Yirser Ra Hotep is a master instructor of Yoga and the creator of the YogaSkills Method. He is the most senior instructor of Kemetic Yoga in the United States with over 30 years of experience practicing and teaching. Yirser was involved with the original research and documentation of Kemetic Yoga along with master Instructor Dr. Asar Ha-pi in the 1970s.
Yirser has continued to research, document and expand on the foundations of Kemetic Yoga. He has written extensively, lectured and led workshops throughout the United States, Africa and the Caribbean, including Cuba. Yirser has been featured in publications such as Yoga Journal, Yoga Chicago, Chicago Tribune, Chicago Parent, African Business and Culture to name a few. He has also been interviewed and featured on WGN TV, ABC TV, NBC TV, CBS TV and has appeared on the Oprah Winfrey Show.
Yirser was a pioneer in training children, their teachers and social workers in the in the science of becoming calm and maintaining focus through his system called Internal Self Regulation or ISR. Yirser first began to use ISR in 1979 working children at the Better Boys Foundation and Chicago Public Schools. ISR incorporates deep breathing, focusing exercises and movements in order to stimulate the nervous system to become calm.
In the 1980s Yirser applied his systems of ISR and the YogaSkills Method to the treatment of substance abusers and those addicted to alcohol. As a social worker and therapist he has worked with children who have been traumatized by abuse and neglected to overcome the debilitating effects of their experiences to live whole lives.
In 2004 Yirser was given an award by the Easter Seals organization for his work with helping children with physical, cognitive and emotional disabilities through his YogaSkills for Kids program. This program has been replicated at Centers for New Horizons, Southwest Youth Collaborative, Chicago Urban League, One Hope United and numerous public and private schools throughout Chicago and other cities nationally and in Ghana.
Yirser has trained and certified over 100 Yoga instructors throughout the United States and has been recognized for his innovative Yoga Therapy programs for pre-school children, school age children and teens. Yirser holds a master’s degree in Social Service Administration from the University of Chicago and has operated Groups Homes for abused and neglected youth, worked as an administrator for the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services and operated youth mentoring programs.