Niroga In The News

Research partnership brings mindfulness/yoga practices to schools in Middle East

January 2014
Palestinian educators, health professionals, social workers and refugee service providers recently received training in Transformative Life Skills (TLS) -- a social-emotional learning program that aims to reduce studentsí stress and promote social-emotional health and physical wellness through mindfulness and yoga training -- from a team of trainers and researchers from Penn State, the University of California at San Francisco (UCSF) and the Oakland-based nonprofit Niroga Institute.

Yoga: Peace and Justice for Urban Youth

October 2013
An interview with Danielle Ancin, program manager for the Niroga Institute. Danielle developed a yoga-based therapeutic program for psychosocial care for displaced (IDP) adults and children in southern Colombia. She now teaches yoga and in-class TLS (Transformative Life Skills) in public schools (elementary through high school), and in the Alameda County Juvenile Justice Center (detention facility).

How Yoga Could Help Keep Kids In School

July 2013
Scientific evidence supports the idea that practices like mindfulness, meditation, and yoga can help address individual and societal problems. School dropout rates, substance abuse, PTSD among veterans, incarceration and recidivism rates, etc can all be impacted through these practices.

A Necessary Catalyst: Dismantling the School-to-Prison Pipeline with Yoga

May 2013
BK Bose addresses the school-to-prison pipeline, spanning Niroga program areas of education and youth development. Published in Journal of Yoga Service, a publication of the Yoga Service Council.

The Transformation at Tech


May 2013

Oakland Technical High School has become one of the most sought-after public schools in the city, overcoming years of low academic performance and past safety concerns. Niroga TLS programs are an important part of the school's remarkable transformation.

Yoga Can Disrupt the School-to-Prison Pipeline

December 2012
An interview with Niroga Institute founder, BK Bose.

Esther Honig Radio interview

Fall 2011
Interview of BK Bose and Annika Hanson of Niroga Institute as part of a public radio program grant with Mills College.

Two short Comcast Interviews with Bidyut Bose

September 2011
Niroga Institute Founder and Executive Director Bidyut 'BK' Bose discusses the merits of yoga, and the work of Niroga Institute with Barbara Rodgers of Comcast Newsmakers.

Yoga for the People

Summer 2011
Yoga International magazine features the work of Niroga Institute and founder B.K. Bose.

Yoga Program for At-Risk Youth Transforms Mind and Body

February 4, 2011
At age 16, Shelley Smith (not her real name) was on a path to ruin. At Berkeley Tech, one of the elective classes Smith took was yoga, offered under the name of “Transformative Life Skills” (TLS) by Niroga Institute. “It was one of the best things I did,” Smith said. She added that soon after starting the class, “I began to have yoga highs, which was a lot better than weed highs.”

Niroga Institute Founder Bidyut Bose Receives Jefferson Award

September 20, 2010
Bidyut Bose has been awarded a Bay Area Regional Jefferson Award for his outstanding work as Executive Director of the Niroga Institute, an Oakland-based nonprofit that teaches Transformative Life Skills (TLS), a multi-modality intervention including yoga, breathing techniques and meditation, to at-risk youth and other vulnerable populations, including seniors, cancer survivors and recovering addicts.

News: The Research Says "Yoga Works!"

Yoga Journal Blog: Yoga Buzz September 20, 2010
As yogis, we know that makes us feel calm and less reactive. But the Oakland, California based non-profit Niroga Institute has taken this one step further... systematically training minority young adults to become certified Yoga teachers "so that they can serve their own communities with cultural competence and linguistic sensitivity."

Niroga Teacher Hayley Parlen featured on Yoga Activist

YogaActivist.org January 25, 2010
Hayley has been using yoga to work with urban youth in an Oakland, CA continuation high school for one and a half years. Recently, she also began teaching yoga to adults in drug rehabilitation centers.

Changing the Face of Yoga

Marcy Rein, East Bay Express, December 30, 2009
The Niroga Institute aims to use the practice to teach self-discipline and help youths break the cycle of violence. Exploring the work of Niroga Institute in Alameda County Juvenile Hall.

Holistic Solutions to Violence: part 1

KALW News - 12/10/2009
Bay Area reporters shed light on the many perspectives around roots and solutions to violence in Oakland, featuring Niroga Institute founder and executive director, Bidyut Bose.

Yoga's Calming Influence on Crime

Dave Newhouse, Oakland Tribune: Oct 11, 2009
After discovering yoga through a Niroga Institute program, teenager Genai Powers overcame a downward spiral of stress, depression, violence and substance abuse. Now Genai aspires to help others just as she was helped by Niroga. read article

Stretching themselves to the limit - The Niroga Institute brings the benefits of yoga to minority and at-risk communities

Josey Duncan, Ode Magazine: May 2008
It’s Monday morning in Unit 3 of the Alameda County Juvenile Justice Center in San Leandro, California, where they hold yoga classes in two units five days a week. A weekly class is also offered to staff. Yoga is supposed to help the teens relax in this extremely stressful environment. It’s also meant to help improve their lives after they’re released. read article

Yoga helps young offenders deal with stress

Barbara Grady, Oakland Tribune: Feb 28, 2008
Circumstances landed them in Juvenile Hall and many are angry. Some have been traumatized by violence. Some are coming off addictions. Just about all worry about what is next in their lives. These extreme stresses experienced by incarcerated youths are why county health officials thought yoga would help.

So, each morning, 20 teenagers in the Alameda County Juvenile Justice Center, Unit 6, participate in hour-long yoga classes. The classes are taught by Niroga Institute, an Oakland-based nonprofit whose purpose is to bring yoga to at-risk youths and other groups that might benefit from the discipline but are unlikely to seek it out, such as senior citizens and cancer patients. read article (pdf)

Bending, Posing and Teaching Beyond the Mat

Katie Zezima, New York Times: January 24, 2008
Bidyut Bose, who grew up in India and learned yoga from his father, started teaching it to seniors in 1998 at the Downtown Berkeley Y.M.C.A. in California. As he saw the students gaining in strength and self-esteem, he started to wonder about others who could benefit. Mr. Bose began contacting treatment centers, hospitals and homeless shelters. “If millions of Americans are doing yoga, then there are millions who are not getting it, not coming to a studio, not able to afford classes,” he said. read article

New juvenile center gets the kinks out

Karen Holzmeister. InsideBayArea.com: June 10, 2007
Like any other new building, Alameda County's recently opened Juvenile Justice Center had a few kinks. read article

Incarcerated Teens Learn Mindfulness - Yoga Behind Bars

Jenny P. Andrews. Benefit Magazine: Mar/Apr 2007
With funding from the Probation Department and Health Care Services, Niroga Institute offers yoga every weekday morning to the teens housed in B-2, a unit for twelve boys and eight girls. A Niroga study demonstrated that youth participating in yoga had improved self-control and reduced stress. read article (pdf)

Calm minds, peaceful goals

San Francisco Chronicle: September 2006
Abstract More than 75 people gathered on the lawn outside Oakland City Hall to do yoga Saturday, above, with the hope of bringing peace to a city struggling with surging violence. read article

The Niroga Institute - Giving the Gift of Yoga

Cathy Dalton. YogiTimes: July 2006
If you read the March issue of Yogi Times, you no doubt saw the centerfold portrait of a rapturous Darnell Walker, a student at Rock La Fleche Community Day School, with hands in anjali mudra (palms touching at the heart). Darnell is one of hundreds of people who had little or no access to yoga until the NirogaT Institute entered their lives. read article