Fully booked - Yoga & Somatics for Healing & Recovery
This course has been designed as an explorative journey for yoga teachers, yoga therapists and others to delve into how a compassionate and subtly attentive relationship with their bodies, practice and teaching can help address these commonly seen dis-ease states.
Type of Event
6 Saturdays (roughly monthly) 11am-6pm: 2020: Jan 18th, Feb 15th, Mar 28th, Apr 25th, May 16th, June 20th
Yoga & Somatics for Healing and Recovery: moving beyond stress, trauma, burnout, anxiety, fatigue and post-illness through embodied awareness
6 x day sessions
Course for yoga teachers, teacher trainees (and wellness professionals with yoga experience) with Charlotte Watts SYT.
This course has been designed as an explorative journey for yoga teachers, yoga therapists and others to delve into how a compassionate and subtly attentive relationship with their bodies, practice and teaching can help address these commonly seen dis-ease states. This may be as a route to unravelling their own states and/or supporting those in students. There will be inclusion of Somatics practices – from the work of Thomas Hanna that emphasises internal physical perception and experience – and sits well within yoga to support modern body needs.
The intake will take twelve students maximum to ensure a small, safe and intimate group dynamic. Other movement teachers and wellness practitioners are welcome to apply if they have at least a year’s yoga practice.
A large part of this exploration will be modern stress and trauma, and what this means for our bodies, minds, yoga teaching and practice; on and off the mat. Charlotte Watts gathers together strands of her courses on Teaching Yoga for Stress and Burnout, and for ME/Chronic Fatigue (for Yogacampus) and her recent books Yoga Therapy for Digestive Health (Singing Dragon 2018) and The De-Stress Effect (Hay House 2015), for an experiential dive into how we can view symptoms of 21st century living through the lens of the Yoga Model of Wellness.
Each session is accompanied by directed home exploration to enquire through practice, self-reflection, reading and viewing, the themes taught and discussed each week. This will build up knowledge and experience of the aspects covered, as well as providing a supportive framework for self-healing and observing our deeper needs within a busy world of high expectations and goal orientation. Subjects such as fascia, the vagus nerve, trauma, posture, interoception and proprioception, the enteric nervous system, body psychotherapy and language will be woven into a longer story of somatic self-enquiry that can feed into teaching skills.
There will be an hour’s lead practice each 3 hour session (two on the day sessions) – this will be recorded (sound only) for you to follow again in your own time, so that you don’t need to take notes but be fully present in the practice. This will bring in asana, somatic practices (eg from Thomas Hanna, Feldenkrais and Tias Little’s SATYA training), breath consciousness, sounding/mantra and meditation.
Yoga philosophy will be brought in as relevant to the course material, to also explore what aspects such as the yamas, gunas, koshas and chakras bring to new understandings of stress, trauma, fascia, movement patterns and self-regulation. The course will support the needs of teachers to foster their own resources and self-protection from burnout and compassion fatigue as they help and hold space for others.
Who is the course aimed at?
Qualified yoga teachers who have either recognised their own need for self-care, self-support, stress coping, trauma recovery and health practices; and/or who want to guide others they teach – either in specifically tailored class, workshops etc or to recognise the more subtle needs of those within more general classes. Also those looking for an introduction to Somatics and included this practice within yoga teaching.
Others will be considered on a case-by-case basis according to relevant experience, including trainee yoga teachers, yoga therapists and other health professionals.
How is the course assessed?
At the end of the course, an assessment will be set. This will be a written exploration of a personal chosen and related topic, designed teaching practice and reflections when both taught to a group or individual student and as a self-practice. Completion of course is granted on submitting the assessment within a month of the last date of the taught course. If the assessment is not up to pass standard, then constructive feedback will be given and one more submission (within one week) will be allowed. Those who do not pass will then have the option to redo the course at 20% discount.
Breakdown of the 70 hours course CPD hours:
6 days at 6 hours = 36
6 x 5 hour suggested reading/watching/self-enquiry/practice = 30
Written assessment = 4
Each of the 12 sessions will be set out in a format such as this :
30 mins – checking in with the enquiry/self-practice from the week before (intros week 1)
1 hour – talk from Charlotte on the theme of the evening
1 hour – taught yoga practice to experience the theme
30 mins – reflections on the practice; discussion of related home exploration
The 6 day course will follow such a format morning and again in the afternoon to cover the same themes as the 12 week course.
Maximum of 12 people per intake
Toilet breaks and refreshments during discussion times to maximise the time
Weekly handouts given at the course – beginning of sessions – building up to a comprehensive folder of notes
Weekly home reading/watching/self-enquiry/practice sheet given out weekly – end of sessions
Audio of the practice taught sent after for guided Home Exploration
Pre-reading of Charlotte’s book Yoga Therapy for Digestive Health a prerequisite – passages from the book may be recommended for weekly reading or preparation
COURSE CONTENT – 12 themes
1. Arriving – Setting our community healing space. Where we find ourselves in modern life and what it means to be a ‘modern yogi’ in a world of goal orientation, high expectation and physical ideals. How these considerations can be supported by the yoga model of healing and recovery, as distinct from the reductionist model of disease.
