Research Newsletter Issue 64

Read about new research on the anti-inflammatory effects of yoga practice and a study about how the brain responds to meditation. We gather the latest studies on yoga and mental health as well as reviews of new books—one beautiful enough to grace your coffee table by master yoga therapist and Ayurvedic clinician Indu Aurora, and another to keep on your bookshelf, especially if you want to work with expressive arts and yoga therapy. As we move toward summer’s end, there are many LifeForce Yoga events to look forward this fall in Encinitas, CA, Atlanta, GA, at Kripalu Center in the Berkshires of MA and at the Satchidananda Ashram in Yogaville, VA.

Did you know you can begin your LifeForce Yoga Practitioner Training right now? You can pace your studies at home with our interactive webinar series, either for credit towards certification or simply to expand your toolbox of mood-managing practices. Learn more about this exciting new training opportunity!

brain-744207_1280Research: Evidence of Brain Changes During Meditation and Amy’s Commentary

Lead researchers Shirley Telles and Nilkamal Singh and their colleagues are adding an exciting dimension to the research they are doing at the Patanjali Research Foundation in Haridwar, India. Through their collaboration with S-VYASA, a university and renowned research institute in Bengaluru, India and the National Institute of Mental Health and Neuroscience, also in Bengaluru, they are using fMRI to observe the brains of yoga practitioners. In this study, they are looking at the brains of long-time and shorter-term meditators while in the three stages of meditation, as described in Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras. Underlying their research, not only in this study but in the many studies they have published, is the foundation of ancient textural references to practice.

In the research and therapeutic yoga world today, many practices are being adapted and made more accessible for populations who would not otherwise seek out the benefits of yoga, as for instance in health care and clinical mental health settings. As the founding director of the LifeForce Yoga Healing Institute, I personally support such adaption in the West, where there may be cultural or religious resistance to more traditional approaches based on ancient yoga texts or Hindu scriptures. People who are suffering from various maladies but who may not be amenable to the traditional practice of yoga should be offered these adapted practices as a natural alternative to pharmaceuticals. As compared to pharmaceutical interventions, the side-effect from yoga practices, whether traditional or adapted, is greater well-being in all dimensions (koshas) of life. In other words, while treating back pain or insomnia with yoga practices, including meditation, the yoga practitioner enhances his or her quality of life in all aspects of body and mind.

While I support the adaption of ancient yoga practices for therapeutic treatment for special populations and the studies that include these adapted practices, I also believe that it’s vital to base a substantial body of research on the practices described in traditional texts. The kind of research Telles and Singh are doing is founded on the wisdom of the ancient texts and great sages of yoga. The particular results they achieve means less to me than the fact that their research is grounded in the foundations of yoga. That being said, in this particular study, they found that the third stage of meditation as written about in Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras and described by the authors as, “Meditation with one-pointed focused attention without effort (ME),” experienced meditators had brain changes associated with “sustained attention, memory, semantic cognition, creativity and an increased ability to detach mentally.”

For more information on this research, contact Dr. Shirley Telles.

A fMRI Study of Stages of Yoga Meditation Described in Traditional Texts
Shirley Telles1,2*, Nilkamal Singh1, K.V. Naveen2, Singh Deepeshwar2, Subramanya Pailoor2, N.K. Manjunath2, Lija George 2,3, Rose Dawn3 and Acharya Balkrishna1

yoga-682326_1280Research: Anti-inflammatory Evidence of Yoga’s Healing Powers

This recent study is important for two reasons: First, because it compares yoga to exercise. Those who have been practicing yoga for five years had lower TNF-alpha as compared to non-yoga practitioners, when both groups stressed their bodies with moderate and then vigorous exercise.

Second: We want to lower TNF-alpha, because it indicates high levels of inflammation, part of the body’s response to stress, and inflammation increases the risk of everything we don’t want–auto-immune diseases, arthritis, Alzheimer’s Disease, cardiovascular diseasse, cancer, metabolic disorders.

Read the full article here.

