Articles & ReviewsSeptember 2008
Guiding Yoga's Light - Lessons for Yoga Teachers
by Nancy Gerstein
Human Kinetics Publishers Canada
Guiding Yoga's Light: Lessons for Yoga Teachers moves beyond the anatomical aspects of asanas to help instructors present the deeper concepts of yogic philosophy to their students and offer insight into the integration of yogic teachings into everyday life.
Now in an updated, expanded edition, Guiding Yoga's Light presents 74 easy-to-follow, succinct lesson plans offering instruction in hatha yoga, including asana, pranayama, the yamas and niyamas, the chakras, creating mindfulness, and understanding emotions. The text also includes three new, teacher-requested chapters: Salutations in Motion, Lessons of the Heart Center, and Relaxation. For convenient reference, teachers and students can also refer to the vocabulary of Sanskrit pronunciations included in the glossary.
Lesson plans progress from basic yogic concepts important for beginning students to more advanced material. Each lesson plan offers a written script for use in class. For beginning teachers, these scripts provide a helpful structure and set the stage for mindful yoga instruction. More advanced teachers may use these lessons and scripts as a creative departure point for expanding on the wellness effects of asana or focusing the day’s practice. For ease of planning and organization, each lesson follows a six-part outline:
The text takes beginning students and teachers on a journey through the various aspects of yoga to understand the foundations of hatha practice. Beginning with basics of breathing, Guiding Yoga’s Light progresses to the physical and spiritual philosophy of the asanas and salutations and ends with lessons to bring clarity, calmness, and relaxation into daily life.
- The intention provides the focus for the day’s yoga class.
- Approximate time offers the length of each lesson script to help yoga teachers manage class time.
- The lesson embodies the essence of the day’s teaching, which is expanded on in the following three sections.
- Asanas for deepening illustrate and incoporate the lesson through body stretch, movement, and sensation.
- Practice off the mat helps students integrate the lesson into their daily lives by providing an assignment, a reminder, or a discussion topic.
- To end each lesson, wise words offer selected quotes, suggestions, or proverbs to remind students of the lesson as they engage in their practice outside the class.
Guiding Yoga’s Light: Lessons for Yoga Teachers interprets yoga’s 5,000-year-old philosophy in an effort to inspire, delight, and empower yoga students to enrich their physical, emotional, and spiritual lives both on and off the mat. With each lesson, Guiding Yoga’s Light demonstrates how the strength, balance, and stretching of the physical practice can inspire a healthy, complete, and joyous existence.
About the Author
Nancy Gerstein has been a student of yoga for almost 30 years and a certified hatha yoga teacher with the Himalayan Institute of Yoga Philosophy and Science. Ms. Gerstein is also a reiki master practitioner and yoga therapist.
As a workshop speaker and frequent contributor to Yoga Chicago Magazine, Gerstein shares her experience as a yoga teacher and student emphasizing the systematic integration of yogic philosophy into daily living, encouraging her students to take their yoga out of the classroom. She is a member of the Himalayan Institute Teachers Association (HITA), the International Association of Yoga Therapists, Midwest Yoga Teacher’s Network, and Yoga Alliance.
Ms. Gerstein resides in Morton Grove, Illinois. In her free time she enjoys hiking and traveling.
* Please note these reviews are written by individuals, and in no way reflects the view of Yoga Directory Canada™.