Yoga as a Research Methodology Lesson Plan: Daniel Helman & Julie Malone
Professor: Joan Clingan
Creative exploration ahead ...
Table of Contents Introduction3 Objectives.4 What is Yoga?...................................................... 5 Key Terms 5 Scholarly Resources6 A Few Types of Yoga..7 Joining Together..8
What to expect8 A word about terms. 9 What to expect (back again).....................9
Plan. 10 Yoga Resources.11
Breathwork.. 11 Yoga Asana.. 11
Yoga Philosophy.. 12 Yogis 12
Yoga Research Papers.. 13 Yoga Methodology Papers..14
Yoga Methodologists.. 14 Teaching Yoga15 Yoga as a Research Methodology16 Glossary 17
Introduction: Yoga, meaning union, was originally a Hindi spiritual path. It posed a question: How does one experience the breath, mind, or divine? Yoga is also a world-wide modern practice, and the traditions and practices are continually being updated. Even now, yoga is emerging as a research methodologyone that focuses on the internal mindfor research on the forms of thought and relaxation. You may note that yoga can create a relaxing and stress-free atmosphere as you begin to write or do other activities throughout the process. If you find yourself under stressslow down, back off, and take a few breaths to recenter yourself. This is a journey that you are in charge of. This mini-course will present material about yoga practice and philosophy for those who are not familiar with it, but the focus will ultimately be on how to use these philosophies as a research methodology. Dont despair. The first part is very heavy on practice and philosophy. You wont just be learning about how others create yoga methodology. Youll be steeped in the thoughts and practice yourself. If it helps to have an initial look at yoga as a methodology, you dont have to wait until week two. The methodology papers are on page 14, and the methodology practice well explore is on page 16. If you know that you hate surprises, have a look early to see what youll be focused on. Ultimately, well be doing a process that:
(1) Makes the primary focus of the research internal. Youll be writing a brief research communication that is in a form other than an expository journal article, e.g. as poetry.
(2) Lets the research design be emergent and leads to health.
You should feel free to adjust your practice to fit with any new observations.
(3) Lets there be a focus on breathing. (4) Includes elements from the yoga tradition.
The work itself is meant to be yours. Interpret and reinterpret as suits the person that you are. We invite you to join in our mini-course to take a closer look at yoga as a research methodology and, depending on your sentiments, learn how to incorporate the practice into your research.
Objectives: Gain familiarity with yoga. Positive experience of yoga. Educate oneself on how yoga can assist in your personal and professional daily activities. Know what elements that a person would need to run research using a yoga methodology. (1) Follows in a tradition of yoga (2) Outcome is predominantly internal. (3) Supernatural is presumed as a possibility. (4) Examples of yoga as a method. (5) Examples of yoga as a methodology. Familiarity with other people who have run yoga as a research methodology. (1) Exemplary yogis. (2) Researchers. Knowledge of how to teach yoga. (1) Teacher principles. (2) How to find work. Experience using yoga as a research methodology. Positive sharing of that experience.
What is Yoga?
Video defining yoga
Why Yoga? It is good for you. Yoga helps with the blood pressure, anxiety, depression, headaches, bodily aches and pains, and the list goes on. There might be more. Its a personal choice.
Key Terms: Yoga,research,methodology
A Few Types of Yoga:
Hatha Union of opposites through asana and breath; hatha literally means
Sun-Moon. Tantha Separation in union; also called tantra. Laya Meditation on energy centers in the body; associated with Kundalini
(Sikh) yoga. Mantha Union through sound; also called mantra. Raja Union through philosophy. Jana Union through meditation. Karma Union through a sense of duty. Bhakti Union through loving service to living creatures.
Joining Together: Take a deep breath, sit a little deeper into your seat, and get ready for some joyful exploration. The activities assembled here are designed with your growth in mind. That may seem like a contradiction, as perhaps you have some emergent ideas that havent been included. Of course you have some emergent ideas that havent been included! This is your exploration. Yours completely. Flexibility isnt just for limbs and trunks. Its also a part of how yoga works. Dont do anything that doesnt seem right for you. You know your body and heart best. Trust yourself. Really, youre the expert here. Take heart. What to expect: Weve included a set of activities to familiarize you with yoga. That means youll probably end up doing some yoga. Spend a little time making yourself ready for the journey. Look inside. Is this going to be your first experience with yoga? Or, are you seasoned practitioner? Or somewhere in between? Begin where you are. There is a section entitled Yoga Resources on page 11 of this document. It has links and materials for developing your yoga practice. The resources are divided by type. Breathwork, for example, is its own category. There are two categories, and twelve sets of resources. Suppose an instruction asks you to do some work with your breath. You can do some practice that you already know, and are comfortable with. You can look to Yoga Resources (in the Breathwork section) for a practice instead. Its entirely up to you. The work itself is divided between becoming familiar with two worlds, the world of yoga, and the world of research. Perhaps they will both connect with you. That is our hope. That has been our experience.
A word about terms: This lesson was designed for a two-week exploration of yoga as a methodology for research. Methodology is not methods. Rather, its the tradition within which a researcher feels comfortable. Thats it. If youre comfortable in yoga, perhaps you will adopt yoga as a methodology in some work of yours. What to expect (back again): Youll find that this lesson plan has a few features. There is a Plan that shows a sequence of what to study, and when. Its a loose guideline, designed to help you get familiar with yoga and with yoga philosophy. Its also there to help familiarize you with how yoga has been used as an intervention or therapeutic method during research, and with yoga used as a research methodology. Youll also have a chance to explore the lives and thoughts of prominent yogis and see which researchers are