DATE(S): February 9, 2018 – February 11, 2018
February 9-11, 2018
Cost: $250; $225 early bird if purchased no later than January 1
Friday, February 9 ~ 6:00 – 8:00 pm
Saturday ~ 9:00 am – noon; 1:45 – 4:45 pm
Sunday ~ 9:00 am – noon
In this training we will address fundamental, need-to-know (and eye-opening) aspects of our physical practice in a way that is immediately useful to teachers as well as extraordinarily helpful for interested or advancing students; and we will tie this to the evolving spiritual philosophy of yoga, starting especially from the hatha yoga and tantric traditions from which contemporary yoga has sprung in its practical aspects.
This concerns primarily the conception of the ‘yoga body:’ how the yogis came to conceive of the body on all of its levels of experience, and how this relates to our maintenance of our physical as well as spiritual health. These ideas will be placed in relationship to our contemporary understanding of the body and mind, particularly on a fascial level, and the relationship of our healthy functioning to our patterns of movement, breath and even sleep (in relation to the vital role of yoga nidra).
Friday Evening Practice February 9, 6:00-8:00 pm
A Practical Introduction to the Sacrum and Sacral Stability in Asana
This asana session will include a light introduction to the sacrum and actions in asana that promote a balance of sacral mobility and stability, countering the typical causes of low back and sacral pinching or pain in asana — particularly twists. The emphasis will be on some fundamental ideas for practice, which we will take into a well-rounded practice including some vinyasa, standing poses, twists, forward bends and very light backbending.
Saturday Morning 9:00 am—Noon
The Sacrum and Low Back: Keys to Practice
This session will include some lecture, with the support of illustrated slides with notes that will also be available to you for download. The lecture will go more deeply into the sacrum and low back, including the relationship of the breath to health in this area. The main points will then be brought into practice, through both remedial exercises and points for asana practice.
Saturday Afternoon 1:45-4:45 pm
Better Breathing in Asana, Pranayama and Relaxation
The two most fundamental patterns in our lives for maintaining our health are our breathing patterns and our sleep patterns. And these are the two patterns that are the most disordered and dysfunctional in our lives, and with enormous impact on our health.
This session will explore ‘openers’ for cultivating space for the breath, as well as toning exercises related to the bandhas for sustaining better breathing patterns. This will be brought first into a few stretches and asanas as warmups or preparation for pranayama, and then into pranayama itself, with some focused work on the most fundamental pranayamas for health, deeper relaxation and meditation.
The practice will be carried further into yoga nidra, with some discussion of the significance of the practice of yoga nidra in relationship to our sleep patterns. Starting from an exploration of the benefits and function of sleep and the relationship of healthy breathing patterns to sleep, we will explore the approach to yoga nidra as essential to the deeper aspects of yoga practice, including meditation. Our approach will link the processes associated with Kundalini and the essential processes that take place in deep relaxation, especially when facilitated by focused practice.
Sunday Morning 9:00 am—Noon
The Upper Body: Neck, Shoulders and the Breath in Asana
Neck and shoulder health are intimately tied to our breathing patterns — and often we use the neck and shoulders to facilitate the breath in ways that cause tension and limitation. Asana practice is an opportunity to use the arm and neck actions in the poses to deepen our experience of the breath while bringing greater ease to breathing. The ‘Ujjayi’ breath is at the center of healthy diaphragmatic breathing in the poses, but the actions of the neck and shoulders are crucial to doing it well!
This will be a well-rounded asana session, with special attention and focus given to the neck and shoulders, with exercises and variations on poses as well as some lecture at the beginning of the session, with illustration of the points that will be available for download.
Doug Keller’s background reflects a lifelong commitment to studying, imbibing and sharing the vast field of knowledge and practice known as yoga. After receiving honors and graduate degrees in philosophy from the top Jesuit universities in the United States, Georgetown and Fordham Universities, and teaching philosophy at a college level for several years, he then pursued his ‘post-graduate’ education in the practical experience of yoga at the Siddha Meditation Ashram, Gurudev Siddha Peeth in India, for seven years. He spent a total of 14 years doing service, practicing, training in and teaching yoga in Siddha Meditation Ashrams worldwide. He received intensive training in the Iyengar system in New York City, practiced Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga in India, and became one of the first certified Anusara Yoga teachers, producing three highly respected books on asana, pranayama and yoga philosophy. His work has since taken him beyond the confines of the Anusara system.
His further expansion in learning is reflected in his latest and most in-depth work, ‘Yoga as Therapy,’ which is truly one of the most comprehensive, innovative and useful treatments of the structural aspect of yoga therapy available. And for three years he was a regular columnist for Yoga+ Magazine (formerly Yoga International, published by the Himalayan Institute), writing the ‘Asana Solutions’ column that addresses specific therapeutic problems. He is at the highest level of certification with Yoga Alliance, ERYT500, and a member of the International Association of Yoga Therapists.
Doug is also advisory director and a regular member of the teaching faculty at the Master’s Degree program in Yoga Therapy at the Maryland University of Integrative Health, a state–approved institution of higher learning. The program is also officially approved as a certification program for yoga therapeutics by the International Association of Yoga Therapy.
Doug’s teaching is rooted in a vast and inclusive perspective of study and practice that honors the insights of the many streams of wisdom that flow into the river of yoga.