What is Yoga Therapy?
Like yoga, there are so many different traditions of yoga therapy that finding one definition is impossible. Practitioners may blend modern day knowledge of anatomy, physiology, psychology and western medicine with the time honored tradition of yoga practice, yogic philosophy and ayurveda. From my perspective, it goes back to the basic definition of yoga…yoga means “union” or “to yoke.” The practice of yoga is yoked to health and wellness. When health and wellness are less than optimal yoga practices and philosophy can be used to bring balance to mind, body and spirit. In the west, we tend to think of yoga as asana or the physical postures into which we shape our body. Physical fitness is of course a big part of ultimate wellness, but not the only part.
Yoga therapy approaches illness, disease and injury from a multi-dimensional perspective that addresses the body as well as the mind and spirit. My goal as a yoga therapist is to act as partner and coach to empower each individual to move towards ultimate wellness through the physical and philosophical practice of yoga. Reducing symptoms, restoring balance, pain management, increased vitality and health are just a few of the possible benefits of yoga therapy.
Some of the conditions addressed by yoga therapy are pain management, weight loss, fibromyalgia, acute and chronic injury, cardiac disease, cancer, multiple sclerosis, addiction, back pain, anxiety, attention deficit disorder, depression, migraine, neck pain, arthritis, post traumatic stress disorder, and carpal tunnel syndrome, just to name a few.
Yoga therapy is tailored to an individual’s needs and move the body towards a healing state. Although yoga/yoga therapy has a spiritual component, it has no religious affiliation and can be used to deepen your spiritual practice without regard to specific beliefs.