Monday, 12 January 2015

Holistic Approach to Pain and Stress

Well the first weekend of my weekend intensive course, Holistic Approach to Pain and Stress, is over. It was an exhausting weekend, more so than I thought it would be, but enlightening as well.

The techniques we have been focusing on are Kundalini Yoga, Sat Nam Rasayan Healing, mindfulness and meditation. I have some exposure to mindfulness and meditation but the yoga and Sat Nam Rasayan healing are new to me. 

I found the meditations hard to sit through without being distracted but was reassured that this is part of the process and to trust it. I am finding the course to be more of a retreat than a typical course but am seeing pieces that I will be able to use with my clients. I also have set a short term and a long term goal to incorporate pieces of it into my own self-care practice to reduce stress and anxiety.  

I have little experience with yoga in general and had never heard of Kundalini yoga before this course. The breathing that is used, at least in the beginner's set we were experiencing, are short quick breaths and you become very aware of the flow of the breath and where it is initiating from. At first I became worried that this type of breathing would raise my anxiety levels and end up causing an anxiety attack. However thankfully none arose.

Harvard is teaming with one of the hospitals in Boston and they are researching the benefits of Kundalini yoga on anxiety levels in patients with cancer. The yoga felt awkward at first but I am beginning to see the benefits in it and would like to research it further. The chants and music that are used in this practice are soothing and help deepen the experience.

I am looking forward to next weekend when the second weekend of the course occurs and to hunkering down with the readings this week!
One of the required books for the course

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