ANATOMY OF A YOGI

In this day and age of modern yoga it becomes critical to understand the anatomical principles that guide human movement. Becoming educated in the language of movement is the bedrock for moving safely, skillfully and effectively when practicing yoga asana.

Dr. Jeremy Brook, the Yogi’s Chiropractor, is a specialist in the fields of chiropractic and yogic anatomy. His workshops combine modern western science and chiropractic principles of biomechanics, alignment, and neurology coupled with the ancient art of yoga. His Anatomy of a Yogi training for yoga teachers and advanced practitioners will take students on an anatomical experience where anatomy - bones, joints, muscles, alignment and dysfunction - comes to life. Combining over 20 years of yoga practice in various styles and disciplines and 15 years of chiropractic work, this training offers a unique look at anatomy and biomechanics as it relates directly to yoga asana.

Module 1: Alignment Principles and Biomechanics – 9 hours

Module 1 is all about human mechanics, dissecting the human skeleton with an emphasis on the shape and configuration of the joints to help maximize range of motion and minimize poor movement patterns. Uncovering the body from the core infrastructure - from the skull, down the spine, into the pelvis, and then the extremities - Dr. Brook skillfully weaves through the layers of the body to demonstrate how the body was designed to move based on the laws of biomechanics and enhanced through the practice of yoga.

Students will learn:

  1. The evolution of the curves of the spine

  2. The geometry and range of motion of all the major joints- designed to help students see the lines of energy created when two bones come together

  3. The black holes in the spine with special emphasis on the transitional zones where most injuries occur

  4. How to create the “ultimate Tadasana” using centers of gravity

  5. The relationship between mobility and stability for every region of the spine and body

  6. The most common misalignment patterns in the spine. Time will be spent on how to recognize these misalignments in standing, seated, back-bending, inversion, twisting, supine and prone positions

  7. Specialized sequences to maximize full range of motion for each region of the spine and body

Module 1 concludes with a 2.5 hour scientifically designed full body vinyasa practice where students experience an anatomical asana journey exploring every joint in the body.

Students will walk away from Module 1 with a clear understanding of how the body moves based on the laws of movement and alignment, how to link and connect the bones and joints to become more energy efficient and strain/ stress-free, and how to prevent preventable injuries. Students will have a new comprehension of the spine and how the spine moves through space, making the spinal mechanics a priority before engaging muscles as leverage to go deeper into the pose.

Muscle Mastery - 9 hours

Yogis are injuring themselves everyday unknowingly because of their lack of understanding of the architecture of the joints focusing on the muscular stretch at the expense of the joints, discs, and ligaments. When this happens, injuries at the deep layers of the body can occur, resulting in years of pain, inflammation and frustration.

Having explored the skeletal infrastructure in Module 1, Module 2 brings the muscles into focus looking at how the muscles move the bones. Being that there are 650-850 muscles in the body we will focus on the main muscles that move the body.

Students will learn:

  1. All of the major muscles of the body and how they work together in a holistic manner

  2. Muscle anatomy through a neuro-muscular lens analyzing what is contracting and what is getting stretched and what poses would be appropriate to open the body. This approach goes beyond memorizing the names of the muscles giving students an opportunity to comprehend the relaGonships between the muscles and bones.

  3. The neurology of yoga scientifically stretching muscles within classical asana while learning how to read tension in the body. By accessing muscle spindles and golgi tendon organs students can lengthen and release their muscles efficiently and effectively. Time will be spent on how different poses can influence the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems.

  4. How to differentiate between tension, compression and restriction- discerning if a pose is jammed or blocked due to tension/ tightness of the connective tissue, restriction of the joint through a fixation/ subluxation, or if you maxed out the range of motion in the joint and are meeting compressive resistance, which is critical when deciding on poses to release the tension.

  5. Common injuries that yogis step onto the mat with, as well as the most common yoga-induced injuries

Module 2 will finish with a 2.5 hour vinyasa class that will solidify students’ newfound knowledge of the bones, joint, muscles, and nerves. 

After completion of the Module 1 and 2 students will have mastery in the following areas:

  1. What is the intention of the pose?

  2. What is the shape of the joint?

  3. What are the muscular commands?

  4. What muscles are contracting, stretching, and stabilizing?

  5. What are the challenges/ obstacles?

When we combine the science of the west with the philosophy of the east we get a whole person... not just a body, not just a mind... but a mind connected to the body through an intricate connection of nerves that are clear of interference.