online yoga certificationBy Dr. Paul Jerard, E-RYT 500

The education and continuing education of Yoga teachers, through web 2.0 applications, has its proponents, but technology is not favored by everyone. There have been timeless arguments against technology. People have argued against almost every modern convenience.

Although we have no reference to it, the first humans to control fire must have met resistance from their fellow tribal members. With this in mind, one may say reading about Yoga is not practicing it. Yet, how often do we refer to classic scriptures and texts? The truth is: We refer to books all the time – whether they are old, contemporary, or downloadable e-Books.

Even though universities use them as learning materials, one may argue against the use of DVDs, downloadable videos, or online videos. The argument in Yoga is that the teacher in the video cannot see the quality of your techniques. This is true, but we are training Yoga teachers with experience – not novices.

Meaning no disrespect toward novices – we all started at the beginning, but most DVDs address Yoga practice as if you have pre-existing teaching knowledge. There is room for error here, if you practice along with a video and have no working knowledge of Yoga.

In the hands of a Yoga teacher, a DVD is a powerful resource. How often would you like to rewind a live discourse, lesson, or lecture from the past? While viewing is not practicing, DVDs and online Yoga videos are valuable learning tools. What is even more ironic is: almost every Yoga teacher training course has books and DVDs that compliment the course.

So, why do we have a debate over the tools of education? As we age, there is resistance to change. I still attend meetings with a notebook and jot down notes. The ritual of writing and drawing on paper gives an idea, or a concept, more meaning.

Unfortunately, that feeling does not happen when I use a lap top, but it is also a valuable learning tool; and most of us can type faster than we can write with much more clarity. The point being: We can learn from technology, without having it take over our lives.

The convenience of integrating technology into Yoga education should not be resisted, but we cannot allow technology to control our lives. We have all witnessed technology change courtesy and manners. Cell phones and text messages can interrupt precious and sacred moments.

Worse than this is that talking on cell phones, and text messaging, causes a fair number of traffic accidents and fatalities. Once again – moderation, in all matters, is a crucial key to a quality life.

© Copyright 2009 – Paul Jerard / Aura Publications

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