In cities like Los Angeles, where yoga studios are about as abundant as Starbucks, we tend to think of yoga as a primarily physical practice enjoyed by mostly white, middle and upper class people (also predominantly female). However, there is a growing effort to teach more varied forms of yoga to a still more diverse population. Teaching yoga to children and youth is one aspect of this shift and has become a popular business model for many a yoga teacher.
But teaching yoga in a school setting, particularly to children who come from different socio-economic backgrounds, is still finding its footing. Sat Naam is one of the organizations in LA and across the country attempting to make yoga in low-income schools a more regular occurrence. Over the past eight years, Sat Naam has sought out and trained dozens of yogis (some certified teachers and others not) to visit classrooms from Compton to Sun Valley and teach a curriculum that brings breath, mindfulness, and movement into the lives of young people.
Many of Sat Naam's teachers are former educators, artists, or yoga enthusiasts who have experienced first hand the benefits and joys of the various branches of yoga. Many are also former or current residents of the areas in which they teach. In the coming weeks we will be sharing stories and insights from the teachers who represent Sat Naam. These profiles and tidbits are our way of putting a face on the sometimes abstract or romanticized work done by people who are trying to better their communities.
Make no mistake, this work is not easy, but it can be immensely rewarding. Sat Naam teachers are equipping future generations with the tools they need to operate in an increasingly complex world while also learning a great deal about themselves and the city they call home. If you are a certified yoga instructor and would like to learn more about a part time or substitute teaching position with Sat naam visit: http://bit.ly/1y8r7WX and http://bit.ly/1sMAYnG.