Research: Yoga therapy Growing as Treatment

Yoga therapy is advancing as a treatment for many conditions. According to a recent review of the research literature, published in The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, over the last 10 years, the number of articles in peer-reviewed journals worldwide about clinical trials of yoga therapy to alleviate disease-related symptoms increased 3-fold. The article is available free on The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine website until September 17, 2015.

Review: Mudra: The Sacred Secret by Indu Arora

Rose-newReviewed by Rose Kress, ERYT-500, LFYP-2, LFY Educator. Rose teaches classes and workshops throughout the Tucson area. Rose is the Program Manager of the LifeForce Yoga Healing Institute and travels with Amy to assist her in LifeForce Yoga Practitioner Trainings. She is a lead trainer in the Soul of Yoga Center’s Yoga Training Program. Rose is also the author of 2 CDs, Mantra Chanting with Rose and Pathways to Relaxation. Learn more about Rose on her website

Mudras are the magic of the yoga world. These hand gestures can have a profound effect on a person in a matter of seconds. Whether you know it or not, you are already using mudras. There is the peace sign, the index and middle fingers extended, which instills a sense of peace. Or the wishing mudra, crossing your fingers for an expected outcome. The most familiar of mudras is the one that some use while driving, the extended middle finger, which expresses aggression and anger.

315motUVVRL._SX496_BO1,204,203,200_Indu Arora, master Yoga Teacher, Yoga Therapist, and Ayurvedic Clinician, shares the ancient wisdom about why mudras work the way they work and how to use them in her beautiful book Mudra: The Sacred Secret. Mudras have been used for thousands of years as a part of ritual in many cultures. In yoga, mudras are used to direct awareness and energy. Indu says that mudras help the “mind to retain the awareness of an idea without the aid of any verbal representation or mantra.” For example, a gesture like the peace sign (also known as Happy Buddha Mudra), helps to instill a sense of calmness, yet uplifts energy at the same time. We need not repeat the word peace nor visualize peace to have the experience of calm uplifted energy; although visualization and sound can enhance the practice.

Mudras are also beneficial, as Indu says, “even if performed without an understanding of their deeper meaning.” As a yoga professional, I often lead mudras in yoga classes as a part of centering and in yoga posture. Out of this direct experience a student or client can have a profound transformation without knowing the name of the mudra or the reason for practice. But knowing the benefits can sometimes enhance the effects for the practitioner. For yoga professionals, this knowledge and understanding is essential, especially if they are applying yoga therapeutically.

Indu explains how to practice mudras therapeutically, which is different from a general practice of mudras. She demonstrates, via pictures, the different positions one may take for the practice of mudra. Information on time, place, duration, diet, pressure, age group, hand position, and breath is also included. Indu is so thorough that one can read this book and, without other instruction, be able to practice the mudra. The section on therapeutic mudras gives information about the practice of mudras for specific issues. For example Mushti mudra (make a fist with the thumb on the outside) is a mudra for strength and willpower. Indu says that the mudra activates liver and stomach energy, promotes digestion, helps relieve constipation and “helps in strengthening the willpower and brings confidence.” For those working with issues related to confidence it can be empowering to know that you can practice a hand gesture in addition to all of the other work you may be doing.

This book is beautifully laid out. After beginning with a definition and explanation of mudras, Indu goes in depth into the history of mudras, the meaning of each finger, the relationship between Chinese meridians and nadis (the energy channels in yoga), the psychology, philosophy and science of mudras, and guidelines for practicing. If you are someone who practices mudras, this book will enhance your practice by providing more information. If you do not have a mudra practice, this book will give you all you need to know to begin. As someone who practices mudras, I found this book to be of great help. Part Two of this book contains pictures, directions for practice, and explanations of the mudras. Even if you don’t practice mudras, Mudra: The Sacred Secret makes a stunning art book that will look beautiful on your coffee table!

Purchase a copy of Mudra: The Sacred Secret online.

