Restorative & Nidra Fundamentals teacher training
What is NIDRA RESTORE
It is the combination of restorative yoga poses taught in a fluid, flowing way with the continuous practice of yoga Nidra (a powerful meditative practice for deep relaxation). Bringing the body to stillness isn't enough to calm the mind, the Nidra gives the mind something to do while the body rests offering a greater opportunity for the positive health benefits of each practice to be felt.
The benefits of this method
The overwhelming response to these classes over the last 5 years has been that people leave feeling more relaxed and calm.
It's truly accessible to everyone - anyone can do it, any body, any mind, any one
It is deeply restful and relaxing
Promotes self-care, learning to attend to our need for comfort, relaxation and tenderness
It promotes an alternative mindset - rest is valued, essential, necessary
Welcomes all of you, however you are, as you are, no need to improve or be different
Induces the relaxation response - lowers heart rate, respiratory rate, blood pressure
Moves the body from a 'doing' catabolic state to a 'healing' anobolic state - helps repair damage to cells and tissues
Relieves muscular tension - reportably a cause of high blood pressure
Research suggests it helps manage the endocrine systems and supports lympathic drainage
Essentially it helps to counteract some of the affects of stress on the brain structures and supports the production and take up of important neurotransmitters associated with good health e.g. dopamine, serotonin and GABA.
Helps reduce rumination/ calms a busy mind
Develops our interception (processing of internal sensory signals) so we can better understand how we feel and attend to that feeling e.g. I'm tired, hungry, stressed
Changes the brain waves from Beta to Theta - supporting the anabolic state of repair
Stimulates brain structures that may have been damaged by chronic stress e.g. the size and activity of the insula (associated with processing of information around our felt sense of us)
Promotes the production of dopamine needed for good brain connectivity especially in the Pre Frontal Cortex - giving us more control over our stress alarm (the amygdala)
"The Nidras are so varied, nurturing, imaginative and at times they have been the only way for me to switch off my busy, hypervigilent mind (I have PTSD). So thank you'. Name protected
'Thank you Helen for your wonderfully nurturing Nidra class last night. The hour went by in no time at all and I only hope my snoring wasn't noticed!' Theresa, Brighton
'Such lovely class last night, you have created something quite beautiful and I feel very lucky to be able to experience your offerings'. Clare, Brighton
Philosophy behind the method
For me, rest is revolutionary. How many of us really, truly make time for ourselves to rest, actively rest, not watching TV, reading but consciously being aware of being not doing? NIDRA RESTORE is a way of opening the door to sensing into that value of that rest in our physical body and mind.
NIDRA RESTORE offers, for many, a different way of experiencing and inhabiting their body and mind. It invites the opportunity to meet ourselves in a more friendly, accepting and curious way and develop a deep appreciation of the healing power that comfort and rest can offer. This practice honours and promotes a space of undoing, non-achieving and of being. It is the perfect antidote to modern living.
What the course aims to provide
To equip teachers with the skills they need to competently and confidently offer some of the fundamental restorative yoga poses and yoga Nidra in their yoga classes either as a full NIDRA RESTORE class or as supplements to existing classes.
Accompanying this course will be a comprehensive manual offering supporting materials to those covered during the weekends spent together. However this course is not about going through the manual. This course is about feeling the work, exploring and teaching the practices, questioning and discussing your findings, considerations and questions.
The spirit with which this course is undertaken is one of curiosity and inquiry e.g. why is this work important to us to teach, how does it affect us? what's its purpose and potential? The intention is that everyone brings their knowledge and an open mind to share in this learning experience so as a collective we develop together.
This course will not cover in details the same depth of information as you would receive from a full six day training in either restorative or yoga nidra and nor is trying to. This is a fundamentals course, giving you the basics you need to take this much needed work out into the world to meet the need of your students safely and appropriately.
The hope is this course gives you enough to get started, meet your students needs and maybe ignites and life long love of the power of this work.
Intention of the NIDRA RESTORE course
That it ignites the interest of teachers to practice more for themselves and teach others the value of active rest so that we can change the conversation about yoga and connect back to its deep therapeutic offerings.
What are the key elements of a NIDRA RESTORE class?
A theme is chosen and then woven through:
A flowing restorative sequence
The course covers four sequences of restorative yoga poses that invite more fluid, easy transitions from one pose to the next so to minimalise the disruption to the body and mind states cultivated by the practice.
Guided yoga Nidra awareness in each pose
When the practitioner has landed in each pose they are guided through invitations and awarenesses that are present in nidra, so that each poses becomes an opportunity to experience a mini nidra.
Ends with a full yoga nidra
At the end of the session the practitioner is invited into a supported relaxation pose and offered 15min or more yoga nidra as a separate full practice but also as the culmination of all the body and mind work that has been explored up to that point.
Why teach this way? People need it and it works
It is my strongly held belief that the one thing most people need is rest. We are very good at doing but not so good at undoing. When we take active rest we bring health into our biology and psychology and the benefits of these practices are far reaching. However simply holding the body in 'shapes' in stillness doesn't mean we get the benefits of what's on offer.
In my experience more and more people report 'busy minds', rumination, anxiety and the inability to calm the mind. I found that by offering continuous Nidra awareness through restorative
practices the psychophysiological benefits of both Nidra and Restorative Yoga became were reportedly obtainable for students with busy or anxious minds. My classical methods of teaching that leave students relative silence and stillness with little invitation to direct awareness can leave those with anxiety, depression or stress on the edges of the practice's benefits, not able to really access them in a meaningful, useful way. I found that offering Nidra awareness throughout the classes occupied a busy mind in a productive, inclusive and gentle way into the experience of the moment and offers a much deeper experience of rest.
Using elements of nidra e.g. body, breath, sensation awareness, rotation of consciousness we can help to capture a busy mind and invite it more gently into the quiet of the practice and all the incredible benefits it offers. The continued Nidra awareness invitations has also shown to make the mind ready to receive the benefits of the final 15min Nidra and move the participant into a deeper, more peaceful, rested place of awareness and presence.
Another key element in working with busy minds is the idea that all is welcome. However you are in the moment is OK and enough. You can’t get this practice wrong.
Who is the course for?
The course is open to yoga teachers of 200hours or more who want to explore the fundamentals of restorative yoga and yoga Nidra for their own knowledge and to offer them safely in their classes, 121s and workshops.
Who’s the trainer?
I am Helen Moss, a BWY (500hr, 2008) and Sivananda (300hr, 2009 ) trained teacher. I am an Associate teacher with the Total Yoga Nidra Network, a Senior trainer with Lushtums Pregnancy and Post Natal Yoga courses and a guest lecturer and teacher for The Minded Institute. In 2020 I will qualify as Yoga Therapist with the Minded Institute.
I have specialist training in Nidra (2014 Total Yoga Nidra Network) and Restorative (2011 Tri Yoga's Anna Ashby) as well as pregnancy, post natal and kids yoga.
I live in Brighton with my family delivering local group classes, 121s and yoga in schools.