Yoga for mood management

Issue 48: Two Inspiring Book Reviews

One of life’s pleasures is the validation of our own experience.  There’s a moment of deep connection to something larger than small self when what we have found on our own through regular practice or learned from a teacher to self-soothe or to regulate mood, is documented in an ancient text or a book by a contemporary spiritual teacher, or proven by new scientific evidence.  I found that “yes” moment of validation again and again this month, as I read both books reviewed below. Both Tara Brach’s new True Refuge and Sat Bir Khalsa’s Your Brain on Yoga provided that warm “ah-ha” feeling of connection, and the new research studies summarized in this 48th edition of the newsletter, supported the ways in which I and many of you practice and teach yoga and meditation.

amy-anjali-crop
Amy at Sivananda Ashram, Paradise Island, 2/2013

I’m thrilled to announce here many new LifeForce Yoga training opportunities for professionals and every day practitioners, including a new online learning module and a 200-hour yoga Yoga Alliance approved LifeForce Yoga Teacher Training, led by me and my dear friend and colleague, senior Kripalu Yoga Teacher Trainer, Rudy Peirce, MA, ERYT-500.

I look forward to our meeting again on the yoga path.

a warm namasté,
Amy

In this Issue

Research: Second International Conference on Yoga for Health and Social Transformation

Several papers presented at the research conference organized by the Patanjali Research Foundation in Haridwar, India, and directed by Shirley Telles, MBBS, M.Phil., Ph.D. support yoga nidra as a means for behavioral change. The first study suggests that the regulation of emotions could be occurring through the calming of the autonomic nervous system as measured by breathing patterns. The small study examined respiratory patterns in students enrolled in schools in Australia for disruptive behavior before, during and after yoga nidra relaxation.  As compared to controls, the seven students with a mean age of 12.6, had unstable and a predominance of thoracic breathing (upper chest) before and after their progressive relaxation, but stable breathing during the practice.  For more details about this study, write to the primary investigator, Pauline S.Jensen: pauline.jensen@uni.sydney.edu.au

Other studies of yoga practices that demonstrated significant improvement in mental health included the psychological benefits of yoga as measured in a prison population in the UK by primary investigator Miguel Farias, miguel.farias@psy.ox.ac.uk; two studies that demonstrated the benefits of shavasana (corpse pose/relaxation) or yoga nidra, for anxiety one by primary investigator Prafull Kotalwar, parfull_kotalwar@yahoo.com and the other by Rajkumar Rajak, rajkumarrajak30@yahoo.com; two different studies on the psychological benefits of prayer/mantra chanting, one presented by Manikya Shreevatsa, jkbalsurbhartisaritasamiti@gmail.com, and the other by Reetika Choradia, reetika.jain07@gmail.com, and a study that correlated a decrease in depression/anxiety with participation in a 7-day yoga camp, presented by Ankur Kumar, ankurkumar5678@gmail.com. Two studies examined the benefits of yoga in hypertension treatment.  One by Satinder Paul, satinderpaul41@yahoo.in looked at pranayama, the other presented by Subodh Prakash, art.llrm@gmail.com, looked at the role of “yoga therapy.”  For more details on these studies, please write the authors directly.

Research: More than 100 Studies Prove Yoga’s Mental Health Benefits

A new review of over 100 studies on the benefits of yoga for mental health has shown that yoga has a positive effect on psychiatric problems, from mild depression and sleep troubles to schizophrenia.  The study called “Yoga on our minds: a systematic review of yoga for neuropsychiatric disorders” was published in the journal Frontiers in Psychiatry.  The authors found that yoga influences key parts of the body that are thought to play a role in mental health in similar ways to antidepressants and psychotherapy. Scientists at Duke University Medical Center reviewed the findings of previously published research, all of which had looked at the effects of yoga on major psychiatric disorders.

In one study of 69 older adults with mild depression, weekly yoga sessions reduced depression scores by 40 percent at six months. A comparison group of adults who didn’t take yoga, and a group that practiced a form of complementary medicine called Ayurveda, did not show changes in depression scores.

In another study, seven weeks of yoga improved sleep quality and reduced the need for sleep aids in 39 adult cancer patients receiving chemotherapy. People who did not take the yoga sessions (control group) did not have an improvement in sleep.

Yoga practice improved symptoms of both schizophrenia and ADHD in people who were on medication.

