Amala Class Sequencing Blueprint
Checking in: Lead an intro circle, ask students how they are doing, sense the vibe - do people seem tired or lively?
Introduce theme: You may have planned a theme, but be sure to acknowledge if there was a recurring theme amongst the students when you checked in with the group. Weave in their words and concerns as best as you can. Give a short talk (no more than 5 minutes) about what you want to work on with them today. If you don’t feel comfortable doing it this way, just be sure you introduce the theme at some point early in the class and revisit lightly throughout.
Centering & Pranayama: Seated or sometimes lying down. Check in with body, breath, mind and feelings. Introduce a simple pranayama practice which you may refer back to through class. Leave time to set an intention. Potentially chant OM.
Warm-ups with foreshadowing: Generally start with seated, hands & knees, floor based warm-ups. Warm-ups can also be done standing. All warm-ups are dynamic. Move the spine in all directions, relieve stagnation in the joints. Warm ups are preparatory poses that lead in the general direction you intend to take the class and that reflect similar allignment of future or apex postures.
Standing poses: You can do some standing poses mixed in with floor poses, but remember that the students who are in their late third trimester will have a hard time getting up and down off the floor many times. For every asymmetrical standing pose you lead, always lead a symmetrical one to counter. Leave time for rest and stillness between sides and/or between poses.
Apex pose: Standing or a balancing pose, in some cases a seated pose. Make sure your theme peaks here. Share the purpose behind the pose. Be mindful of where you are focusing attention and how is it relevant to your intention for the class.
Seated poses/cool down: Bring people gradually down to the floor for some more forward folds and twists, hip openers and Kegels. Use counter poses that stretch area’s of the body which were the main focus of class. All prenatal and postnatal yoga classes need to include pelvic floor cueing and preferably Kegel instruction.
Savasana that includes kosha awareness: Well-propped and nurturing, always leave ample time for silence. Whole savasana a minimum of 8 minutes long.
Closing meditation/theme wrap-up: Bring students up to seated, let them reflect on what they are feeling, connect with baby and body, think of how they want to move forward into their day. Potentially chant OM.
Make yourself available to answer questions and make referrals to other healthcare professionals as appropriate. Let students have time to talk after class.
Be mindful of the Nurture/Stabilize/Energize principles of teaching;
Are you encouraging students to nurture themselves by listening to themselves, taking breaks, using props? Are you nurturing without hovering/caretaking?
Are you encouraging students to build stability and steadiness of body, breath and mind? Are you guiding students to their own self awareness of how to hold themselves steady?
Are you reading the students energetically and offering the appropriate response for bringing them into the optimal state of balance through the practice?