We at YD are so honored to be sponsoring our second Street Yoga training in NYC. We did our own training with founder Mark Lilly back in July 2011 and learned so much, not only about bringing yoga to at-risk youth, but how to do our own work internally, asking the important questions in preparation, to build a strong foundation from which to serve. We still use some of what we learned that weekend on our own mats or leading a class filled with them.
And so it’s doubly exciting to be able to offer to you our very first scholarship giveaway for Street Yoga’s NYC Training! It’s coming up quick (Jan 27-29) so read on about details and how to enter.
What is Street Yoga? Street Yoga is a non-profit org based out of Portland, OR that spreads mindfulness and healing to youth in need. They have programs in several cities across the country and in their trainings offer hands-on practice in teaching yoga and mindfulness to youth and families struggling with homelessness, poverty, abuse, addiction, trauma and behavioral challenges.
WIN: A half scholarship to the Jan 27-29 NYC training (regular full cost $290, so yours would be $145).
The Street Yoga Teacher Training is a 14 hour CEU workshop for those interested in learning how to teach yoga to individuals facing huge life struggles. Participants will learn how to weave yoga and mindfulness practices into youth activities and therapy work, about the trauma-healing effects of yoga, appropriate boundaries for touch and much more.
The training is NASW approved for Continuing Education Contact Hours for social workers, and yoga teachers may receive Yoga Alliance continuing education credits.
There are a few stipulations before entering:
1. We hope you are interested in learning more about working with these populations. (ps. even if you’re not entirely sure and just curious we promise it’s still totally worth it).
2. Winner must be able to attend the weekend of Jan 27-29. The training is being held at Sonic Yoga in Hell’s Kitchen (9th Ave between 50th and 51st). Friday 7:30 – 9:30pm, Saturday 12pm – 7pm, Sunday 10am – 5pm.
TO ENTER: Easy peasy. In the comments, tell us why you’re interested in the training. Short, long, verbose or in a few words, just make them your own.
Entries accepted until noon on Thursday, January 19th. Winner will be chosen at random and announced by Friday the 20th. Good luck!
Here’s a video interview with Mark Lilly talking more about the mission of Street Yoga.
Also, his take on the NYT body-wrecking sitch, as it were.
1) The biggest injury seemed to occur when people “forced it.” The same would happen with ballet, tennis, football, golf, kung fu. Any personal practice, if done for ego-gratifying reasons, might cause harm.
2) Some people take up yoga for externally facing reasons – to look better or to fit into a certain situation, or simply for exercise. If folks don’t go from that to an awareness that the whole point of yoga is to become more truthful with yourself, and to follow precepts of humility and grace, then there is more likelihood of “force” – self-generated – which can again, cause harm.
3) If one approaches yoga with a high sense of curiosity, and a firm willingness to accept with gentleness the findings within oneself, yoga is an invaluable practice. It’s not for the timid, or the overly striving, but in the words of Sri Nisargadatta, “if you are truly earnest and honest, the attainment of reality will be yours.” That’s what yoga’s good for, attaining a truthful reality about your self and everything, an understanding of total love and deep interconnectedness. Once you have those simple bits in hand, it’s far easier to decide what to do with the time you have left on this planet.
UPDATE: Congrats to….Logan! Thanks to all for your entries and more importantly your interest and passion. Stay tuned for more upcoming continuing ed giveaways like this. Namaste yds.
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I submitted my scholarship “application” via the comment section of your site. I hope that was what I was supposed to do. Please let me know if I should have submitted it elsewhere.
Wow – loving Mark’s comments at the end and especially #3 – well said!
Just learned about Street Yoga late last year and love what they do. Will spread the word about this generous scholarship offer!
I would be so excited to join your training! I’m a certified instructor (typical yoga as well as yoga for the child with special needs) and have a deep interest in therapeutic yoga for anxiety and PTSD, particularly for children and young adults. I think the Street Yoga program would be an amazing new perspective to gain and a wonderful opportunity to add more tools to my bag. Hope to see you there!
I know how hard it can be for a youth struggling with forces beyond their control to bring their life into balance. I myself struggled as a youth. I was introduced to yoga by a woman who came to my highschool. She seemed so grounded and peaceful, I remember being instantly drawn to her. From there, I sought out a yoga class at my local gym and began practicing yoga. I have now been practicing for 8 years. Through regular asana, meditation and pranayama, I have learned how to bring my life into balance and harmony. Today, I am in a place I never dreamed I would be able to make it to; I am a graduate student living in NYC. I truly believe that if it weren’t for the practice of yoga, I would not have developed the skills necessary to reach my goals. I want to be that person who brings yoga to at-risk youth, I want to give them the gift that I was given.
