Exploring the Temple, Our Bodies Uncovered

Justine Shelton and I spent 5 days with Tom Myers of Anatomy Trains and Todd Garcia, Director and Dissection Master of the Laboratories of Anatomical Enlightenment in Boulder, CO. In those 5 privileged days, we saw more than one could ever expect to see inside the...

Seriously? It worked! Working with your Weakest Link

It’s your weakest link that speaks to you first when you are tired, rundown or getting sick. It’s that part of your body that maybe had a previous injury, surgery, or is just not quite 100%. You might feel it ache, get tight or tense, or even give way when...

When Pondering a Hip Replacement

I share what is happening in my Yoga life with all of you so that we can learn together! And what I learn, I know others could benefit from that knowledge as well. We all grow smarter together when we share! So, I spent 12 days with my parents (now 87 and 88) in Ohio...

Functional Fitness vs. Physical Acrobatic Fitness

“Functional Fitness”. This phrase keeps popping up all around me. And I think it is a good one when we talk about teaching to the over 50 Yoga student community. A student handed me an article from our local newspaper entitled “Functional Fitness...

When You Sub a Class and Have No Idea what to Expect

I subbed a class yesterday! I got an urgent request to sub an Adaptive Yoga class at our local library and I said “sure”. I had no clue what the class was, or who attended, etc, etc. I showed up early for a 10 am start time. As I sat in a chair on the...

Birthday Reflections on turning 63

Today is my 63rd Birthday. Not a milestone of any sort .. bit it still makes me pause and reflect. Back when I was in my 20’s and 30’s, I’d be thinking 63 was so close to official “retirement” when I could sit around and do nothing all...

Balancing Letting Go and Holding On

This month of August 2018 is a month of letting go for both Justine and I. And it’s scary and exciting at the same time. I always recall this phrase when I am going through changes that require letting go….. We can either live with clenched fists or open...

The Unveilings of the Camino de Santiago – A Time Untethered

The Camino de Santiago in Spain is a Pilgrimage plain and simple. As I came to find out… people trek this path for physical, spiritual, cultural and social reasons. Or a combination of those. I wanted my trek to be primarily spiritual. I wanted insight. I wanted...

How to Keep Your Students and Grow your Classes

Tom Myers drew this diagram on the white board during one of his Anatomy lectures this week and it really stuck with me. Most of the workshop attendees were Yoga Therapists wanting to learn more (oxymoron for sure!) But Tom brought it down to human nature many times...

Giving a Student an Ah Ha Moment

Giving a Student an Ah-Ha Moment is like touching the Brass Ring of being a Yoga Teacher. Because it is only when a student understands and acknowledges the mind and body (yes, and spirit!) connection … that they empower themselves to make the changes that need...

Testing our Resilience – Grab Your Yoga Toolbelt

A Special Message from Justine…… On the night of January 31st my 32 year old son had a 3 story fall in Los Angeles at his apartment. When I received the news, we were not sure if Mike was going to make it. In that one moment, my life changed. Drastically....

Aging Study Results are In! Best Exercise for Aging Well

Looking for the Fountain of Youth is a lifelong quest for many. Some find it through healthy eating, some through cosmetic surgeries, some through exercise, some through meditation… but the results of this Aging study was a bit of a surprise. My guess is...

How Close Should We Get to our Students?

How close should we get to our students? I think every Yoga Teacher asks this question time and time again. How can we be compassionate, caring, involved and available to each and every one of the lives we touch in our Yoga classes? I am sorry to say that I...

A Tutorial on How to Stretch the Piriformis Muscle

I spoke with a 20-something Yoga Teacher this week who told me she was teaching 5 “scripted” Hot Yoga classes every week. For 60 minutes, she guides a roomful of students through the same routine. I thought about all the great questions that come up...

How to Go Forth and Teach Chair Yoga at your Local Libraries

Tips from Lori in Canada! I just had to tell you how amazing my life is today! Last summer I went to several libraries regarding teaching Chair Yoga to over 50’s who can’t get down on a mat and the response was overwhelming. This summer my life has been...

Why Teach Yoga at Senior Care Facilities

[vc_row][vc_column][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”3/4″][vc_row_inner][vc_column_inner][vc_column_text]The courageous and the lonely. That is what I see in the beautiful people at the various Senior Care facilities where I teach Chair Yoga....

Teaching Ideas outside the Box

I had conversations with six different Yoga teachers this week. From Michigan and Indianapolis, to N. Carolina and Arizona and two fairly local to where I live in California.  All of us are in the age range between 50 and 70. And what amazed me about these individual...

What to do with Students who get Dizzy in Yoga?

Do you worry about your students?  How can we not!  We worry when they don’t show up. We wonder how they are doing with that sore shoulder, or the low back twinge they told us about.  And we often worry that they might trip, fall and get hurt … and...

Being Mortal – Factoids about Aging we Need to Know

When we find a good book or good movie, we love to share it with a friend. Justine recommended this book to me and I am only halfway through and already have taken some new things I learned into my Yoga teaching. For instance, did you know that forward head carriage...

Get Your Students to Take their Shoes & Socks Off

How can we keep on bringing new ideas into our Yoga Teaching? How can we learn new ways to explain or reinforce important concepts? How can we get out of our own teaching rut? I have a simple answer that takes a little work on our parts. There are two steps involved....

At Risk Yoga Poses for the SI Joint

I have a bird’s eye view of what is happening in the bodies of our 50+ aged Yoga students.  How?  Because I produce Gentle, Senior and Chair Yoga DVDs and videos and I keep track of who is buying and viewing certain topic areas.  So, see if you can guess which...

