Instructor: Laura Remington
Community: High School Juniors/Seniors, Alternative High School Setting, 30-45 minutes
Plan Creation Date: May 1, 2014
Yoga Calm Principle/Lesson Goal: Stillness
Academic/Therapeutic/Other Goals: Making space in our lives for stillness.
Props/Music Resources Required: Music (iPhone), speakers, mats, blocks, Hoberman Sphere, Calm Voice Worksheets for all students and Pens.
- Natural Breath Inquiry – (prior to Belly Breathing with Hoberman Sphere)
- Belly Breathing – with student-led demonstration with Hoberman Sphere. Students choose how many breaths they need between 3-8. Draw students’ attention to the stillness between the inhale and exhalation.
- 2nd Natural Breath Inquiry – Discussion with students about whether or not their second inquiry felt different than the first. Discussion of sensations following Belly Breathing. Encouragement to utilize Belly Breathing to alleviate distress, reset and enhance focus.
- Cat-Cow – with emphasis on synchronized breathing (Cow=in-breath, Cat=exhalation). Also explain activation of core muscles and arms and legs as they press into the earth during Cat and activation of back muscles and chest expansion throughout Cow. Repeat sequences 4 times.
- Downward Dog – Proceed from Cat-Cows to first Downward Dog with knees bent.
- Child’s Pose – Relax into Child’s pose and remind students that they can return to either of these positions for rest or to reset their breathing. Child’s pose represents such a comfortable and insulated way for many students to synch with the breath and experience stillness.
- Yoga Flow – Brief activating sequence: Return to Downward Dog, come up to Warrior I, bring hands down and step into Plank, come back to Downward Dog, Warrior I on the opposite side, and step into Plank, lower down to Cobra, then to Child’s Pose, back up to Downward Dog, walk to front of mat into Forward Fold, and come to Upward Mountain and finally to Mountain. Have students proceed from Mountain to Forward Fold and repeat sequence independently in synch with their breath. Model in front for a reminder of how to do postures. Stress that students feel their bodies activate from the ground up, pressing away from the ground where hands and feet are in contact with the earth and activating appropriate muscles to perform movements.
- Calm Voice – Have students find a pose that is Calming for them personally and then proceed with Calm Voice Activity, reading them the prompts from the Calm Voice Worksheet. Distribute the Calm Voice Worksheet and have them fill out quietly. Share out.
- Relaxation – Three-Minute Exploration wherein students are asked to lay down (if they are comfortable in that position; they can be seated if not), close their eyes and visualize a place that is still, calming, and utterly peaceful to them. Remind them that this is a place of their making, a place that is theirs and theirs alone and that they may return there anytime they feel distress or when they need to relax.
- Closing – Close of class with expression of gratitude.