Yoga Resources

Friday, June 10, 2011
As we travel together in our yoga journey, let’s take this opportunity to explore resources that will help us learn more about yoga.

Audio and video resources  Audio resources help us in practicing dhrana, by teaching us to focus our minds. Videos help us to learn asana poses. There are many reputable audio and video resources for purchase in stores, through online merchants as well as through online downloads and other venues. Look for audio and video resources by reputable instructors and teachers. Select a video that suits your needs—that is, if you are a beginner or novice asana practitioner, select the beginner level videos. There are videos available for people with cancer, and you may want to preview such videos prior to recommending them to your patients.

Books  There are hundreds of books on each of the 8 limbs of yoga. Take your time and select one that is best for you at this particular time. Check out the yoga selections at your local library and online. Go online and visit yoga-related websites. Yogajournal.com is an excellent place to start.

Instructors  You may want to select a yoga instructor for your own practice, or to help your patients who are living with cancer. The Yoga Alliance (yogaalliance.org) is an organization that approves yoga schools to teach instructors. The instructors who complete an approved school’s training program are eligible to become registered yoga teachers. Their website explains more about this process. There are 200-hour Registered Yoga Teachers (200-RYT) and 500-hour Registered Yoga Teachers (500-RYT).  When teachers gain more experience, they are eligible to attain 200- and 500-eRYT designation.

The Yoga Alliance website lists instructors who are RYT-designated, and you can search for such instructors in your area. When selecting a yoga instructor, select one who has experience, offers instruction at a reasonable price, and encourages a safe practice. Select beginner level instruction until you feel comfortable with the language, sequencing of poses, and expectations of the instructors. Private and group lessons are options for you; for beginner level classes, choose a group class that has a small size and is taught by an instructor who helps students into and out of poses safely. Remember to wear comfortable clothing and bring a bottle of water to drink. Other items you may find useful will be listed in an upcoming blog.

For people living with cancer, special considerations are needed. The instructor should be familiar with cancer, its treatment, and the physical and mental needs of people living with cancer. Adaptations to poses may be necessary for your patients. You may want to investigate various instructors and classes to better assist your patients.

Lisa Marie Bernardo, PhD, MPH, RN, HFS
 
Blog Info
This blog highlights the current evidence for integrating yoga into cancer care. Strategies for practicing the eight-limbs of yoga are posted and shared. Video links allow for demonstration of yoga practices that benefit everyone.
Author Bio
Lisa Marie Bernardo, PhD, RN, is a registered yoga teacher (RYT). She serves as a co-investigator on research projects related to yoga in women with osteopenia and individuals at risk for type-2 diabetes. Dr. Bernardo is an ACSM-certified Cancer Exercise Trainer and Health Fitness Specialist. She maintains a private practice in mind-body fitness using yoga, Stott-Pilates, and Gyrotonic to serve individuals with special healthcare needs.
 
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