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Taking roots in ancient knowledge and making a bridge to modern life, this yoga teacher training will guide you through the practical, philosophical, and mythological aspects of yoga. By practicing classical Hatha yoga with devotion, you will be able to follow any style of your choice in the future and reap physical, mental, and spiritual fulfillment from this life-supporting practice. In a serene and ambiance rooftop studio surrounded by a tropical garden, you will deepen your self-practice and experience the true principles of yoga.
During this yoga retreat, you will stay in a very comfortable twin bedroom with private bathroom, balcony, and kitchen facility surrounded by a beautiful garden with a large terrace. Ganesha Palace Hotel is ideally located at only two minutes from the beach and Varkala cliff, restaurants, and shops. Special requests like air conditioning can be accommodated on request for a small extra charge. Under programs, you will find more information about yoga classes, retreats in Varkala, and yoga tours through Kerala.
Shiva Rishi Yoga at Varkala Cliff provides a traditional style of yoga, comprehensive and genuine knowledge of practical yoga psychology and philosophy, mantra chantings, Bhakti yoga, bhajans, and daily teachings (yoga philosophy, anatomy classes, focus on alignment and adjustment to avoid injuries, pranayama classes, yoga workshop for yogic management of common diseases, asanas sequencing).
With an education in techniques, teaching methodology, anatomy, yoga philosophy, and practical teaching experience, you will ultimately feel safe and adequately prepared to instruct a general adult population.
After all, yoga is more than physical exercise or stress release. These benefits all come as side effects of regular practice, yet the ultimate aim of yoga is to transcend the limited and egoistic self and connect with the unlimited eternal. Beyond education, Shiva Rishi Yoga at Varkala Cliff will provide a proper spiritual environment for your journey.
Several years of experience flowed into the shaping of a characterful, recreative accommodation atmosphere, and well-elaborated yogi diet to ideally assist your practices. Furthermore, Shiva Rishi Yoga at Varkala Cliff invites you to occasional spiritual trips into the gorgeous landscapes of Kerala in that you attune to nature by walks, mantras, music, and bhajan singing.
In order to be a good teacher, it is important to establish or deepen your self-practice. To do so, you will practice in the morning and evening together in a group setting supervised and instructed by lead trainers.
In the morning, you will practice Vinyasa Kriya flow yoga. It entails the practice of varying flow sequences uniting asanas with breathing and mantras followed by relaxation, pranayama, and kriyas. By this way, you will get a practical impression of different Vinyasa sequences.
In the beginning of the teacher training course, you will start with basic flow exercises that are gradually improved over time. You can experience its physical and energetic effects as also observe how different categories of asanas (bends, twists, and inversions that are investigated in theory classes) harmonize in a set.
Towards the evening, when the sun sinks behind the palm trees in the sea and the climate cools down a little, you will practice classical Hatha yoga. In an atmosphere charged with peace and devotion, you will practice recreational Shanti asanas in the tradition of Swami Sivananda and his disciple Swami Satyananda Saraswati, who framed ancient yoga teachings in a modern language that incorporates both traditional and scientific understandings.
By harmonizing all levels of human life and experience through practical means of asanas, pranayama, kriyas, bandhas, and mudras, you start balancing the sun and moon energies (ha-tha), purify nadis and chakras, and you ultimately practice to gain mastery of prana in order to control the mind.
The training is divided into five blocks.
Herein you will receive training of asanas, pranayama, kriyas, mantras, and meditation in a practical and analytical way. Following a scientific approach, you will discuss physical and energetical health benefits. Subsequently, you will learn to recognize practice mistakes and apply adequate alignments. Find some examples for this block outlined in the following:
Standing asanas stretch and strengthen the back, shoulders, and leg muscles. This is especially important to face stiffness and back pain difficulties increasingly arising in modern times through long hours of sitting.
In this section, you will learn common standing postures, how to explain their benefits, discover and correct common misalignments, understand similarities and exceptions to other asana categories, and experience balancing effects of standing asanas for the root chakra. You will further discuss how to provide effective verbal cues to direct practitioners coming in and out of the poses, how to verbally adjust them, and how to breathe properly.
Bending asanas loosen the back by separating vertebras and improve blood circulation around the spine. This brings vitalizing and overall health improving effects on all organs and the brain. You will receive analytical training by demonstration, conversation, and the use of the teacher training course guidebook in how to teach, practice, and adjust bending postures.
The learning objects herein are to explain bending postures and their benefits, verbalize and demonstrate alignments, beware of common misalignments and risk factors, how to direct practitioners coming in and out, how to breathe in these positions, and understand similarities and exceptions to other asana categories.
Pranayama regulates prana flow in nadis of pranamaya Kosha. Through practice, observation, and discussion, you will learn the most common breathing techniques, how to explain benefits, and how to direct practitioners through these exercises. You will also practice pranayama on occasional spiritual trips and breathe fresh air in the mountains or on the rocks at the shore.
Learning objectives: get an overview and practice experience of multiple techniques about the four aspects of breathing (breathing in, out, holding breath in, and holding the breath out), how to incorporate pranayama in an asanas class, which breathing exercises are appropriate for different ability levels, age groups, and practitioners with special needs (pregnancy, menstruation, etc.).
According to Samkhya, one of the schools of Hindu philosophy, the very first element that manifested itself in this plane was sound and that the element of sound itself originated from Lord Shiva's drum. Sanskrit mantras are energy-based sounds that have the power to vibrate and resonate throughout the entire body.
