What is Yoga Therapy ?

Yoga Instructor vs. Yoga Therapist

It’s not that one is better than the other – you can be a yoga therapist and also an yoga instructor but that does not hold true the other way around due to the more extensive training one must undergo to be certified as a Yoga Therapist. Often, someone who is already a therapist in a traditional definition of that profession – someone who counsels those going through emotional, psychological, interpersonal strife or challenges in need of help- may also add-on yoga, and that professional may call themselves a “therapist” with Yoga as one of the tools used in helping the client. BUT she/he is NOT a yoga therapist.

This is the latest update from IAYT:

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.

This tradition recognizes that the human being’s
essential nature is unchanging awareness that
exists in relationship to and identification with
the changing phenomena of the empirical
world. 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/student’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 wellbeing.

Yoga therapy also helps clients/students change their relationship to and identification with their condition. The practice of yoga therapy requires specialized training and skill development to support the relationship between the client/student and therapist and to effect positive change for the individual.

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.

exerpt from latest IAYT publication

Hope this clarifies those who wonder what’s the difference between a yoga instructor and yoga therapist. Both teaches yoga but I yoga therapist is more customized and personalized … which makes it very difficult to teach remotely.

Wouldn’t you also agree that – at least for me – it’s the environment and the vibe – the ENERGY – an escape from the ordinary – to go to a yoga class held at a PLACE other than your own home. We can combat this by creating your own sacred place within your home. Then, you need the ENERGY – THE VIBRATION. To find the extraordinary or the unique special miracles in the ORDINAY EVERYDAY often dismissed – is what this shelter in place teaches us.

Maybe.

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