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How yoga makes Clare (11 year old certified grounded kid) feel/A better person

IMG_8911How Yoga Makes Me Feel/ A Better Person

Yoga makes me feel like I’m fearless, more important to this world than I thought I was. It teaches me to be proud and positive, to respect others and understand what they may be going through.  It tells me to do what I need to do instead of holding it in~such as crying.

Because of yoga, I know now not to let people judge me, to listen when someone is speaking to me. Instead of hiding in my own world I should shine but with confidence.

I don’t know what my life would be like if I haven’t done yoga, but I know I have become respectful, thankful, loving, friendly, and fearless.

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My name is Clare. I am in the 5th grade. I work hard in school thinking about my future. I have a learning disorder that makes it hard for me to learn fast, but I only study harder because I’m not going to let a little devil saying, ” I can’t do it.” hold me back.

Next year for middle school I’m going to Druid Hills. My best subject is math. I’m interested in animals and nature. I want the earth creatures to be respected.

My favorite color is red. Some people  say that red shouldn’t be my favorite color because it means stop, but I think of it as stop disrepect.

My name is Clare. I am 11 years old, and I do yoga.

Editor/Teacher note: Clare has been in yoga club since she was 5 and has had all these heart virtues all along. She just didn’t see it. Her perseverance, her loving family, and her open-hearted school environment, and of course her mindful breathing have helped clear the dust covering up the real Clare.

More will be revealed, I’m sure.

I feel so lucky to have witnessed her transformation and am delighted she wanted to share her journey with you.

Sat Nam

Yoga By Letter: L

Letter-L_1

 

In L Out L

Yoga with the L

Listen, Look, Love

In L In

 Letter-L_2

In L Out L

Yoga with the L

Lame, Limited, Lazy

Out L Out

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In L Out L

Yoga with the L

Laughter, Luminous, Liberty

In L In

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In L Out L

Yoga with the L

Lousy, Labeled, Low

Out L Out

 

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We practiced Loving~Kindness in yoga club today. We began with finishing up our Loving Letters from last week.

Caroline wrote a letter to her fourth grade friend who is stressed out~
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Dorian wrote a loving letter to his teenage sister who has been worrying about grades~

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Lauren posted two letters in the hallway for her fellow fifth graders. She shared that many of them feel sad and let down.

IMG_8423Isabel crafted a note to her dear friend Charlotte who is still sick. We sent Charlotte healing energy and love~
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Anaiah and Zoe created this pose called Feet Forward.  We were all inspired to give ourselves a lovely foot massage and practice partner poses.

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And then we ended class with Energy Circuit and sent healing Love to Rachel in Oregon.
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May all Children

Love and Be Loved

Sat Nam

 

A fifth grader practices yoga at a Men’s Night Shelter

Katie Bashor, Humanitarian, Director of Central Night Shelter (CNS), PE Teacher at Fernbank Elementary, and a Yogi recently told our yoga club all about the yoga program at the shelter. She told the children that the men are so much fun~they laugh and moan and sweat and laugh and LOVE partner poses. We explained that our dream is to make the yoga class (every Sunday from 5-6) a community event where everyone can practice together.

{Read more  about yoga at the shelter here: https://bashorkatie.wordpress.com/2013/10/27/namaste/}

 

So, Isabelle, Certified Grounded Kid, (pictured here with Katie Bashor) told her family about shelter yoga and here’s how it went down…

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“My Experience at the CNS by Isabelle

Last Sunday, I went to the CNS and took part in their Yoga night. It takes place every Sunday from 5:00pm to 6:00pm. It was started by Katie Bashor and Cheryl Crawford and is open to everyone. It is a nice way to start off your week and is a fun and challenging alternatative to sitting on your couch and watching TV.  It brings homeless men and women together and also pulls in members of the community. When I simply walked into the room, I could feel an aura of serenity between people. Our place in the community didn’t matter, we were all there for one reason: to do yoga. To me that was just so great, just a couple of handfuls of people there to do yoga. I think that this is an amazing thing, I hope you share my opinion. ” Isabelle

 

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Atlanta! Come practice yoga with this amazing, supportive, fun-loving community.The teachers are stellar.  http://www.cnsatlanta.org/

 

Let us know how it goes!

 

Yoga By Letters: K

Letter-K

In K

Out K

Yoga with the K

Kickstart Kinetic Kindess

In K In

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In K

Out K

Yoga with the K

Kicking, Killing, Kvetching

Out K Out

We practiced Kindness in our Yoga Club today~first being kind to ourselves and then with partners, and finally with others who are not in our club.

We breathed into our hearts and then partnered up and breathed into the back of our hearts because sometimes the kindest thing we can do is be quiet, listen and breathe for someone who is suffering.

Allie wrote this anonymous letter for someone to find unexpectedly.  She placed it in the teacher’s workroom.

IMG_8363Get Up Pose Chip Letter

Lola created this advice for her 4th grade teacher who is moving next week.

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Amala wrote a note to her teacher and placed the pose chip with directions in a special package.

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Isabel wrote a letter to her sick friend who couldn’t be at yoga club today.

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And Anaiah wrote a special note to her mom. She also told her mom that there is no such thing as too much kindness. {Heart}

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Next week we will reveal more. Inspired? Purchase pose chips and send notes to your friends!

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Sat Nam

yoga2

Facing the World Upside Down

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I love the feeling of my feet reaching towards the sky, lightly floating through the air. I first experienced this in a shoulder stand, watching my toes point towards the ceiling above me, free and weightless. When I was ready, I set up for my first headstand. Creating a stable base with my hands and head, I eagerly sent my feet up above me. Obviously I fell a few times. I even took down other headstanders next to me in class once (fortunately, they didn’t hold grudges). As soon as I was ready to hold myself up stably in a headstand, I couldn’t stop turning myself upside down.

During this time, I was also forging my way through high school, balancing classes, homework, clubs, work, and yoga all at once. When the hours of homework stressed me out, I took inversion breaks to kick my feet up. Before big exams, I kicked up into handstands against the hallway walls. My feet balancing in the air reminded me of my freedom and stability in the midst of difficulty.

During high school I also completed my 200 hour yoga teacher training, which led me to Grounded Yoga trainings. At first I didn’t think teaching yoga to kids was for me. I like kids, and I like yoga, but the first time I put the two together I couldn’t even get the kids to stay on their mats, let alone stop talking, and I was used to adult classes where everyone just follows my cues.

 

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Fortunately, I had the opportunity to intern with Cheryl at Fernbank Elementary. There was one girl who represented everything that scared me about kids’ yoga. She complained, left her mat, wouldn’t follow directions. Then one day she learned how to stand on her head and she, like me when I first learned, didn’t want to do anything else. So we went to the side of the room and I showed her how to make a stable base so her feet could float through the air. I had fun, because all I was doing was showing her how to do what I loved to do.

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When I started teaching my first teen class, I was nervous to be teaching students not far from my own age. I decided to teach restorative poses with bolsters at the end of class because that’s all I wanted after a long day of school, and every class after that they asked for restorative poses. I soon realized that teaching all yoga to kids is nothing more than showing them what I love to do, like teaching headstands at Fernbank.

Being upside down reminds me of my freedom and power, but also to teach what I love. The world is a lot less intimidating upside down.

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