We all know that yoga has the power to increase strength and assist with weight loss.
But did you know that yoga can also help with specific ailments such as stomach aches, back pain, and stress? Or that there are specific poses to help with more difficult problems such as insomnia or depression?
This type of yoga, often refered to as therapeutic yoga or yoga therapy uses postures and breathing techniques to treat specific physical or mental discomforts.
Many people are not aware that yoga has emotional and psychological layers in addition to the physical one. But yoga can release pent up feelings that we may not even realize are there, clear mental blocks, and increase happiness.
Yoga Therapy Caters Toward Specific Needs
Yoga therapy is often held in a small class setting or private session as it is catered to individual needs or one specific issue. (Loving Life sessions are typically one-on-one and include classes that help with insomnia, increasing energy, decreasing stress, improving self-awareness, and pain management.)
Most people want to practice active yoga for fitness, but they may be able to find more reward in another style better suited to their specific needs and goals.
This is especially true for people who have trouble with their heart or with their breathing. In therapeutic yoga, a teacher will pay close attention to the student’s needs and guide them through a practice that best fits their unique challenges.
Yoga Therapy Creates Emotional Balance
Students often find themselves experiencing waves of strong positive (or negative) emotion during and after a yoga therapy session (where even the negative ones can feel wonderful because they release the emotion).
Learning where these feelings are stored in our bodies helps us to return to those places of happiness or release in the future. Yoga poses, like acupuncture, target specific organs and muscle groups that are strongly tied to physical and mental health.
When our major organs are off balance, our emotions can also be off balance. Therapeutic yoga focuses on restoring that balance.
|Organ||In Balance||Out of Balance|
|Heart||Love, compassion, tranquility||Overexcitement, chatter|
|Stomach||Sympathy, wisdom||Worry, criticism, irritability|
|Lungs||Self-reflective, happy||Grief, depression|
|Kidneys||Confident, ambitious, adaptable||Fear, low self-esteem, lack of focus|
|Liver||Patience, idealism||Anger, restlessness|
If you have not been feeling like yourself (or don’t like the way that you usually feel), therapeutic yoga can address the internal imbalances causing those feelings.
Yoga Therapy Increases Mental Clarity
Yoga therapy can create quiet and calm in your mind which can last throughout the day, and with enough practice can become a regular state of being.
When you are feeling happier and less stressed, it is easier to focus and be productive. And when your mind is clearer and calmer, it is easier to concentrate and remember things.
Learning this state of peace can even reduce chances of developing mental illnesses, which can be important for people with a family history. Meditative practices like positive self-talk and mindfulness help us to ground and comfort ourselves in times of fear or pain.
This may be highly beneficial to children and teens still developing their mental states as well as people dealing with frequent bouts of stress and anxiety.
Yoga Therapy Treats Physical Ailments and Reduces Pain
Most people know that benefits of practicing yoga are increased flexibility, strength, and toning.
But yoga therapy can also treat pain from previous injuries or conditions, and even prevent future injury for concerned groups like athletes and the elderly.
A common misconception is that yoga is only for people who are already flexible and fit. But it can be modified so that people who feel limited by age or physical ability can improve their physical fitness and overall well-being.
I like to practice repetitive motions with each pose, so that the body can steadily become used to them and work up to them gently. And synchronizing these movements with your breath oxygenizes your muscles and your brain, helping you feel stronger and more aware.
What Style Should You Try?
If you are ready to find additional benefits in your yoga practice, give yoga therapy a try. Try a group session that matches your need or request a private session to target issues unique to you.
- Invigorating Yoga — Targets stress, fatigue, self-awareness, depression, and lack of motivation
- Root Yoga — Targets stress, anxiety, panic, and feelings of being overwhelmed and consumed (Great for over-analytical minds.)
- Yin Yoga –– Targets anxiety, panic, emotional coping, and self-awareness. Releases emotional build up of anger, stress, and resentment while increasing energy levels.
- Yoga Nidra — Targets insomnia, stress, tension, anxiety, and inability to turn off the mind.
- Pain Management Yoga — Targets bodily injuries and pain within the body, specifically aimed for each individual’s problem areas.
- Couples Yoga — Targets relationship building and specialized based on client need.
If you are interested in learning more about yoga therapy, join us for a class.
Enter your email in the box below to get $25 OFF your first session and call us to schedule 813-609-6946.