Yoga Skills for Therapists: Effective Practices for Mood Management

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A toolkit of “no mat” yoga strategies for you and your clients.
Drawing on her study of multiple traditions and lineages—from ancient yoga practices to current neuroscientific research on yoga benefits and contraindications—Weintraub presents a compendium of guided breathing exercises, meditations, self-inquiry practices, relaxation exercises, and simple postural adjustments that can readily accompany and complement psychotherapy—no mat or difficult postures required! Therapists learn exactly how to introduce these simple practices into a session, all within the comfort of their therapy room, no prior yoga training or experience necessary.
Weintraub shows therapists how to introduce and apply a full range of yogic approaches: targeted breathing practices called pranayama that meet the present mood and bring it into balance; healing hand gestures called mudras; special sounds and tones called mantras; guided imagery and affirmation; yogic self-inquiry, and much more. Clinical stories and anecdotes explore how these yoga-based interventions, rooted in a firm, evidence-based foundation, can be used as effective treatments for a particular mood or mental state.
With over 50 photographs that clearly illustrate the practices and gestures, detailed, step-by-step instructions, and scripts for guided relaxation and meditations, Yoga Skills for Therapists is a practical, hands-on guide that teaches the power of basic yoga techniques to bring great self-awareness, balance, and lasting well-being to you and your clients.

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Editorial Reviews

The Huffington Post
“[U]seful for anyone wishing to empower him of herself with tools to establish greater emotional resilience and/or relieve anxiety and depression . . . . [C]ontains a wonderful compilation of simple mind-body practices that really everyone can benefit from.”
Yoga Therapy Today
“[G]roundbreaking . . . .[B]rilliantly opens a door to the physical and spiritual layers of a client—one that many therapists and counselors have been waiting to walk through. From a place of genuine respect, integrity, and intention, Amy Weintraub offers easily applied foundational yogic practices to enrich the therapeutic experience for both client and practitioner.”
Yoga International
“The value of this book is in its range: from Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra to current scientific research, relevant psychology writings, and actual case studies, everything a therapist needs is right here.”
Midwest Book Review
“[A] pick for any serious psychology collection and offers therapists a groundbreaking discussion from a leader in yoga’s application to mental health. . . .It’s a ‘must’ for any collection strong in clinical applications of meditative skills.”
Tara Brach
“Yoga Skills for Therapists is both practical and inspiring; it will allow you to offer the precious gifts of yoga to your clients and deepen the roots of your own practice as well.”
Stephen Cope
“Amy Weintraub has produced a groundbreaking manual that will guide a whole new generation of patients and therapists in the use of simple but extremely reliable yoga-based techniques for self-regulation.”
Rick Hanson
“Amy Weintraub is a master teacher, and her skills and heart are woven throughout this new classic for therapists, clients, and anyone interested in inner strength and peace.”
James S. Gordon
“Amy Weintraub helps us to bring the ancient wisdom and scientifically validated power of yoga into our clinical practices. This book is lucid, well documented, and immediately practical. Powerful medicine for our patients and clients, and for all of us.”
Lilias Folan
“Thank you! Thank you, Amy, for weaving your practical, inspiring yoga therapy skills and heartfelt experience into this groundbreaking book. This easy, clear-to-read manual will enrich us 'ole’ war horses' in the healing professions and bring inspiration to a new generation of students, clients, and therapists for years to come.”
Matthew J. Taylor
“In Yoga Skills for Therapists, Weintraub delivers another thoughtful, well organized and easily accessible resource for professionals and the public alike (don't be misled by the title.) Every Yoga professional contemplating offering a therapeutic book would be well advised to carefully study the example set in this next generation of writing that will serve to make Yoga a respected and recognized therapy”
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780393707175
  • Publisher: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
  • Publication date: 4/9/2012
  • Pages: 240
  • Sales rank: 320,625
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.40 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Amy Weintraub, MFA, E-RYT 500, has been a pioneer in the field of yoga and mental health for over 20 years. The author of the bestselling Yoga for Depression, she trains mental health and yoga professionals in adapting yoga for mood disorders in clinical settings at notable national and international venues, including Kripalu and the Omega Institute, and is involved in ongoing research on the effects of yoga on mood. The founding director of the LifeForce Yoga Healing Institute, she offers advanced professional certification for mental health and yoga professionals in LifeForce Yoga(R) for depression and anxiety, as well as workshops for the everyday yoga practitioner.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix

Introduction 1

Chapter 1 Why Yoga Now? 5

Chapter 2 Basic Yoga Principles & Preparations 25

Chapter 3 Clearing the Space: The Yoga of Breath (Pranayama) 41

Chapter 4 Cooling the Breath, Calming the Mind: Breathing Practices for Anxiety 52

Chapter 5 Mood-Elevating Breath Practices 75

Chapter 6 The Yoga of Sound (Mantra) 96

Chapter 7 Mudras for Managing Mood 113

Chapter 8 The Yoga of Imagery (Bhavana) & Affirmation (Sankalpa) 132

Chapter 9 Relax: Yoga Nidra & Irest 158

Chapter 10 Welcoming It All: Yogic Self-Inquiry (Svadhyaya) 175

Chapter 11 On The Mat & More: Referrals, Resources, & Training 187

Glossary 202

References 206

Index 213

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