Let’s Celebrate National Yoga Awareness Month!

Recent data suggests that over half of the people in this country feel stress. And a lot of it!

Sadly, when many people feel stressed, they tend to lean into bad habits, like drinking, smoking and eating junk food. What they should be doing is more yoga, meditation, and mindfulness.

More and more studies are now proving yoga can help people deal with stress and anxiety. But sadly, not enough people realize the benefits of yoga. And that’s why September has officially become National Yoga Awareness Month.

Besides helping to relieve stress and anxiety, yoga also offers some other pretty terrific benefits:

Improves Strength, Balance, and Flexibility

Yoga is wonderful because it helps your muscles become stronger while loosening other soft tissue, thus improving flexibility. Plus, holding certain yoga poses improves your balance. And, it’s so gentle, pretty much everyone can do it.

Eases Arthritis Symptoms

According to a John’s Hopkins review of several studies, gentle yoga has been found to ease a lot of the discomfort associated with arthritis. So, if you are looking for exercise that can help with your swollen, painful joints, yoga is a great option!

Helps Relieve Back Pain

Yoga’s gentle stretching movements are very effective at relieving back pain and improving mobility. So much so that the American College of Physicians even recommends yoga as a first-line treatment for chronic low back pain.

Yoga to Help Treat Trauma

Trauma negatively impacts a person both mind and body. When someone experiences a threatening event the person goes into “survival mode,” triggering their nervous system which causes them to go into fight, flight, or freeze and shutdown mode. Trauma is then stored in the body and can be felt as a physiological response when reminded of the trauma through emotional reactions, anxiety attacks, feelings of fear, crying, avoidance of reminders, and feeling as though the trauma is happening again known as “reexperiencing.” People may have responses that are out of proportion to the trauma reminder or event.

Yoga supports the person in achieving stabilization of the autonomic nervous system by restoring the mind and body connection. Body awareness is an intrinsic part of yoga, and can help people “build skills in tolerating and modulating physiological and affective states that have become dysregulated by trauma exposure” which decreases trauma symptoms. Yoga paired with psychotherapy can help accelerate recovering from trauma, reducing symptoms, and getting you back to a safe and happy life.

Yoga & Psychotherapy: A Heavenly Match

Psychotherapy and yoga have one very important thing in common: they are both holistic approaches to health and healing. They also happen to be very complimentary. In fact, when yoga and therapy are combined, the health outcomes can be massive. That’s because yoga helps to tone the body and the deep stretching helps release stored trauma in the body. Psychotherapy helps get to the root issue of the trauma, teach practical skills, and relaxation techniques while yoga helps you feel safe in your body again. Yoga can be a great way to unwind and connect to yourself after an intense therapy session that involved processing past trauma.

If you’re looking to recover from your trauma both physically, emotionally, and mentally, I highly encourage you to practice yoga and have routine therapy sessions. Contact me now to get the therapy process started.