Thoughts and Hopes for the 2016-2017 School Year 

Julie Johnson, M. Ed, TVI, ATS and Fit Abilities Program Cooridnator is on the blog today sharing thoughts on yoga, her students and hopes for the Fit Abilities program for the upcoming school year. See below

In a world that reinforces external forces of control for self-worth, it is important for today’s students and all people to have opportunities to practice a path of self-empowerment that is not dependent upon pleasing other people. This starts with learning the art of mindful breathing and moving aka yoga. This is the basic premise of why I believe it is important for all students to learn yoga and also build a wellness community based on yoga principles within our school environment.

This semester, my hope is that our students in the Fit Abilities Yoga Program deepen their understanding of self-empowerment by connecting the power they feel in their bodies when doing yoga to the power they feel when they follow through with a hard task in their academic lives as well. I am hoping as a program, we can really begin to bridge that gap in understanding that the power we feel in our bodies when we are doing a yoga pose is the same power we can access to get through a very challenging academic task at school, families and social life.  I hope that we can lay seeds of understanding for our students that their inner power is not dependent upon the task they need to achieve but their ability to know that is in them to help them face all kinds of adversity. 

Additionally, it is also my hope that the families in our program continue to benefit from the community resources that the Fit Abilities Yoga program is built upon. We have plans to offer a few monthly yoga classes for the mothers who stick around during the after school program and hopefully help create a safe space for nurturing and self-care for themselves and also connect them to trusted, trauma informed resources in St. Louis who support holistic approaches to self-empowerment and personal healing. Some of these resources include play therapy, integrative health for pediatrics, family therapy for parent empowerment, etc. 
I look forward to keeping everyone up to date on our progress as a program and lessons we have learned. We officially start on September 21st and will go for 13 weeks straight.