By Sangeetha Saran
It is important to remember one of the primary purposes of yoga. Yogic practices tend to reduce suffering – Although the goal is to end all suffering. This is the reason why we still see so many therapeutic yoga teacher trainings to this day.
Any type of trauma can be treated through yogic practices. Life has many different traumas but it’s important to know that through trauma we learn of ourselves and grow as individuals. Tackling traumas with yoga, including injury as well as mental trauma, such as the loss of a loved one can speed us on our way to a healthy and happy life. Yoga does help one become more grounded in all areas of their life. It pushes us to notice and appreciate our strengths and our weakness and gain self-acceptance. The feeling of overcoming a traumatic event in life and conquering it breeds a strength and confidence in ourselves that no one can take away.
There are certain things to keep in mind when teaching a yoga training session for an individual with the pain of trauma. Without delving deep into someone’s thoughts you may not know exactly what they’ve been through. Many suffer PTSD or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. It could be from experiencing war, assault, or any multitude of traumatic experiences. A yoga instructor that is coaching those suffering from PTSD should be aware of things like chair and mat postures for those who have had an accident, and how to modify classes to make them trauma-sensitive.
The effects of trauma on the body are many. They can include pain, stress, low-energy and depression. Even without trauma these symptoms have been the main reasons for anyone taking up yoga training. First they must learn to quiet the mind and connect with the world around them through breathing techniques. Then through practice of asanas, students learn to travel and focus on the place where the trauma lies by listening to the body and letting go slowly of the pain.
Trauma survivors can gain strength through any asana, yet some of the following are the best.
• Mountain Pose – Mountain pose is perfect for those suffering emotional trauma. It concentrates on strength, and how you are grounded to the earth.
• Folding Pose – This is perfect for those with injury or without. Emotional conflict is usually held in the hamstrings. Conflicted feelings are easily released in Folding Pose.
• Legs Up the Wall Pose – This is a restorative asana that helps the yoga student relax, focus, and also will help them sleep better, as insomnia is a common effect of trauma.
Whatever poses are incorporated; the main focus should be stress relief, calmness, and slow easy moves with focus on breathing.
© Copyright 2012 – Aura Wellness Center – Publications Division
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