Yoga and Psychotherapy

Yoga and Psychotherapy help us in states of profound grief, fear, depth of longing and desperation. They work together to help us understand the depth of our pain and turmoil. Through yoga and psychotherapy we can realize that under all this mental trauma and distress, there are certain things like resilience, beauty, strength, contentment and joy. Psychotherapy through yoga makes us recognize ourselves as spiritual beings with immense strength and capability. Through this we emerge refreshed, at peace, contented, and fortified beings. Yoga and psychotherapy applications have profound effectiveness on the treatment for anger, anxiety, depression, addiction, low self-esteem, grief, trauma and many other negative psychologies. The doctors from NIMHANS prescribe yoga therapy along with medication in major ailments, and use yoga therapy alone for less serious disorders.

Studies show that yoga practice, which combines stretching with other exercises like meditation and deep breathing improve overall physical fitness, flexibility, strength, and lung capacity. It also reduces heart rate, back pain and blood pressure. There is a growing body of research, which documents yoga�s psychological benefits. Recent studies suggest that yoga may help in the improvement of social attachments, relieve anxiety, depression, insomnia, and reduce stress. Many researchers have also found that yoga and yoga based treatments help in the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder.

Yoga instructor, and Stanford University health psychologist, Kelly McGonagall, PhD, says that there is evidence that yoga helps people change at every level. She is also of the opinion that yoga complements psychotherapy in the treatment of stress and anxiety. It is also a tool to heal emotional wounds. Melanie Greenberg, PhD, and a psychology professor at Alliant International University, says that yoga helps talk therapy in finding solutions to problems, and understanding your own strengths.

Sat Bir Khalsa, PhD, a neuroscientist and professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, studies the effects of yoga on depression and insomnia. He says that yoga is a natural and readily available approach to maintain wellness and to treat mental health issues. Psychologists are now examining the use of yoga with trauma survivors and finding that it is more effective than many other treatment techniques.