Yoga Therapy for PTSD & Trauma
Thursday's 15 July - 26 Aug, 9.30am - 10.45am
‘The science which teaches you how to absorb the shock of adversity and come out
with grace and wonder of life, in the old days was called Kundalini Yoga.’
Yoga Therapy Course - SUPPORTING ADULTS WITH TRAUMA & PTSD
Trauma – the Greek word for ‘wound’.
What is trauma? It can be described as anything that overwhelms the system- not surprisingly this can be very different for everyone depending on their experiences, past and present.
These experiences create a disturbance in our rhythmic strength and a distance in our conscious relationship to ourselves. Trauma (including events, stress and tension) is held in the body, the impact can be far reaching . Yet through the specific application of Kundalini Yoga for Trauma, recovery and healing can also be far reaching.
We are made to withstand the challenges of life, encoded to move through trauma, recover and be more evolved because of it. What if we can reframe and experience our biggest traumas or liabilities as a gift of increasing our nervous system capacity and integration of our life experiences in order to move forward with more awareness and an expanded consciousness. While we are shaped by our experiences, we can also shape ourselves using our internal capacities.
The practice of Kundalini Yoga has been found to be effective for treating anxiety, depression and insomnia which are key symptoms of PTSD.
‘We access through breath, we strengthen through movement,
we integrate through mantra’.
The specialised yoga course for the recovery of trauma is designed to help safely move people out of states of hyper arousal or shut down and disassociation back into life.
The course begins by creating a sense of relative safety and then slowly and progressively begins to awaken the confidence to explore and accept what is being felt in the body. To be present in the body is a positive step towards recovery. The pace and progression of the course helps to develop an inner pulse of contraction and expansion. This pulse works in class by inviting an action, then a pause, then an action and so on. The students are invited to engage in a practice of breath work or meditation and then they are given time or they can choose to take the time, to pause and relax. This is an important part of the process of balancing the nervous system. Relax the body, the mind will follow.
At first, students may feel uncomfortable or uneasy with an unknown or stirring sensation (contraction) and then they have the opportunity and guidance (co-regulation with the teacher) to calm themselves again (expansion). Participants embody the pulsing rhythm of contraction and expansion, which over time leads to increased safety and a sense of being in control of the internal world- choice becomes available, rather than reactivity which can feel frighteningly uncontrolled. The student’s confidence in sitting with sensations for lengthening periods of time increases, supporting the development of self-regulation skills. As the course progresses and as students feel more comfortable with the practice, the focus shifts to safely, slowly releasing trauma and stress from the muscles. This is done by practicing very specific yoga series (kriyas) that include gentle exercises, stretching and conditioning of the Psoas muscle, a muscle which plays a big part in the reaction of fear, stress and trauma.
The recovery of trauma and long term stress is an ongoing journey that achieves the best outcomes when the person rallies the help of a team of support. The Recovery of Trauma Yoga course can be accompanied with talk therapies such as Psychology or Counselling. Often, participants complete the course more than once to really crystallise the positive new habits and relationship with the mind into their life.
"Neuroscience research shows that the only way we can change the way we feel is by becoming aware of our inner experience and learning to befriend what is going on inside ourselves." – Bessel van der Kolk,
Yoga for Recovery of Trauma or Health Conditions is usually a 7 or 10 week series which can be targeted for specific groups, specific workplace sectors or specific health conditions. One on One sessions can also be delivered to participants
Suitable for people looking to restore resiliency or assist in the recovery of chronic physical health conditions. Classes promote self empowerment tools for moving through traumatic stress.