Yoga-Mindfulness in the Classroom
for Student Success
Dori DiPietro LCSW, CEAP, E-RYT500
Mesa Community College
Director, Social Work Program
My Epiphany…
My Own Research with SWU171
#1-Full YM class+ 10 min
78 average score
#2-10 min YM Class
77 average score
#3-Baseline Class
75 average score
SWU250 -Mindfulness for Stress
Management (hybrid/3 credits SB tag)
Stress reduction
Immune power personality
Balanced living
Food as medicine
Brain waves
Body scan
Rest and relaxation
Experiential learning
Guided imagery
Cell development
Lifestyle alternatives
Preventative and Integrative
Goal setting
Effective communication
Emotional Intelligence
Living in the “zone
Power of the breath
Autonomic nervous system
Why Yoga-Mindfulness in the Classroom?
• Reduces stress
• Increases overall feelings of well-being &
• Improves the ability to learn!!
• Optimizes productivity
• Enhances mind body awareness and
• YM is low cost, preventative medicine
What are the
Benefits of Mindfulness?
Since the early 1970’s more
than 1,000 lab studies of
meditation have been
International Journal of Yoga Therapy
iRest Yoga-Nidra on the College Campus:
Changes in Stress, Depression, Worry, and
Mueller, H., Wilson, T., Ae-Kyung, J., Kimura,
A., Tarrant, J., (2013)
Journal of American College Health
Developing mindfulness in college students
through movement-based courses: Effects
on regulatory self-efficacy, mood, stress,
and sleep quality.
Caldwell, K., Harrison, M., Adams, M., Quin,
R.H., & Greeson, J. (2010)
Journal of Management, Educational
Gura ST. Yoga for stress reduction and
injury prevention at work. Work.
Heilbronn F. The use of hatha yoga as a
strategy for coping with stress in
management development. Manag
Educ Dev. 1992;23(2):131–9.
Journal of Psychosomatic Research
Mindfulness-based stress reduction and
health benefits: A meta-analysis Paul
Grossman, Ludger Niemann, Stefan
Schmidt, Harald Walach , Journal of
Psychosomatic Research - July 2004 (Vol.
57, Issue 1, Pages 35-43, DOI:
Journal of Health Education and
Effects of Low-Dose Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR-ld) on
Working Adults
Maryanna D. Klatt, PhD
College of Medicine, The Ohio State University, Columbus,
[email protected]
Janet Buckworth, PhD
College of Education and Human Ecology, The Ohio State University,
William B. Malarkey, MD
College of Medicine, The Ohio State University, Columbus
Scandinavian Journal of Work and
Environmental Health
The effectiveness of yoga for the improvement
of well-being and resilience to stress in the
workplace, by Hartfiel N, Havenhand J, Khalsa
SB, Clarke G, Krayer A, Scand J Work Environ
Health 2011;37(1):70-76,
Journal of Occupational Health
Effective and viable mind-body stress reduction
in the workplace: A randomized controlled
trial. Wolever, Ruth Q.; Bobinet, Kyra J.;
McCabe, Kelley; Mackenzie, Elizabeth R.;
Fekete, Erin; Kusnick, Catherine A.; Baime,
Michael , Journal of Occupational Health
Psychology, Vol 17(2), Apr 2012, 246-258. doi:
Military expanding use of
mindfulness training…
• Examining the protective effects of
mindfulness training on working memory
capacity and affective experience. Jha, Amishi
P.; Stanley, Elizabeth A.; Kiyonaga, Anastasia;
Wong, Ling; Gelfand, Lois Emotion, Vol 10(1),
Feb 2010, 54-64. doi: 10.1037/a0018438
Special Section: Mindfulness Training and
Emotion Regulation: Clinical and Neuroscience
What is Mindfulness?
“Presence of the Heart”
Paying attention in a particular way:
on purpose,
to the present moment,
and nonjudgmentally.
Mindfulness is both:
-a process
-an outcome
Occupational Challenges
“We can no more be present
with the suffering of others and
not be affected by it, than walk
through water and not get
wet.”~ Rachel Naomi Remen
Compassion Fatigue
• “reduced capacity or
interest in being
empathic or bearing
the suffering of
(Adams, Boscarino, &
Figley, 2006 p. 103)
“Yoga is a vehicle to put us in touch
with the place in us that hasn't been
touched by the circumstances of our
lives." ~ Tim Miller
5 Categories of Brain Waves:Why Mindfulness Works
1. Gamma State: (30 — 100Hz) This is the state of hyperactivity and active learning.
Gamma state is the most opportune time to retain information. This is why
educators often have audiences jumping up and down or dancing around — to
increase the likelihood of permanent assimilation of information. If over
stimulated, it can lead to anxiety.