To all the yogis in the world who are drawn to Street Yoga’s mission and work, please allow me to express the deep emotions I feel when I am given the honor of reading your life stories, dedication and devotion to making the world a better place. Aligning myself with this organization was the best thing that has ever happened to me, and I can’t share how much it means to me to witness the powerful GOOD that is in the world. Thank you.
As a kids yoga instructor of inner city youth growing up in the housing projects of DC, I’ve witnessed first-hand the adversity in their lives. I’m clear practicing yoga has a significant impact on their well-being; sometimes it’s the simplicity of silence in savasana in a room that was filled with chatter all class, other times it’s the positive feedback of good feelings and new found peace. The spontaneous creativity and imagination they foster helps when they’re dealing with real day to day stresses in their lives. Through this training, I’d love to increase my ability to work with these children so that I can continue to facilitate their journeys into self discovery and wellness.
Currently I am in 200 RYT training, to be certified in April. Having been a rebellious teenager myself I understand that there is a need for life skills to be taught to children of all walks of life, especially the ones that “fall through the cracks”. I would be honored to take part in your program and to follow through with guiding the Souls most in need. Namaste
I would be thrilled to have the opportunity for a Scholarship for Street Yoga.
I am currently a certified yoga teacher, with training in kids yoga as well. I am also a Special Education teacher in Harlem.
As I move forward in my career, I am specifically looking for ways to help at-risk kids, through yoga. I am passionate about the way that yoga helps with both physical and emotional health, and I want to be able to bring that well-being to high-need populations.
Congrats Logan, you won the scholarship! Check your email for more info.
I would LOVE to attend this training! I’m an RYT-200, and I’m also studying to become a doctor. I love the idea of yoga as therapy and yoga for social justice, so I volunteer at a local non-profit longterm recovery home to bring the therapeutic effects of yoga (physically and emotionally) to survivor populations. I’m also the program coordinator for an initiative at a medical school; we teach medical students how to use mindfulness-based practices and yoga as therapy in the medical care-giving profession. By going through this training, I would be a more informed advocate of yoga in my communities, and also have the tools to become more involved in underserved communities.
Serving high risk youth is a great importance to me. Our youth in society have numerous challenges in life regardless of who they are, where they come from. All youth need commitment, consistency and a direct relationship with individuals who genuinely care. To be a disadvantaged youth is exponentially more difficult. The environment they survive in is more complicated than most people understand. At risk youth are often deprived of essentials in life: sleep (adequate and uninterrupted sleep is essential for cell repair, regulation of blood sugar, learning, activity), food (seldom nutritional), proper clothing, and safety (the nervous system triggers more acid in the stomach when nervous, afraid), daily exercise of which without muscle activity and neurological integration lessens, living in a smoke/smog free environment (breathing techniques assist with eliminating toxins in the body, rebalances the nervous system, oxygenates the RBC). Yoga provides numerous benefits: Neurological and muscular activity which can aid with sleep; the development of confidence and internal strength which can assist with overall well-being; meditation and breathing techniques which can yield tools to derail anger and anxiety.
I live in a diverse community with 32 different cultures. In the past 4 years our downtown has begun to vacate, businesses close with the exception of package stores and social service organizations. Crime, gangs, homelessness and drug use are on the rise. Two casinos within are within 7 miles of the downtown. The local downtown YMCA closed on 30 April 09, which created community anger, the youth felt betrayed and lost. There is very little in the area for low income families to actively engage their kids outside of school. School activities are not always free. The youth frequent the streets, race cars, hang out in areas or with individuals who invite trouble. Bored, teens wander around looking for something, not knowing what exactly that is. Sometimes younger ones can stay warm, dry because their guardian brings them to the casino daycare ‘til all hours of the night, often a school night.
Children do not seek a difficult path when life forms. They are led there. Somehow existence takes a turn, caught in a cycle they can’t reconfigure, the direction blurred. As the years pass to ask for help seems weak, frightening, safer to just be quiet and see if they can figure it out for themselves, hence the burrow gets deeper, entrenched with little hope.
My intention is not to be a savior but to share the wonders of yoga. I relate to the journey they travel. I understand abuse, harbored fears, disassociation and confusion, childhood without memories. I traveled a similar path, though not in a city. As a USN vet(stateside only), a 200YT with additional training for PTSD I want to connect the yoga I have learned and lived to the youth who are searching, who just want to figure out who they are. The answer is within. They just have to be guided how to feel and believe that.