A yoga therapist copes with COVID
By Denyse LeFever, with Sherry Zak Morris
A year into our collective COVID experience, bright spots may seem few and far between. As pandemic casualties mount, worry and fear can be hard to shake off.
But there are many bright spots to be found, and I would say that yoga therapist Sherry Zak Morris is one of those lights.
When Sherry was diagnosed with COVID-19 in summer 2020, she directed her energy toward applying the tools of yoga to her own self-care. Breathing practices, gentle physical postures (asana), and yoga nidra meditation were all part of a holistic self-care practice.
A yoga therapist becomes her own client
Using an approach to yoga asana similar to the techniques she uses with students who have a variety of chronic conditions, Sherry was able to maintain her physical strength, mental fortitude, and respiratory capacity throughout active COVID illness and into recovery. According to Sherry,
“My work with students who have chronic illnesses, disabilities, and age-related physical degeneration gave me insight into how COVID affects the body—and what tools in my yoga toolkit could be of most benefit.
“Because COVID often attacks the lungs and heart, I focused on those areas to help me determine the best self-care protocol to follow in managing my symptoms alongside more traditional medicine.”
Although her energy was very much depleted, she incorporated appropriate movement into each day:
“Gentle yoga asanas invite prana [energy], which is needed to combat COVID fatigue. They also strengthen the functions of the heart and lungs, organs that are taxed by the COVID virus.”
Sherry’s positive outlook and determination doubtless played a big role in her ability to heal. Four months after recovery Sherry was able to donate her blood, which still contained COVID antibodies, and 6 months after recovery she donated plasma.*
Learn more about Sherry’s therapeutic approach for COVID support here.
Denyse LeFever, C-IAYT, founded Lavender Om Wellness, where she specializes in teaching yoga to “perennials,” those dedicated students who come back year after year regardless of age or health condition. She is a graduate of Yoga Vista Academy’s Chair Yoga Program.
Sherry Zak Morris, C-IAYT, is a leader in wellness for those aged 50 and up. As co-founder of Yoga Vista Academy, her energy and enthusiasm have been shining into people’s home yoga practices for almost two decades.
*Blood donated by people who have recovered from COVID-19 contains antibodies to SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes the illness. The donated blood is processed to remove blood cells, leaving behind liquid (plasma) and antibodies. These can be given to people with COVID-19 to boost their bodies’ immune function.