ERIC Number: EJ852244
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005
Reference Count: 2
Yoga and Ethics in High School
Falk, Jodi P.
Journal of Dance Education, v5 n4 p132-134 2005
In the past three years, the author has taught yoga classes to students at the Pioneer Valley Performing Arts Charter Public School, in addition to her job as Dance Director. This school already is an open environment; the students are generally interested in the arts and the Pioneer Valley in Massachusetts is known for its larger-than-national-average proportion of left-of-center thinkers. This allowed the author to teach yoga as a holistic discipline, meaning not just as a series of steps and poses, but as a way of thinking and being in the world that is many thousands of years old. Although yoga can produce a limber, strong, and centered body, the actual goal of yoga itself can be found in the English translation of its name--union. Yoga is a way to achieve a unified being--unified in body, mind, emotions, and spirit. It isn't very yogic to embody the poses, or "asanas", with presence and calmness, to challenge oneself with humility and compassion, and then leave the studio and commit road rage, verbally abuse fellow classmates, or on the other side of the spectrum hide talents from others due to fear or lack of confidence. Yoga is a practice that makes its practitioners more humane, calm, powerful, and insightful. One of the pathways toward union that yogis practice is called the "yamas", or ethical principles. The author teaches these principles in an interactive way. This article presents an outline of this unit of the course, and some of the reactions of the students who participated. This unit follows weeks of doing the poses, or "asanas", and breath techniques or "pranayama".
Descriptors: Student Attitudes, Altruism, Ethics, English, High Schools, Dance, Charter Schools, Public Schools, Dance Education, Holistic Approach
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: High Schools
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Massachusetts