Individual Viniyoga Therapy Sessions

What is Yoga Therapy?

*See below for my Winter to Spring, Essential Detox Special.

Yoga Therapy refers to the adaptation and application of Yoga techniques and practices to help individuals facing health challenges at any level, manage their condition.  It is different than a general yoga class and goes much deeper. Through specific and individually designed practices,  Yoga therapy seeks these long-term goals:

  • to reduce the symptoms of suffering or managing the symptoms that cannot be reduced
  • to root out causes wherever possible to uncover unconscious behavior patterns
  • to improve life function, vitality and
  • to shift attitude and perspective in relationship to life’s challenges.

After over 25 years of study, I am happy to offer you my specialty in Viniyoga™ Therapy.

What to expect?

After studying and practicing with me for a while, you may have noticed subtle, positive changes in your life. You experience a general ease and fulfillment that naturally occurs as you practice an average of 3-4x a week.  At this level,  I work with individuals and group classes on practical, therapeutic life-style issues to keep this balance in place. These issues may include muscle discomfort, endocrine issues like insomnia, digestive, stress and periodic depressive and/or anxious states.  I help you learn basic practices in breath and movement to help you manage these occasional states of discomfort.

Why go deeper?

And then there are those times of immense change, transition and upset. Yoga therapy takes that commitment to a new and I will say, exciting level.  I work with chronic diseases like cancer, chronic low back pain and chronic anxiety and depression.  These issues can be debilitating and interrupt your life and life-force. Yoga therapy is a powerful tool for the committed individual who is willing to practice more regularly. Many of you are there and ready to take this next step. Now is the time to step into that commitment and into the next level of health and wellness. 

*Winter to Spring, Essential Detox Special. Please call me to set up an initial free phone consultation at 415-259-8900

Yoga therapy has become the new buzzword of the yoga world.  What is it really?  Isn’t yoga therapeutic in general?  What is the difference between a yoga class and a yoga therapy session?

To illustrate the difference, let’s break it down, differentiating between a yoga class and a yoga therapy session, and a yoga teacher and a yoga therapist.

Yoga Class vs. Yoga Therapy Session

People attend yoga classes for a variety of reasons but they usually start out seeking exercise within a community.  Along the way, they may discover that yoga has more to offer that just a physical workout; they may find an interest in pranayama, meditation or chanting.  Yoga classes offer students a variety of techniques so they can learn different ways to explore this ancient health care maintenance system.

A yoga therapy session is more specific: it is all about you and your individual issue(s). A yoga therapist’s goal is to investigate your specific symptoms and offer personalized solutions for controlling and/or mitigating them.

Yoga Teacher vs. Yoga Therapist

A yoga teacher should be trained in both the art and science of yoga as well as effective teaching methods.  A good yoga teacher knows how to assess the needs of the students in any given class and teaches techniques that will be of interest to that group as well as enhancing their general knowledge of yoga.

A yoga therapist is a yoga teacher who further trains to assess the needs of and determine an intervention for an individual.  Yoga therapy training involves in-depth study of a range of conditions along with the corresponding therapeutic interventions.

Let’s look at an example.  You have developed low back pain that often keeps you up at night.  Attending a gentle yoga class helps to ease that pain for a while as you learn to coordinate your breath to movement.  However, you are still not finding enough relief to be able to sleep well at night.  You go to visit a yoga therapist, who asks you a variety of questions about your life, your work, your habits, and your diet, and works over a period of time to develop a personal practice that will directly address the specific, current issues that are preventing you from feeling relief.

You can see the important but distinctive roles that either professional may play in helping you to utilize the ancient tools of yoga to feel better.

The American Viniyoga Institute (AVI) provides training for both yoga teachers and yoga therapists.  The International Association of Yoga Therapists (IAYT) has recently developed a certification process for Yoga Therapy certification programs as well as current and aspiring yoga therapists and the American Viniyoga Institute is proud to be among the first schools to be certified.