What is Yoga Therapy?
Yoga is a scientific system of self-investigation, self-transformation, and self-realization that originated in India. The teachings of yoga are rooted in the Vedas and grounded in classical texts and a rich oral tradition.
The yoga tradition views humans as a multidimensional system that includes all aspects of body; breath; and mind, intellect, and emotions and their mutual interaction. Yoga is founded on the basic principle that intelligent practice can positively influence the direction of change within these human dimensions, which are distinct from an individual’s unchanging nature or spirit. The practices of yoga traditionally include, but are not limited to, asana, pranayama, meditation, mantra, chanting, mudra, ritual, and a disciplined lifestyle.
Yoga therapy is the appropriate application of these teachings and practices in a therapeutic context in order to support a consistent yoga practice that will increase self-awareness and engage the client's energy in the direction of desired goals.
The goals of yoga therapy include eliminating, reducing, or managing symptoms that cause suffering; improving function; helping to prevent the occurrence or reoccurrence of underlying causes of illness; and moving toward improved health and well-being. Yoga therapy also helps client's change their relationship to and identification with their condition.
Yoga therapy is informed by its sister science, Ayurveda. As part of a living tradition, yoga therapy continues to evolve and adapt to the cultural context in which it is practiced, and today, it is also informed by contemporary health sciences. Its efficacy is supported by an increasing body of research evidence, which contributes to the growing understanding and acceptance of its value as a therapeutic discipline.
Who can benefit from Yoga Therapy?
However, yoga therapy has a unique value for specific groups and individuals, including:
-those who would like yoga practices tailored to their specific needs.
-those who feel out of shape and need a slow and personally designed program.
-those who have been practicing yoga within a set system resulting in imbalances of strength and flexibility, pain, or injury.
-those interested in exploring the full spectrum of their being, including feelings and emotions, in a safe, non-judgmental environment.
-anyone experiencing chronic pain, knee issues, spinal issues, osteoporosis, hip/pelvic girdle issues, shoulder and neck issues, cancer patients and survivors, and those experiencing stress, anxiety, and depression.
"Kristen has a positive, warm presence. She really listened to what I said and usually had more info about the issue that day and at the next session. If something didn’t work, she found a solution/different option. She clearly has lots of knowledge and the ability to share it."M.N., South Carolina
"Kristen is the right mix of empathetic, professional and really chose the right poses and tone for me at this time in my life. The weekly classes held me accountable. That was great. Plus just Kristen--she is a great listener and truly gifted at this type of teaching. Can't thank you enough! I truly loved this process and the time we had together."S.H., South Carolina
"Kristen has a calmness about her. When I first started my yoga therapy, my body was craving rest, yet my mind was forcing it to continue at the same pace as my pre-cancer diagnosis, as I felt this was a way to deal with my health...Through yoga therapy, Kristen has taught me to slow down and focus on my healing. I feel happy to be alive and through yoga therapy and my breathing exercises, I now feel calmer and I have learnt to concentrate on the positives of my treatment and what I can do in the moment."L.J., South Carolina
"Kristen is caring, intuitive, and relatable. I appreciate her support, non-judgmental attitude, and encouragement."A.B., South Carolina
""...when I am with Kristen, whether it’s in a class setting or one-on-one, I feel truly seen and heard..."E.B., South Carolina
“Kristen has been a wonderful help to me throughout my childbearing years, especially in the postpartum period. She has mindfully helped me restore not only the weak parts of my body, but weak parts of my mind as well. Thanks to her guidance I have discovered the invaluable knowledge of how the two are connected.”C.S., South Carolina