“Movement is the song of the body.” Vanda Scaravelli
What is yoga therapy?
Yoga therapy is a way of addressing specific emotional or physical issues, working with the body, applying the principles and practices of yoga. It isn’t about achieving or striving for ‘a perfect pose’, but much more about connecting more deeply with the body and with ourselves.
Through developing a yoga therapy practice, we can tune in to what the body wants and knows and what it’s capable of. We can unlock the power that we sometimes lose touch with and soothe the nervous system and unravel habitual sources of stress and tension.
How yoga therapy works
If you go to a yoga class, you’re learning ways of moving and ways of breathing that strengthen your body and increase your flexibility. And one of the ways that yoga is different to other forms of exercise is that it doesn’t only promise physical strength and flexibility – but also supports the nervous system and increases mental and emotional flexibility.
Yoga therapy follows the same principles, but applies them to specific physical and mental health conditions. And, as a therapeutic approach, it draws on the fields of neuroscience, physiology and psychotherapy.
It can also improve your awareness of and relationship with physical sensations and emotions. This greater awareness helps us benefit from all the ways in which our bodies tell us what we need – and can also protect us from getting stuck ‘in our heads’ in repetitive cycles of fear or worry. It can also improve capacity to shift between moments of heightened stress and moments of relaxation. Finding new ways of moving helps us find new ways of responding – introducing creativity and flexibility to difficult situations.
One of my main areas of focus is working with people who have a specific mental health issue and are looking for support from a body-based approach, alongside talking therapies or medication.
What happens in a yoga therapy session?
My approach is not about a right or a wrong way to move, but exploring how the ways we move can help us feel more at home in our bodies, calmer in our minds and more alive in ourselves.
By bringing your attention to your body and being curious about what you find, you can create a practice that supports your physical and mental wellbeing.
Sometimes, just becoming more aware of the body can feel very relaxing and give a sense of integration and wholeness. But there can be times where focusing on physical sensations might feel challenging, especially for people with experience of trauma. When this is the case, we need to take extra care in how we work with the body.
How many yoga therapy sessions do I need?
In our first yoga therapy session, we’ll talk about why you’ve come, and what you’d like to get from working together.
We’ll explore some movements and start to build a home practice that meets your needs. This might include postures, breath work, meditation and relaxation techniques.
I recommend a series of six sessions to begin with.
Time, cost and place
Sessions are one hour and cost £45.
*I am currently offering three sessions for £120, or six sessions for £200.
If you’d like to talk to me about how I work, and how I might be able to help you, I offer a free fifteen-minute telephone consultation.
Please email me at email@example.com to book yours.