Evidence Based Yoga for Health - Doctors Workshop

Workshop on Evidence Based Yoga for Medical Practice 

Yoga Bharati Press Release Sep 22nd, 2010

Yoga for Health Doctors Workshop

 Yoga Bharati organized a workshop for doctors and medical practitioners at India Community Center (ICC) Milpitas on Sunday, Sep 19th, 2010. The workshop was well attended by a group of over twenty five healthcare professionals. There were specialists in all fields of medicine such as cardiology, oncology, obstetrics, internal medicine and therapists. The workshop was arranged to generate awareness on yoga therapy and its benefits on the patients.

It was reiterated that yoga therapy basically works at removing the root cause of all ailments – Stress. Stress itself is defined as response to a situation. We cannot change the situation but we can only change *our* response to the situation – was a takeaway to the audience.

The sequence of events was a talk on “Yogic Concept of Health” by Dr.Nagarathna, practice of Cube Yoga (Cyclic Meditation) by Sri. N.V.Raghuram, followed by a panel discussion. On the Panel were – Sri.Raghuram, Dr.Nagarathna , Dr.Naras Bhat, Dr.Raji Iyer and Smt.Pratichi Mathur. Savita Joshi, Treasurer and yoga therapy teacher of Yoga Bharati introduced Dr. Nagarathna and other delegates to the audience.

Dr. Nagarathna also gave a brief idea about Prashanti, the wellness center in Bangalore and the yoga therapy and the associated research being conducted there. She talked about modern day medical problems such as heart attack, emotional instability, stress, etc – basically mind and body related issues because of urbanization and fast paced life. She elaborated on different yoga therapy techniques to cope with these problems such as different relaxation techniques that help us get mastery over our mind.

She shared information that SVYASA University has published more than 100 papers in various medical journals. The research papers include effects of yoga on ailments such as breast cancer, diabetes, back pain, etc as well as the study of yoga techniques and its effects on healthy individuals. A complete repository of published reports can be found at http://www.svyasa.org/research_papers/.

On the question of whether yoga can replace modern medicine, Dr Nagarathna opined that yoga therapy is meant to complement the existing modern system as opposed to replacing it. Pratichi Mathur, an Ayurveda practitioner and the founder of Vedika Global said that Ayurveda and yoga together form a holistic approach to health. Dr. Naras Bhat, cardiologist and professor at Berkeley University, demonstrated with his examples, on how his simple breathing techniques had their benefits on heart disease and other ailments.

Audience raised a concern about the cultural acceptance of yoga to which Dr. Raji Ayyar, oncologist at Kaiser, said that yoga is now universally accepted compared to 20 years ago, and that doing research in yoga and its benefits among the mainstream was not difficult. Also, Dr. Nagarathna said one could modify certain practices based on the nation and the culture in which yoga therapy is being introduced. SVYASA is collaborating with universities and hospitals in US and Europe and the results of the positive effects of yoga therapy were seen consistently across nations.

Sri. Raghuram, Chairman of Yoga Bharati and faculty at SVYASA talked on the philosophy of yoga and also conducted a short cyclic meditation session and a pranayama session to give the doctors and medical practitioners, an idea of how it helps to develop inner awareness. It was beautifully received by the audience.

Overall, it was a fact-filled and motivating session that empowered the audience with the needed research data to help them explore the path of Yoga Therapy.