Yoga Therapy - what is it?
I am often asked what 'yoga therapy' is and how it differs from 'yoga'. Let me explain briefly, yoga therapy is the adaptation of yoga practices aimed specifically at people with health considerations. Research provides evidence that it can aid in the alleviation of many different ailments, including fibromyalgia, diabetes, back pain, hypertension, obesity, asthma, menopausal and menstrual disorders, cancer, depression, anxiety, arthritis and rheumatic disorders, insominia, irritable bowel syndrome and other stress related conditions.
Yoga therapy is a mindful practice, it uses gentle postures, specific breathing practices, relaxation techniques and meditation to help restore body/mind balance and promote natural healing. In a therapeutic yoga session poses are supported by using props e.g. as bolsters, blankets, blocks and sometimes a yoga chair. I may also use a very gentle, non-evasive hands on approach to help clients release physical and emotional barriers and tensions which may be holding them back. A therapeutic application of the postures aims to bring the body back to homeostasis by calming the parasympathetic nervous system. The vagus nerve is also a key part of your parasympathetic “rest and digest” nervous system. It influences your breathing, digestive function and heart rate, all of which can have a huge impact on your mental health. I often describe therapeutic yoga as ‘restorative’ yoga for this reason.
Is it for me?
Yoga therapy is suitable for all ages and all levels of fitness and flexibility but as mentioned previously it can be helpful for all kinds of physical, mental and emotional conditions. As with all yoga it empowers you to look after your own health and wellbeing and can help in the management of pain.
I am truly grateful to the clients that I work with for letting me be a part of their 'journey' and I am humbled by the openness, honesty and trust that my clients put in me.
Yamuna Body Ball Rolling - What is it?
This method of deep massage was created by Yamuna Zake a yoga teacher from New York her work has developed over many years of working with people and from years of research and knowing the physiology, anatomy and mechanics of the body on and off of her yoga mat. Yamuna designed specific massage balls in different sizes and densities in order to treat physical problems, using the specialised Yamuna Body Rolling balls, you can target superficial skin, fascia, muscle fibers, tendons, ligaments, bones, internal organs, and the nervous system by themselves.
The extraordinary effect of Yamuna Body Rolling is its multidimensional elongation of muscle fibers. In addition to the regular longitudinal elongation by the conventional stretch method, Yamuna Body Rolling enables the transversal and diagonal expansion of muscle fibers in order to move the body more dynamically.
How Does It Work?
Bodyrolling is a complimentary health system, which perfectly compliments yoga, empowering you to maintain your own body structures and can help in healing and preventing pain and injury. The system teaches us to reorganise and improve our own anatomy. It is a powerful and self-fixing and maintaining tool that everyone can do regardless of age or physical limitations. Using a series of balls designed exclusively for this practice Body ball therapy works the way a hands-on practitioner works during a deep massage. The ball replaces a hand as it moves on muscles to lengthen them, dislodge tension & discomfort, increase blood flow, & promote healing. In a class a series of routines are used working the whole body
What are the Benefits?
Body Ball Rolling re-educates & lengthens muscles, stimulates bone, creating positive changes in the body. It releases tension & energy blocks, creates space & freedom of movement within your body. It enables you to develop a deeper understanding of your body, improves posture, helps to let go of habitual patterning & can help prevent injuries. It can be particularly beneficial for specific conditions e.g. sciatica, back pain, frozen shoulder, sports injuries, improves circulation, it keeps bones healthy and helps maintain a general feeling of health and wellbeing. You can use the ball anytime, pre yoga, post yoga, pre and post sports. You can roll away everyday stresses.
Is it for me?
Yamuna body rolling is for every body, you do not have to be fit or flexible. It is beneficial for those who are very physical to those who take very little exercise. People who practice yoga and pilates find this particular therapy extremely beneficial. However, to use the ball you will need to work from a solid surface e.g the floor. Due to the intense nature of this therapy class numbers are small (maximum 8 people). For specific physical conditions one-to-one tuition is recommended. The only contraindication would be myeloma (bone cancer).
I completed the First Phase Yamuna training in London in 2007 and I was extremely impressed with the way the my body felt after just one session I felt the effects immediately, tension in my muscles and I felt elongated, I also felt a sense of lightness. I have been using the ball in my own practice for many years and have developed my own routines to release sore or tight muscles. I don’t currently teach specific Yamuna classes but I may use the ball in a one to one session or a Yin and Myofascial Release class. I also offer small private sessions for up to 8 people.
For further information on any of the above therapies please contact Barbara: firstname.lastname@example.org or Tel: 07788 581 662