Chair yoga for teachersPosted: 19th January 2021
Teachers spending hours hunched over a computer during lockdown are being given some respite with the launch of chair yoga.
With lockdown came the partial closure of schools, with remote lessons meaning both teachers and students spending their days sat at a desk at home.
To help ease the aches and pains brought on by the lack of movement, Forest Hall School has come up with a solution.
Sarah Power, enrichment lead, introduced her yoga classes to the school community at the start of lockdown last year, offering a yoga club to students and remote sessions to colleagues.
Now, she has launched weekly online after-school yoga classes for teachers and other school staff, including stretches which can be done sitting in a chair.
She said: “More people than ever have signed up to my new yoga classes, because everyone is struggling with working from home in lockdown. From the frustrations of IT, to handling their own children at home on top of teaching and all of their other responsibilities. Everyone is feeling it.
“In our normal jobs at school, we would spend our days going from lesson to lesson, doing break and lunch duties and rushing around the place. Now, we are looking at a screen for 300 minutes each day.
“I am offering 30 minutes at the end of the working day to schedule in some yoga and get the body moving. As part of that, I am sharing some chair yoga, so my colleagues can use it throughout their working day.
“Chair yoga can be seen as being just for seniors or those with restricted mobility, but it is for everyone. There is so much you can do in your chair.”
Chair yoga focuses on posture, introducing movements and stretches for the neck, shoulders, spine, hips, wrists and fingers.
Every session ends with meditation.
Miss Power said: “Most people sit with poor posture throughout the day. These sessions encourage them to check in with how they are sitting and demonstrate how they can improve. It’s about looking after ourselves with movement and meditation.
“Some people just need that time and space allocated in the diary as they can feel guilty for doing it on their own. This way, they have an appointment with a teacher and, somehow, they feel like they can allow themselves that time.
“I love teaching, especially when I see people at the end of yoga looking relaxed and knowing they feel so much better for it. It is brilliant to be able to offer this at school.”
Miss Power has introduced meditation into her lessons with Year 10 and 11 students as part of their ASDAN courses which prepare them for life and work.