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Yoga in Prisons

By on August 12, 2013

The United States has the highest documented incarceration rate in the world.  While it’s important to analyze the policies that created this situation, more and more yogis and yoginis are bringing mindfulness practices and yoga in men’s and women’s prisons.

In her article Yoga for prison inmates is no longer a stretch, Chicago Tribune journalist Michelle Manchir reports about Prison S.M.A.R.T., a local non-profit that has sent voluteers to 36 correctional facilities in 21 states to implement yoga workshops and programs.  “Researchers found that prisoners who embarked on a 10-week yoga course also showed greater accuracy in a computer test of impulsivity and attention. But it doesn’t require an academic study to know that, for some inmates, practicing yoga just feels good.”

The benefits of yoga in the prison environments has been recently dramatized in the hit Netflix prison series “Orange is the New Black” where the character “Yoga Jones” gives classes to fellow inmates and shares moments of wisdom with the main character Chapman.

There’s a lot more work to do, but it’s really inspiring that yogis and yoginis are willing to go across borders, take a risk and bring yoga where it’s most needed.


About Suleyka Montpetit

Suleyka Montpetit is a Media Entrepreneur, Explorer, Writer and the Managing Editor of Everyday Ayurveda. She has studied Yoga, Health, Spirituality and the Arts for over 15 years, rubbing elbow with all kind of luminaries and making stuff happen everywhere she goes.



    Mary Pike

    August 17, 2013 at 6:37 am

    Such a great programs. My friend Alisa is one of the yogis volunteering. She is truly inspired by the practice.



    August 19, 2013 at 10:45 am

    I am highly experienced in YOGA practice and wish to make training in prison in USA.

    please reply

    best regards

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