Yoga Bharati – Yoga With a Difference
While there are a host of yoga studios mushrooming in every street in America these days, there are very few of these studios or organizations that provide yoga for the body, mind and spirit making it a wholesome and holistic practice. People perform strenuous acrobatic poses, toning the muscles, sweating and stretching in the name of yoga. Very few of them focus on mental and spiritual aspects of of yoga.
Yoga Bharati’s very foundation of yoga classes is to provide health at five dimensions of human existance (pancha koshas) – the physical, the pranic or life-force level, the emotional, intellectual and spiritual levels. With the technique of stimulation and relaxation and with the focus on building awareness, ours is an integrated approach to yoga geared to be holistic. We bring subtle aspects from the ancient wisdom of Upanishads, Bhagavad Gita and Patanjali Yoga sutras with its stress on Asthanga Yoga. This makes our classes very popular and people who attend our yoga classes are simply awestruck by their simplicity and effectiveness. Our goal is to achieve positive health for individual and society (Vyasthi and Samasti as said in Upanishads) combining the best of East with the best of West as envisioned by Swami Vivekananda.
In the same spirit of combining head, heart and hand in all its activities, Yoga Bharati provides many avenues for our trained teachers to offer community service (sewa) whether it is through providing free yoga classes to the community, connecting the community with various aspects of yoga philosophy or instilling in the younger generation a spark of curiosity in yoga practice and philosophy. There is increasing demand for our teachers training program among high school children to help them handle the stresses of high school and college.
Yoga Therapy with Research (Evidence based Yoga)
Yoga Bharati has made a great leap in therapeutic applications of yoga in association with SVYASA, which has immense background on research in Yoga Therapy. SVYASA has published over 100 research papers that are catalogued in pubmed and are peer reviewed. SVYASA houses 250 bed Yoga Therapy Health center called Arogyadhama. We have been conducting yoga classes for common ailments and special groups such as kids and pregnant women in SF Bay Area for the last three years with significant results. We conduct yoga for kids, prenatal and postnatal yoga, yoga for back/neck/shoulder pain, arthritis, hypertension, diabetes, weight loss and stress management, yoga for infertility, to name a few. The goal of Yoga Bharati’s yoga classes for ailments is three-fold:
Help people with their ailments by giving them regular classes where they learn to relax better and to get relief on their ailments. Touch the hearts of people with the simple and profound yogic concepts so they understand how to manage their condition as well as they become better in their overall personality – physical, mental and spiritual outlook
Develop research so that we practice Evidence based Therapy.
Yoga Teachers with depth of Yoga Foundation
Yoga Bharati conducts Yoga Teachers Training every year for three months as a weekend course. We bring this course from Swami Vivekananda Yoga Research Foundation (SVYASA), a premier yoga university in Bengaluru, India with its focus on yoga research. Our course conforms to the Yoga Alliance RYT200. It is however, different from many other courses because we focus on holistic aspects in our course. We bring the best of yoga masters from India and US and give the most authentic yoga concepts along with scientific explanation of the concepts where needed. Yoga Philosophy is taught by Yogashree N.V.Raghuram of SVYASA and Spiritual founder and Chairman of Yoga Bharati who has more than 20 years experience in teaching Yoga philosophy in over 30 countries all over the world. Yoga Bharati also provides a platform for all the yoga teachers to further enhance their yoga skills and for their self growth by providing year round study groups, discourses by yoga masters, yoga retreats, Suryanamaskar yagna (Sun Salutation Marathon), Stress Management and other such workshops.
Stress Management using Yoga
Yoga Bharati brings Stress Management workshops to various communities. Just to name a few,
Yoga Bharati recently conducted a *free* SMET (Self Management of Excessive Tension, a SVYASA technique) in June 2011 at Sunnyvale Hindu Temple Auditorium for public and the doctors in the Bay Area. More than 100 folks participated in the event and enjoyed the wonderful discourse and SMET practice. This was presented by Shri. N.V.Raghuram of SVYASA and Dr.Naveen of FAITHS, Bengaluru.
- Conducted Stress Management workshop for Foster Parents at the department of Family and Child Services.
- Collaborated with Breathe California to bring Stress Management workshop for Senior Centers in the Bay Area.
Research Awareness for Medical Practitioners
One of the important initiatives of Yoga Bharati is to facilitate collaboration and awareness programs to bring research work on yoga in India to American medical community. Yoga Bharati arranged a Doctors Workshop in Sept 2010 where more than 30 doctors from various fields participated. Dr. Nagarathna, the chief of Medical staff at SVYASA chaired the event and shared the research work on Yoga in Diabetes, Cancer, Autism and many other ailments. A similar workshop was done in June 2011, where Dr. Naveen of FAITHS (Foundation for Assessment and Integration of Traditional Health Systems), Bengaluru, presented enormous data on research in Yoga Therapy. Doctors and research scientists at UCSF appreciated the presentation and agreed to work with Yoga Bharati and FAITHs in considering possible research collaborations.
Yoga for Kids with a difference
Our children’s yoga classes are also special in that we not only focus on yoga poses, but we do teach them to chant shlokas to build harmony of the mind and to root them into yogic tradition. Children of Yoga Bharati classes participate in Chinmaya Mission Gita Competition, Samskrita Bharati’s shloka competitions and bag awards! They are proud to be little yogis and to chant their Sanskrit shlokas.
Partnerships and Reach Outs
Yoga Bharati works with other organizations to help build network, spread the awareness, to bring the best of yoga research into our practice, and as a reach out program.
Research: We collaborate with SVYASA (Swami Vivekananda Yoga Research Foundation), Bengaluru and FAITHS (Foundation for Assessment and Integration of Traditional Health Systems), Bengaluru for bringing evidence based yoga into our yoga classes and therapy classes.
Community Service and Outreach: We provide free classes at various locations in the SF Bay Area, prominent temples, public libraries, community centers, Chinmaya Mission Balavihar programs, at India Community Center (Milpitas, Bay Area) and other locations in USA.
Vedanta: We collaborate with Sambodh Society for conducting annual workshops on Meditation, Yoga Philosophy and Vedanta.
Sanskrit: Since Sanskrit and Yoga go hand in hand, we refer our yoga students to Samskrita Bharati for Speak Sanskrit Course, and for higher studies on Sanskrit and also provide yoga classes for workshops and retreats of Samskrita Bharati.
Ayurveda: Working with Vedika Global (a Ayurveda School in Berkeley) to provide Yoga Darshan course as a part of their curriculum.
Yoga for Sports: We work with non-profit organizations like Sevathon, Ekal Vidyalaya and Chinmaya mission to conduct yoga sessions for their Marathon programs. Marathoners have given a feedback that they were able to improve their speed from 10%-30% after they took the yoga class. They also said they get less pain and less injury after taking yoga classes.
Making a Difference – A New WayInstead of providing fish to the needy, Yoga Bharati teaches them how to fish. Due to modern life style, extreme competitions, economic instability, relationships issues of fast paced individual-centric American society, etc, people are under tremendous stress. Lifestyle disorders such as obesity, diabetes, hypertension and heart diseases are becoming epidemics. To address this and to help people manage their lives better, Yoga Bharati conducts free classes in many locations in the Bay Area and different chapters of America. Our goal is to help people help themselves. Yoga Bharati has provided more than 400 yoga classes per week in various locations in the Bay Area alone (worth $4000 or more).
Simply by attending our regular free classes, people have made their lives better and are living in health and harmony. Many come to Yoga Bharati yoga teachers at the end of the class and explain how stressed they were just a couple of years ago and how peaceful, they feel after attending regular yoga classes.