In the past 10 years, I attended many different yoga classes. Every yoga teacher has different styles of conducting lessons. At time, they will inform the class what will be the focus of the day such inversion or upper body poses, etc. However, they are some who prefer to monitor the energy in the class and plan on the spot.
Since I started my 200hrs Yoga Teacher Training (200YTT) course in June -2021, I am pondering if I can create a theme for every lesson that I conducting in the future. My first theme will be Chakras.
Write a little story about Chakras and why it speaks to you
There are 7 chakras (Sahasrara, Ajna, Vissudha, Anahata, Manipura, Svadhisthana & Muladhara). You can go through all the 7 chakras in an hour lesson by touching on each of them briefly. You may also want to select 1 or 2 chakras in a lesson so that you can go into details for the poses and breathing. It is important to explain the identity, elements and location of chakras,
To me, chakras is a chamber in the temple of the body that receives assimilates and transmits life force energy. It creates an inner roadmap for awareness in the body. When all chakras are aligned and tuned, energy flows freely. The chakras are a helpful way to think about modern-day spiritual ailments, metaphorical though that may be.
Chants, quotes, mantras or poems that connect
“Strength, love, courage, love, kindness, love, that is really what matters. There has always been evil, and there will always be evil. But there has always been good, and there is good now.”- Dr Maya Angelou
- Sahasrara = Silence
- Ajna = Om or Ksham
- Vissudha = Ham
- Anahata = Yam
- Manipura = Ram
- Svadhisthana = Vam
- Muladhara = Lam
Phases or sentences to employ during the lesson
Chakras literally means a wheel or disc, that enables energy to flow through or around it at various speeds, different directions, with a center that is anchored to a fixed point. There are 7 chakras in our bodies. In our practice today, we’ll mediate on each one, connecting a pose to each chakra space and moving with the intention to allow energy to flow freely.
Think of the energy flowing from your root to your head. Breathe deeply, allowing it to flow freely in every part of your body. Nothing to be forced.
While resting, we gain energy again. Rest, and tune in to the flow of your personal energy when your body is still.
**Remind the students about the chakras mantra.
Awareness of your chakras can start you on a path of self-discovery. Allow this knowledge to ignite your interest in self-study. The chakras are one more path to deeper self-knowledge.
Poses that work with chakra
Besides going into the poses below, you may want to warm up the students with 3 rounds of sun salutation A or sun salutation B.
(in sequence for each chakra)
- Muladhara (Coccyx) = Apanasana, Supta Padangusthasana, Setu Bandha Sarvangasana, Supta Virasana ending with Siddhasana
- Svadhisthana (Sacral area) = Baddha Konasana, Upavistha Konasana, Agnistambhasana (fire log pose), Eka pada kapotasana ending with Supta Baddha Konasana
- Manipura (Solar Plexus) = Standing side stretch, Virabhadrasana I, II & III, Viparita Virabhadrasana, Trikonasana ending with Ardha Chandrasana
- Anahata (heart) = Gomukhasana, Anahatasana, Parighasana 2, Ustrasana ending with Matsyasana
- Vissudha (Throat) = Sasangasana, Salamba Sarvangasana, Halasana ending with Karnapidasana
- Ajna (Brow) = Yoga eye exercise, Makarasana II, Pincha Mayurasana, Adho Mukha Vrksasana ending with Bakasana
- Sahasrara (Cerebal cortex) = Paripurna Navasana, Purvottanasana, Urdhva Dhanurasana ending with Savasana
You can perform all the poses in one lesson or break them up into a couple of lessons. The above poses for each chakra are just some of the common ones. Some of the poses impact more than one chakras.
After the Savasana, don’t forget to give your ending phase to complete the lesson!
Tips when planning yoga lesson with theme
- Write down how you want your students to feel end of your class. This will be the destined goal for the class.
- Next write out your road map to reach the destinated goal. It should include a list of sequences, poses, music playlist, and quotes, etc. You may also use online template for theming yoga lesson.
- Examine the road map and identify potential road bumps (such as pregnant student walk in to attend your lesson focusing on backbends, technical issue with music app, etc). Not forgetting to find alternative for those road bumps.
- Lastly, smile and find contentment in the lesson even if events do not go according to your plan.
Ivy Ng (July-2021)