The aim of yoga therapy is to stimulate the innate recuperative powers of a client’s body and mind. To do this, a yoga therapist relies on the healing properties of yoga rather than medication or hands-on procedures. Depending on the client’s issues, a yoga therapist may use any combination of the following techniques: breath-focused movement and postures, controlled breathing, repetition of words or sounds, visualisation, and guidance on lifestyle and diet.
What can I expect if I go to a yoga therapist?
When someone seeks help, a TSYP yoga therapist will carry out a thorough assessment of the person’s presenting problem and design a therapy plan for the client to follow on a daily basis. They will also review the client’s progress at regular intervals and adjust the plan accordingly.
What training have TSYP yoga therapists done?
TSYP yoga therapists are experienced yoga teachers who have undertaken a further three years of training in a proven methodology for practising therapy. This framework helps them understand the context and nature of a client’s concerns, establish possible causes, and develop the most appropriate direction and plan for therapy.
Within this system, therapists also tailor their approach to the client’s individual needs. For example, a TSYP therapist never works with hypothyroidism alone, they work with a unique individual who happens to suffer from hypothyroidism: so a person of a particular age with a unique physical and physiological constitution, mental state and attitude, personal circumstances and experience of symptoms.
A holistic approach
Yoga therapy takes into account all aspects of the person. A TSYP therapist working with a client who seeks help for a knee injury might also address the impact of the knee injury on the client’s spine and other joints, the psychological effect of the injury, and whatever physical imbalances might have contributed to the knee problem.
Likewise, if a client presents with asthma, the therapist might aim to improve the client’s posture, create more movement and space in their back and chest, improve their breathing patterns, increase their lung capacity and relax their mind.
Yoga therapy complements orthodox medicine and TSYP yoga therapists recognise the importance of working in harmony with conventional care. Even if an asthmatic client’s symptoms are eliminated altogether and their medication becomes redundant, their therapist will emphasise the chronic nature of their condition and the need to carry medication at all times.
What kind of problems can be helped by yoga therapy?
Yoga therapy has helped many clients to recover fully from injury and illness. In the case of chronic conditions like diabetes, terminal illness, and permanent damage from trauma such as a stroke, yoga therapy can alleviate the client’s experience of symptoms.
For example, a client with Parkinson’s disease could work on improving their balance and retraining and strengthening their gait. Regardless of the client’s problem, a yoga therapist also aims to bolster a client’s mental capacity to cope with their condition.
Working from within
Yoga therapy works from within, to create more balance in a client’s body, breath and mind. As we gain more inner balance, our suffering is reduced and our quality of life enhanced.