Trauma-sensitive yoga is a form of yoga as therapy, adapted from modern postural yoga. TSY is a mind-body practice, with many forms and styles. It typically includes physical postures, breathing exercises, mindfulness, and meditation.
TSY was designed to promote feelings of safety for people who have experienced trauma within their life. TSY creates a space for you to connect the mind and body creating healing and awareness of triggers that are both environmental and physiological. TSY is designed to:
- begin gently and at your own pace
- guided seated breathing exercise
- light movements or postures
- Postures will be guided at a level that meets your needs
In each posture, instructors/therapist encourage you to observe your internal sensations, without judgment, and to respond to them compassionately. You are encouraged to make choices for yourself about what feels comfortable and safe in your own body and you may modify any posture as needed. The class ends similarly to ordinary postural yoga in a resting pose.
Trauma-sensitive yoga is effective for improving psychological symptoms of:
- chronic traumatic experiences
- post-traumatic stress disorder
- Intimate partner violence
- depression and anxiety
Trauma-sensitive yoga increases feelings of safety and a higher self-esteem, self-compassion, decreased feelings of isolation, greater feelings of relaxation, confidence and a greater sense of awareness over their own bodies.