshirtVineyard 10cache_240_240_0_0_80_yoga-workshop-template

Our Yoga 4 Teens Instructor’s Guide Gets A New York Times Mention

In the context of reporting about Jaysea DeVoe, a 13-year-old yoga teacher from Southern California, our Instructor’s Guide gets a mention by The New York Times. The article reports Yoga 4 Teens: An Instructor’s Guide to Teaching Yoga to Teenagers to be a “popular manual”, which is a boost for teen yoga and teen yoga teachers everywhere.

YogaMinded is pleased to see Jaysea making a difference in her community.  Articles that highlight her teaching serve to role model yoga’s benefits for other teenagers.  And we’re all for that!  With the stresses that abound in teens’ lives, more teenagers still NEED yoga more than ever.

If you are a yoga practitioner and care about teens, the Yoga 4 Teens Instructor’s Guide can prepare you to have more engaging and rewarding classes for teenagers.   Its 275 pages of thoughtful content, abundant pictures, and well-organized chapters reflect the many years of experience of its co-authors and above all, their intention to aid others in shaping yoga to be meaningful in a teen setting. And, by the way, teenagers need you!

Yoga 4 Teens: An Instructor’s Guide to Teaching Yoga to Teenagers is now available as an e-book, as well.

Insight on SUP Yoga and Teens

Did you ever avoid something because it WAS trending?  SUP Yoga is hot right now.  If you doubt the challenge or enjoyment of it, I challenge you to give it a try.

I’ve enjoyed Stand Up Paddleboards (“SUP”‘s) since 2007 when my husband and I bought two boards.  What fun to be on the ocean, connecting to nature.  I regularly go out on my 10 ‘ SUP, usually with a friend.  I’ve even learned to surf with it, which makes catching small waves a tremendous thrill.  Here in California, there are some great SUP designated surf spots.

With all there is to enjoy with Stand Up Paddleboarding  (“SUP”) and my personal yoga practice to boot, I hadn’t gotten around to actually trying SUP yoga, until NOW.  So I’m reporting in….. what a great way to mix up your ordinary asana practice, open your mind and body to something different, and enhance the yoga experience with all that water and the outdoors element offers.

OliviaGateBest of all, I was able to share my SUP Yoga experience with another young lady.  Together, we had a good time experimenting with what yoga poses we could and couldn’t do.  I loved having the water underneath me, constantly shifting my balance point.  We even took an unplanned dip or two in the lake, which was a sure way to let go of expectations during practice (and add a good laugh, too).

Earth practice is so dependable;  but with SUP Yoga, the water provides a shifting base, making one refreshingly uncertain.  New ways to balance abound with SUP Yoga. The lovely and peaceful water element offers a profound relaxation experience (at least in certain conditions).  Is there anything more relaxing than the sound of water lapping?

If I am to be honest about my first SUP Yoga experience, I need to come clean with the fact that I felt a little embarrassed.  I’m used to doing my asana practice in private.  There were moments when I was self-conscious and concerned that I was being scrutinized.  That my young friend was open to joining me made me more comfortable.  I imagine that group SUP Yoga classes also would help ease the awkward factor of doing yoga by yourself on the water.

ChristyTadasanaI have a few more thoughts on this experience and how it might relate to teenagers.  As one legged balancing is irresistable for teens to try on the ground, the challenge of balancing on a SUP on even two feet is  enticing.  Believe it or not, Mountain Pose (or Tadasana) pictured below, can be so difficult to balance.  I was really squeezing into the mid-line here in the photo.  Savasana on a SUP is brilliant for posture awareness across the shoulders and upper back.  One can instruct the outer shoulders to touch the board and it’s an instant presto posture improvement.  Prayer hands (or namaskarasana) comes particularly alive on the water, I discovered, too.  My young friend agreed.

My guess is that the sensory stimulation of SUP Yoga would also be great for teenagers.  It’s pretty hard to focus on anything other than balancing and feeling what you feel when you’re doing SUP Yoga!

 

 

 

 

photo 2 Olivia UpDogOliviaCamel

 

 

OliviaSavasana

 

 

ChristySirsanaUpavista ChristySirsana ChristyGate ChristyDownDog ChristyCamel ChristySUP

 

LA Library Needs Teen Yoga Teacher

I was recently contacted by librarian and teen outreach coordinator, Dana Eklund, from the Sylmar branch of the Los Angeles library system.   He is looking for a certified yoga instructor who wouldn’t mind volunteering to teach yoga to teenagers and adults one or two Saturdays a month.

SyLibYouAreHereCropMPHSign-PBktTeenagers along with adults and some kids currently meet on Saturdays and do yoga with videos like Yogaminded’s Yoga 4 Teens DVD.  Dana says, “the teenagers really loved the workout with the Yoga 4 Teens DVD”.  The response for attracting teens has been encouraging, since adding teen specific videos.  Adding a live instructor to lead an hour long class would really complete their program.

Read and respond to this opportunity on yoga activist here.

What a fantastic opportunity!  I’m hoping this blogpost will touch the heart of the right, qualified person.  Either that, or I’m going to make the hefty commute myself!

Such a cool story, Dana writes:

“As a harried Dad working full time with another full time job at home raising a needy daughter, I couldn’t find time for yoga at home so I came up with the idea to get some mats and show videos  to people at the library. For the first two years, I only had one or two people (adults), a TV set  and a yoga for dummies video, but as the economy took a downturn more and more people started to show up and now with a supply of yoga mats and a big TV screen I’m getting usually 10-20 people each time. Still mostly adults but as my job is to do outreach to teens,  I’m really keen on aiming the program specifically at tweens and teens.  Since showing more yoga videos specifically for teens, more teens are coming a few are actually starting to bring their friends. Also Phoenix House, a local drug rehab center for teens, brings a group of their girls once or twice a year to do yoga.”

Here is a map and workout schedule  for the Sylmar library.  Dana will receive all responses from people through the yoga activist job posting so go ahead and make his day!