Yoga has long been recognised for its transformative potential, offering a holistic approach to healing that incorporates the mind, body, and spirit. For those navigating the tumultuous journey of grief, yoga holds promise as a supportive practice.
Venturing into any new practice, especially when navigating the depths of emotion, can be daunting. This blog post aims to empower you who are contemplating yoga for grief by addressing some key questions.
1. Is there any evidence supporting yoga as an effective tool for grief management?
While not a cure-all, research suggests yoga’s positive impact on grief management. A 2023 study by the Journal of Palliative Medicine found that yoga participation decreased grief symptoms among bereaved individuals compared to a control group. The study suggests that yoga’s calming effect on the nervous system, its facilitation of mindful awareness, and its ability to release emotional tension contribute to its therapeutic potential.
Additional research explores how specific yoga practices address diverse aspects of grief:
- Breathwork (Pranayama): Studies suggest slow, deep breaths activate the parasympathetic nervous system, promoting relaxation and stress reduction, beneficial during emotional distress.
- Mindful movement and postures: Research indicates yoga postures and mindful movement improve mood, increase body awareness, and contribute to emotional regulation, aiding in navigating complex emotions.
- Meditation: Studies highlight the benefits of meditation in reducing anxiety and grief symptoms, with yoga offering various meditative practices to cultivate inner peace and clarity.
While further research is ongoing, existing evidence suggests that yoga holds promise as a supportive tool for managing grief, potentially complementing traditional therapeutic approaches.
2. Can I practice yoga for grief at home?
Absolutely! Home practice offers flexibility and privacy, allowing you to connect with your yoga practice amidst the rhythms of your own life. Several resources cater specifically to practicing grief yoga at home:
- Online classes and workshops: Numerous platforms offer grief yoga classes led by qualified instructors, providing guidance and support in the comfort of your own space.
- Yoga apps and video libraries: Explore apps and online libraries featuring video sessions specifically designed for grief yoga, allowing you to choose practices that resonate with your needs.
- Books and guided meditations: Books and guided meditations on grief yoga offer valuable resources for building your home practice, providing instructions and prompts for self-guided sessions.
Remember, adapt your practice to your own needs and limitations. Listen to your body, take breaks when needed, and prioritize gentle movements over forceful postures.
3. What resources are available for practicing grief yoga at home?
Here are some helpful resources to kickstart your journey with grief yoga at home:
- Websites: This website! Aside from that, I do offer Yoga For Grief (through the chakras), and Chair Yoga For Grief (also through the chakras). You can also
- Yoga Journal: Provides online articles and video guides on yoga for grief and loss.
- Books: “Yoga for Grief and Loss” by Karla Helbert (2015), “Yoga for Emotional Resilience” by Kathryn Budig.
- Apps: Keziah Gibbons’ Guided app has all my Yoga for Grief courses.
Seek guidance from a qualified grief yoga instructor, either online or in-person, can be beneficial, especially for beginners. We can help tailor practices to your individual needs and ensure safe and effective movement.
Starting yoga for grief embodies an empowering step towards healing—a journey personalized to meet your emotional needs. Recognizing the evidence-backed benefits of yoga, understanding its adaptability to home practice, and exploring available resources pave the way for a meaningful and nurturing yoga journey in the landscape of grief.
Remember, this practice is about your journey—listen to your body, honour your emotions, and allow yoga to gently guide you through the waves of grief.
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Virtual Yoga Courses
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Guided by Keziah
This app has my guided meditations, breath-work, and reiki practices, as well as my video courses. I am so honoured to be a part of the team