There is a lot of research about the benefits of Trauma Sensitive Yoga for people who have experienced trauma in their lives and is a great adjunct to individual therapy. It is based on the work of David Emerson, in clinical collaboration with Dr Bessel van der Kolk and several other trauma clinicians and yoga teachers.
The intention in a Trauma Sensitive Yoga session is to create a safe, predictable and non-judgmental space in which participants may explore the notion of “having a body”. It can be an enormous part of the healing process for a survivor of trauma to reclaim their body as their own.
What to expect
Class details: Our 5 week Trauma Sensitive Yoga program is run with a small and closed group (limited to 6), with the same participants for each week. This gives the class consistency, familiarity and the opportunity to make connections with the other participants should you want to. It is an inclusive class - there is no restriction on age, gender, background or physical ability. There is no discussion about traumatic experiences in class, and participants are required to have concurrent individual therapy to support them to verbally process anything they wish to explore that comes up in their practice.
Equipment: Equipment is provided (mats, yoga blocks), although participants are welcome to bring their own.
How is this different to a regular yoga class?
Firstly, the class is run by Keira-Marie Allen - a Psychologist and Registered Yoga Teacher. This gives her an understanding of mental health and trauma, as well as how this is exhibited in the body and how to use the body as a part of healing.
There are no 'physical assists' in class. Some yoga classes include times where the teacher will physically put their hands on you to assist getting into a pose or correcting your form in some way. In Trauma Sensitive Yoga, this is not done.
The language used in Trauma Sensitive Yoga is different - there is no Sanskrit used (i.e. names of poses) to allow the forms to be more accessible to everyone, without any spiritual meaning associated. Language is also invitational and allows for participants to make choices about the movements they make (or don't make).
There is an understanding of physical and emotional safety. Discussions will occur with each participant before commencing on the course to ensure there is an understanding of their particular needs.
Participants sign up to attend 5 consecutive weeks and commit to coming each time, with a different theme/topic each class.
No use of the word 'pose'., which may be triggering for some people Instead, the words 'form' or 'shape' are preferred, which also demonstrate the belief that there is no 'wrong' or 'right' way to do them.
Start date for the next course: TBC
Please contact us to be placed on a waiting list for the next available course or to ask any questions