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Yoga Therapy: Yoga for Movement Disorders

Posted Feb 24 2010 8:53am

"If you've been hesitant to try yoga because of physical limitations or other medical restrictions, smile, relax, and start with where you are. That's all you'll need." -- Excerpted from LIM (Less is More) Yoga

If I had to choose one thing that saddens me about yoga is how so many people shy away from the practice because they feel they don't fit into the "yoga mold" -- they feel too old, too inflexible, too limited, too unfit, too unlike the cover model on this month's yoga magazine, etc. to even try yoga. The truth is -- yoga is for everyone and more and more often today people are seeing the therapeutic value of yoga.

Luckily, more and more resources are surfacing to dispel the myth that there is a yoga mold and reinforcing the fact that yoga can (and should) be adapted to the individual rather than vice versa. Just recently, I came across an excellent book that offers an ease-into-it approach to yoga for anyone suffering from movement disorders, Parkinson's Disease, MS, stroke, TBI recovery or anyone else who has physical limitations due to medical restrictions. The book, Yoga for Movement Disorders: Rebuilding Strength, Balance, and Flexibility for Parkinson's Disease and Dystonia , is a fabulous resource for anyone who needs to adapt yoga to his/her own level of functioning and need.

The author, Renee LeVerrier , comes from a place of experience, as she is a stroke survivor and yogi living with Parkinson's Disease. Renee offers up her personal story and offers up her insight throughout the book in the form of short vignettes from her life and sound bite tips (these Try This tips are peppered throughout the book) to enhance your life with unique practices.

This fabulous book offers up clear direction and includes fabulous color photos. And because the book is spiral bound, it's easy to practice yoga while using it as a guide. The first part of the book includes an introduction to yoga along with warm-ups. The second part of the book includes a practice for each day of the week. Included in each weekly practice are tips for how to apply yoga and meditation to one's daily life.

Here's a video preview of this one-of-a-kind book:

I can't recommend this brilliant, illustrated text enough. If you or anyone you know (or for teachers working with anyone dealing with neurological disorders) is living with a neurological disorder, this book is a must have. I also suggest checking out Renee's Web site, LIM Yoga , as it offers up a variety of useful resources.

And for those of you in the NY area who want to explore the therapeutic uses of yoga, the Yoga for Health Conference is coming to Pure Yoga in NYC on March 6th . Topic include grief relief, joint health, pain management, and application of yoga therapy. Click here to see the schedule for this day-long event . To keep things affordable, you can pay per session or purchase a pass for the entire day.


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