I offer some specialist yoga classes for those living with pain or illness: Yoga for Healthy Lower Backs and Yoga for people living with cancer
How can Yoga help?
Yoga is an integrated and holistic system for helping us to bring about balance – or to restore balance – on all levels: body, mind, energy, heart, and spirit. When a serious illness, chronic pain, or other life change has disturbed this balance, a regular practice of yoga can help in a number of ways:
Gentle physical postures – help increase energy levels, improve functioning of internal organs and bodily systems, and to remove toxic waste
Breathwork – helps improve breathing, which in turn helps release tension, and soothes the nervous system
Relaxation – calms the nervous system and helps reverse the effects of stress
Meditation – helps to manage fear and anxiety, and to develop an ability to come to terms with the experiences of life.
Yoga for healthy backs
Chronic back pain is the most burdensome healthy issue we face, but our understanding of chronic pain is improving all the time. And the good news is that the body and brain are adaptable, and will change if we train them. Practising quality movement, repeatedly, in a supportive environment, is knows to be one of the best ways of doing this.
I offer 2 classes for those interested in using yoga to improve their back health:
A specialist weekly class: a 12 week programme of yoga classes devised by experienced yoga teachers and back pain experts. It is gentle, simple and effective, and gives you the tools to improve your back health through a progressive series of posture sequences for healing, back pain prevention, strengthening and mobilising. It is suitable for beginners and experienced students alike. The programme was used in a trial to evaluate the effectiveness of yoga for chronic low back pain. It was one of the largest yoga trials worldwide, and it found that yoga is one of the most effective options for improving back health in the long term.
You can see the research details and a four-minute video here yogaforbacks.co.uk
A monthly workshop as a top-up or for on-going support. This is for anyone who would like to join and will use practices from my hatha yoga training alongside what I have learnt on the specailist Yoga for Healthy Lower Backs training.
See the classes and courses page for details of current yoga for backs classes in Stroud.
The video clip below is a useful overview of lower back pain and its management:
What are yoga for cancer classes like?
The core practices we focus on are simple, effective and profound. There are essentially three components to a holistic yoga session: body work, breath work, and some sort of quieter practice such as a relaxation or meditation practice (you could think of this as "mind work") to finish. This is the sort of pattern we use in these therapeutic yoga sessions: some gentle movement, with respect for your limitations, some work with the breath - which helps improve energy levels, and gives us techniques for managing pain and anxiety - and a relaxation practice.
The aim of the classes is to provide a safe and welcoming space and to offer techniques which help us to acknowledge and accept things as they are, and so to be free to live life fully and consciously in the present.
I have found working with people at the end of life to be extraordinarily humbling and rewarding. At the heart of it all, yoga invites us to live this life with awareness, and helps us develop the skills to do just that.
I offer individual yoga for cancer classes, and these can take place in your home, at a hospice, or from my beautiful yoga studio in Stroud.
"I have enormous respect for your work and the integrity and humour you bring to it. Likewise what you have brought to my inner world at home has been invaluable." Lucy
"Lucy really valued your work and the support you offered her during her illness and before. It was a really important part of her journey and supported her on many levels." Lucy's husband.
Contact me for more details or to book a session.