It’s well known that yoga is a great way to exercise while relaxing at the same time and there are also many benefits to yoga, which is why it’s popular in the UK and all over the world. Those who practise yoga can tone muscle while focusing on their chakras, meditating, and doing breathing exercises.
With this in mind, yoga therapy aims to physically and mentally cure through the principles of yoga: Asanas (poses), Pranayama (breathing), and stretching. It adds a philosophical dimension, allowing you to find vitality and zen in your life.
In this article, we’re going to look at the fundamentals of yoga therapy, a discipline that takes care of your body and mind through yoga, the benefits of yoga therapy on the body and mind, who it’s for, and how you can take part in a yoga therapy session.
What Is Yoga Therapy and Where Did It Come From?
Yoga was born in India but yoga therapy was born in France and developed alongside therapy. You can discover the origins of yoga therapy with Superprof!
Yoga therapy is a discipline that combines traditional yoga with sophrology and philosophy and a typical yoga therapy session comprises of yoga poses and relaxation.
In short, you could describe this blend of yoga and modern medicine as:
“The combination of thousand-year-old traditional methods and neuroscience based on scientific and medical study that has shown to be effective in many different areas of health.”
Yoga therapy is usually for patients suffering from physical or psychological problems, but it can also be used for a variety of other problems. You can’t use yoga therapy in isolation but it can be effective when used alongside medical treatment to help you heal and feel better.
It was created in 1970 by Doctor Bernard Auriol who had the idea of combining psychoanalysis with Eastern practices such as yoga. After having proven the benefits of his method, two yoga therapy organisations were created: Institute of Yoga Therapy (IDYT) and the French Federation of Yoga Therapy (FFYT).
The Physical and Mental Benefits of Yoga Therapy
Just like with traditional yoga, yoga therapy, when done regularly, comes with many benefits for both the body and the mind. You can discover the benefits of yoga therapy in the long-term whether you’re ill or not.
Yoga and yoga therapy can improve your mind and body!
The Physical Benefits of Yoga Therapy
Yoga therapy is a discipline that anyone can do regardless of their age or physical condition. It’s very useful for maintaining your body, getting rid of physical pain, and strengthening muscles to make you feel better in your own body. It can also be used to treat back pain, chronic pain, and certain internal problems without the need for any other medical treatment and when used alongside medical treatments, it can be used to help with sciatica, hypertension, and heart disease.
The Psychological Benefits of Yoga Therapy
One of the biggest benefits of yoga therapy is how it can help you manage stress and improve your daily life. Yoga therapy is useful for several psychological issues:
- Sleep apnoea
- Chronic migraines
- Anxiety attacks
Regularly doing yoga therapy and receiving medical treatment can help with several mental health problems and can be useful for more severe conditions such as Parkinson’s Disease.
Who Is Yoga Therapy for?
Yoga therapy is a combination of exercise and sophrology and can be useful for almost anybody.
So who exactly can benefit from yoga therapy?
Yoga Therapy: A Discipline for Everyone
Yoga therapy, which can be used to cure plenty of ailments, is for anybody. You don’t need to ill to take part in a yoga therapy session. You can relax while practising Hatha yoga or Nidra Yoga. You can enjoy the benefits of yoga even if you’re not looking to get over a particular condition or illness since the physical benefits of doing yoga will be useful in your everyday life and even prevent certain health problems down the road. No matter how old you are, yoga therapy will do you a lot of good.
Patients Suffering from Physical or Mental Health Problems
Yoga therapy’s goal is to cure health problems, be them physical or psychological, and a yoga teacher’s job is to help heal the whole being on every level.
The most common physical and mental health problems that can benefit from yoga therapy are:
- Chronic anxiety
- Sleep disorders
- Light physical problems
- Low lung capacity
- Pregnant women through prenatal yoga
- Patients who’ve undergone an acute medical treatment
The benefits of yoga therapy work on several levels so you may want to consider it for both physical and psychological issues.
Taking part in a Yoga Therapy Session
Yoga therapy has been available in Europe for a long time but the general public isn’t fully aware of it. Find out how to take part in a private yoga therapy session, a group yoga therapy session, or a yoga therapy workshop.
Taking part in a Yoga Therapy Session
Yoga therapy is usually done in 1- or 2-hour sessions. Usually, sessions are private since the therapist needs to adapt every exercise to their patient. This personalised treatment is what makes yoga therapy the ideal discipline for curing a wide variety of conditions.
However, you can also take part in group yoga therapy sessions with more general goals. These sessions normally take place with a predefined group such as with friends, work colleagues, etc.
Finally, yoga centres regularly organise themed workshops for yoga therapy. They can work on a particular topic or aspect of yoga (meditation, breathing, alignment, chakras, etc.) or a particular type of patient (children, the elderly, pregnant women, etc).
Don't forget that you can also get yoga therapy sessions with a private tutor on Superprof!
How to Become a Yoga Therapist
It's quite simple for a yoga teacher to become a yoga therapist but they will need a bit of training to learn the therapeutic side of things. There are a few ways to get this training:
- Get a Green Yoga qualification, the most common among yoga therapists.
- Train with the Yoga Therapy Institute.
- Receive training from another yoga therapy institute or organisation.
These training courses can be quite long so you’ll need to be patient.
You should now know a bit more about yoga therapy and be aware of what you should expect from a session and how it can be used to help with both physical and mental health problems by using yoga and meditation. If you want to find out more, consider reading our other articles on the topic or getting yoga therapy sessions from the yoga teachers and tutors on Superprof!
There are many different types of yoga including Iyengar Yoga, Ashtanga Yoga, Hot Yoga, Power Yoga, Bikram Yoga, Vinyasa Yoga, etc. Each yoga class is different so ask your yoga instructor or tutor which is the best for you. Since there are a lot of different types of yoga available and three main types of yoga tutorial available on Superprof: face-to-face, online, and group, you need to think carefully about choosing the right tutor and the right type of private tutorial.
Face-to-face tutorials are between you and your tutor; there's nobody else there. This is great if you require highly-tailored yoga therapy, for example. However, as a bespoke and tailored service, these tutorials tend to be the most costly per hour. With your tutor dedicating every minute of the session to you, they're also the most cost-effective type of tutorial.
Online tutorials, while usually better for academic subjects, can be quite useful if you're on a budget. Since the tutor doesn't have to travel and can also schedule more sessions per week, they have the potential to earn more and spend less and can charge a more competitive rate for their tutorials. If you prefer a hands-on approach, these tutorials won't be for you, but if you have a decent webcam, microphone, and internet connection, you can get quality and tailored tutorials without having to break the bank.
Finally, group tutorials are similar to traditional yoga therapy sessions and you won't be the only person there. With multiple attendees footing the bill, these tend to be cheaper per person per hour than the other types of tutorial but it does mean that the lessons won't be tailored for you. Since most yoga therapy is geared towards a specific condition or ailment, most of you there will have the same needs and goals. This means you can all benefit from affordable private tutoring and yoga therapy and maybe even make some new friends.