Graduate Cadaver Lab

The 4-day lab is offered to graduates of Jules Mitchell’s 300hr yoga teacher training who wish to observe the mechanical properties of human connective tissue and get a visual and tactile sense of human movement.

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Tissue Mechanics Anatomy Lab
4 Days and In-Person in Colorado Springs

Explore connective tissue mechanics, musculoskeletal anatomy, and breathing mechanics in a hands-on in-person cadaver lab. Eligible for 28 CEUs upon completion.

 Tuesday – Friday
June 25-28, 2024
10am – 6pm local time

 $1800 USD

Institute for Anatomical Research
1490 W Fillmore St #130
Colorado Springs, CO 80904

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Fly into either Denver (DEN) or Colorado Springs (COS).
Please do not book any non-refundable travel/accommodations
until the course has been confirmed.

The price includes Colorado lab only. The Las Vegas gathering is a separate registration. You are not required to do both. If you can only attend one, I suggest the Las Vegas gathering as there will be many more lab opportunities. Learn more about the Las Vegas graduate gathering or other lab opportunities.

We have confirmed that this lab will have one embalmed and one unembalmed cadaver. I find the embalmed cadavers to be an excellent educational tool because structures hold their shape very well. However, this option means you give up one thing to gain something else: a more realistic view to gain a more instructional environment. In this lab, you won’t have to give up anything! The lab will feature one of each so you can compare and contrast, learning from both views.

Human Dissection Lab Objectives

Explore connective tissue mechanics, musculoskeletal anatomy, and breathing mechanics in a hands-on in-person cadaver labEligible for 28 CEUs upon completion.

 In this 4-day course, we will dissect:

  • Muscles
  • Fascia
  • Tendons
  • Ligaments
  • Joint capsules
  • Bones
  • Organs

If you wish to explore a specific structure not on the list above, that can be arranged as a personal side project for you with prior communication.

Course Description

This course is for yoga teachers and committed students who wish to observe the mechanical properties of human connective tissue and get a visual and tactile sense of human movement. The program includes a group Zoom meeting before and after the lab plus content-related reading.

In this lab, you will dissect specific anatomical structures of an embalmed cadaver (*unless a frozen cadaver is specified in a special lab situation). You will be doing the dissecting yourself, allowing you to touch, feel, and discriminate the structures noted on the course itinerary. Of course, some prefer to spend most of their first time in the lab watching and listening, which is equally as rewarding.

No prior dissection skills are necessary. We will meet you where you are and support you in the level of involvement that works for you.

However you choose to take in the content, you’ll walk away with a greater understanding of anatomy and biomechanics, especially as it relates to how we teach yoga.

Jules Mitchell leads human dissection courses for yoga teachers
Jules and her lab participants in lab coats working
Jules siting next to a classroom skeleton with her hand on its shoulder.
Jules leading an anatomy lab dissection for yoga teachers

Course Topics

  • Connective tissue behavior and stretching
  • Muscle continuity, fiber direction, and function
  • Specific joints such as the shoulder, knee, hip, and more
  • The psoas and whether it deserves its fame
  • The poor misunderstood upper trap
  • The incredible SI joint
  • Synovial fluid and joint capsules
  • Anything and everything about the spine and vertebral discs
  • The connection of the heart, lungs, and diaphragm
  • Layers of the abdominal wall
  • The role and evolution of the IT band
  • Identifying capsular muscles
  • Labrums, menisci, and bursae
  • The vagus nerve
  • Nerve plexuses
  • The pelvic floor
  • The plantar fascia

Course Includes

  • 2 x 60-minute group Zoom meetings led by Jules
  • 4 full days in the lab led by Jules
  • Several lab assistants for extra support
  • Lab tools and equipment
  • Suggested reading from Jules' book related to the course work
  • Access to a private social network for this special cohort

Not Included

  • Lab coat and gloves
  • A copy of Jules' book
  • Travel to and accommodations in Colorado Springs, CO

How do I know if the cadaver lab is right for me?

  • Do you think you know nothing about anatomy?
  • Do you think you know everything about anatomy?
  • Do you find textbooks to be painfully dry and two-dimensional?
  • Are you in awe of the human body?
  • Are you curious about human movement?
  • Have you heard the spine is unstable?
  • Have you heard the knee joint is fragile?
  • Have you wondered what happens to musculoskeletal tissue when we age?
  • Can you picture what tendinopathy, osteoarthritis, or a bulging disc looks like?
  • Are you skeptical of overcomplicated models of human movement?
  • Are you skeptical of oversimplified models of human movement?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, this lab is for you.

The primary concern I get is about knowing too much or too little anatomy. The lab has a way of leveling the playing field. Everyone sees something they have never seen before and everybody learns from the curiosity of others. A beginner’s eye can often see things in a way that the expert’s eye can’t, and vice versa.

The second concern is usually about the ick factor. Since the cadavers are embalmed, or “fixed,” (*unless an unembalmed/frozen cadaver is specified in a special lab) there is little to no blood and pathogens have been chemically cooked. If you have ever changed a diaper, picked up after a pet, or held a heaving, drunk girlfriend’s hair back, you’ve experienced grosser things than you’ll encounter in the lab. That said, you are welcome to take breaks and step outside anytime you feel overwhelmed.

The third concern is usually around confronting illness, death, and our own mortality. The lab environment is reverent, supportive, and collaborative. We have daily share circles as well as pre and post-zoom calls to process, share, and pay respects. Expressing emotions is okay and normal. We love you.