This course will equip you with the skills you need to share yoga in group or one-to-one sessions in a variety of settings.

You will be guided through highly effective and accessible strategies for integrating the remedial advantages of Special Yoga methodology into the lives of adults with special needs. With these skills you will have the ability to tailor various settings to the specific needs of the adult or group you support.

The strategies taught throughout this course will be applicable to a range of special needs including, but not excluded to, people with:

  • ASD 
  • PDD 
  • Anxiety disorder 
  • Learning difficulties 
  • Motor planning issues 
  • Developmental delays 
  • Neurological disorders
  • Sensory impairment

Course Structure

This course has been developed for both 'live online group learning' and at 'home private study'. Practise and journal through the summer using the pre-webinar classes, videos and content available from 28th June. Bring this learning to the first live webinar on 6th September when you'll be able to ask questions and learn more. After this there will be more Home Study until our final webinar on 13th December. To gain certification you will need to complete all modules, attend the live webinars and sessions with your mentor, and complete questionnaires placed throughout the course.

  • 2 live webinars - 6th September and 13th December both from 10.00am - 1.00pm

  • Access course content before and in-between webinars for self study and practise throughout the summer.

  • Interact with fellow students throughout using our course community page and receive mentoring from our Special Yoga senior practitioners.

Your Course Teachers

Richard Kravetz

Trainer for Adult/Chair Yoga

Visit to join Richard's classes. Richard has been teaching yoga for over 15 years to adults, children and for special needs. He holds a BWY Dip for teaching adults and children and served as County Rep for North London & City 2005-13. His interest in special needs originated when his second child was born with Global Developmental Delay. Richard currently teaches at day centres, special schools and residential homes. Richard’s training enables practitioners to deliver yoga therapy to the wider population and helps facilitate the practice of yoga for people with special needs.

Karuna Jackman

Senior Practitioner and Trainer

Please email to join her classes. Karuna is one of our Senior Practitioners, working with adults and children with special needs for over 8 years. She is a British Wheel of Yoga and Integral Yoga trained teacher bringing her compassionate gentle nature to all her clients. She has also trained in Hanna Somatic Movement, a form of neuromuscular re-education that helps to ease chronic stress in the body. Karuna’s classes are rooted in compassion; aimed to develop a loving relationship to where we are right now and a chance to explore one’s full potential.

Jodie Spiers

Practitioner and Trainer

Jodie has worked with adults with additional needs since 2012, then training as a Yoga teacher and subsequently becoming a special yoga practitioner and trainer. She has been able to merge her experience as a manager of adult day centres with her experience and passion for Yoga and now delivers group and 1:1 yoga to adults. Jodie is also a trained Yoga Therapist with the Minded institute and specialises in working with adults with learning disabilities and mental health challenges. She endeavours to offer a space for people to find ease and grow within themselves to find a more peaceful way of being in the world.

Course curriculum

  • 1

    Welcome to Yoga for Adults with Special Needs

    • A Welcome Message From Your Teachers

    • Use of the Special Yoga Methodology

    • Welcome - About This Course

    • Navigating This Course

    • Course Schedule, Homework and Assignments

    • Study Resources

    • Before we begin...

  • 2

    Webinar Recordings

    • Opening Webinar Sunday 6th September

    • 1 November Webinar

    • 1 November Karuna's Study Group

    • 1 November Richard's Study Group

    • 1 November Christine's Study Group

    • 1st November Side Bends Study Group

    • 1 November Twists Study Group

    • 13th December Closing Webinar

  • 3

    Module One: Introduction

    • Module One Handout Booklet to Download

    • Overview

    • Lesson 1: Introducing the Practice

    • Lesson 2: Why yoga?

    • Lesson 3: The Heart of the Special Yoga Methodology

    • Lesson 4: The Importance of Self-Practice

    • Lesson 5: Grounding and Soothing Yoga Practice

    • Lesson 6: Gentle Chair Yoga Practice

    • Lesson 7: Special Yoga Precepts and Self Learning

    • Lesson 8: What Are We Trying to Achieve in Our Yoga Sessions?

