Trauma sensitive yoga
I recently started a Trauma Sensitive Yoga course through Shirley Hicks, Yoga Teacher and Counsellor. I am super excited!
I really believe in the power of yoga to move energy and heal the body and brain.
The reason I am so passionate about this is because yoga is one of the tools I used to support my body and brain to move out of a depressed state of being into a happy state. A regular yoga practice is in my self-care tool kit.
Does practicing yoga mean I never get stressed?
Not at all…I still experience stress which is perfectly natural and part of human existence! We need stress to survive.
Does practicing yoga mean I am so “woke” and have it all figured out and am super zen meditating on a rock in the Himalayas?
Nope. I wish I had it all figured out.
BUT!! What practicing yoga does mean is that I have a regular practice to support me to level out in the ups and downs of life. Prior to a regular practice, I felt as if I was on the edge of the see saw of life. When I was up, I was ecstatic. When I was down, I was depressed. Life continues to roll up and down and this time around (compared to 2012/13) I feel able to level out without going from zero to 100 and back again in the space of 24 hours.
Sooo doing this course around trauma to help me to be a trauma informed teacher is already bringing a greater level of awareness to my personal practice and how I can support students better.
Australian Psychological Society defines trauma as: “Very frightening or distressing events may result in a psychological wound or injury.”
The course reminds me that every person that lands on the mat for class and every person I come into contact with in my daily life, has experienced some level of trauma. Whether people talk about it or not, whether they post it on social or don’t, people come with a unique history and it is important to respect this history, not minimise someone’s experience and equally don’t pry or assume.
It’s so interesting to learn that physically and mentally, you may be out of a stressful or risky area but your body can still store traumatic events. Yogapedia delves further into this idea of how the body remembers and stores trauma. This is the way the body has evolved to protect the body, brain and mind. Talk therapy is great for many people and movement through yoga, through going to the gym, walking, running helps the body to facilitate healing.
Your body has to somehow release trauma and stress can manifest in the body through symptoms like depression, anxiety, eating disorders or addiction. Learning about this makes me both sad and happy. Sad that people experience such pain and loss that manifests in destructive ways. And happy to know there are resources, there is information out there and people who are committed to supporting healing and recovery. I am in awe of the human body and how intelligent it truly is.
My hope is to be able to contribute to healing through yoga.
Wishing you a beautiful Thursday and weekend full of listening to your body and rest.