Yoga Therapy Blog
The First Group!!
Yoga Therapy Training in Amsterdam
The first group
It has been an amazing two-weeks of Yoga Therapy training in Amsterdam…actually, I am not going to lie, I think that none of us realized how intense these days would be, even at a personal level.
This kind of training, this beautiful work, is not for the faint-hearted.
Let me warn you: there are no fancy studios with heated floors and trendy staff here. But there is a blackboard, large windows, and hard-working students who sometimes are so involved that forget to take a break.
We finish the day exhausted and exhilarated at the same time, as we walk out into the frozen ground of the Vondelpark. The students say the same every day: “there is so much to learn!”… and yet they keep on asking for more.
Building the house from the ground
Once the Dalai Lama asked, “why do people insist on building their house from the roof?” referring to how these days, people want to be “enlightened” before they build the foundation from the ground. First, you need to learn, to work on the land, to plant the seeds, to water the ground, and to wait for the sun.
The Yoga Therapy Foundation Course is just what it says on the jar. It is the foundation on which students will build the next two years, the study that will determine the quality of their work in the future as yoga therapists. Learning to stand before you walk and before you run.
A unique program
The most intense part of the training involved learning how to do a really effective physical and emotional assessment of a new client. This may seem simple at first, but it is a rather complex process in which clinical observation and client communication are necessary skills that need to be learned.
Attending these courses will not be enough for the students to obtain their Diploma. They will need to demonstrate their knowledge and skills with real clients.
I invited some of my own Yoga Therapy clients, including some that I had never met before. Students had the chance to witness real-life intakes and first-time treatments, and they also had the opportunity to participate themselves.
Following the guidelines of the IAYT, by the end of the Diploma Course in two years time, students will be able to carry out their own Yoga Therapy sessions with clients suffering from a wide range of health issues, from heart disease to herniated discs, and even cancer.
The small group allowed each student to receive the attention and the training they needed, according to their own specific needs. You did not find anyone at the back falling asleep, as you do in large groups! If they fell asleep, it was with full awareness and the love that the moment allowed -as one of the students came suffering from the flu-.
There is no choice but to be involved here.
In our tea-breaks, we discussed the cases we were studying, but we also spoke about our own issues. The Foundation course is a journey of self-discovery, in which you learn more about yourself in areas that you had not thought of, with practical applications of the Eight Limbs of Yoga and the Kosha System in each dimension of the human being, starting from yourself.
Students were surprised to see that, to be professional yoga therapists, first, we need to build on our own foundation, and that we cannot help others bring balance to their lives, unless we ourselves are aware of our own needs, and work on our own balance every day.
This group will always have a special place in my heart, as it was the first of the bravest… as they know, I will be eternally grateful for their indomitable spirit, their kindness, their honesty, and their sense of humour!!
I get the feeling that we will stay friends for life, as some of them continue the journey into The Yoga Therapy 500-800 hour Diploma courses. I look forward to every moment of it, with them and all the new Yoga Therapy trainees that have already registered for the future courses…a new generation of yoga therapists.
Here we go.