    • Lesson 9: Physiological Systems and Yoga

    • Lesson 10: Group Dynamics

    • Lesson 11: Managing Behaviours

    • Module One: Test your learning

    • Homework

    • Resources for you to explore

  • 4

    Module Two : Working with the Breath - Pranayama

    • Overview and Disclaimer

    • Module Two Handout Booklet To Download

    • Lesson 1: Introduction to the Breath

    • Lesson 2: Introduction to Your Breath Q&A

    • Lesson 3: Entrainment

    • Lesson 4: Touch Supported Breath

    • Lesson 5: Touch Supported Breath From Sitting

    • Lesson 6: Touch Supported Breath from Standing and Q&A's

    • Lesson 7: Developing Breath Awareness

    • Lesson 8: Reverse Breathing

    • Lesson 9: Coherent breathing

    • Lesson 10: Coherent Breathing From Sitting

    • Lesson 11: Up and Down Coherent Breathing

    • Lesson 12: Three Part Breathing

    • Lesson 13: Ujjayi Breathing

    • Lesson 14: Alternate Nostril Breathing

    • Lesson 15: Teaching Alternate Nostril Breathing

    • Lesson 16: HA breath for ADHD

    • Lesson 17: Lions Breath

    • Lesson 18: Kapalabhati Breathing

    • Lesson 19: Kapalabhati Examples of Practice

    • Lesson 20: Pressure Points to Assist Breathing

    • Module Two: Test your learning

  • 5

    Module Three : Yoga Postures and Lesson Planning

    • Module Three Handout Booklet to Download

    • Overview

    • Lesson 1: Introduction to the Asanas

    • Lesson 2: The Postures

    • Lesson 3: Forward Bends

    • Lesson 4: Sitting Positions

    • Lesson 5: Postures on hands, knees and/or feet

    • Lesson 6: Prone Positions

    • Lesson 7: Supine Poses

    • Lesson 8: Standing Poses

    • Lesson 9: Balances

    • Lesson 10: Eye Exercises

    • Lesson 11: Lesson Planning and Sequencing

    • Lesson 12: Chair Yoga

    • Module Three: Test your learning

    • Module Three: Study Group Homework

  • 6

    Module Four : Massage, Touch and Energy Medicine

    • Module Four Handout Booklet to Download

    • Overview

    • Lesson 1 : Benefits of Massage and the quality of touch

    • Lesson 2: Working with the feet

    • Lesson 3: Tapping

    • Module Four: Test your learning

  • 7

    Module Five : Relaxation

    • Module Five Handout Booklet to Download

    • Overview

    • Lesson 1: Deep Relaxation

    • Lesson 2: Relaxation Practices

    • Lesson 3: Coming out of relaxation

    • Module Five: Test your learning

  • 8

    Module Six: Adult Mental Health

    • Module Six Handout Booklet to Download

    • Overview

    • Lesson 1: Introduction to Mental Health & Special Needs

    • Lesson 2: Creating a Safe Space

    • Lesson 3: Grounding

    • Lesson 4: Anxiety

    • Lesson 5: Depression

    • Lesson 6: Trauma

    • Lesson 7: Social Interaction

    • Module Six: Test your learning

  • 9

    Module Seven : Singing and Sound

    • Module Seven Handout Booklet to Download

    • Overview

    • Lesson 1 : What happens when we sing

    • Lesson 2: The Sound of AUM

    • Lesson 3: Rhythm and Mantras

    • Lesson 4: Basic Rhythm with Sanskrit Sounds

    • Lesson 5: Affirmations and Mantras

    • Lesson 6: Interactive Practices

    • Lesson 7: Closing Chants

    • Module Seven: Test your learning

  • 10

    Module Eight: Yoga for Adults with Sensory Impairment

    • Module Eight Handout Booklet to Download

    • Overview

    • Lesson 1 : Multi-sensory Impairment

    • Lesson 2: Introduction to Hearing Impairment

    • Lesson 3: Practical tips for working with the deaf population

    • Lesson 4: Relaxation

    • Lesson 5: Adults with Visual Impairment

    • Lesson 6: Touch

    • Lesson 7: Guiding the Practice for those with Visual Impairment

    • Lesson 9: Examples of Practice

    • Module Eight: Test your learning

  • 11

    Module Nine : Yoga for less mobile Adults with Special Needs

    • Overview

    • Module Nine Handout Booklet to Download

    • Lesson 1: Yoga for Adults with Cerebral Palsy

    • Lesson 2: Working with people with PMLD

    • Lesson 3: Yoga for Wheelchair Users

    • Lesson 4: Preparing the body for Asanas - Undoing Spasticity

    • Lesson 5: Movement

    • Lesson 6: Dislocation in Hips

    • Lesson 7: Working with Pain

    • Module Nine: Test your learning

  • 12

    Module Ten: Yoga for Ambulatory Adults with Special Needs

    • Overview

    • Module Ten Handout Booklet to Download

    • Lesson 1: Yoga for Adults with Learning Difficulties and Autism

    • Lesson 2: Yoga for Adults with Down Syndrome

    • Lesson 3: Approaches for Different Conditions

    • Lesson 4: Delivering Sessions via Zoom

    • Module Ten: Test your learning

  • 13

    Module Eleven : Yoga for the Elderly and Neurological Conditions

    • Overview

    • Module Eleven Handout Booklet to Download

    • Lesson 1 : Working with the Elderly

    • Lesson 2: Joint Mobility and Arthritis

    • Lesson 3: Neurological Conditions

    • Module Eleven: Test your learning

  • 14

    Module Twelve: Yoga for Carers

    • Overview

    • Module Twelve Handout Booklet to Download

    • Lesson 1: Yoga for Carers

    • Lesson 2 : How to work in Care homes

    • Lesson 3: Case study of a Carer

    • Lesson 4: Episode on Healthflix - Yoga for Carers

    • Module Twelve: Test your learning

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