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How We Train Yoga Teachers

The Prison Yoga Project is dedicated to establishing yoga and mindfulness programs in prisons, jails and rehabilitation facilities and bringing yoga to all underserved populations, providing training for instructors and those with a committed yoga practice who are interested in teaching in these institutions. We believe in restorative justice, which is, providing prisoners with tools for self-rehabilitation. We've helped thousands of prisoners by instilling a practice of self-awareness and self-control that fosters accountability for one’s actions while addressing the harm caused oneself and others.

We've learned from 13 years of experience at San Quentin State Prison in California and many other correctional institutions, that yoga and mindfulness can help offenders change trauma-influenced, unconscious behavioral patterns – impulsive/reactive behavior and tendencies to drug and alcohol addiction as well as violence…usually the behavior that landed them in prison.  Our methodology focuses on impulse control, mood disorders, despair, violence prevention, addiction and PTSD.

This is the focus of our teacher Training. Except under unusual circumstances, it’s a fourteen hour, comprehensive and practical view of how to teach in prison, with a very good idea of what and how to teach to get the best results for the students. We discuss your approach to prison administrators, protocol of working in prison and much more. Those who have gone through it say that this is a memorable, and in some cases, life-altering experience. And that’s just the Training. The real payoff comes when you’re watching the transformational power of yoga, your own act of karma yoga, work wonders for people who really need and appreciate it.

This Training will prepare you to teach in prison. It will also teach you how to bring yoga into your daily life. The focus is on finding peak experience through seva…bringing Restorative Justice and the rehabilitative value of yoga and mindfulness into local prisons for the betterment of the neighborhoods that surround them.

Read more here about one teacher's experiences:  A blogger reveals her impressions from a PYP Training.


Workshop Documents

Research Documents for download Adverse Childhood Experience Study

Mindful Awareness: our methodology

Mindfulness, also known as mindful meditation or mindful awareness has scientific support...

The Yoga We Teach

Yoga's origins can be traced to the ancient Indian scriptures called the Vedas which date...