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Educators Complete Yoga Training

Yogafit developed by Beth Shaw

Judy Shinn, a teacher at Wishram School and Jeff Albin, intervention and prevention specialist for ESD 112, completed a rigorous 18-hour Yogafit Level One training course.

Yogafit ("Yoga for the Fitness Industry"), was developed in 1994 by Beth Shaw. After practicing yoga since 1989 and taking several "Yoga Certifications," Shaw began teaching at fitness clubs in Los Angeles. She soon discovered that while traditional certifications taught a lot about the history and philosophy of Yoga, they did not address the nuts and bolts issue of teaching yoga in a health club.

Knowing the many challenges of teaching yoga in a health club; bright lights, cold rooms, bodies of all types and fitness/ flexibility levels, she created her own style of yoga that combined fitness moves such as push ups, sit ups and squats with traditional yoga postures linked together in a flowing fitness format.

All Yogafit level one trainees must offer a minimum of eight hours of free classes to complete their initial certification. Albin and Shinn will be offering classes after the holidays in a yet to be designated location.

Albin has been slowly integrating yoga into his intervention and prevention program. Shinn who also teaches the Love and Logic parenting series uses simple yoga breathing with her students to help calm them and prepare them for transitions.

Albin finds that the exercises help some students release stress while gaining the physical benefits of stretching and breathing.

Albin hopes to slowly influence schools to integrate what he calls movement modalities such as Tai Chi, Chi Qong, and Akido into their regular counseling and physical education programs.

"Yoga is great fun," says Albin. "It's cheap, doesn't require any expensive equipment and can be adapted to any body size and any age group."

Funds for this training were made possible by CMASA (Community Mobilization Against Substance Abuse) and the SKCN (Skamania Klickitat County Network.

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