Strength carried through as our theme for the boys class ----with a group of 16 boys--12 of them new to the class it was fun to watch the new boys --one of whom said yoga was for girls--work hard, and while working hard, breathe together, and while breathing ---soften. The softening is really beautiful and many people whom I've spoke to don't believe that the softening takes place in one class--but for that one class they soften and you see the little boys who are scared, worried, and yet buoyed by their experience in the "yoga room" and they soften enough to feel safe, and when they feel safe their is a complete switch on of their learning and experiencing.
I've found that doing core work with the boys in JDC is a terrifically interesting experience--they have PE class, their PE instructor takes yoga with us now, and the PE instructor is learning right along with the boys, the proper alignment. We talk about how most movements that we do in Yoga are generated by the core--not the arms or legs (periphery). The best part of this teaching is when the boys get it and the core becomes their focus and they work harder than ever to get the poses right. We transisitoned from Dog to Lunge using our core, not the momentum of our leg, SEVERAL times---its beautiful when each ones gets it--they want to do everything core based. We talked about how life is just like this, slow down move from your midline--not worrying about the outside chatter--keep contained. It was AWESOME~
It's really encouraging to see the boys work through chaturanga--especially when, "is this it--I can do 100 push ups" comes across. I love to work through all the questions the boys have about their muscles and their alignment--as I have said before these boys are amazingly smart about wanting to learn what and why their muscles react to how their alignment is or isn't, and mostly how to get into proper alignment with what muscles.
Chaturanga today was really good, the boys listened, and worked their arms into alignment and even the PE teacher, listened and tried to do chaturanga not just push ups with arms. It was a really fun class.
The boys are doing meditation work, they ask every class in the beginning to make sure we are doing it and today it seemed like the 3 minutes flew by---I mean flew by--no fidgeting, no cracking of knuckles, no heavy sighs of boredom---they are also doing meditation on their own, and you can tell that they are because wow what a group of mediators. The new boys which was most of the class really pay attention to those who have come before and because they ones that have been there are into it--the new kids are into it and listen.
When I rang the bell for Savasana it was if their eyes turned to jewels--they transform--they become filled with their inner strength--it is amazing to witness. I'm working on next months newsletter, and I cannot wait to research the benefits of Savasana because some kids have told me that Savasana is the only time they truly are relaxed. Eye pillows were a hit with the boys-one of my boys said, "the pillows help me make my eyes float and I don't hold onto them so tight." Yep the power of yoga----I LOVE IT!!!!!