Infusing Yoga into Fieldwork
November 12, 2018
I am completing my Level I Fieldwork and Jennifer is completing her Level II Fieldwork at the USC Kortschak Center for Learning and Creativity (KCLC) under the mentorship of a previous student ambassador, Dr. Rashelle Nagata. As mentioned in my previous post, the USC KCLC is an academic support center that addresses challenges related to academic performance such as time management techniques, procrastination, self-care strategies, and stress management skills.
Dr. Nagata is our wonderful Fieldwork Educator (FE). A FE, formerly known as a Clinical Instructor (CI), is typically an occupational therapist who mentors and supervises you during your FW experience. In the beginning of our FW, Jennifer and I worked together to build an occupational therapy informed yoga class that incorporated meditation, mindfulness, and gentle yoga stretches to provide a greater awareness of useful calming and alerting strategies that can be easily incorporated throughout the day.
The yoga sessions, which are trauma informed, first begin with a mindful breathing activity, then leads into a guided meditation, and ends with gentle yoga stretches and poses. Throughout the session, aromatherapy and bells or Tibetan sound bowls are incorporated during session to bring greater awareness to the power of senses impacting a calm and alerting state. For example, we pass around lavender in the beginning to elicit a more serene vibe. Towards the end of the session, peppermint oil is offered to those wishing to return to an environment that requires a more alert state of being. We end with the sound of bells or Tibetan bowls, which have healing benefits such as decreasing stress and anxiety.