Yoga for Health & Wellbeing
Most people who make contact with me for change work, whether they are looking for hypnosis, counselling or something else, are experiencing a level of stress or pressure in their lives that they want to resolve. Hypnotherapy and education programs like Thrive are brilliant, transformative, most say life-changing - they genuinely are a vehicle for folks to get where they want to be, but once that's achieved, it can be such a huge benefit to have a regular physical practice to keep that positive onward flow happening. It's a bit like keeping the vitamins up - bringing in another level of nourishment for the journey forward.
The benefits of both yoga and meditation have been well researched and there is an ever growing pile of scientific data that supports the power of both practices for physical and psychological wellbeing. If you'd like to check out some of the benefits that relate specifically to meditation you can access my previous blog post on meditation here.
For yoga, we can look at a study done at The University of Texas with a trial group of women undergoing radiation therapy and the results are quite impressive: reduced fatigue, the regulation of the stress hormone cortisol and an improvemet in mental outlook . And another study conducted at Ohio University and published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology showed that the more the trial group practiced their yoga, the better their health results were. What I was particularly pleased to see was the observation by Professor Janice Kiecolt-Glaser who said "We also think the results could easily generalize to other groups of people who have issues with fatigue and inflammation” , and of course thats alot of people. These guys also identified an improvement in sleep which is a major win for many.
In a nutshell the benefits of yoga are;
- Increased flexibility
- IImproved sleep
- Better mood
- More energy
- Better sex for men and women
- Reduced inflammation
- Greater strength
- Boosts immunity
- Fewer headaches
Intermittently I run short workshops which are designed to be introductory experiences to get people going with yoga so that they feel comfortable about attending a regular weekly class. Occassionally I run the 'Moving Into Archetypes' workshop which is a combination of yoga postures and breathwork, and each season a special meditation workshop. So the offerings are;
- Weekly Dru Yoga Class at Glenecho Neighbourhood House
- Stretch Breathe and Relax Workshop
- Beginning With Yoga Workshop
- Moving Into Archetypes Workshop
- Seasonal Meditation Workshop
Styles of Yoga
Some people get caught up on doing the right 'style' of yoga but I think it is comes back to your own personal preference. I trained as a Dru Yoga teacher and I love the Dru style but at the end of the day, where there are physical postures done - in the end its all hatha. Some styles are fast-paced, about strength or moving postures, some like Dru are more focussed on the heart aspect, some are very traditional, some more modern or westernised so the style is the slant, the additives or perhaps we might say focus. Same thing with chocolate cake, you can think chocolate ripple cake, chocolate coconut cake, the light chocolate, double choc, classic chocolate cake, but whichever one you go for, it's still chocolate cake - and it's all yummy.
Places To Go
For regular daily and weekly classes there are some great optiions on the border as we have custom yoga studios on both sides of the river and they are all good. At Glenecho Community Centre in Glenroy, Cindy Kelly teaches DRU Yoga on a Wednesday night and I do the same on Monday evenings. In Wodonga there is The Green Room which is run by Corrinne, and Orana Yoga and Wellbeing which is run by Julie, In Albury we have Yoganess run by Vanessa, Balancing Buddha and MVe, Robyns School of Yoga out more towards Lavington. You can google yoga teachers in Albury Wodonga as some will run private classes.
Like anything, you will want to find the best fit for you. Im yet to meet a yoga teacher who isnt lovely, but you will probably need to try a few to get exactly what you are looking for. And you can have fun with it. It's like shopping for a great dress, sometimes you have to try on a couple of possibilities before you find that particular one that is going to have you looking and feeling absolutely amazing.
Yoga is definately a transformational therapy, it is good for both body and mind, so if you havent experienced it before, try a few classes and enjoy the benefits that physical movement can bring. Whether you are on a weightloss journey, are looking to reduce stress levels or resolve anxiety, yoga is a great idea!