Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Keep it Simple Sweetie: Sequencing Tips for Teachers

We've all heard the acronym "K.I.S.S" which I like to define as, "Keep it Simple Sweetie." This is a wonderful way to think about yoga sequencing and class planning. Many teachers have come to me over the years asking how they can know if their classes have helped their students. While just about any yoga class will help, there are very simple things you can do to ensure a class meets the mark every time.

"Keep it Simple Sweetie" is my personal favorite teaching technique. Keeping it simple means coming up with a simple theme, one that you can concisely speak about, and one that you can relate to your peak posture or can apply easily to the entire practice.

Whatever you choose keep looping your theme and your poses together. Create a tapestry that pulls out the same colors and creates a consistent pattern. You can take a simple theme like, "coming out of hibernation" and apply it to an entire class sequenced around cobra pose (this is what I taught last night) and share some interesting facts about snakes, hibernation, and focus on back bends that build in complexity from the simple shape and alignment points of cobra.

When you keep a theme simple and focus on one pose as your anchor students can sync their imagination to the evolution of their poses. Before they know it, they are going deeper and further into postures then they have before and they walk away from your class with their imagination engaged and spirits heightened.

If yoga is is the yoking together of mind, body, and soul then maybe all we need to do as teachers is to design simple classes that engage the imagination, provide intelligent sequencing, and offer soulful meaning. What do you think?

If you are looking for some wonderful sequencing resources, here are a few of my faves:

Yoga Sequencing: Designing Transformative Yoga Classes by Mark Stephens
Jivamukti Yoga by Sharon Gannon and David Life

Happy teaching sweeties!


1 comment:

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