Although in India the therapeutic benefits of yoga have been known for thousands of years, in the Western world yoga therapy has only just started to emerge as a discipline in its own right. The ancient knowledge system of Vedas gave origin to both yoga and Ayurveda, two closely interrelated and partly overlapping disciplines. While Ayurveda is the branch of the Vedic system developed specifically for healing purposes, yoga is the Vedic system of spiritual practice that was originally used and taught by dedicated Vedic yogis named rishis to overcome the limitations of the mind and see ultimate reality.
Yoga and Ayurveda share the same holistic approach to health that focuses on all levels of the person: physical, psychological, and spiritual.Yoga therapy consists in the adaptation of yoga practices for people facing health challenges. Yoga therapists prescribe specific regimens of postural exercises, breathing techniques, and meditation to suit the health needs of the individual and restore balance to the body-mind system. Medical research shows that yoga therapy is one of the most effective complementary therapies for many common ailments, and is particularly appropriate for a number of chronic conditions that do not respond to conventional medical treatment.
I had the opportunity to study yoga therapy and Ayurveda in India under the guidance of Guruji Omanand and a team of local yoga therapy specialists and Ayurvedic medicine practitioners. A full immersion in the Indian culture and the ashram life, associated with an intensive yoga and meditation practice, brought about deep personal change and a clear understanding of how Vedic science provides a complete system of healing and prevention. Yoga therapy differs from group yoga in that it is aimed at treating specific conditions and injuries that are not normally addressed in a group setting. Therefore, I provide yoga therapy only as one to one sessions and small group classes of maximum three people with similar health concerns.