How to Turn a Factoid into a Yoga Class Sequence

How can we continually come up with something “new” every time we teach?  Follow the 70/30 formula.  Which is 70% of what you teach in a Yoga class is familiar to your students and 30% is new (or a new twist on an old thing!)   How can we fill in that 30%...

Students and Teachers: How they Come and Go

I read an interesting article about the importance of Community to support our health. One of the suggestions was to find a Yoga studio or Yoga gathering… because love, joy and spiritual nourishment often reside there. I will say firsthand I know that to be...

Your Energy Tank – How Many Classes Do You Teach a Week?

Sipping passion tea in the summer breeze, a Yoga therapist-in-training and I had a wonderful chat about teaching Yoga to people with physical, mental and emotional challenges. She teaches at the local military base to active personnel, as well as other places…...

Sharing Yoga at a Better Breathers Club at a Local Hospital

Stepping up and stepping out into our local communities gives Yoga a louder voice. If you find yourself stuck in a teaching rut at studios and gyms – consider spreading your wings! Here’s Justine Shelton, Co-Director of the Yoga Vista Studio, presenting to...

How To Train Your Observation Skills

One of the final course assignments in our Online Chair Yoga Certification Program is to go out into the community and observe people’s postures and come up with beneficial Yoga asanas. This observation practice brings together 3 necessary skills needed for a...

We Are Just as Needed as Physical Therapists and Doctors!

We Are Just as Needed as Doctors, Physical Therapists and other Healthcare Professionals I (Sherry) had the wonderful opportunity to spend a week with my family during my North Carolina visit. In that one week, we celebrated my Mom and Sister’s Birthdays and my...

Why Yoga Teachers Care

Lorna is the most beautiful woman I have ever seen. Probably in her mid 80’s by now. Her skin glows and she says her blushed cheeks and pink lips are all natural gifts. I had not seen her for a few months at my regular Assisted Living Chair Yoga class.  I...

Yoga Teacher, Yoga Educator, Yoga Ambassador… that is YOU!

How important is it to you to have a list of Yoga titles, acronyms and credentials after your name? We will answer this question differently based on our personal experiences. Depending on the type of “Yoga Job” you desire, you may need more titles than...

For Osteoporosis? Is a Chair or Mat Yoga Class Better?

We get a lot of questions in our email box from teachers who want to ensure they are keeping their students safe in their Gentle, Senior and Chair Yoga classes.  Most of our students are 50+ and we all know too well the health issues that can start to manifest around...

Get Your Creative Juices Flowing!

I’ve had a few ah-ha moments as a Yoga Teacher than totally changed my perspective on teaching. When I understood that there is no cookie-cutter approach to teaching Yoga to the Gentle and Senior Yoga community – I gave myself permission to explore a wide...

Go Forth Into Your Community! Ways to Spread Yoga!

Do you want to grow your class?  Do you want to reach more people with the healing gifts of Yoga?  Do you want to educate and empower people to take good care of their health?  Then going out into your Community is important. As we know not everyone will find us where...

Step Up, Step Out! Share What You Know!

At my Yoga Studio, I have a special class called the “New Grad” class. It is where I offer brand new teacher grads the ability to teach right after they graduate. I mean, before the ink is barely dry on their YTT certificate! Why do I do this as a studio...

Why the Feet? Ideas and Reasons for Keeping Feet Healthy

We see a lot of bare feet in Yoga classes. Panning the room, I can see swollen and discolored feet, toes that jam together, ankles that turn outward, flat feet, and toes knuckles with nobs and bumps. And then I see these same feet hold a body up in Warrior and Tree...

“That’s a pretzel pose!” The Side Saddle

“That’s a pretzel pose!” one of my students called out when I introduced the Side Saddle sequence in my Chair Yoga class.  I knew what she meant! A pretzel pose is the code word for a stereotypical physically challenging pose that we might see on the...

Pure Yoga or is it okay to Blend Disciplines

Why don’t we enforce or endorse a specific “brand” of Yoga teaching? It’s because every Yoga Teacher brings their life experiences, passion projects and natural gifts and talents to their teachings. How can you clone that? The Academy Team of...

What is All Ability Yoga?

Do you often start your Yoga classes with the “setting of an intention”? (def. an act or instance of determining mentally upon some action or result). It is a powerful practice! Our thoughts become our actions, and an intention is a literal seed of what will...

Movements for our Gait muscles – The Hip Flexors

Our hip flexors are our gait muscles. They help propel us forward with every step we take. The tighter these muscles, the shorter our walking gait can become. This can be an issue with our Senior population or for those who are sedentary for long periods of time....

Do you feel intimidated by Anatomy?

Do you feel intimidated by Anatomy? Perhaps you recall having to memorize the insertion points of each muscle or naming the 4 individual muscles of the quadriceps. Rote memorization is only useful for testing purposes… but when we can embrace and be awed by...

Cautionary Poses for the Low Back

Do you cringe when a student tells you that they have Lumbar disc damage or an SI joint displacement?  What is that?… you may ask! These are fairly common conditions that can be found in the 50+ Yoga student community and both create an instability in the spine...

Sunflower and Moonflower Flow

Thanks to Kim for this wonderful sequence that adds a new spin on Goddess and Half Moon. Kim shared this sequence in her Online Chair Yoga Certification Program Teachback and gave credit to YogaFit for the inspiration. I then took Kim’s Chair Yoga flow into my Gentle...

Add in Some Celebrity Moves in your Yoga Classes

At the Yoga Vista Academy, we are all about sharing ideas and new ways to approach teaching Yoga for the Gentle, Senior and Chair Yoga community. We get inspired by teachers just like you who most likely got inspired by your teachers, peers or students! So, we are...