The SYA course consist of a basic curriculum of yoga postures to help participants open up their bodies for better flexibility, simple breathing exercises to calm down their senses and minds, elementary concentration exercises that form their first steps toward meditation, and explorations of non-violence to help them to shift their mindset toward more positive actions.
- Stiffness in the body eventually affects the mind. The postures place little strain on the bodies of the participants while still giving them an opportunity to enjoy the benefits of a more open and healthy body.
- The breathing exercises teaches them to lengthen their breathing in both a formal practice and throughout the day. As the breath is directly in control of the senses and emotions, this calms them down and lessen the intensity of their reaction to their surroundings.
- The concentration exercises teaches them the beginning steps of meditation, in that they can be taught how concentrating all of their thought on a single thing like the breath can help them to find greater clarity and peace with their thoughts and prepare themselves for meditation.
- The act of non-violence, both in abstaining from physical acts of violence and reducing hateful thoughts about oneself and others, is central to the effective practice of yoga. This last component provide participants with methods to reduce the incidence of violence in their day-to-day lives.
The Sola Yoga Project in Afghanistan