One of the study’s authors, Dr Murali Doraiswamy, professor of psychiatry and medicine at Duke, claimed that if yoga’s impact on mental health was available in drug form, ‘it would be the best selling medication world-wide’. He added: ‘The search for improved treatments, including non-drug-based, to meet the holistic needs of patients is of paramount importance and we call for more research into yoga as a global priority.’
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/?term=a+systematic+review+of+yoga+for+neuropsychiatric+disorders

Research: Yoga Reduces Arrhythmia, Anxiety & Depression

In a study published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology in January, researchers found that patients with Paroxysmal Atrial Fibrillation (arrhythmia) benefited from a three month program of twice weekly 60-min yoga training. Study authors concluded that yoga improves symptoms, arrhythmia burden, heart rate, blood pressure, anxiety and depression scores, and several domains of quality of life.
http://content.onlinejacc.org/article.aspx?articleid=1567301

Training News: LifeForce Yoga Practitioner Online Training

Congratulations to the Graduates of the Module A LFYP Training at Sivananda Ashram in February 2013
Congratulations to the Graduates of the Module A LFYP Training at Sivananda Ashram in February 2013

The LifeForce Yoga Healing Institute is launching its first online course. The 13 hour course, plus materials, can be taken for credit for $210, as Module B in the LifeForce Yoga Practitioner Training.  The course begins live on Thursday, April 18th at 1pm PT, or you can listen the week between each of the four 2-hour webinars. It includes four two-hour webinar sessions on Creating the Safe & Sacred Container, Pranayama & Meditation, Mantra & Mudra, Trauma, and a two-hour live phone call to talk about clinical application with LFYP Training director and author of Yoga for Depression and Yoga Skills for Therapists Amy Weintraub and LifeForce Yoga Mentor and psychotherapist Ann Friedenheim, MS, MA, CAADC, RYT-200, LFYP-2. Those taking the module for credit in the LFYP Training will also have study partner phone calls, reading assignments and homework and receive the LifeForce Yoga Practitioner Training Manual. If you are not taking the LFYP Training in 3 Modules, but you would like the online learning, sign up for 8 hours of webinar; 2 hours of live call. 10 hours for $150. Just enter code lfy-webinar-promo-2013 at checkout.
To register, yogafordepression.com/register-for-lfyp-training-module-b

Training News: LifeForce Yoga Practitioner Training at Yogaville

Congratulations to the new LFYP Graduates from the Tucson Training in January 2013
Congratulations to the new LFYP Graduates from the Tucson Training in January 2013

For the first time, we will be offering our 58-hour residential LFYP level one training at Satchidananda Ashram in Yogaville, near Charlottesville, VA. This venue has the amenities of the West, the heart and soul of India, and is a perfect location for a deep immersion in yoga. Go on retreat with Amy and a faculty of LifeForce Yoga Practitioners who are yoga and mental health professionals. You will learn evidence-based yoga practices that do not require a yoga mat to serve individuals and groups in health care and yoga settings, even as you offer yourself tools for your own self-care.
For more information: yogaville.org/products/lifeforce-yoga-practitioner-training-for-depression-and-anxiety-level-1

Training News: LifeForce Yoga 200-Hour Teacher Training

Five Pointed StarBecome a LifeForce Yoga Teacher in a beautiful and peaceful setting with caring professional yoga instructors!  Whether you’re a health practitioner seeking to deepen your own practice or offer yoga to those you serve or you are an avid yoga practitioner, you can become certified as a LifeForce Yoga Teacher. The LifeForce Yoga Healing Institute, a Yoga Alliance registered school is offering its first 200-hour, training at the Satchidananda Ashram at Yogaville in two 13-day sessions: Nov 30 – December 13th, 2013 and Feb 23 – Mar 7, 2014. The training will be directed by yoga and mental health pioneer Amy Weintraub, ERYT-500. MFA and master Kripalu Yoga Teacher Trainer, Rudy Peirce, ERYT-500, MA.  Senior Kripalu teacher Grace Jull, ERYT-500, MA, LMT, founder of Grace’s Anatomy, is a guest teacher in the training.  The faculty includes LifeForce Yoga Practitioners, both senior yoga teachers and mental health professionals, including Rose Kress, RYT-500, LFYP-2, as program manager.