2: Context of the Modern World – The stress response and what it means for the modern yogi – the effects of modern life and psychosocial stress on the nervous system, noticing polarities, somatic practices, survival over growth. Bringing in the yamas and the gunas as guides for practice and life.
3: Vagal Connection – Trauma & polyvagal theory – the freeze response, grounding, orientation and what this means within practice on and off the mat. The importance of the vagus nerve and old/new vagal tones.
4: Belly Connection – The enteric nervous system aka ‘second brain’ and listening to ‘what is true right now’, as well as sense of safety, intuitively responding and embodied awareness. Observing separation of head and body in reductionist culture; coming back to ‘head, heart and hara’ as whole.
5: The Fascial Web – Fascia as a sensory organ and how everything is connected to everything else. Communication via the psoas and fascia for kinaesthesia; interoception and proprioception, and how tightness, lesions and distortions in this matrix can ripple through the nervous system and affect how we move and feel.
6: Posture & Self – Modern postural habits from stress, sitting on chairs and trauma patterns. Including exploration of the primary and secondary spinal curves, the ventral and dorsal aspects (front and back body) and expressions of these via breath tones, and the Deep Front Line (Anatomy Trains) and sense of self.
7: Body Psychotherapy – Modern chakra theory & developmental trauma models for body psychotherapy – relationships with survival, trust, attunement, attachment and autonomy and how they affect our expressions through responses, gestures and movement.
8: Mindful Language – Stress, trauma & hypervigilance language – the modern habits of goal-oriented and self-critical language; how this affects yoga practice and teaching. The language of modern mindfulness as a helpful guide; inviting movement rather than imposing our will and the support of sound during physical practice.
9: Health as Whole – The yoga model of wellness (as opposed to the medical model of disease) and approaching health as coming back to whole, the root of the word ‘healing’. Discussing the koshas and layers of makes up our whole being. Identification with illness as a state and finding our essence nature.
10: Inner & Outer Dialogue – Teaching language and inner voices – self-regulation and co-regulation with students via mindful attention, self-compassion and clear boundaries. Recognising we all have inner dialogue and how this may be bought into relationship with students.
11: Self-Empathy for Givers – Self-protection for yoga teachers – support, self-care, the courage to slow down – recognising what we need and the empathy to trust our students may need that too.
12: Bringing it all together – Bringing it all together – this week is a clear space to go through any elements that need more attention and come together as a group for overall reflection.
6 Saturdays (roughly monthly) 11am-6pm:
2020: Jan 18th, Feb 15th, Mar 28th, Apr 25th, May 16th, June 20th
“As a Yoga Teacher with experience of and an interest in working with trauma, I have long been searching for a dedicated space for reflective practice, community and sharing that is underpinned by a balance of thorough, intellectual, knowledge-based input alongside a skilfully held space for somatic exploration.
What a treat this course has been in ticking all of these boxes! It has also stimulated, inspired, rejuvenated and invigorated my passion for my work, given me confidence to continue in the direction that calls to me, and filled in my gaps in knowledge.
Charlotte is an extraordinary Teacher with a wealth of experience & sensitivity as well as significant depth and insight. She is a fountain of knowledge and I am extremely grateful for this invaluable and exceptional offering that she has shared with those of us on the course. I would recommend it to all Yoga Teachers.”
– Emma Cole, yoga teacher and teacher trainer, Forest Row
“At last! A yoga training that encompasses the true breadth of the practise. This brilliantly crafted course reminds us of the potential yoga has to awaken, safely support and gently (and sometimes powerfully) heal the most hidden of our experiences.
What Charlotte does so well, and with more acuity than any yoga practitioner I’ve known, is to help us to listen to our body’s communication so we might feel more proximity to our truth. Her courage to stand out from the usual suspects, venture beyond the obvious to explore, and share her findings with intellect, wit and a playfulness that grounds this emotive learning, is what sets her apart.”
– Sam McCarthy, Counselling Therapist and co-founder UMEUS foundation, Brighton
“Charlotte entwines her in-depth knowledge, wisdom and experience and delivers the course with humility. The knowledge shared within a safe and supportive space gives time to explore and nurture your own personal development and practice as well as giving the tools to support others.
Charlotte’s enthusiasm is contagious and I eagerly awaited each weekly session. Words alone cannot truly express how wonderful this course is, as it is very much a journey of healing as well as learning.”
– Charlie Nash, yoga teacher, Brighton
“Charlotte is very passionate and knowledgeable about her subject and puts her heart and soul into teaching the course. Her course materials are well organised and structured. I would highly recommend this course to add to your knowledge and teaching, it provides very useful additional and varied tools to your tool kit and a different perspective.”
– Zophanie Vazquez-Howard, yoga teacher, Guildford