Who is Tiffany Seybert...
What is Cop To Yoga Peace Force?
Tiffany Seybert has lived in Chicago, in her Rogers Park home, since 1985. She has advanced Kundalini Yoga teaching credentials, and has taught publicly and privately for twelve years. Her education and professional experience in international business, music, and liberal arts add depth and distinction to her background.
Seybert founded Cop To Yoga Peace Force, Inc. as a community-based peace initiative which aligns with the community policing objective that has local engagement at its core. Yoga is the Sanskrit word for union. Seybert’s program unites volunteer yoga teachers with their local Chicago Police districts to provide evidence-based breath work meditation tools as a way to neutralize stress in real time. The result is officers and the community joining together to create relationships, with the understanding that we are all connected and working together to create peaceful interactions in our city.
Seybert leads a class called Roll Call, which is seven minutes of yoga breath work meditation given in the roll calls as officers start their shift. Officers are seated and in uniform, and practice the work Monday through Friday. This format provides repetition and depth to ensure the work becomes embedded in their daily wellness practices. Her business cards have the exercises detailed on the back, and are given to officers as a reminder to breathe throughout their day.
Roll Call exercises are based on deep proactive breathing, which immediately activates the Parasympathetic Nervous System. This activation stops the production and flow of stress hormones that flood the system during fight or flight. Since officers experience fight or flight several times per day, Roll Call exercises are the real-time antidote to the corrosive stress they experience as an occupational hazard. Results include slowing the heart rate, lowering the blood pressure, and re-oxygenating the blood cells. The work neutralizes stress, and instills an alert, centered feeling of calm and balance.
Yoga breath work is a powerful effective tool that forms the basis of self-care. It teaches officers that their well-being matters first. As a result, they can serve from the place where compassion for themselves and others resides. It is the most effective exercise the officers can do in the limited time they have, and it’s a tool they can use wherever they are to rebalance after a stressful event, or to prepare for one. Just as important, Roll Call teaches the awareness of our inner powers to effect neurochemical changes in the brain, responsible for neutralizing stress. This is so important for all of us to know, and especially crucial for people in high stress professions to practice.
Similar breathing exercises, sometimes called combat or tactical breathing, are taught in military and law enforcement training. Most local officers have not encountered breath work, so for them Roll Call is very helpful. Cop To Yoga was in pilot for three months when it began, and officers voted unanimously to continue it. With the guidance and support of the 24th District Commander and officers, the program evolved to its present state, and expanded to other districts. It is a quick pain-free way to facilitate deeper wellness. Cop To Yoga Peace Force Inc. is expanding its message to the entire city and beyond, bringing volunteer teachers together with officers in their respective districts to manifest peaceful and deeper connections in their communities. Tiffany Seybert is grateful to all who support her efforts to create more peace in our world. We all have the right to remain silent and connect to the peace within.