Micheline Flak founder of RYE (1978) and EURYE (2000) is invited by the Indian Government to attend the celebrations of the International Yoga Day 21st – 22nd June 2015 in New Delhi.

The address to UNO by the Indian Prime Minister Mr Narendra Modi, proposing an International Yoga Day was met with enthusiasm by 177 countries out of 193. It will be celebrated yearly. It is a turning point in the history of mankind, a transformation of the collective consciousness, a prophecy realized in our time.

Seven Principles for the Introduction of Yoga in School

In order to ensure our practice is successful and appropriately recognised, we must insist upon certain ‘common sense’ rules that will need to be adhered to at all times, and will accordingly form the basis of yoga in the school environment. It is essential to avoid unauthorised methods and take care that our enthusiastic innovation keeps a sense of balance.

We have listed below several fundamental principles to keep in mind:

I. Teachers will be properly trained before introducing yoga into school. They must have obtained a qualification from an appropriate authorising body in this domain. It would be ideal if Initial Teacher Training (ITT) institutions proposed a training of this kind for future teachers.
II. Relaxation is the prerequisite to receptivity (high quality attention). Relaxation should not last more than 5-6 minutes and should essentially consist of a systematic awareness of the environment, the body and the breath. Usage of internal (emotive) images should be limited.
III. Holding the breath or altering the natural respiratory rhythm should be avoided at all times with school children. Simply observing the breath leads to a regularisation of its phases, with a subsequent calming of the emotions.
IV. Yoga exercises that involve postures and/or develop attention and concentration should be adapted according to the age and ability of the children, which assumes that teachers have finely-tuned observation skills.
V. RYE is not concerned with spirituality or religion. It instead attempts to positively influence children and young people’s behaviour in keeping with the central scholastic goal of nurturing better learning in a pleasant environment.
VI. We focus upon the return to silence; an element that favours interpersonal relationships, the quality of learning, and self-awareness.
VII. Despite the fact that we are using a modified form of yoga to suit the school environment, the original yoga source for each exercise is given.

These are the principles that we advocate in RYE France and throughout international branches of RYE. They are based on science and tradition. We feel that these recommendations are important in rendering yoga acceptable to all partners within the education sector.