Our approach combines mindfulness practices, adventure experiences, and acts of service to help our students in their journey toward healing. Each of these facets provides students with the opportunity to learn new things about themselves. We believe that the mindfulness foundation provides long term skills that students can use to help them overcome challenges in their daily lives and promotes their overall wellbeing.
Meditation and Mindfulness
Meditation, the practice of quietly noticing our thoughts and feelings, helps us be open to the present moment. Mindfulness is the ability to do so while engaged in activity or interacting with others. Developing a regular meditation and mindfulness practice has been proven to help ease the stress and anxiety brought on by ever-changing life circumstances.
Yoga at Red Mountain Sedona
Yoga is an ancient practice that has long been seen as a key component of physical, mental, and spiritual well-being. It promotes physical health, reduces stress, and supports a sense of inner peace.
Four times each week, our trauma-certified yoga teacher, Tera Klymenko leads our students in 90-minute sessions designed to increase body awareness, improve breathing techniques, stretch and strengthen muscles, and enhance spiritual journeys. From their yoga practice, students have reported an increase in confidence, balance, and peace, with better self-discipline and a decrease in impulsivity. They have a greater sense of inner peace, and even improved sleep quality, which in itself is essential to healing.
Many of our students arrive at Red Mountain feeling beaten down by life and robbed of their confidence. This could result from a combination of anxiety, substance abuse and depression, or having suffered a traumatic experience. We use many confidence-building techniques to overcome these challenges. One of the most popular offerings is our martial arts training program.
Our students train with founder, Josh White, a third-degree black back in Ten-Chi Kenpo, an integrative blend of several practices that focuses on developing a “peaceful warrior” spirit, which results in experiencing harmony, well-being, and spiritual peace (www.tenchikenpo.org).
We embrace “Yin and Yang,” the hard and soft sides of the martial arts. The “hard” arts, such as Shotokan Karate and Kung Fu, are excellent for physical fitness, self-esteem, trauma recovery, and boundary setting. We also incorporate the “soft” arts, such as Aikido, T’ai Chi, and Qigong, which are nonviolent in nature, using energy to calm the nervous system and build self-esteem.
This transformative practice helps increase confidence because there is inherent value in knowing how to protect yourself. For those of our students who have experienced trauma, studying martial arts has supported them in feeling safe again. Learning how to carry oneself and moving from victimhood to radiating confident, assertive energy is a key part of healing.
Adventure And Recreation
Adventure and Recreation helps support students in their journey to learning more about themselves as they grow throughout the program. These activities encourage individuals to develop a sense of identity and become mentally and physically engaged through fun, action-based activities.
We encourage students to try new things through adventure activities. This also provides a chance to practice the mindfulness skills they’ve worked on in these real-life experiences. Some students find new interests or hobbies that help support their long term growth and provide a healthy outlet for their mental health challenges.
At Red Mountain Sedona (RMS), we have found that service work helps our students to get a bigger picture perspective on their lives and problems. Service work helps individuals realize the interconnectedness of all people, cultivates gratitude, creates selflessness, combats narcissism, and brings you more fully into the moment.
Helping others through volunteerism and community service diminishes egocentrism and selfishness, two character traits that contribute to behavioral issues, depression, and poor choices. Studies have shown that when two people forge a relationship based on overcoming challenges, both of them grow stronger. So the one serving is therefore also served by the act of service.
Our engagement in community service is just another way in which the RMS model goes beyond traditional treatment modalities, treats the whole person, and sets our students up for future success.
Every weekday morning after group meditation, our students break into small groups for daily accountability and well-being checks. Students identify the emotions they’re feeling, share gratitude, comment on what they noticed during the meditation, and then set their intentions for the day.
Daily check-ins at Red Mountain Sedona help our students learn to focus on what’s going well, and what’s in their control, rather than habitually and reflexively focusing on what’s “wrong” and outside of their purview.
Such habits are building blocks in leading an honest and responsible life. Daily check-in provides an opportunity to address issues before they blossom into huge problems, at the same time ensuring that our students don’t attempt to avoid problems that need resolution.
The daily check-in is a simple process in and of itself, but it represents one more way in which RMS goes above and beyond traditional programs in the quest to help people lead healthy happy lives.