By Kelli Bethel, PT, C-IAYT, Director of Yoga Programs and Yoga Therapy
Yoga is a philosophy that began in India about 5,000 year ago. It is not a religion but a method for individual wellbeing. The term “yoga” means to “bind” and its goal is to alleviate suffering. Yoga has been used in Eastern medicine for centuries and only made its way across the seas to Western Culture in the last hundred and fifty years or so. While many in the US view yoga as a “workout” or that you need to be a contortionist, it is in fact far from that. Yoga practices can include breath work (known as pranayama), physical poses (known as asana), meditation and lifestyle (such as honor your body and where it is today). A yoga class may incorporate one or all four methods. In fact, some yoga may only focus on breath or mediation and may not have any movement. To participate in a yoga class, you don’t need to be able to get on the floor or have the flexibility of Gumby!
Research continues to demonstrate that benefits of a yoga practice. These may include:
Who is appropriate for yoga?
Well actually anyone and everyone! There are many different forms of yoga from hot power to slow and gentle to yoga nidra or sleep. It is important to choose a yoga program that is right for you, your body and your medical history. For those individuals with chronic medical issues or are currently in active cancer treatment a referral for evaluation by a yoga therapist to develop an appropriate yoga program for you and your needs is recommended.
The Therapeutic Yoga for Cancer Program at Maryland Proton Treatment Center is delivered by a Maryland licensed Physical Therapist and a Certified Yoga Therapist. Each client is assessed prior to treatment and an individualized treatment plan is created based on the assessment and the client’s goals. Treatment sessions are modified based on the participants day to day needs and goals. Sessions may include breath work, gentle active yoga pose and guided meditation. Read about some of our other Specialized Yoga Therapy programs at the links below.
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We have great classes for health professionals throughout the year.
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Yoga Teacher TrainingLearn more here.
From the University of Maryland, Baltimore Graduate School: