Choosing a therapist and a treatment style can be difficult. The relationship established with the treating therapist is as important as the therapeutic style. Through trust and connection with the therapist, clients are able to begin the process of self-reflection, self-revelation and healing. Below are some of the questions clients have previously asked when starting treatment. I hope they will help you understand some of the options available to you. Please feel free to contact me if you have additional questions.

Frequently Asked Questions

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    What is psychotherapy?
    Psychotherapy is an effective technique for helping individuals cope with a variety of difficulties in their lives. There are many different approaches or schools of psychotherapy. Traditional insight-oriented counseling or “talk therapy” is a popular treatment modality which incorporates exploration and resolution of sources dissatisfaction and suffering to increase confidence, satisfaction and improve relationships.
  • What is Yoga Therapy?

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    Yoga Therapy is an exciting treatment option for clients combining active physical and emotional participation in treatment, healing and personal growth. Within a safe environment filled with warmth, compassion and acceptance and under the guidance of a experienced therapist trained to work with the mind and body, clients can begin to recognize the issues interfering with happiness. Techniques are introduced to clients to assist them in exploration of being present in the moment and learning to identify and work with the physical and emotional feelings and sensations which arise during treatment and life. Integrating insight-oriented counseling techniques, mindfulness training, breath work and asana, yoga therapy facilitates the exploration of the underlying thoughts, emotions, bodily sensations and reactions to past experiences.
  • What types of issues does Yoga Therapy address?

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    Yoga Therapy is an effective treatment modality for a wide variety of emotional issues including depression, dysthymia, seasonal affective disorder, stress management, anxiety, social anxiety, insomnia, post-traumatic stress disorder, body image issues, eating disorders and the emotional effects of chronic illness or infertility.
  • How does Yoga Therapy work?

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    Yoga Therapy recognizes and focuses on both the physical and emotional experiences simultaneously. Programs are individualized to meet the individual needs of the client’s body and mind. This may include particular asanas (poses), sequences and adjustments of speed and intensity to address particular issues. Recognizing what the mind and body require to come into balance is one of the core skills gained. As these needs are not permanent and change from day-to-day or even moment-to-moment, the process of self-study and self-observation are critical in self-realization. Clients learn to gaze inward and recognize what their mind and body need at any given moment. This experience, the ability to transform one’s life from the inside out, is the essence and the goal of Yoga Therapy.

    Our bodies store an abundance of information about our earliest experiences, memories and emotions as well as our more current thoughts. Research shows that with increased repetition of certain thoughts and behaviors comes increased development of different parts of the brain associated with these emotions and actions. If we accept that certain movements are a reaction to specific thoughts and emotions, it would follow that altering the movement patterns through a program like Yoga Therapy would effectively create change in thought patterns as well. By decreasing internal and external stresses and increasing internal physical and emotional awareness, physical and psychological tensions release and change of physical and emotional patterns and improvement of overall health and vitality may follow.

    Physical practice combined with emotional insight and support facilitates the release of emotional tension held within the body bridging the gap between intellectual insight and actual change. Through development of mindful and conscious awareness of our emotional “triggers” we can learn to interrupt negative cycles earlier developing new, more functional patterns.
  • Can I come for psychotherapy without doing yoga?

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    Absolutely! While Yoga Therapy is a wonderful tool, it is not right for every individual. Many clients prefer and benefit from traditional psychotherapeutic approaches.
  • How does Yoga Therapy differ from an individual or group therapy session?

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    In traditional psychotherapy we explore why we react to situations the way we do and through this knowledge work to alter our habitual thought patterns and actions. This process is often referred to as “insight-oriented therapy.” In Yoga Therapy we integrate this knowledge with change in our physical, emotional and thought patterns to respond differently and eventually transform our lives. Emotions and insight are not only discussed verbally but explored physically. Guided meditation and physical postures are combined with group discussions of relevant emotional issues.
  • How does Yoga Therapy differ from a yoga class at my gym?

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    Yoga Therapy is about more than pure alignment and focus. Initial assessment includes an evaluation of an individual’s strengths and weaknesses in their mental state, emotional connections and physical body as well as any physical ailments (past and current), symptoms and medical limitations which might impact the therapeutic plan. Yoga Therapy focuses on improving an individual’s emotional state as well as their physical well-being and alignment in poses. Time is spent during each session discussing how to integrate the techniques presented into one’s daily life to improve mental health and decrease suffering.
  • What should I wear and bring?

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    I encourage you to wear comfortable clothing. My studio is stocked with yoga mats and all the supplies you need, but if you prefer you are welcome to bring your own yoga mat and props. You might bring a towel and water bottle.
  • Will I be getting a good workout?

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    Absolutely. The intensity of the workout will vary based upon the issues being addressed and how hard you choose to work, but yoga is a full body workout. Yoga Therapy has benefits for the mind and body.
  • Will my health insurance cover the cost of Yoga Therapy?

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    Coverage for Yoga Therapy and traditional counseling services varies with different plans. Most insurance plans do offer coverage for out-patient individual and group counseling. I recommend calling your insurance company prior to beginning treatment to determine your benefits and any prior authorization required.
  • Can you describe a “typical” Yoga Therapy session?

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    While each session will vary based upon the participant's physical and emotional needs. All sessions will include the following components: a period of grounding and reflection, development of mindfulness skills, pranayama (breathwork), asana (postures) with a particular focus, a period of guided relaxation and discussion.
  • What if I don’t like to exercise or talk in front of other people?

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    Many people feel this way; however, it is contrary to the very foundations of yoga. One of the five niyamas or rules of yoga, santosha, a state of contentment and non-judgement, is a fundamental part of yoga. We learn that through appreciation of what we have arises inner states of harmony and bliss. Judging ourselves (like judging others) prevents us from reaching these stages of inner peace and happiness. Learning to accept ourselves and others, with our strengths and weaknesses, is an important part of the process. Don’t worry, we will work through your concerns.
  • Will Yoga Therapy replace my current treatment?

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    Yoga Therapy is recommended in conjunction with traditional psychotherapy and/or medication (if necessary). Collaboration with treating doctors and therapists is strongly encouraged.
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