This course is one of a series developed by Jyoti Manuel

Jyoti has led the path in the UK for the delivery of therapeutic yoga for children with special and additional needs.

It is with great humility and gratitude that we invite you to experience the teaching of Special Yoga. Having been blessed to share yoga with many children with Cerebral Palsy and PMLD all over the world we have witnessed it’s extraordinary power to help us truly reach our full potential over and over again. That potential is not only physical, but also mental, emotional, physiological, energetic, neurological and spiritual. Through the practice of Special Yoga we want children to gain the most strength and balance they can in every way, to release their fears and to achieve what they have come into this life and this body to do. Yoga gives them this opportunity. Yoga, when practised in a therapeutic way, helps us to manage our emotions, increase our concentration, and maintain attention. It is a lifelong practice for developing inner peace and calm.


Your Foundation

This Special Yoga for Cerebral Palsy and PMLD foundation level course introduces you to the Special Yoga methodology, teaches you accessible practices and adaptations to begin to teach children with special and additional needs. After taking this course you will be able to take a short bridging course before you progress to our Special Yoga for Special Children Level One training. This will will build on the knowledge and skills you have learned here and may lead to accreditation as a Special Yoga Practitioner. You can read more about our complete training programme on our home page.


The Special Yoga Cerebral Palsy and PMLD Foundation course

Right from the start of our foundation course you will be guided through highly effective and accessible strategies for integrating the remedial advantages of the Special Yoga methodology into the lives of children with special and additional needs, Cerebral Palsy and Profound and Multiple Learning Disabilities. On our courses you will learn the three different aspects of the Special Yoga methodology taught using a variety of tools with mentor and community support throughout.


Learn how your state matters

We start by seeing how our state matters and look at the value of our self care and self observation in relation to the children. The compassionate practices that underpin Special Yoga’s methodology give us the tools to change our inner state. As we develop a practice of kindness and self care for ourselves, we are more able to support the needs of the children and encourage their ability to flourish and reach their potential.


ASANA - using deeply effective postures and movements

At Special Yoga we share the profound benefits of simple and accessible postures and movements to enhance the children's physical abilities, encourage the potential for deeper breathing and emotional stability. This module explains the emotional, physical and physiological benefits of these movements and offers practical and useful ways of adapting them to help keep the children safe.


BREATHWORK - engaging the breath to regulate and calm

Our breath is our best friend. It is always there for us. The emotions and the breath are intertwined. Learning to control and work with our breathing has many powerful benefits. Children with Cerebral Palsy and/or PMLD often have restricted breathing patterns. This module will share accessible, simple yet profound practices to support the child to use their breath enabling them to improve their health as well as their physical and emotional wellbeing.


SOUND & SONG - using the vibration of sound to calm the nervous system

The value of sound is becoming more fully understood. Sound is a vibration and can be used to calm the nervous system. This module shares practices to support the balance of the autonomic nervous system. We can use sound and rhythm to support deeper breath and in turn relaxation of the muscles, tendons and ligaments which may offer the opportunity of improved movement.


RELAXATION - help the child(ren) drop into the deepest place of relaxation

Our intention at Special Yoga is to help the child(ren) drop into the deepest place of relaxation. Children with Cerebral Palsy and/or PMLD often have to work much harder to physically achieve movement and function. Supporting the child to relax deeply allows the systems of the body and brain to restore themselves and to be able to function optimally.


MINDFULNESS - managing and accepting our human emotions

This module offers a variety of mindfulness practices to help children become more self-aware and bring an understanding of what is happening in their brains. This modules shares practices that support our ability to manage and accept our more challenging emotions with kindness and compassion.


MASSAGE & ENERGY - enhancing the wellbeing of children with special needs

This module will offer a variety of massage techniques that we have learned and used at Special Yoga to enhance the wellbeing of children with special needs. These include massage points that support calming the child and those that are commonly used in various healing modalities to reduce tension and stiffness in the body.


WORKING WITH THE FEET - to open up the body

The feet are a very useful place to work for children with Cerebral Palsy and/or PMLD who don’t walk. They allow us to open up the entire body and breathe creating better alignment throughout. The whole body and its systems are mapped out on the feet, thus stimulating and nourishing the organs, glands, spine and all the systems within.


Discover how different practices can be adapted for different children

These adaptation modules will ensure that you know how to keep the children safe and while using them to enhance the child/ren's wellbeing. You will learn different ways of adapting the practice for children in different stages of Cerebral Palsy and PMLD.


This course will be taught using a variety of tried and tested methods:

--- 2 live teaching webinars with Jyoti and the Special Yoga Team -- ------ 2 live study group webinars with the Special Yoga Team ------ ---------- Self study with video, audio and written materials ----------- ------------------ 4 one to one mentor support sessions ------------------- --------------------- an online course community space --------------------- --------------------- regular quizzes and assignments ----------------------


Our courses begin by giving access to pre-course materials enabling you to begin your inner work before the opening webinar. Between the webinars and study groups you'll have one to one calls with your mentor who will support your journey with Special Yoga.

  • Various pre-course self study materials are available from 6th September

  • The opening teaching webinar will be held on Saturday 17th October between 10.00am - 12.30pm and the closing webinar on Saturday 23rd January between 10.00am and 12.00pm

  • The live study group webinars will be held on Saturday 21st November and Saturday 12th December both between 10.00am and 12.00pm. These study groups give you the opportunity to work with other students and a mentor putting into practice what you have learnt so far.


Yoga experience is not required.

This training has been designed in a way that occupational therapists, school teachers and staff, parents, yoga teachers, yoga therapists, trainee yoga teachers or anyone interested in exploring Special Yoga will find it accessible. You will be individually supported throughout by one of our Senior Practitioners in one to one mentoring sessions. No prior experience of yoga is required just an open heart and mind and passion to work with these very special children.


When you take a course with Special Yoga you can be confident that our approach to training, our practice methodology and the years of experience we have of delivering training will leave you well equipped to teach and support children with special and additional needs in a variety of settings.

  • Parents - This course offers the opportunity for parents to have the pathways to to work with their own child and support them to reach their potential, manage their emotional, physical and physiological wellbeing.

  • Teachers - This course offers skills that teachers can use in the classrooms to enhance both the child's potential to learn. It will also empower you with tools to improve your own mental and emotional health as well as the mental and emotional health of the children and supporting staff.

  • Therapists - This course supports the emotional wellbeing of therapists as well as giving them extensive skills that they can use within their therapeutic settings.


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Watch Intro Video

A Short Video of

Special Yoga's Work Around the World