Yoga therapy is the adaptation of yoga for people with health problems.
Although ordinary yoga classes can improve general health and resolve mild
complaints, they may be ineffective - or even harmful - for serious conditions.
In such cases, yoga therapy can help people by tailoring yoga to their individual
needs, taking into account their health problems, constituition and circumstances.
is a holistic system for promoting homoeostasis at physical, mental and
emotional levels. When this balance is disturbed by illness, or the stress
created by illness, yoga can help restore it, and help cure or manage the
Yoga therapy practitioners are qualified yoga teachers with further
training in medicine and applications of yoga to medical conditions.
Yoga therapy utilises practices from India which date back thousands
years and are part of traditional Indian healthcare. Just as traditional
herbalism contributed to pharmacology, so traditional yoga can contribute
to behavioural and attitudinal practices in modern healthcare - as illustrated
by the widespread adoption of relaxation techniques in clinical psychology.
Critical research trials show that yoga therapy practices are among the
most effective known methods for managing the psychosomatic, stress-related
conditions, which are so common today. This is because they bridge the
gap between body and mind, ranging across the whole spectrum from physical
mental. Conditions treated include asthma and COPD, hypertension and heart
conditions, back pain, arthritis, hyperacidity, irritable bowel syndrome,
diabetes, migraine and headaches, multiple sclerosis, and cancer (coping
with chemotherapy and radiotherapy, rehabilitation from surgery, and reducing
Yoga therapy starts with a one-to-one consultation to ascertain
the presenting condition, associated health problems and related lifestyle
factors. This is followed by a series of one-to-one or specialised group
classes teaching yoga regimens for different conditions. Yoga therapy
consists primarily of postural, breathing and relaxation exercises. It starts
very simple exercises, so that clients can begin to practise and benefit
right away, even if they have no prior experience of yoga.
Yoga therapy is very safe, when taught by a qualified yoga therapist.
In addition to helping manage the presenting condition, it often yields
other health benefits.
Yoga therapy empowers people to look after their own
thus leading to patient satisfaction and reducing NHS expenditure on
consultations and drugs.