2. Beta State: (13 — 30Hz) Where we function for most of the day, Beta State is
associated with the alert mind state of the prefrontal cortex. This is a state of the
“working” or "thinking mind": analytical, planning, assessing and categorizing.
3. Alpha State: (9 — 13Hz) Brain waves start to slow down out of thinking mind. We
feel more calm, peaceful and grounded. We often find ourselves in an “alpha state”
after a yoga class, a walk in the woods, a pleasurable sexual encounter or during
any activity that helps relax the body and mind. We are lucid, reflective, have a
slightly diffused awareness. The hemispheres of the brain are more balanced
(neural integration).
4. Theta State: (4 — 8Hz) We're able to begin meditation. This is the point where the
verbal/thinking mind transitions to the meditative/visual mind. We begin to move
from the planning mind to a deeper state of awareness (often felt as drowsy), with
stronger intuition, more capacity for wholeness and complicated problem solving.
The Theta state is associated with visualization.
5. Delta State: (1—3 Hz) Tibetan monks who have been meditating for decades can
reach this in an alert, wakened phase, but most of us reach this final state during
deep, dreamless sleep.
Stress helps account for two-thirds of
family doctor visits and half the deaths
to Americans under 65. It has been
implicated in heart, stomach and mental
disorders, along with the more ordinary
headaches, backaches and high blood
pressure and cholesterol. ~ U.S. Centers for
Disease Control and Prevention
My Kid
Stress Causes Increases in…
•Blood pressure
•Heart rate
•Blood flow to your muscles
The Effects of Stress on our Bodies
Skeletal Muscular System
(muscles, back, neck)
Immune System
(glands, white
blood cells)
Cardiovascular System
(heart, circulation)
Digestive System
(stomach, intestines)
Respiratory System
(lungs, sinuses)
What is Yoga?
The word Yoga comes from the Sanskrit word "Yuj"
meaning to yoke, join or unite. This implies joining or
integrating all aspects of the individual - body with
mind and mind with soul - to achieve a happy,
balanced and useful life, and spiritually, uniting the
individual with the supreme. ~ BKS Iyengar
About YOU!
Yoga is about self awareness and self mastery.
How do YOU know when you are stressed?
More About YOU, Your Stress…
• Where do you feel your stress in your BODY?
• How does your stress express itself in your
MIND/BEHAVIOR? (thoughts, feelings,
behaviors, your relationships and your life.)
• SUD-How GOOD do you feel right now?
On a scale
of 1-10, with 10 being the BEST and 1 being the worst.
Be the Change…
• “What gives light must endure burning.” ~Victor Frankl
• By becoming the change you want to see, you become a
powerful and inspirational model for others.
• This “embodying the peace you wish to teach” is an
essential prerequisite to transmit the teachings of yoga.
Restore Diaphragmatic Breathing
• Nice breath in
• Blow out like blowing out a candle ,pursed
lips, long exhale.
• Breathe in through the nose
• Breathe out through the nose, 3x
• Repeat…….
Kum Nye Yoga
Tibetan self-massage
Shake it OUT!
The Rabbit story.
Let it go!
Open Your Heart
It is only with the heart that one can see rightly,
what is essential is invisible to the eye.~Antoine de
“The only lasting beauty is the beauty of the
heart“~ Rumi
Partner Pose
Chair Yoga
• Twist
• Hip opener
• Forward fold
• Three part deep muscle relaxation
Inner Smile!
Thich Nhat Hanh said, “Sometimes your joy
is the source of your smile, but sometimes
your smile can be the source of your joy.”
Turn Within
"What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters
compared to what lies within us." -Ralph Waldo Emerson
“Muddy water…Let stand…Becomes clear.”- Buddha
“If you want to be happy, BE…”~Leo Tolstoy
Still and Quiet
• What do you notice?
• On a scale or 1-10, how good do you feel now?
The Light in me, honors and recognizes the
Light in you.
That place of Divinity, where we are all
connected to Peace, Truth, Love, Joy,
Goodness and Grace……. THAT PLACE.
May our practice be of benefit and service
that all beings may know THAT PLACE
within themselves.
What Yoga Mindfulness in the
Classroom is NOT!!