Extraordinary people are ones that don’t hesitate in their actions when they realize one simple act can benefit a whole community. Such was the selfless act of Mangala Sarda, yoga instructor, who created a Braille book on yoga for the visually impaired communities in India.
As a teacher of the National Association of the Blind she devoted 10 years to teaching students. It was from this experience that she understood that to provide the asanas in a “simple and basic” way would be the most effective for those wishing to begin a yoga practice.
And so her work began. In her book called Yog Sparsh in Maranthi and Feel Yoga in English the instructions are clearly and thoroughly written out in Braille. The book is in constant use as she conducts classes in which she guides one student to read the Braille instructions while the other performs the yoga pose.
According to an article in the Mumbai Mirror, Ms. Sarda says “Yoga calms the visually challenged people. Since they do little else for exercise, practicing yoga not only helps them overcome physical ailments like acidity, but also gives them confidence and enhances their self-esteem.”
From this first publication hundreds of copies have been donated to those who could not afford them, while several others have been sold in both languages.
[tags] yoga practice, visually impaired, Mumbai Mirror, Mangala Sarda, National Association for the Blind, India, yoga for the blind [/tags]
This is a fine example of having the gift, not only to discern the problem, but also to find a solution.
It’s interesting how she says yoga calms the visually impaired. For me, closing my eyes is a comforting, calming action, but I guess, that’s because I can open them whenever I want.