In this training you will learn how to guide truly transformational yoga that includes the LifeForce Yoga evidence-based techniques of asana, pranayama, sounding, relaxation and meditation for vitality, healing and mood management based on the techniques in Amy’s Yoga For Depression, A Compassionate Guide to Relieve Suffering.
Full details
To apply to become a LifeForce Yoga Teacher: yogafordepression.com/200-hour-lfy-yoga-teacher-training/#tuition-application

Professional Training Opportunities

In addition to the LifeForce Yoga Practitioner and LifeForce Yoga Teacher Trainings, Amy Weintraub will be a featured presenter at mental health conferences and learning programs that offer CEUs for health professionals at the following venues:

The Annual Psychotherapy Networker Symposium at the Omni Shoreham in Washington DC, March 21-24: Amy will be offering a day-long yoga workshop, a half-day workshop on yoga meditation applicable in a clinical setting, teaching the early morning yoga classes and the afternoon meditations.  In addition, there are over 175 workshops on a vast range of clinical topics, presented by a faculty that reads like a “Who’s Who” of Psychotherapy, as well as plenty of networking events that will allow you to connect with other members of your professional tribe. Featured speakers include David Burns, Tara Brach, Diane Poole Heller and K. Anders Ericsson. You can get all the details you need on the Networker Symposium website.

15th Annual International Energy Psychology Conference at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Reston, VA May 30-June 02: Amy is an invited speaker, talking about “Integrating Yoga-Based Energy Practices into Therapy.” In addition, there will be 60 other great presentations by leaders in the field of energy psychology and keynotes by Joan Borysenko,PhD, best-selling author of ten books including Minding the Body, Mending the Mind, Eben Alexander, MD Academic Neurosurgeon and best-selling author of Proof of Heaven: A Neurosurgeon’s Journey into the Afterlife, David Feinstein, PhD, foremost thought leader in the field of Energy Psychology and award-winning author of Energy Psychology Interactive and The Promise of Energy Psychology, Roger Jahnke, OMD Co-founder of the National Qigong Association and author of The Healer Within, and renowned physicist William Tiller, PhD author of four books including Science and Human Transformation.
Click here to go to the Conference website.

34th CAPE COD INSTITUTE, June 17 – August 23.  From July 22 – 26th, Amy is offering a 15-hour course for healing professionals called “LifeForce Yoga: Empower Your Clients to Manage Their Moods. The CAPE COD INSTITUTE is a summer long series of 28 week-long in-depth continuing education courses for mental health and management professionals, taught by leading contributors to knowledge and practice. Sessions are held Monday-Friday mornings, leaving the afternoons free for leisure and study. The courses are approved for continuing education credit for various professional groups. For more information, click here.

Review: True Refuge: Finding Peace and Freedom in Your Own Awakened Heart by Tara Brach

True Refuge: Finding Peace and Freedom in Your Own Awakened HeartThere are a handful of writers I turn to when I am ready to let go of something I thought I understood about life and my place in it.  These are writers I trust, because they’ve let go of posturing. They approach the journey of being human with humility and a depth of self-inquiry that inspires me to keep going.  Psychologist and meditation teacher Tara Brach is such a writer.  In her honesty, she holds up a mirror to her own humanness and then turns it toward the reader.  In her new book, True Refuge, the author of Radical Acceptance, guides us into self-inquiry with authenticity and compassion.  The book combines elements of self-revealing memoir, instructive stories about her meditation students and psychotherapy clients with meditation instruction suitable for a beginner, meditative inquiry suitable for an advanced practitioner, and 26 beautiful meditation and reflection scripts with which to practice.  You hear Tara’s compassionate voice throughout, even at her fiercest look at her own tendency to judge.

Since the publication of Radical Acceptance, Tara has faced a difficult diagnosis that has limited her capacity to do many of the things she loves. She has practiced and taken refuge in all the elements about which she so elegantly writes–facing the truth; opening to love and being awareness. “We find true refuge,” says the author, “whenever we recognize the silent space of awareness behind all our busy doing and striving.  We find refuge whenever our hearts open with tenderness and love. We find refuge whenever we connect with the innate clarity and intelligence of our true nature.”  To summarize so briefly the tenants of this book is to do it a disservice.  It is in the reading, page by page, that the gift of Tara’s prose is offered and received by the reader in the form of the possibility to transform old patterns of thinking and reacting.  “Truth,” she says, “can only be discovered in the aliveness of the moment.  Love can only be experienced in this very heart, here and now. Awareness can only be realized as we discover the space and wakefulness of our own mind.”  But this is not just a philosophical treatise on true refuge as outlined by the Buddha and reinterpreted by Tara Brach.  We are given the means, chapter by chapter, of discovering for ourselves true refuge in our “own awakened heart.”
Order your copy.