Sound travels five times more efficiently through water than through air, and as the human body is comprised of more than 70% water, it is, therefore, an excellent conductor for both sound and vibration. The regular practice of mantras balances the agitations of manomaya Kosha. Once a week, there is Yajna yoga time in the evening with a puja with meditation, mantras, breathing techniques, and offerings.
IIn this section, classes will address how to use verbal and physical hands-on adjustments, how to give clear and coherent instructions, how to sequence classes, how poses interact, and how to integrate breathing exercises.
Herein, you will broaden your understanding of the physical anatomy of the human body and combine important aspects of postures and anatomy with contemplative and internal facets of yoga. Next to physical anatomy, you will go deeper into the realms of energy anatomy of chakras, Kundalini, Gunas, Tattwas, Koshas, Nadis, and Vayus.
This teacher training places an emphasis on discovering the vast heritage of yoga philosophy. By introducing the Samkhya system of evolution and discussing traditional texts (such as the Yoga Sutras by Patanjali), you will explore the eight limbs of Ashtanga yoga in more detail and take a glimpse beyond the first limbs towards the ultimate goal of yoga.
Next to getting inspiration from these sacred texts, it may help you recognize how important a firm foundation in these first limbs is as a prerequisite to progress on this path of liberation and how you, as prospective yoga teachers, can assist other beings with that.
Your teachers are looking forward to inspiring conversations about the precept of non-violence (ahimsa), the concepts of dharma and karma and finally the value of teaching yoga while being of service to others (seva).
In this section, you will be slowly prepared to lead a yoga class yourself. In the beginning, you will teach sun salutation and simple sequences to each other. In the progress of your training, you will then start to observe and correct and finally practice teaching as the lead instructor or observe others teaching.
After becoming more established in yoga, automatically awareness will increase about one's diet, too. You will learn theoretical aspects of Ayurveda helping you to discover a diet fitting to your type of body and individual needs and intellectually understand the positive effects of the high qualitative yogi diet you are served throughout the teacher training program. If you like to relax from the training, you will be delighted to find the yoga studio surrounded by several skilled Ayurvedic massage salons.
Next to a qualitative education with responsible teaching and care for your individual learning process, this teacher training is distinct in that Shiva Rishi Yoga at Varkala Cliff likes to make occasional spiritual trips on free days and explore the many diverse landscapes of Kerala like the backwaters, hills, and hidden beaches.
Shiva Rishi Yoga at Varkala Cliff likes to make occasional spiritual trips during the free days to explore the many diverse landscapes of Kerala like the backwaters, hills, and hidden beaches.
Shiva is the founder of Shiva Rishi Yoga. He is a yogi who has trained in various styles including Bihar School, Sivananda, and the teachings of Patanjali, and his sadhana (life practice) reflects one fully dedicated to the yogic way of life. By placing practice within the context of Indian culture and philosophy, Shiva's classes are an ever-deepening experience of the true tradition of yoga. Shiva says, "only when the mind is focused in its subtlest form, you can realize your true self and the ultimate aim of yoga is accomplished."
Dr. Anish BAMS is an Ayurvedic doctor and he will teach you anatomy classes. Here you will also discuss the benefits of asanas, how to address specific problems, or what to avoid during that time. Moreover, he will introduce you to the ancient healing science of Ayurveda, which ideally complements the yogic practices.
This teacher training will take place in Varkala, India. Varkala, a calm and quiet hamlet, lies on the outskirts of Thiruvananthapuram district. It has several places of tourist interest like a beautiful beach, a 2000-year-old Vishnu temple, and the Ashramam - Sivagiri Mutt, a little distance from the beach.
The Papanasam Beach (also called Varkala Beach), which is ten kilometers away from Varkala, is renowned for the natural spring. It is considered to have medicinal and curative properties. A dip in the holy waters at this beach is believed to purge the body of impurities and the soul of all sins; hence the name 'Papanasam Beach'.
A two-thousand-year-old shrine, the Janardhanaswamy Temple, is at a short distance away from the beach. The Sivagiri Mutt, founded by the great Hindu reformer and philosopher Sree Narayana Guru (1856 - 1928) is also close by.
The Samadhi (the final resting place) of the guru here attracts thousands of devotees every year during the Sivagiri Pilgrimage days - December 30 to January 1. Sree Narayana Guru propagated the ideology: "one caste, one religion and one god", in a society torn by the taboos of caste system. Varkala offers excellent accommodation facilities for tourists and is fastly becoming a popular health resort with many Ayurvedic massage centers.
You will be served full vegetarian Sattvic yogi diet (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) six days a week. Please notice Shiva Rishi Yoga at Varkala Cliff in case of dietary restrictions and allergies.
During your free time, you will be able to enjoy Varkala's sights, such as a boat tour and meditation on Golden Island. You will also explore the many diverse landscapes of Kerala like the backwaters, hills, and hidden beaches.
You cannot miss the elephant and dolphin watching, as well as a spiritual trip to Keralan backwaters and Golden Island, Jayattupara Mountain, visiting Amma Ashram Amritapuri (Amma is widely regarded as one of India's foremost spiritual leaders).
Amritapuri is a huge complex, with about 3500 people living here permanently - monks, nuns, students, and families, both Indian and foreign. It offers food, Ayurvedic treatments, and a daily schedule of yoga, meditation, and darshan.
Trivandrum International Airport
Please book your flight to arrive at Trivandrum International Airport (TRV). Transfer from and to the airport is included. Shiva Rishi Yoga at Varkala Cliff will pick you up from the airport.
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