What We Do
Our Mission Statement
YogaShield® Yoga for First Responders® (YFFR) has a mission of bringing yoga philosophy, through somatic and cognitive exercises, to practical applications for first responders and military around the country. We will do this through an official protocol which is safe, effective and consistent and provides a systematic skill set to a known problem; the high rates of Post Traumatic Stress, heart attack, suicide and other stress-based issues in the first responder population. In addition, the YFFR protocol builds mental and physical resilience leading to optimal levels of performance on and off the job.
Our method to achieve our mission is by training first responders/military, yoga teachers, clinicians, and anyone looking for education on the neurological effects of yoga on our unique approach including delivery methods and long-term sustainability. Achieving sustainability includes continuing to support our trained teachers through operationally sound programming as they implement YFFR yoga programs, classes and curriculums into training academies, public safety agencies and departments, and local community settings to improve community relations.
YogaShield® Yoga For First Responders® (YFFR) is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization that provides proactive resiliency training to first responders and military around the country through a methodology of yoga that is job-specific and culturally informed. We consider first responders anyone who works in public safety or emergency services. Our training models include Teacher Training Intensives, In-Service and Training Demos (Introductory workshops for the purposes of continuing education), licensed curriculum for training academies, and online digital content. We currently have training models for law enforcement, fire service/EMS, Dispatch/911 Telecommunications, and military, with jail-based law enforcement in development.
YFFR programs, classes and curriculum may only be taught by trained and licensed YFFR Teachers or Ambassadors with a signed service and/or teacher contract in place. This ensures the highest quality of instruction and instructional material, sustainable program implementation, feedback for continued growth and revisions, insurance protection, and tracking the progress toward our mission.
To date, YFFR has trained over 300 instructors and introduced this new skill set to thousands of first responders in the United States, Canada and Australia.
Core Value #1
Yoga for First Responders® is rooted in the fundamental components of yoga and mindfulness techniques as tools for the management of stress and the enhancement of resiliency. Yoga For First Responders® remains transparent as an organization by working through service and teacher agreements for clear understanding of scope of work, intellectual property, liability and media efforts. By remaining integral to the above points our trainings will always be comprehensive, our content will always be relevant, our programs will remain sustainable and communication will remain clear.
Core Value #2
Our program respects the public safety and military community, culture and personality. Yoga for First Responders® supports the efforts of first responders and military while offering tools to mitigate the adverse effects of cumulative stress and vicarious traumatization that causes poor performance. We are not here to change ethics, morals or beliefs.
Yoga For First Responders® respects itself as a hard working organization that is always fueled by its mission as well as the understanding of what is required to run and sustain a Not-For-Profit organization. We will not compromise any of our core values, quality of our programs, or support of our team do to pressure, unreasonable requests or bullying.
Core Value #3
Yoga For First Responders® Liaisons, Teachers and Ambassadors will always be prepared. All participants who successfully complete our Teacher Training will continue to be supported by our organization. The YFFR Teacher Training will provide the tools they need to conduct a YFFR program for first responders or military in their community. Yoga for First Responders® will offer a fully accessible support system as Teachers gain experience. Through well prepared teachers, first responders will experience a new level of preparedness for their career.
Core Value #4
Our organization is family. Through the Squad Leader program, social media, newsletters and online digital toolkits Teachers will receive updates, continuing education opportunities, resource support and more. Yoga for First Responders’ executive team, teachers, students and supporters will maintain a close knit group creating a strong foundation as the program builds.
Core Value #5
Our program is down to earth and pragmatic. Yoga for First Responders® values straightforward communication as we bring ancient techniques to practical applications. We use language and an attitude that creates a functional and easy-to-access style of offering yoga in the 21st century.
Core Value #6
The Yoga For First Responders® program stays integral to its initial and unique system and values yet continues to evolve. Whether revising training material or pausing instruction when tones go off in the middle of class, the YFFR team will adjust to the ever-changing environment of a public safety department and make accommodations to successfully implement yoga training in environments where it has never been seen before.