Sun Breaths is a dynamic warm-up sequence that focuses on the flow of arms with the breath. The breathing pattern (inhalation-hold-exhalation-hold) guides the movement of the arms that acts as a tool to bring more awareness to the body and breath.
On the Tree of Contemplative Practices, the roots symbolize the two intentions that are the foundation of all contemplative practices. The roots of the tree encompass and transcend differences in the religious traditions from which many of the practices originated, and allow room for the inclusion of new practices that are being created in secular contexts.
The branches represent different groupings of practices. For example, Stillness Practices focus on quieting the mind and body in order to develop calmness and focus. Generative Practices may come in many different forms but share the common intent of generating thoughts and feelings, such as thoughts of devotion and compassion, rather than calming and quieting the mind. (Please note that such classifications are not definitive, and many practices could be included in more than one category.)
Starting a Mindful Practice Group by Meena Srinivasan
A GREAT WAY to support your practice is to start a mindful practice group at your school. You could meet once a week either before or after school, or if that’s too much, start with meeting once or twice a month. Perhaps you can use your classroom or talk with an administrator about using a common space to meet. Even though this space should be confidential so all participants feel safe express- ing themselves, I suggest forming various practice groups to suit people’s needs. For example, there could be a group for the entire school community or one just for teachers or just for parents. I had an experience where some of my teaching colleagues felt that if there were administrators or parents in the group, they would not feel comfortable or safe that the group would honor how they truly felt. So it’s important to create safe spaces in which individuals feel they can express themselves without being afraid of being criticized later.
Welcoming Inclusion Activities are brief, interactive experiences that bring the
voice of every participant into the room, making a connection to one another
and/or to the work ahead, with each perspective-laden, culturally-rich voice being
heard, respected and learned from. The more we fully share ourselves and are fully
received and understood by others, the stronger and safer our learning
environments become. Growing knowledge of and appreciation for our groups help
ensure that we will provide opportunities to welcome people in the ways they need
and want to be included.
Psychologist Barbara Fiese explains that routines are a way of communicating “this
is what needs to be done,” while rituals symbolically communicate the idea that
“this is who we are” as a group, providing continuity in meaning across time.
Learn About Eligibility & For What the Funds Can Be Used
Who is Eligible to Apply for the Yoga Alliance Foundation Emergency Relief Fund?
Applicants must be yoga professionals (yoga schools and yoga teachers). Yoga professionals who also teach mindfulness and/or other modalities are also eligible.
Applicants’ income must have been at or below 100% of the Area Median Income (AMI) prior to loss or reduction of income due to the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) crisis
Note: AMI is based on household size
Applicants must demonstrate a loss of income as a result of the COVID-19 (coronavirus) crisis.
Proof of yoga teaching, residency, income eligibility, and proof of loss or reduction of income due to COVID-19 (coronavirus) must be provided.
Immigration status will not be considered in determining eligibility (i.e. undocumented residents are eligible).
ForWhat Can the Emergency Relief Funds be Used?
The funds will be allocated for expenses that qualify as basic needs: rent or mortgage and utilities such as food andelectricity. The Fund will also be available to assist with other needs as detailed below.
Approved applicants will receive a minimum of $150 USD and maximum $1750 USD.
Note: The Emergency Relief Fund is not for overdue rent payments, overdue mortgage payments, or overdue utility payments owed prior to the loss or reduction of income due to COVID-19 (Coronavirus).
All applicants will be asked to provide a photo I.D. to prove identity.
The application does not require government identification numbers, so please delete them or cross them out prior to submitting.
Proof of loss or reduction of income due to COVID-19 must be demonstrated in one of the following ways:
Two pay stubs, one showing income before loss or reduction of income, and one showing income after loss or reduction of income and dated after January 1, 2020,
A letter from current/former employer that indicates change of income due to COVID-19,
A business closure notice from the applicant’s employer dated January 1, 2020 or after,
A tax statement that shows reduction of child support payments since March 1, 2020,
An affidavitfrom a family or child support provider indicating that they are unable to pay applicant because of COVID-19, OR
An affidavitof loss of income and wages since January 1, 2020.
Income reduction may include, but not be limited to: reduction of hours of employment, loss of employment, loss of other income sources (such as reduction or loss of family or child support, or other significant income disruption). Loss of income does not include loss of investment income. See Application Instructions for additional details..
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I continue to teach two weekly yoga classes online on a volunteer basis at no cost. Though this circumstance is not ideal, I am grateful to have this outlet to teach so that I can still connect with others and to not allow my teaching skills to get rusty.
Deepening my practice with consistency and openness for knowledge and new experiences has helped me feel grounded and my heart at ease during these uncertain times.