BY ERIN HALBEISEN
Photo courtesy of Wendy Ansley
Associate Professor of Kinesiology, Wendy Ansley returned to College of the Desert after taking a teacher sabbatical for the Spring and Fall 2017 semesters. Ansley spent her time learning about various forms of yoga in order to create a new program at COD.
The new program is called Yoga Teacher Training or, as Ansley refers to it, Positive Vibes Yoga. The program provides a low-cost and high quality experience in a safe environment. It will fulfill the 200-hour training requirement needed in order to become a Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT). This RYT certificate is recognized by Yoga Alliance, the largest nonprofit association representing the yoga community.
A sabbatical is a period of paid leave a professor is granted to use for study. Ansley embarked on this two semester journey to expand her knowledge of yoga. As a result she has become a better yoga teacher. Her goal going into the sabbatical was to achieve personal growth that she could share with students. Ansley found the ultimate goal is the gift of “personal self practice.” Ansley hopes students will build a strong foundation they can use to create a life-long practice of their own.
Ansley said the highlight of the entire experience was her empowering passion to keep learning more in the field of “yoga” which means the science of healthy living. As a result, she has created this new program that teaches students the essence of yoga. Students who become certified can use their knowledge as credentialed teachers to share and inspire others.
During her sabbatical, Anlsey spent a majority of her time in San Diego at Southwestern College where she received her 200 hour yoga teaching credentials. In addition, Ansley spent an entire month in Santa Cruz earning the highest certification with Yoga Alliance making her a Registered Yoga Teacher 500. Ansley said, “this intensive 300 hour study in Santa Cruz under yoga expert and author Mark Stephens is where the knowledge of yoga asana (posture), anatomy, history and philosophy, teaching cues and tactile adjustments blossomed.”