It has been a great pleasure to introduce yoga to the male prison inmates at the Corradino Correctional Facility as a part of the ‘Behaviour and Skills Management‘ course. The programme which was organised by the Fondazzjoni Mid-Dlam ghad-Dawl, aimed to help participants increase their ability to manage their behaviour.
With the co-operation of all, I managed to deliver the planned sessions successfully. It was not an easy task and had to offer modified/alternative postures, as some of the participants had physical restrictions, mainly due to fatigue after a day’s work and injuries incurred during the other physical activities of the course.
In general, the participants responded positively to the sessions, whereby I have witnessed the most dedicated yogi and the most transformed one. I was quite impressed with the participants’ good behavior and attitude. Without doubt, I strongly believe that a good rapport was established between the participants and myself.
Some inmates had even requested to continue attending the yoga sessions and even asked permission to have a yoga mat in their cell.
Being aware that this has been a 3 month pilot project, I can only express my views with regard how can yoga be beneficial if it continues to be included as part of a rehabilitation project.
Yoga is like medicine and once stopped, its effects will diminish. It is a journey of self-discovery and self-transformation. To be successful, as it is happening in other overseas prisons, the practice has to be ongoing.