Review: Your Brain on Yoga by Sat Bir Khalsa

Your Brain on Yoga (Harvard Medical School Guides)Sat Bir Khalsa has been engaged in the field of yoga research for ten years and is a longtime Kundalini Yoga practitioner and teacher.  From his appointment at Harvard as an assistant professor of medicine, he directs the research for both the Kundalini Research Institute and Kripalu’s Institute for Extraordinary Living, so he is in the ideal position to offer us a synthesis of what we have learned so far about how yoga effects, not only mind and body, but how it can actually change our brains. This brief but informative book is a Harvard Medical School guide, and is available as a download.

Through case studies and lengthy anecdotes, Khalsa illustrates the vital nature of stress as part of the human condition, in both its positive and negative aspects.  “What yoga and meditation can do,” he says, “is to facilitate a change in your perception of the stress in your life and provide you with effective skills to cope with it.”  The book provides a summary of current research on the effects of yoga on mood and explains that research for the average, non-scientist reader.  Khalsa talks about meditation as a “mental time-out” that provides our brains a “much-needed breather.”  Meditation does this, he says, by fixing the attention, so that we experience less mind-wandering.  “Once your are in the attention mode,” he explains clinically, “you engage the frontal lobe connections that directly impact the limbic system, which is the part of your brain dedicated to your emotions.  By meditating and controlling your attention, you can establish more control over what you perceive as a significant stressor, reduce activity in your limbic system and your emotional reactivity, and thereby diminish your stress response.”  Meditation and yoga actually change the brain by thickening the cerebral cortex. Khalsa points out that practice can reverse the negative effect of trauma in the brain.

Khalsa began his research career in the area of yoga and its effect on sleep and is well published in that area.  Included in the book are evidence-based yoga exercises and meditations for sleep.  There are also yoga meditations, mostly from the Kundalini tradition as taught by Yoga Bhajan, for boosting the immune system, reducing blood pressure, improving memory, strengthening vitality, boosting telomerase (an anti-aging enzyme), raising sexual energy and balancing mood.  Whether you are a yoga practitioner or health professional, you will want Your Brain on Yoga on your eReader.  It’s an easy read and a good reference for anyone interested in natural treatments for what ails us.
Order your copy. Available as an ebook only.

News: Free Interview with Amy Weintraub by Author Mariana Caplan, PhD

Here’s what yogi-psychotherapist Mariana Caplan, author of The Guru Question and Eyes Wide Open has to say about our talk together:
My guest is Amy Weintraub, a deeply experienced yogi, who through her books and teachings has detailed how various yoga practices – including asana, but also breath, sanctuary, and mantra – can be applied for therapeutic benefit. Her teachings and books give clear instruction and guidance for psychologists and therapists as to how to integrate yoga practice into the therapy room. I was particularly moved by Amy’s deeply feminine approach to this material, and her willingness to use her own life’s challenges to exemplify the experiences that so many of us share.

TO LISTEN, CLICK HERE

Listeners will learn about:

  • Dealing with depression through body and breath based yoga
  • Managing mood through yoga
  • Moving beyond the mood state and the story to connect to a deeper level of wholeness
  • How parts of the psyche only open to gentleness and love
  • Cultivating a safe container in your yoga practice
  • An experiential visualization practice that’s empowering and reduces anxiety
  • How yoga and psychotherapy are tools for exploring the self
  • How yoga can provide clinicians the tools to see the bigger picture and go beyond the story with their clients

News: Free Online Training ~ Thriving as a Yoga Teacher, with Laura Cornell, PhD

My friend Laura Cornell interviewed me for this series and is offering it as a complimentary, online training.  It includes valuable tips and information about how to reach more students and build a healthy income. Your complimentary registration includes access to two training videos and a detailed webinar.  I highly recommend this resource.
Register for the training and watch the first video now: click here

One thought on “Issue 48: Two Inspiring Book Reviews”

  1. judy jorday says:

    i love getting your newsletter. i hope to join your teaching at Kripalu for a few days. thanks, judy

Comments are closed.

