“In over 20 years as a teacher I have had the opportunity to ask 100’s and 100’s of people from a wide variety of cultures and walks of life – Why are you practicing yoga? I have found: people first practice yoga for many different reasons – science; flexibility; stress management; pregnancy; balance; disease prevention; therapy; brain function; core strength; scholastic achievement …… but long time practitioners tend to simply say “It makes me feel good.” or “I like how I feel good after.” ~ Trudy Scott Prevost
Rainbow Yoga – The Method
The Rainbow Yoga Method with Trudy Scott Prevost is science/evidence based.
1 : the state of knowing : knowledge as distinguished from ignorance or misunderstanding
2a : a department of systematized knowledge as an object of study the science of theologyb : something (as a sport or technique) that may be studied or learned like systematized knowledge have it down to a science
3a : knowledge or a system of knowledge covering general truths or the operation of general laws especially as obtained and tested through scientific methodb : such knowledge or such a system of knowledge concerned with the physical world and its phenomena : natural science
4 : a system or method reconciling practical ends with scientific laws cooking is both a science and an art
Personally I believe yoga has always been a science and from the Merriam-Webster Dictionary quote above it seems to fulfill the criteria outlined for the definition of science.
For 1000’s of years yoga experts from many different cultures have recorded the health and wellness benefits from this practice.
Because my yoga practice began with studying the ancient experts on yoga and what they had deduced the techniques could promote in the body and the mind I have an insight into the medicinal aspects of yoga before it was studied by Allopathic Medicine.
I have watched yoga flow from being a hippy thing to being accepted as a valid scientifically proven method of enhancing quality of life and healing the mind and body.
I have watched yoga techniques like the Progressive Muscle Relaxation and the Auto Genic Relaxation be promoted by the medical field.
I thoroughly enjoy every new study I find proving what the ancients said about yoga and I marvel at their insight and knowledge.
In the 1980’s I first began to follow the work of one the first doctors of medicine who utilized the yoga method for not only health and wellness but as a treatment for heart disease and cancer. I have promoted Dr. Dean Ornish findings with great joy everywhere I have gone since then.
I absolutely love to see the blending of Yoga and Allopathic Medicine to create a Complimentary Medicine. Cancer Centers; Homes for the Aged; and Hospitals all over the world are now utilizing yoga techniques to ease the journey through the treatment of medical conditions.
I love to find the ancient yoga techniques that have been renamed and used in Cognitive Behavioral Psychology Programs for pain management as well as depression; schizophrenia and ADHD.
Over the years I have found other university based programs such as Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction that are based on yoga wellness techniques and new studies emerge every day as to the benefits of MBSR.
Chiropractic Medicine; Naturopathic Medicine and Physiotherapy programs all use yoga techniques to enhance the healing of their programs.
The Sports and Fitness fields have also scientifically proven that yoga based programs create a functional fitness.
When I teach I love to share
- the latest scientific research on yoga; foods, herbs and healthy sustainable lifestyles.
- the historical research on yoga
- the historical yoga sources of medical techniques renamed and studied today.
- what studies have shown the pose or technique we are practicing is good for.
- what bones, joints, muscles, ligaments and tendons are being effected by a movement from an anatomical point of view.
- what physiological systems of the body are effected by the position, movement or technique.
- what movements are occurring in the joints or spine.
- how to work your body in a balanced way to promote Functional Fitness.
- how to utilize the latest yoga/scientific techniques to release stress and improve brain function.
I encourage my students to utilize conscientious decision-making which is based not only on the available evidence but also on: how the food; practice, herb, position or technique feels emotionally; intuitively and physically.
I generally find this sharing of knowledge one of the reasons people tell me they love my yoga – it gives participants a glimpse at the use of Yoga in Allopathic Medicine and encourages a deeper study of all the facets and styles of yoga.
After my Hatha Yoga Sessions – students say they are more mindful during a Hatha Yoga Class as they learn the names of the parts of the body they are are using and the effect their practice has.
I have also had students share the studies with their doctors to ensure Yoga Practice is included in their Wellness or Healing Plans.
I have seen with my own eyes – since the first yoga study from Penn State University in 1998 – the way people’s faces light up and smiles beam out upon hearing a scientific study in relationship to their practice of the moment.
It was this inspiration I observed – this mindfulness that was encouraged when people heard about a scientific study – that made me take the time to study the Allopathic Science of Yoga and the Ayurvedic Science of Yoga.
It is the same basis I have chosen to include The Cultural Diversity of Yoga and The Styles of Yoga in my teaching – the inspiration I see in my students faces – The Mindfulness that was encouraged.
In the end I know a little about a lot but each piece of knowledge opens my practice as Pantjali said it would; I hope it does yours too.
For a simple example: as we stand I discuss a 2012 study from Brazil published in the European Journal of Cardiovascular Prevention.
According to the press release this study has shown that if you can descend and rise from the floor easily you will live an average of 10 years longer.
Just last Monday at my class at Fort Young we were all seriously and mindfully practicing our yoga. As we rose from the floor I invited everyone to rise without their hands; quoting the scientific study. It was like turning on a light bulb – smiles emerged; faces shone and comments flowed! Some worked on the movement a few times.
Come to my sessions and workshops to study the science of yoga through the Rainbow Yoga Method.