To practice yoga is to know yourself. Your mind and your body. Your fears and your limits. Your ego and your wisdom. Your ignorance and your strengths.
To become an effective yoga teacher, knowledge of anatomy is essential. The more you understand the physical body and how it moves, the better you will know your own practice and the more capable you will be to teach others.
In this 8-class course, we will explore human anatomy as it applies to movement and the practice of asana. Each session involves lecture, discussion and hands-on work. You will learn about the key muscles, tendons, ligaments and joints, as well as the fascia. And you will learn about common injuries that occur in yoga classes and the kinds of sedentary lifestyle problems that many new students have when they first come to a yoga class.
This 20-hour course is designed both for prospective yoga teachers and all serious yoga students interested in understanding their bodies and their practice better.
1. November 5 (Tue) 11:15 - 13:45
Introduction to Anatomy for Yoga. Learn basic terminology and what happens to the muscles, tendons, ligaments, joints, and fascia when you stretch, move, practice particular asanas.
2. November 7 (Thu) 13:15 - 15:45
In the second session, we examine the concept of “inner” vs. “outer” muscles? How do inner muscles relate to the idea of “the core”? We explore how these muscles come into play when practicing particular asanas, when stretching, when working out in the gym, and in daily life.
3. November 12 (Tue) 11:15 - 13:45
The third session centers on the spine. We explore the anatomy of the cervical, thoracic and lumbar spine as well as the relationship of the spine to the pelvis. In this experiential session, we look at what happens to the spine in particular asanas and examine common spinal injuries and ways to prevent them.
4. November 14 (Thu) 13:15 - 15:45
The fourth session centers on the shoulder—the amazing mobility and inherent instability of this ball-and-socket joint. With particular attention to the rotator cuff, we will see what occurs in the shoulder joint during weight-bearing and non-weight-bearing exercise.
5. November 19 (Tue) 11:15 - 13:45
The fifth anatomy session centers on the elbows and wrists. We examine the complex anatomy of the hands and fingers and how the location of the elbow between the shoulders and the wrists leaves it vulnerable.
6. November 21 (Thu) 13:15 - 15:45
Session sixth centers on the hips and pelvis. We explore the meaning of “hip opening,” examining the anatomy of the outer and inner hips as well as the pelvic floor. We discuss differences in the hips according to gender and age.
7. November 26 (Tue) 11:15 - 13:45
In the seventh session, we examine the knees and ankles. We explore the complex anatomy of the feet and ankles and how the location of the knee, a hinge joint between the ankle and the hips, leaves it vulnerable in certain practices, and look at the pathology of common knee injuries.
8. November 28 (Thu) 13:15 - 15:45
If you teach public yoga classes, you should be prepared to encounter a wide range of students with different levels of experience, different personalities, and different body types. You should also be prepared to deal with issues such as students who have questions about practicing during menstruation, pregnant students, senior citizens who want to start yoga, students who become very emotional during class, and much more. In this final session, we look at the some of common special-needs situations you might encounter in class and effective ways to address them.