What People Say

“With a specific emphasis on managing mood, Amy’s book delivers dynamic insights and yoga-based practices that she has refined over decades of first-hand experience working with clients, students, and therapists, that relax, focus, and reduce the symptoms and causes of anxiety, depression, and stress, as well as prepare the mind and body for the integrative work of psychotherapy.” — Richard Miller, Ph.D., author, Yoga Nidra: The Meditative Heart of Yoga, President, Integrative Restoration Institute.
“Words do not do justice to all that I learned. This workshop changed my life!” — Jen Nolan, Teacher, Cortland, NY
“Yoga Skills for Therapists is the ideal resource for those who want to bring yoga practices into psychotherapy or healthcare. Weintraub, a leader in the field of yoga therapy, offers evidence-based, easy-to-introduce strategies for managing anxiety, improving mood, and relieving suffering. Helpful clinical insights and case examples emphasize safety, trust, and skillful adaptation to the individual, making it easy to apply the wisdom of yoga effectively in the therapeutic context.” — Kelly McGonigal, PhD, author, Yoga for Pain Relief, Editor-in-Chief, International Journal of Yoga Therapy
“This program changed my life in a significant way. It helped me connect with the spirit which is something you can’t get from psychotherapy and medication.” – G. W., artist, Pittsburgh, PA
“I gained tools for working with my own depression and with my clients’ depressions.” — Robert Sgona, LCSW, RYT, psychotherapist, Yoga teacher, Camden, ME.
“I have found the pranayama (breathing practices) especially easy to introduce in a clinical setting. Some people have benefited quickly in unexpected and transformative ways.” — Liz Brenner, LICSW, LFYP, Watertown, MA
“Amy Weintraub shows how to use yoga as a resource for psychological healing and personal growth. Her methods are grounded in ancient wisdom, informed by modern science, and eminently practical for reducing anxiety, lifting mood, and improving self-regulation. She 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.” — Rick Hanson, Ph.D. author of Buddha’s Brain: The Practical Neuroscience of Happiness, Love, and Wisdom
“I have gained a softer heart, more receptive mind, and tools to enrich both personal and professional aspects of my life.” – Regina Trailweaver, LICSW, clinical social worker, Hancock, VT.
“Amy’s teaching is enthusiastic and loving.  She guides me gently, harmoniously and confidently to a mindful state and encourages me to find my own strengths and edges.  With well-chosen language and carefully executed examples, she reminds me of my own inner healing knowledge.” — Penelope Simmons, artist, founder of Odyssey Storytelling, Tucson, AZ
“This workshop helped me rededicate my energies and begin to work through some of the blocks I’ve felt creatively.” — Steve Mark, college professor, New Haven, CT
“In the compassionate voice of someone who definitely knows the territory of depression, Amy Weintraub presents Yoga science and personal stories, research results and poetry, and practice instructions that are genuinely interesting in this very readable book that is both comprehensive and totally inspiring.” — Sylvia Boorstein, author of That’s Funny You Don’t Look Like a Buddhist and It’s Easier Than You Think: The Buddhist Way to Happiness
“Heal yourself with Yoga For Depression. I absolutely love this book and highly recommend it.” — Dharma Singh Khalsa, M.D. Author of Meditation as Medicine
“My experience in Amy’s classes for the past four years has been uplifting and powerful. I have found that the techniques she shares are powerfully effective for dispelling the dark clouds of negativity and hopelessness. But more than that, Amy brings us the ability to easily access the inner world where healing and self-understanding reside.” — Cynthia Athina Kemp Scherer, author, The Alchemy of the Desert and The Art and Technique of Using Flower Essences, Tucson, AZ
“As a teacher of yoga, Amy Weintraub has continually reinforced my longtime belief in the strong connection of mind-body-spirit. For the past three years, I have benefited, both personally and professionally (I am a clinical social worker), from Amy's supportive and competent guidance in yoga. Because of Amy's influence, I often recommend the practice of yoga to friends and clients.” — Dory Martin, CISW, Tucson, AZ
“Amy Weintraub’s work is some of the most important in our world today for helping humanity understand more deeply the significance of the mind-body connection. Her insights are inspirational for yoga teachers and all readers. Her in-depth understanding of her subject is an important basis for personal, as well as societal transformation.” — Rama Jyoti Vernon, Founder, American Yoga College, co-founder Yoga Journal
“Yoga Skills for Therapists brilliantly opens a door to the physical and spiritual layers of a client - one that therapists and counselors have been waiting to walk through. Its chapters unfold a unique and inspiring blend of ancient traditions and contemporary concerns. From a place of genuine respect, integrity and intention, Amy offers easily applied foundational yogic practices to enrich the therapeutic experience for both client and practitioner.” – Elissa Cobb, MA. Director of Programs, Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy
