Practice roundup: Yoga therapy techniques for aging, stress, COVID-19 recovery, and more
Yoga therapy is the specific application of yogic tools like breathwork (pranayama), posture (asana), and meditation to boost whole-person health. While a yoga therapy approach is tailored to an individual’s specific needs, students can draw on practices more generally to support their health and well-being while working with a goal or challenge.
We’ve rounded up articles on the blog that highlight yoga therapy techniques to support health and wellness areas like stress management, anxiety and depression, sleep, COVID-19 recovery, and more. Keep reading for excerpts and links to practice descriptions, videos, and step-by-step tutorials!
“Breathwork aims to normalize breathing patterns and increase the efficiency of respiratory muscles (especially the diaphragm), resulting in less energy expenditure, less airway irritation, reduced fatigue, and improvement in breathlessness.”
“Here are five simple practices, combined with the yogic ideas of intention and mantra, that in my experience have powerfully transformed a fear of aging into an ability to face the process with strength and courage.”
“The practices of conscious breathing, relaxation, and physical poses have different qualities that can be stimulating or calming as needed. When someone is feeling anxious, we might reach for yogic tools that ground and soothe the nervous system. When someone is feeling depressed, we might reach for yogic tools that are uplifting and stimulating.”
“Seated in a chair, Dr. Moonaz demonstrates how to move sequentially through the body—from ‘playing piano with the toes’ to inviting movement through the ankles, knees, hips, and upper joints. In the video, she emphasizes that ‘whatever range is available is fine,’ and encourages syncing breath with movement during certain techniques.”
“One possible tool is the practice of yin yoga, which can serve us during times of stress through potential mechanisms of decreased anxiety and improved mindfulness, interoception, and relaxation. Yin yoga represents the quiet, still side of yogic practice, and its postures are especially accessible because they are mostly done on the floor and can be adapted in any number of ways.”
“A few basic poses you can do in the comfort of your own bed may be a great starting point! Try spending a few minutes in these positions to help your body gently unwind and your mind settle for a restful night.”
“During the first Global Yoga Therapy Day…professionals on six continents shared their work. Check out a few of the practices offered by IAYT-certified yoga therapists in honor of the event, which raised awareness of this complementary healthcare modality.”
Please note that, like the other information provided on this site, these practices are not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Not all exercises are suitable for everyone. You are encouraged to consult your personal physician with questions or concerns.