Lesson Plans for Restorative Yoga and T’ai Chi

By Maryann DiEdwardo E-RYT500


Participate in Asana, Pranayama and Relaxation.
Develop proper techniques when stretching, assuming and holding poses (asana), and engaging in pranayama (practicing breathing techniques).
Hatha Yoga practice will improve fitness and a sense of physical and emotional well-being through asana (poses/postures), pranayama (controlled breathing) and relaxation techniques.

T’ai Chi

The practice of T’ai Chi begins as physical exercise, then nurtures the qualities that we seek to develop physically (balance, resilience) and integrates emotional and spiritual levels as well. Students will learn the form and moves of T’ai Chi in such a manner that any one, of any age or fitness level, can benefit (internally and externally) without the risk of injury while having fun in the process of learning.


Restorative yoga has been the foundation of my practice for many years. Every posture can be arranged for the restorative mode if the instructor takes plenty of time and works with long warm ups.
Journaling during and after practice, as a form of healing exercise, has also shocked me into a wonderful transformation. And, foremost, sharing with my family and friends brings joy. Also, journaling retains and preserves lesson plans for the purpose of engaging others to enjoy the simple yet healing movements inherent in yoga and t’ai chi. Journaling evokes retention of the material to aid the student. Finally, I humbly suggest that my ebook may serve to strengthen skills but more importantly, the journaling serves to show the most important aspects of Yoga and T’ai Chi to beginners to encourage life long healing endeavors.

Lesson Plan for Restorative Yoga
The sequence includes reading passages from yoga texts, showing through demonstration of poses with blankets and pillows on a sticky matte and reflecting on the benefits of the postures.
The sequence follows:
  1. lay face down on the mat with arms folded at the elbow I crocodile pose
  2. lay on back in knee to chest pose on back
  3. stand and perform chair pose
  4. arm circles
  5. neck stretch with arms reaching high
  6. mountain pose
  7. walking meditation
  8. legs on wall
  9. relaxation with support in supine
meditation with support of a blanket and a pillow

T’ai chi lesson plan 1

1. Warm up waist
2. Warm up arms, elbows, and shoulders
3. wu chi
4. Circling
5. Parting wild horses mane
6. Wu chi and advanced circling
7. Repulse monkey
8. Wave hands like cloud
9. Single whip

T’ai chi lesson plan 2
1. Horse stance practice
2. Bow stance practice
3. T stance practice - cat stance
4. Arms move down inhale arms move up exhale
5. Wave like cloud arms
6. Part wild horses mane
7. Repulse monkey
8. Single whip
9. Brush knee push
Meditation ending

T’ai chi lesson plan 3
1. Begin with arm rise and fall
Inhale down and exhale up
2. Turn to r and l hold the ball to r with r hand on top and l with left hand on top - use t stance
3. Ward off left
With step to r and hold the ball with r hand up then step left foot to left and ward off with left arm up and r arm down
4. Ward off right
Seamless flow from last sequence - weight to left leg in bow stance known forward. Turn waist to left with left hand on top of ball. Turn waist to r. R foot steps to right. 70 to r leg. Turn waist until upper body faces right. R arm wards off

T’ai chi lesson plan 4
Double pass, bony area middle of back; jade pillow, bony area back of skull; bright palace, bottom of chest bone.

Wu chi

T’ai chi lesson plan 5
maintain same height as you move from one foot to the other; shifting
rising is when shifting weight forward, your knee does not extend beyond toes. Weight directly in center of foot.
Sink to 4 inches and maintain while you shift
Wu chi
T- stance
Bow stance
Cat stance

Sink into horse stance 2-4 inches
Rising into posture
Shifting height
T’ai chilesson plan 6
Warm up
Parting the wild horses mane
Brush knee push
Repulse monkey
Wave hands like clouds
Feet in bow, horse, t stance, cat stance
Single whip
Ward off

T’ai chi lesson plan 7
24 Yang Simplified Form
1. Commencing Preparation, Beginning
2. Part the Wild Horse's Mane
3. White Crane Spreads Its Wings or Stork Cools Its Wings
4. Brush Knee and Step Forward, Brush Knee and Twist Step
5. Playing the Lute, Strum the Lute, Play Guitar
6. Reverse Reeling Forearm, Step Back and Drive Monkey Away
7. Left Grasp Sparrow's Tail, Grasp the Bird's Tail
A. Ward Off (Peng) B. Rollback (Lu) C. Press (Ji) D. Push (An)
8. Right Grasp Sparrow's Tail
9. Single Whip
10. Wave Hands Like Cloud, Cloud Hands, Cloud Built Hands, Wave Hands in Clouds
11. Single Whip
12. High Pat on Horse , Step Up to Examine Horse
13. Right Heel Kick , Separate Right Foot, Kick with Right Foot
14. Strike to Ears with Both Fists
15. Turn Body and Left Heel Kick
16. Left Lower Body and Stand on One Leg A. Single Whip Squatting Down, Snake Creeps Down B. Golden Rooster Stands on One Leg, Golden Bird Standing Alone
17. Right Lower Body and Bird Stand on One Leg
18. Shuttle Back and Forth, Fair Lady Works with Shuttles, Four Corners 19. Needle at Sea Bottom
20. Fan Through Back, Fan Penetrates Back
21. Turn Body, Deflect, Parry, and Punch
22. Appears Closed , Withdraw and Push, as if Closing a Door
23. Cross Hands 24. End

Cheng Man Ching 37 Form

1. Preparation
2. Begin
3. Guard to Left

4. Guard to the right

5. Retreat

6. Pressing

7. Pushing

8. Whip

9. Lifting hands

10. Leaning ahead

11. White stork spreads its wings

12. Knee sweep

13. Guitar

14. Step forward, deflect down, fend off and punch

15. Retreat and pushing

16. Cross hands

17. Embrace the tiger and return to the mountain

18. Fist under elbow

19. Step back and push away monkey, right

20. Step back and push away monkey, left

21. Diagonal flight

22. Hands as clouds, right

23. Hands as clouds, left

24. Crouching whip

25. Rooster on one leg, right

26. Rooster on one leg, left

27. Spread right leg

28. Spread left leg

29. Turn and hit with heel

30. Right knee swipe and side step

31. Step forward, punch down

32. The weaving maiden, right

33. The weaving maiden, left

34. Step back to seven star
35. Step back ride the tiger

36. Turning and sweeping the lotus with leg 37. End.-Final

About the Author
Maryann DiEdwardo Ed. D., E-RYT500, a health educator, contributes original research on importance of her own practice of yoga, t’ai chi, and journaling. She studied theatre arts, jazz dance and ballet, then started to focus on the marital arts including tai chi for thirty years with masters in the United States. In 2004, statistical results of her case study research suggest that pairing music and linguistic intelligences in the college classroom improves students’ grades and abilities to compose theses statements for research papers in courses that emphasize reading and writing skills (DiEdwardo 2004). In initial study in 2003, Maryann refined Howard Gardner’s (1993) definition of music as a “separate intellectual competence” and compared music intelligence to linguistic intelligence.

The recipient of the Northampton Community College Project Aware Outstanding Service Award, Maryann has been practicing and teaching yoga for thirty years in Pennsylvania. Dr. Maryann DiEdwardo is a member of the Himalayan Institute.