“In this well-written and well-researched book Amy Weintraub provides therapists with simple, easy-to-apply but powerful, breathing, meditation, and hand gesture techniques that do not require a mat or body postures. Therapists can easily incorporate these techniques into their practices without otherwise having to change what they do, and clients can use them on their own. Thank you Amy for giving us access to this ancient healing wisdom.” — Richard C. Schwartz, Ph.D., developer, Internal Family Systems Therapy, author, Introduction to the Internal Family Systems Model
“It is not just Amy’s yoga classes that have added richness to my life as both a yoga student and a yoga therapist, it is more importantly how she integrates and exudes yoga into her daily life that is inspirational for me.  While I have been the beneficiary of her thoughtful, well constructed and emotionally well tuned yoga classes, I have also received her wit and wisdom through informal, "off-the-mat" interaction as well.  In both cases, I have been able to tune into myself at a deeper level and feel more successful in my practice as a result of her care-full teaching and living.” — JJ (Jesse) Lee, owner, Body & Soul Fitness Training, Reno, Nevada
“My life is already changed! I will use the tools I learned in my own practice and in my work. I feel safe and seen.” — Susan Andrea Weiner, MA, teacher/expressive arts facilitator, El Cerrito, CA.
“Amy is a beautiful gift in my life! Her yoga offers a powerful blend of the practical and mystical. She has developed yogic solutions to many chronic health problems, and to many of the ways we habitually get stuck in our bodies and minds. Amy's yoga keeps me grounded and healthy, like the earth under my feet.” — Mary Driscoll, freelance writer and Ph.D., Southwest Institute for Research on Women, University of Arizona
“In this book, Amy Weintraub directly addresses the core of depression: the problem of Being itself, in the finest tradition of Yoga. Yoga for Depression is an astonishingly comprehensive guide to the art and science of Yoga. Herein lies a Yogic blueprint for how to be a human being, written by a compassionate and generous teacher.” — Stephen Cope, author of Yoga and the Quest for the True Self and The Wisdom of Yoga: A Seeker’s Guide to Extraordinary Living. Director of the Kripalu Institute for Extraordinary Living
“I have tried a number of antidepressants and therapy to treat my chronic depression. When I began working privately with Amy, something shifted, and I saw that I could live from a place bigger and brighter than my depression. At first, I just felt better for a few hours after our work together. But after several months, I am feeling that those positive feelings — more energy, more optimistic, more flexible — are taking me through the days in between our sessions.” — KW, technical writer, Tucson, AZ
“I integrate strategies like mantra tones and pranayama, but above all I invite myself and those I teach to cultivate svadhyaya, to practice self-observation without judgment.” — Barbara Sherman, RYT 200, LFYP, Tucson, AZ
“I have gained an incredible opening and clearing of old obstructions. I hope to return to my life and fill this opening with things I love to do and that give me joy!” — Lisa Shine, administrative assistant, Ballston Lake, NY
“I had been on antidepressant medication for three years and had just been diagnosed with fibro myalgia when I began to work with Amy. She designed a sequence of postures and breathing exercises for me that I could practice at home. After four months, I was feeling much better, and after six months, I was able to stop antidepressants entirely. I still have low moods from time to time, but I know they will pass. Yoga has changed my life.” — C.L., 37, massage therapist, Sarasota, FL.
“Amy helped me find powerful personal images that fit perfectly into my short stories, and she helped me find a process to release my inner voice.” — Mark Heasley, Troy, Michigan
“Amy is a treasure. Through her gentle and affirming teaching style, she helped me establish a yoga practice that has become a most satisfying and grounding aspect of my life. I was surprised by the depth of the experience and the enduring nature of the changes I enjoy through this practice.” — CA, journalist, videographer, Tucson, AZ
“The pieces I wrote in Amy’s workshop are the best I’ve done. She brought out my confidence in myself and the best in my writing.” — Amy Wray, Iowa City, Iowa
“I learned lots of ways to reduce the anxiety and depression of my patients and myself.” – Aviva Sinvany-Nubel, PhD, APN, CNSC, RN, psychotherapist, Bridgewater, N.J.
“Amy was just what I needed. Her values & thoughts & way of speaking stirred deep “hidden pockets” that need to be cleaned out. I’m glad I came. I know it will change my life.” — Sue Carlson, seamstress, Ayer, MA
“I came hoping to learn to move past some of the obstacles blocking my creativity. Over the course of this weekend, I feel I’ve gained a certain measure of faith in myself and in my ability to change. I also had some realizations that I believe will be very helpful to me. I feel encouraged. Both the content and presentation of this program were so well-thought out that I can’t think of any way to improve it.” — Andrea Gollin, writer & editor, Miami, FL
