Yoga with Children and Adolescents: Applications of Trauma-Informed Yoga

Date: February 9, 2010

Time: 8:30 A.M.-4:30 P.M.

Location: 1019 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA

Presenters: Dave Emerson, E-RYT and Ilya Yacevich, LAMFT

Cost: $185.00 Full, $166.50 Group/Student

Children and adolescents who have experienced traumatic stress often struggle to connect to, organize, tolerate, and modulate somatic and physiological experiences. Recognition of the impact of complex trauma on a physiological level has led clinicians to explore alternative methods of working with children to explore and regulate experience in their bodies.

Yoga is an ancient practice that combines physical movement and posture with special attention to breath. Over the past several years, the Trauma Center at JRI Yoga Program has studied and applied Hatha Yoga with trauma-impacted individuals across service sectors, including veteran populations, outpatient treatment, victim advocacy centers, and hospital settings. More recently, the TC-JRI Yoga Program has expanded its work to residential programs and schools.

The TC-JRI Yoga Program is pleased to build upon previous training offerings on the clinical applications of yoga with this new one-day workshop on the application of yoga with children and adolescents. This workshop will focus on the application of yoga-based skills with individual children and adolescents who have experienced significant trauma. Techniques discussed in this workshop can also be applied to small groups. We will discuss and practice how to modify yoga exercises including some breath work in order to meet the needs of children and teens effectively.


This workshop is designed for mental health professionals who work with children and adolescents, and who are interested in integrating yoga postures into dyadic or small-group work with this population. This workshop presumes a basic understanding of the impact of traumatic stress on children/adolescents, and at-least beginner-level clinical skills and experience.

This workshop is not geared toward yoga instructors without mental health training; the TC-JRI Yoga Program is pleased to also offer a Trauma-Sensitive Yoga Teaching Certificate Program which is directed toward the needs of yoga instructors.

About the Presenters:

David Emerson, E-RYT, the Coordinator of Yoga Services Program at the Trauma Center JRI, is an accomplished yoga instructor and founder of the Black Lotus Yoga Project, Inc., a nonprofit organization dedicated to the teaching of yoga to individuals with PTSD. Mr. Emerson was responsible for the implementation, supervision and oversight of the yoga intervention component of the two recent pilot studies conducted by Dr. van der Kolk to assess the utility and feasibility of yoga instruction with traumatized adults with PTSD. Mr. Emerson has extensive experience in the instruction of yoga with PTSD and mental illness populations, and has developed and conducted yoga groups for several rape crisis, domestic violence, mental health and veterans administration centers and clinics throughout Greater Boston. In addition, Mr. Emerson owns his own yoga studio in Cambridge, MA called Black Lotus Yoga.

Ilya Yacevich, LAMFT, specializes in work with children and families with histories of complex and intergenerational trauma. She has a Master’s degree in Marriage & Family Therapy from St. Mary’s University and post-graduate training in International Trauma Studies. Ms. Yacevich has worked with children and families for the last decade, in a variety of settings, including residential treatment, shelters, and Head Start. She has also worked with programs in India and Tanzania, and has special interest in international/ cultural issues pertaining to mental health and wellness. She is trained in CISM and is a member of the MRC Mental Health Crisis Response Team. Ms. Yacevich incorporates various modalities in treatment, including yoga, art, sandtray, DBT, play therapy, and dance. She coordinates the GLBTQ program at the Trauma Center, as well as providing evaluations for child sexual abuse and human trafficking.

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Full Cost $185.00, click below

Group/Student $166.50, click below.

Note: Registration at Group/Student rate requires proof of current student status at a degree-granting program, or 3+ registrants from the same institution at the same time.