Reviewer: Alane G Lucht, DC (Northwestern Health Sciences University)
Description: This informative book describes the principles and practices of yoga as used in healthcare, and includes a complete yet brief history of yoga. The book is thoughtfully laid out, beginning with a glossary that will be very helpful to those not familiar with terms used in the yoga community.
Purpose: The purpose is to demonstrate that the simple stretching and breathing exercises that have been used for centuries can be used not only to help people with chronic health issues, but also to help stave off many so-called modern day diseases. This practical book is necessary for the simple reason that it demonstrates the validity of practices that have no negative side effects and financially cost very little.
Audience: The audience includes both practitioners and students of yoga. The authors cite the extensive growth and popularity of the use of yoga for all kinds of reasons from relaxation to depression, addiction, and recovery from cancer treatments as a need for a book that delves into what yoga is, besides just another exercise trend. The focus of the book is on yoga therapy not just yoga as practiced in many gyms and workout facilities. The authors are more than qualified to explore and explain why this ancient practice should be used to help people heal from all sorts of ailments and afflictions.
Features: The book starts with a brief yet complete introduction to yoga and yoga therapy. Subsequent sections encompass a variety of issues that people deal with daily, such as mental health, endocrine, respiratory, and cardiac conditions, cancer, and musculoskeletal issues. One section covers special populations like children and the elderly, as well as future implications. The book is easy to read and includes tables and pictures of yoga postures. The only possible shortcoming is that it will be outdated in a few years.
Assessment: As a yoga instructor of over 20 years as well as a healthcare practitioner, I was very excited to see the amount of research into what I've known is a practical and accessible way to manage many health issues. Anyone wishing to validate the use of noninvasive, drug-free interventions to help people with depression, anxiety, diabetes, heart disease, or cancer can use this book to advocate for an ancient form of what can truly be called healthcare.