“Amy is extensively trained in many schools of Yoga. This allows her to provide a wide variety of information from which the student can choose. Amy knows that what benefits a student is a unique ‘recipe.’ She is a loving and kind teacher. As a colleague, I love to attend her classes!” — K.H., Yoga Teacher, Tucson, AZ
“I gained perspective of who I am in the world and this will change my life significantly.” — Mary Ford, artist, Southport, CT
“A client who returned said, "When I came before, you helped me understand and get where I wanted to go. Now you show me yoga practices I use to help myself understand and get where I want to go.” — Sherry Rubin, LCSW, BCD, LFYP, Downingtown, PA
“I have realized how to go deeper into myself and find what is blocking me. I now can focus and clear my mind. Keep Amy! She is fantastic. She enabled me to release and find where I need to go.” — Kathy Myers, homemaker, State College, PA.
“Amy is a wonderful instructor. She is a vital and vibrant person and she kept the program flowing. Her voice was very soothing and nurturing and she created an open, safe and sacred space.” — Mary Lou Tillinger, massage therapist/rural carrier, Plainfield, CT
“Suffering from depression and chronic fatigue syndrome, I've tried medications, supplements, and many forms of traditional and nontraditional therapies without beneficial effects. While taking yoga classes with Amy at Kripalu, I noticed a definite shift in my consciousness, a reduction in stress, and an improvement in my well-being. Amy's classes have helped me to love and appreciate myself. Amy is an outstanding yoga teacher and in dealing with the fatigue and depression I experience, participation in her classes has been a real gift to my yoga practice and me.” — E. M., teacher, Lenox, MA
“As a musician living with multiple spinal deformities, I have participated in many yoga classes lead by Amy Weintraub. I see Amy’s classes as very fluid, well-structured arrangements of poses, breathing exercises and vocalizations. Amy manages to pace her sessions and her voice at just the right tempo as to add focus and confidence to the students’ efforts. The systematic progression of movements in Amy’s classes naturally engages the student to go further and further within, tapping into the wellspring of their potential.” — Léo Gosseli, musician, Prescott, AZ
“As a Yoga teacher, Amy Weintraub’s most outstanding quality is her kindness. I have seen her work often with very challenging students and always maintain her attitude of patience and compassion. She provides a safe and enriching class.” — Tom Beall, RYT 500, Yoga teacher, Tucson, AZ
“Weintraub has written…a sensitive, intelligent, painstaking exploration of the deeper psychospiritual issues that make up the complex experience of depression.” — Phil Catalfo, Yoga Journal
“Giving my clients a strategy and permission to quiet their minds and rebalance the sympathetic nervous system has been very beneficial to them and in our work together.” — Sue Dilsworth, PhD, RYT 200, LFYP, Allendale, MI
“Amy offers many guidelines and solutions through yoga, to both those who suffer from depression and to yoga teachers working with them.” — Angela Farmer, internationally known master Yoga teacher
“Amy Weintraub's talent as a yoga instructor is surpassed only by her ability to inspire compassion and depth in each of her student's practice.” — LuAnn Haley, attorney, Tucson, AZ
“Amy’s gentle and caring presence blends beautifully with her skillful Yoga teaching talents.  I have enjoyed attending Amy’s unique class offerings for the past 4 years now.  As a practitioner and teacher of Yoga, I find that her style of teaching creates a safe place for me to deepen my own Yoga practice, free from the competitive "striving" attitudes found all too often in Yoga classes.  I have appreciated Amy’s strong focus on acceptance and presence and always leave her classes feeling happier, lighter and more centered in my true self.” — Janine Walter, Oriental Bodywork Therapist and Teacher, Tucson, AZ
“I typically live in a state of future hope and past fear, both totally about stress. When I practice yoga, my life begins again. I look out of new eyes that are a lot more about life and self-esteem. Amy is the best yoga teacher I have had.” — Jaqui Gee, massage therapist, Tucson, AZ
“Amy’s 7 AM yoga class was a journey from darkness to light.  On each morning of practice the route is different.  She embodies the compassion that she writes about so well.” — JS, 48, biologist and writer, Tucson, AZ
“I began a fantasy during the meditation exercise... almost as if I’d been there. It’s now an on-going work of fiction.” — Serian Strauss, Tanzania
“This workshop has changed so much — my self-image and my life. My own heart’s desire is 100% clear. I gained tools to help myself and others to live life fully.” — Marcia Siegel, Yoga teacher, therapist, Carlsbad, CA.
“I have found the LFYP training to be incredibly useful in giving people specific tools to use in maintaining physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual balance, and further opening their intuitive abilities.” — Nancy Windheart, RYT-200, LFYP, Reiki Master, Animal communication teacher, Prescott, AZ