Review: Integrating Art Therapy and Yoga Therapy by Karen Gibbons

authorsmallReviewed by Dr. Ellen G. Horovitz, ATR-BC, LCAT, E-RYT, LFYP. Ellen is a Professor and founder of the art therapy program at Nazareth College, Rochester, NY. Author of 7 books, Ellen’s most recent (co-edited) is Yoga Therapy: Theory & Practice. Ellen conducts lectures and workshops internationally, is in private practice. More information can be found at

At the heart of Karen Gibbon’s book is the Intention Centered Yoga and Art Therapy technique (ICYAT), which entwines intention into the seat of yoga, mudras, and artwork. Delineating the ethical, educational and professional practices for yoga therapy and art therapy, Gibbons combines these interrelated modalities into a mutually beneficial prescription to promote wellbeing and restructure habitual patterns towards health.

41M84ajyDlL._SX329_BO1,204,203,200_Gibbon’s centerpiece is the practice chart, which intertwines intentions with asana, mudras, and suggested art therapy exercises. Prior to starting, the art/yoga therapist reviews the possible art directive and gathers the materials needed. Next, she suggests that your space have ample privacy to complete the sequence.

Gibbons suggests that when using her method with a client that the art/yoga therapist begin with an identified concern or simply find the healing concept (and/or mudra) provided from the “solution” column. Once the art/yoga therapist determines the intention, she then suggests reading the intention and altering the wording, if necessary, to suit the person who will use it. Finally, she recommends pairing the intention with the mudra for meditation and creating artwork, connected to the intention, mudra and /or meditation.

This “solution” column is easy to follow and extremely well thought out. The ideas behind it will allow the trained art therapist/ yoga therapist to sashay back and forth between both the art therapy and yoga therapy fields to move the client towards physical, emotional and cognitive expression and resolve of conflicts. I would highly recommend this book to art therapists and yoga therapists who are trained in both fields.

Purchase a copy of Integrating Art Therapy and Yoga Therapy online.

2015-04-24 21.23.41Practice: Practice for Pain ~ an Essay from Amy

How many times have you said to yourself, I know what I need to do, but I’m too depressed or too tired or too busy to do it? That may be because you haven’t really listened to your pain. A full life means embracing sorrow as well as joy, vulnerability as well as strength. None of us enjoys pain, be it physical or emotional, and we have many strategies, healthy and unhealthy, to avoid it. But if we can acknowledge the pain, without numbing out or immediately trying to fix, the pain sometimes diminishes. If it doesn’t, it can help to remember who we are beyond the pain and that it won’t last forever. One way I deal with pain is to engage it in conversation. The pain part sometimes feels grateful for my attention and begins to settle down. Once the pain is acknowledged, it’s more likely to allow me to soothe it with a practice.

One of the most soothing practices I know is to simply chant Om, and to visualize the face of a loved one. In my case, that would most often be the face of my beloved granddaughter, Shoshana.


About the Author

Amy Weintraub

Amy Weintraub E-RYT 500, MFA, YACEP, C-IAYT, founded the LifeForce Yoga® Healing Institute, which trains yoga and health professionals internationally, and is the author of Yoga for Depression and Yoga Skills for Therapists. The LifeForce Yoga protocol is used by health care providers worldwide. She is involved in ongoing research on the effects of yoga on mood.

One thought on “Research Newsletter Issue 64”

  1. Larry Uman says:

    Shoshana is beautiful!

Comments are closed.

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What People Say

“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
“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.
“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
“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
“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
“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
“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 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 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
“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
“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 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
“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.
“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
“I gained tools for working with my own depression and with my clients’ depressions.” — Robert Sgona, LCSW, RYT, psychotherapist, Yoga teacher, Camden, ME.
“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
“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
“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
“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 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
“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
“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 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
“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
“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 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
“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.
“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 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.
“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
“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
“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
“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
“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
“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’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
“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
“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
“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
“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
“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
“Words do not do justice to all that I learned. This workshop changed my life!” — Jen Nolan, Teacher, Cortland, NY
“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.
“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
“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 patients can now have the same effects as many medications without having to actually take medication!” — Deborah Lubetkin, PSY.D, LFYP, West Caldwell, NJ
“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 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
“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
“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
“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.
“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
“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
“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
“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
“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
“I gained perspective of who I am in the world and this will change my life significantly.” — Mary Ford, artist, Southport, CT
“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
“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.
“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
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