What is Yoga Therapy?

I’d like to share Amanda Pfennig’s article from the Huffington post.

“Yoga therapy involves the adaptation and application of traditional yoga techniques and practices, including poses, pranayama and meditation, to help individuals facing health challenges at any level manage their condition, restore balance and move towards optimum overall well-being. While all yoga can be therapeutic on some level, there is a major distinction between traditional yoga classes and yoga therapy sessions. And with more healthcare practitioners referring their patients to yoga, educating the medical community, yoga teachers and potential students on the differences is extremely relevant as many yoga classes may aggravate rather than alleviate symptoms for an individual.”

The Heart of Pranayama – by Ganesh Mohan

The Heart of Pranayama

The Yogasutra defines pranayama as stopping the breath: after a deep exhale, after a deep inhale, and after a normal breath. The hatha yoga texts specify different techniques of manipulating the breath, and the physiological effects of those techniques.

While the Yogasutra is concerned more with the mind, and hatha yoga apparently with the body, their goals are synchronous. Both pathways aim to quiet the mind. We all know that calming the breath will calm the mind.

But there is much more to traditional pranayama.

Pranayama is one of the limbs of classical yoga, the fourth among eight. Literally, the practice of pranayama is to lengthen the breath, and to stop the breath.

On one hand, the techniques of pranayama can be linked to the doshas of ayurveda—be classified as heating and cooling pranayamas. This is a way to use pranayama therapeutically.

On the other hand, deepening one’s experience of pranayama serves as an entry point to the experience of what is sometimes called the “subtle body” or “energy body.” That is, by practicing pranayama, interoceptive awareness of the body grows more refined and clear over time, allowing us to sense within us layers of body experience and mind-body connection that were inaccessible in our awareness earlier. This notion forms the foundation of the system of prana, nadis, and cakras, the part of yoga that is sometimes termed as “yoga physiology.”

Thus the heart of pranayama is the connection between mind and body that is explored using the breath. The entry to this practice is through cultivating a stable and comfortable awareness of inner body sensation in asana itself. We then deepen the practice in pranayama by finding greater absorption in that inner body awareness using the breath as a support and conduit.

 – Ganesh Mohan

Is Yoga a Therapy?

Ganesh Mohan on Yoga as Therapy

The foundation of yoga is self-management. A yoga teacher cannot practice yoga in place of her student. The student has to do it herself, whether it be exercises on the mat, breathing, or meditation.

Traditionally, the methods of yoga were not intended as treatment. Yoga was intended to be a journey of self-transformation. Yet, when does healing end, and self-transformation begin?

Health is balance. Extremes in body or mind are rarely healthful. Thus the science of therapeutic yoga lies in using the skills of working with the body-mind complex to restore balance.

If I have back pain, I may not be able to sit in meditation comfortably. The skill of alignment, stabilization, strengthening, better posture in daily life, gentle release, breathing, and stress reduction, can all help to bring the function of the back to a better balance. A yoga teacher can teach this; if taught appropriately and practiced sincerely, back pain usually does reduce.

This is as much yoga as it is therapy. Perhaps, such “yoga therapy” is even more “yoga” than a pain-free individual putting his leg behind his head or dropping back into a wheel pose. After all, the goal of yoga is fundamentally to reduce suffering and improve quality of life, and that is the goal of any therapy too.

The skills of self-care are both preventive and healing. Yoga as a holistic self-management skill is valuable in both health and disease, whether we label it therapy or fitness.

Ganesh Mohan

What is yoga as therapy useful for / För vad kan yoga som terapi användas?

Yoga som terapi kan användas för

ryggbesvär, högt blodtryck, ledbesvär, PTSD, skolios, parkinson, artrit, förbättrad hållning, immunnedsättning, idrottsskador, stress, viktminskning, förbättrad andhämtning, sömnbesvär, osteoporos, depression och ångest, fibromyalgi, muskelsjukdomar, skelettsjukdomar

Yoga as therapy is useful for

back care, high blood pressure, joint pain, PTSD, scoliosis, parkinson’s disease, arthritis, poor posture, immune function, sports Injuries, stress related issues, weight loss, breathing difficulties, sleep issues, musculoskeletal conditions, osteoporosis, depression and anxiety, fibromyalgia

Yoga as therapy / yoga som terapi

Yoga kan vara en komplementär metod vid sidan av traditionell medicinsk behandling vid ett antal olika tillstånd. Observera att yogan inte ersätter medicinering eller annan medicinsk behandling. Förutom vid

besvär i ländryggen och nedre extremiteterna

hals- och bröstryggen och övre extremiteterna

andningsorganen och hjärt-kärlsystemet

kan yoga användas för att må bra psykiskt, motverka stress, förbättra sömnen, ge lindring vid neurologiskt betingade besvär, för att bara nämna några av de påfrestningar som livet kan bjuda på.

Ring för konsultation 0723 06 17 07 eller mejla info@yogashanti.eu

Yoga can be an complementary method in addition to traditional allopathic medical treatment for a number of conditions. Please observe that yoga never is a substitute for medication or medical treatment. Besides

for disorders of the lumbar spine and lower limb

for disorders of the cervical and thoracic spine and upper limb

for respiratory and cardiovascular disorders

yoga can be used for mental well-being, counteracting stress, promoting good sleep, soothing and alleviating neurological conditions, to mention only a few of the strains we are faced with in life.

Call +46 723 06 17 07 for a consultation or email to info@yogashanti.eu