“Research now validates what yoga adepts have claimed for thousands of years: Yoga practices profoundly affect our state of heart and mind! Drawing on her wisdom and notable expertise, Amy Weintraub guides us in bringing this ancient science of healing into clinical settings. 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.” — Tara Brach, Ph.D., author of Radical Acceptance (Bantam, 2003.)
“My personal practice will change, as well as my yoga classes. I have a better understanding of yoga!” — Andrea Gattuso, RYT, Yoga Teacher, Hackettstown, N.J.
“I am indebted to Amy's Yoga instruction for teaching the part of me that had trouble letting go. My wife died almost two years ago, and I am now free of grief and other destructive thought-patterns. Since practicing Yoga with Amy, my meditation practice has gone to new dimensions.” — John deCoville, systems analyst, Tucson, AZ
“A psychotherapist might spend many years studying yoga and still not achieve anything near this elegant, practical, powerful integration. The instruction — while emerging from a 4000-year-oldtradition some consider esoteric — is immediately useful for treating abroad range of mental health disorders, even for therapists with no other background in yoga. As a bonus, the book seamlessly weaves in indispensable related tools, such as imagery, self-suggestion, and mindfulness meditation. It is a fabulous resource.” — Donna Eden & David Feinstein, Ph.D., Co-authors, Energy Medicine and The Promise of Energy Psychology
“I have been reminded that I am not on this path alone, that others are sharing the journey that sometimes seems so difficult. I have also been reminded of the importance of daily practice and I will do that. The whole program has been an incredible experience for me. Thank you!” — Lorraine Plauth, retired teacher, Voorheesville, NY
“Amy has a wonderful, powerful presence. Her energy radiated to the entire group. I feel better able to be who I am and to be compassionate toward myself in a new, loving, way.” — Suzanne Phelps-Weir, editor, Boston, MA
“I had the pleasure of experiencing several private yoga sessions with Amy Weintraub, which were for me the most profoundly healing yoga experiences I’ve had.  Amy has the gift of not only being very skillful in helping me feel supported and "held" in yoga postures physically, but, also, the ability to use words to bring me more deeply into my own inner experience. I found myself releasing emotions that had been held in my body for a long time.  After the sessions, I had the experience of being much more at home within myself and much more present to my own inner experience. This was particularly important for me since I am a body-centered therapist who specializes in helping people get in touch with emotions held in the unconscious. Amy’s work is very important in a world where so little attention is given to one’s own inner experience. I’m grateful for having had the opportunity to experience the power of yoga with Amy.” — L.F. 44, Rosen Method Bodyworker Practitioner, Florence, MA
“This is a book about integrating the mind and the body, about using movement to mend oneself; in a world obsessed with psychopharmacology, reading it was a refreshing reminder that, in some cases, the tools we have to cure depression reside not in a pill, but in our own bodies, if we are willing to try.” — Lauren Slater, author of Prozac Diary and Lying: A Metaphorical Memoir
“I utilize the LFY techniques in both a class room setting and one-on-one environment. The skills have infused my teachings with compassion, mindfulness, and awareness.” — Kat Larsen, CYT, LFYP
“In my private sessions with Amy, I learn, expand and heal, and I leave more vivid in every way. I rely on some of the exercises she teaches, throughout the day, to reenergize and rebalance.” — L.D., writer, Tucson, AZ
“As a ‘regular’ in Amy’s 7 AM Mon/Wed/Fri. yoga class, I felt a strong attachment to Amy and her Yoga practice.  I have been with her for 2 1/2 years and I am 82 years old.  A few months back I had the flu and missed two classes; she came to my house to check on me.  I could not believe she did this with her busy schedule.  This is a testimonial to her caring for the individual.  Amy is very special to me and keeps me going.” — D.W., retired nurse, Tucson, AZ
“I’ve worked with Amy’s Yogic sets for the last two years and they have literally transformed my emotional state. Amy takes me, step-by-step, through postures and breathing exercises that straighten out my emotional tangles. Practicing Yoga has positively affected my whole world.” — S.S., retired computer engineer, Cambridge, MA
“I feel profoundly transformed, both physically and emotionally. The connection between mind, body and spirit was clearly evident to me, but revealed to me through this workshop as an integrally vital link to overall health.” — Nadine Richardson, program manager at rehab agency, Monroe, CT
“My patients can now have the same effects as many medications without having to actually take medication!” — Deborah Lubetkin, PSY.D, LFYP, West Caldwell, NJ

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