Unwind the Feminine
Yoga & Trauma: An Embodiment of Healing
A specialised training for women
5TH – 12TH MAY 2020
This training translates yogic thought and contemporary science into embodied wisdom for the modern woman. When we unwind old stories, injuries, shock, trauma, anxiety and stress lodged in the physical, mental and emotional bodies, then a magical alchemy can unfold which brings us home to ourselves. This “home” allows us to embrace our past history and present circumstances. We then empower ourselves to walk forwards in the direction of our choice. By fine tuning yoga practices and teachings to support the nervous system there is space for the body’s innate intelligence to be heard. The more in-tune we are then the more capable we are to step up, show up and take action in a way that supports our health, relationships, community and environment. This, is the heart of yoga.
Who this is for:
- Women who can relate to times of challenge, injury or illness.
- Teachers who wish to refine their offerings and teach yoga as a system of life support: To recover from past challenges and be prepared to embrace future ones.
- Therapists who feel the importance of guiding clients back to the wisdom of their bodies via simple and effective yoga practices and techniques.
- Professionals in need of some R & R: Self-care for those working in conflict areas, humanitarian aid, social work and development.
Why this course in 2020:
This course will be of special benefit to the dedicated yogini who would like to build her own programs geared towards supporting the physical, emotional and spiritual dimensions of women’s health and integrating past challenges. It is packed full with a wealth of techniques and practices for those working in this field, about how to integrate the healing power of yoga in a practical, rooted, effective and necessary way.
This is a time that many of us are desperate to make a difference in the world. To nurture and nourish our relationships, community and environment. Yet the challenges of the modern world can seem so overwhelming and so extreme that it is almost paralysing. The tendency to turn and look the other way, or conversely to take rash action that may not always have the desired effect, is tempting.
This course is about looking inwards to gently integrate past traumas, release stress and support vitality through the lens of yoga. This course is not about reinventing the wheel, but rather about learning how to lean into yoga in a way that we honour the first percept of the Yamas: Non-violence (ahimsa). The more aware we become of our own inner world the more empowered we become to stop perpetuating the cycle of violence which we might be inadvertently participating in. This could be through mindless consumerism, self-harm, toxic relationships or a general disregard/numbness for what is going on around us.
The Patanjali Yoga Sutra 1.7 reminds us that the most valid form of knowledge is direct experience (pratyaksha). In 2018 I was given such training that I couldn’t have learned on a yoga mat. However, yoga had prepared me to be able to rise through challenge, and to come out through the other side with invaluable insights to share:
My life turned upside down as I was accidentally set on fire and lost 30% of my skin. In return I received the most gracious support of friends, students, teachers and total strangers. I was forced to apply my years of studying and practicing yoga to fully integrate a very real trauma whilst dealing with a severe physical injury. The accident forced me to see the years of cumulative stress that had wound me into varying states of anxiety. My injury required that I become intimate friends with my body, its cycles, rhythms and history. My recovery demanded that I recommit to my intimate relationships, yoga and spiritual practices in order to move through fear and re-embrace my life. The content of this training is fresh, sincere and has come from lived experience. It is not a replacement for therapy. It is an exploration of the gems at the fingertips of every yoga practitioner.
9-11am Morning practice
3-5pm Presentation/ dyads/ group work
5-6.30pm Evening practice
The group will be limited to 22 women to ensure we all have a time to drop in and connect. There will be 2 experienced assistants to support your journey.
All ages of women are welcome. One of the gifts of teaching at the Yoga Barn is that is attracts women from all stages and walks of life. The group itself is always diverse and offers a unique richness of life experience and cultural exchange.
Limited scholarships are available for practitioners & teachers who live in areas of conflict and political unrest.
A $300 USD deposit (is included in the total rate and is required to reserve your space on the immersion).
Price includes all tuition, excursion to a local water temple, post-course integration (excludes food, flights and accommodation).
Early Bird Price (before 20th February): $908
Regular price: $1208
Course Content (Pdf of course outline available here)
Embodied Practices (morning and evening):
- Feminine flows: Supportive of reproductive health
- Yoga for stress and anxiety: The benefits of combining a breath-based practice with yoga therapy and restorative yoga
- Yoga for Resilience: Embrace a challenging practice to rebuild self-esteem without using it to distract.
- Yin yoga and visualisation: Ways to explore parts of ourselves we may have numbed and how to self-regulate.
- Myo-fascial unwinding: Calm the nervous system and gently increase the capacity to feel what is ready to be felt
- Personalise your self-practice: A necessary step in order to guide others to do the same.
- Thai Massage: Develop a healthy and intuitive relationship with the art of healing touch.
- Healing power of mudra: Demystify the power of gesture to direct vitality and nurture positive thought patterns.
Resiliency tool kit:
- Adapt hatha yoga for the modern world via the vayus, koshas, chakras and meridian energy lines.
- Yoga for stress and anxiety: Understand the science behind the nervous system and how to apply this knowledge to how & why we practice.
- Yoga and trauma: What the scriptures have to say vis-à-vis karma and moksha
- The art of ritual as a way to regain order in the chaos
- Cognise the causes and different responses to trauma and how to curate appropriate yoga practices
- Cultivate self-acceptance and trust for healthy relationships and intimacy
Trauma and Spirituality:
- Ahimsa: We heal so that we don’t perpetuate the cycle of violence
- Hatha Yoga: Moving beyond the mind to the source – the body
- Patanjali Yoga Sutra: The kleshas and insights into the causes of our suffering
- Bhagavad Gita: Karma, dharma and bhakti
- Upanishads: Discernment into the nature of life itself and the constant of change
- Samkyha: Return to the elements
- Dangers of spiritual bypassing
- Grief as a testament to love and pain as a doorway to compassion
Specifically for women:
- Trauma and the menstrual cycle
- The vagina – brain connection: A deeper understanding of self-esteem, vocalising and creativity
- The effects of stress on the reproductive system, fertility & libido
- The nervous system, nutrition and hormones
- Śākta Tantra: Insight into yoga’s complex history & guidance from the great goddesses
Social justice: Widening perspectives for the greater good:
- Insight into ancestral, intergenerational and historical trauma and considerations for working/ relating to affected populations
- Yoga as an intervention: Contextualising contemporary yoga within a wider environment of “productivity, profit and power”
- The reclamation of health & vitality
- Vicarious trauma and cumulative stress: Self-care for those working with trauma survivors, in order to cultivate wise intention, right action and job satisfaction
- Meditation techniques to welcome compassion and strengthen the capacity to feel
Refine the lens of teaching yoga:
- Yoga in contemporary industry: Unwinding the strive for perfection
- Exploring a post-lineage yoga and the confidence to step outside of the box/line
- Trauma Informed Care for yoga within a general class: Props, cues, tone, assists, consent, intelligent sequencing
- Trigger verses healing practices: The do’s and don’t of certain asana, pranayama & kriya
- Healing the guru-student relationship and patterns of abuse
- Creating a brave space verses a safe space
- How to teach a physical practice as a way to reflect resiliency, awareness and self-leadership
- Explore games and practices to enhance your public speaking skills and self confidence
- Master the power of language: voice, tone, themes, create your own anchor and teach from your own lived experiences
- Draw on yogic thought to add depth to your classes and power to your purpose
We delight in the beauty of the butterfly, but rarely admit the changes it has gone through to achieve that beauty.
– Maya Angelou