Phed 120a introduction to Yoga

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University of Southern California

Physical Education Department

PHED 120A Introduction to Yoga

Instructor: Isabelle Mazumdar


Office hours: By appointment

Office: PHED 213

Course Description: This class is an introduction to Classical yoga, and will include the practice of asanas (postures), breathing techniques (pranayama), relaxation and meditation.

Course Objective:
To introduce the student to the fundamentals of a yoga practice in a safe, supportive and academic environment.
To learn proper body alignment, increase strength and flexibility.
To learn the basics of breathing and techniques used for the purpose of relaxation and stress management.
To understand the basics of anatomy and nutrition.

Physical education program objectives:

Students will understand the importance of sound health and fitness principles as they relate to better health and will be able to:
Recognize the physical and mental benefits of increased activity.
Understand anatomy, basic bio mechanical principles and terminology.

Students will be exposed to a variety of activities providing them the opportunity to:
Apply learned fundamental skills.
Utilize physical activity as a tool to manage stress.

Students will demonstrate proficiency through knowledge and acquired skills enabling them to:
Develop an appreciation of physical activity as a lifetime pursuit and a means to better health.

Course Reader: The reading material is posted on Blackboard under content.

We will use it in addition to the course reader. Class information will be posted on the blackboard, as well as resources.

Location: Morning sections meet in the Exercise Room next to the Racquetball Courts, located in the sub-basement of the PHED building. Afternoon sections meet in PHED room 201, next to the North Gym.
Equipment: You will need your own yoga mat. All other props will be provided: straps, blankets, bolsters, and blocks. Please bring your own hand towel and water if needed
Lockers are available and recommended since the practice space needs to remain uncluttered. Locker Rooms are open from 7:30am-3pm M-TH and closed on Fridays, sign-up in room 108 (PE office).

The lockers will need to be cleared out the week of the PE Dept. finals.

USC Physical Education IS NOT responsible for any lost, stolen or damaged property. If you choose to bring any valuables to class, it is strongly recommended that they be locked up during class
Evaluation Criteria:
Testing locations will be announced on Blackboard™

Cognitive 120 points


20 points


50 points


50 points

Psychomotor 120 points

Active Participation

100 points

Practice Test

20 points

Point/grade-base cutoffs










Below 144

Plus and minus will be issued for each grade, based on percentage range.
Attendance: Because this is a Physical Education course, regular attendance is required for the participation portion of the grade, and is a large component of your final grade. Tardiness and/or leaving early will not be tolerated as it disrupts the class and practice – this is especially true of 50-minute class sections. If you are late or leave early, you will only receive partial credit for attending the class. You will be expected to attend the section for which you are enrolled. Make-ups are not allowed except for emergency situations and then only upon approval from instructor.

General Guidelines for practice

Please notify me of any injuries, illness, or medical conditions (including pregnancy), prior to starting your practice. This is confidential and necessary to avoid complications and to help adapt the practice to your specific needs as best we can.

Please wear clothing that allows freedom of movement, athletic wear is best. No jeans or street clothes and no socks or shoes as yoga is practiced barefoot. No jewelry or watches. Practicing on an empty stomach is recommended, but not a rule.

No cell phones - This is your time for yourself, to step away from distractions.

No candy or chewing gum during practice.
Academic Accommodations

Students requesting academic accommodations based on a disability are required to register with Disability Services and Programs (DSP) each semester. A letter of verification for approved accommodations can be obtained from DSP when adequate documentation is filed. Please be sure the letter is delivered to the instructor or TA as early in the semester as possible. DSP is open Monday-Friday, 8:30am-5:00pm. The office is in Student Union 301 and the phone number is (213) 740-0776

Statement on Academic Conduct and Support Systems

Academic Conduct

Plagiarism – presenting someone else’s ideas as your own, either verbatim or recast in your own words – is a serious academic offense with serious consequences.  Please familiarize yourself with the discussion of plagiarism in SCampus in Section 11, Behavior Violating University Standards  Other forms of academic dishonesty are equally unacceptable.  See additional information in SCampus and university policies on scientific misconduct,

Discrimination, sexual assault, and harassment are not tolerated by the university.  You are encouraged to report any incidents to the Office of Equity and Diversity or to the Department of Public Safety  This is important for the safety whole USC community.  Another member of the university community – such as a friend, classmate, advisor, or faculty member – can help initiate the report, or can initiate the report on behalf of another person.  The Center for Women and Men provides 24/7 confidential support, and the sexual assault resource center webpage describes reporting options and other resources.

Support Systems

A number of USC’s schools provide support for students who need help with scholarly writing.  Check with your advisor or program staff to find out more.  Students whose primary language is not English should check with the American Language Institute, which sponsors courses and workshops specifically for international graduate students.  The Office of Disability Services and Programs certification for students with disabilities and helps arrange the relevant accommodations.  If an officially  declared emergency makes travel to campus infeasible, USC Emergency Information provide safety and other updates, including ways in which instruction will be continued by means of blackboard, teleconferencing, and other technology.

Department of Physical Education-Yoga- PHED 120A

Spring 2015 - Course Outline

Week 1


Day 1 Introduction/Orientation. Review of syllabus. No practice

Day 2 – Use of Props/ modifications

Practice: fundamentals of postures/ alignment/ breathing

Week 2


Martin Luther King’s 1/18

Overview of Philosophy

General History- Chapter 1

Week 3


Intro to Classical Yoga, the “8 limbs” of yoga

Practice: fundamental postures, alignment, adjustments

Last day to add/drop or change registration status without a W: Friday 1/29

Week 4


1st limb of Yoga – Yama: Behavior and Social Conduct

Practice: fundamental postures, alignment continued

Week 5


2nd limb – Niyama: Personal discipline

Practice: fundamental postures, alignment, continued

Assignment Part 1: dietary journal (3 days) – discovering habit patterns

Week 6


President’s day 2/15

3rd limb – Asana: Physical Disciplines

Anatomy & Physiology

Assignment Part 2: Analyze eating habits-application of yogic principles, cultivating healthy habits and taking personal responsibility for correcting negative habits (3 days)

Week 7


Practice: Surya Namascar

Restorative yoga

Intro to Pranayama, Ujjayi Breathing

Assignment Part 3: answer short essay question (reflection, summary of experience)

Week 8


Midterm Review

MIDTERMS: Wed- Th. Location TBA

Assignment (all 3-parts) due day of Midterm

Week 9



Vinyasa, Surya Namascar A and B

using Ujjayi breathing


Week 10


4th limb – Pranayama: Breathing control

Focus on the Fundamentals of respiration and the affects on Stress reduction

Week 11


Vinyasa yoga

Restorative yoga

Week 12


5th limb- Pratyahara: Control of Sensory Perception

Practice: Yoga Nidra (a guided, deep-relaxation practice called ‘yogic sleep’)

Last day to drop class with a W: Friday 4/10

Week 13


Samyama (meditation)

Week 14



Week 15


Review and

FINAL- Location TBA (P.E finals are held a week earlier than core classes)

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