Yoga's Benefits for Interpersonal Trauma

A qualitative study on yoga's benefits for interpersonal trauma.

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Yoga Therapy for Post-Traumatic-Stress-Disorder Professional Training: 9th-14th November 2016 - Central London.

Also 1st-5th October in Edinburgh. Contact us for more info;

Interpersonal trauma is any trauma that occurs at the hands of another person. It can include domestic violence, sexual assault, child abuse, sexual abuse or exploitation, financial abuse or exploitation, or person-on-person crimes such as a robbery or a physical assault. Such interpersonal trauma can be layered particularly if the perpetrator was known to the survivor.

We have shared a number of studies on this forum related to yoga's healing capacity for people struggling with trauma, particularly post-traumatic stress disorder which we offer a specialised training in. A review paper on emerging interventions for the treatment of Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) was published in the Journal of Trauma and Stress in January of this year. Yoga is cited as one of these emerging interventions. Novel interventions seem to be appearing for PTSD almost daily yet the notion of yoga as a potential treatment has been around a bit longer, with a great debt being owed to researchers such as Bessel van der Kolk amongst others. In the January review there were four interventions stemming from a mind-body philosophy, including yoga, which had moderate evidence from randomised controlled trials. More research is desperately needed, however, in this area.

The linked study below used qualitative methods to study the role yoga practice played in the healing process of those who experienced interpersonal trauma. Eleven interpersonal trauma survivors who practiced yoga regularly were identified for the study. Data analysis revealed that the emphasis of yoga on mind and physical body fostered numerous positive outcomes, such as spiritual growth, self-acceptance, alleviation of trauma-related symptoms, and increased feelings of self-compassion, empowerment, and serenity. Researchers concluded that their findings suggest that yoga may be helpful to regain mental and physical health, foster wellbeing, and cultivate personal growth after interpersonal trauma. To find out more about how yoga can be tailored to support people who have experienced trauma, please come along and join us for our training!

Heather Mason

Founder of the Minded Institute, The Minded Institute

Heather Mason is a leader in the field of mind-body therapy and the founder of Yoga Therapy for the Mind. She develops innovative methods for mental health treatment drawing on her robust educational background including an MA in Psychotherapy, an MA in Buddhist Studies, studies in Neuroscience and a current MSc in Medical Physiology.. She is also a 500 RYT, a yoga therapist and an MBCT facilitator. Heather offers various professional trainings for yoga teachers, healthcare professionals and therapists, lectures around the world, and delivers training to medical students. She also develops protocols for different client populations by translating cutting edge research from the psycho-biology and neuro-biology of stress into yoga practices, breathwork, mindfulness interventions and therapeutic holding. Further she is involved in research on the efficacy of these practices, holds the annual UK yoga therapy conference and is blazing the trail for the integration of yoga therapy into the NHS