WHAT IS YOGA THERAPY?
Yoga therapy uses the ancient science of yoga to help bring balance and wellness to body, mind, and spirit. Yoga therapy utilizes the tools of yoga including breath work (pranayama), gentle movement (asana), deep relaxation, and meditation to help relieve pain and illness, ease stress, depression, and insomnia, and help release trauma. Yoga therapy does not diagnose or treat a specific disease, but rather creates a path towards wholeness and healing that is specific to the individual client. The client fully participates in their own healing journey toward wellness. Yoga therapy takes into account physical issues as well as mental, emotional, and spiritual issues the client is facing, from the perspective that the mind, the body, and the spirit are all linked.
WHAT CAN I EXPECT?
A yoga therapy session is different from a private yoga class in that it begins with an initial intake and assessment (which may include body mapping and/or assessing range of motion, depending on client needs), followed by an individualized and integrated program that may include movement therapy, myofascial release exercises with therapy balls, breath work, nutritional counseling, meditation, and Yoga Nidra (guided relaxation). Cheryl provides a thorough assessment to identify her client’s individual needs for a private session and tailors the session to meet those needs.
WHO CAN BENEFIT?
Yoga therapy sessions can be tailored to help individuals with chronic pain, osteoporosis, arthritis, knee and hip replacement, as well as individuals with Type 2 Diabetes, metabolic syndrome, neuro-degenerative disorders, brain injury, PTSD, depression, anxiety, and those recovering from cancer surgery and treatment. Cheryl works with individuals in wheelchairs as well as those with sight and hearing loss. Contact us to find out how yoga therapy might specifically help you improve your wellbeing.
HOW OFTEN SHOULD I COME?
Individual Therapy sessions typically involve an initial 90-minute assessment, followed by a series of follow up sessions (from 2-8 private 1-hour follow-up sessions, depending on the needs of the client). Cheryl generally suggests at least 3 sessions, so she can see how the client is progressing and make any necessary adaptions. More complex conditions may require more sessions. Yoga therapy can be a great complement to, or follow up after, physical therapy to help continue to improve range of motion.
IS IT COVERED BY INSURANCE?
Unfortunately, at this time, yoga therapy is not covered by insurance. If you have a health savings account through your employer, please check with them to see if it might be covered.
DO I NEED A REFERRAL FROM MY DOCTOR?
A person seeking yoga therapy does not need a referral. However, individuals should make sure that they are cleared by a doctor for yoga therapy after surgery or during pregnancy. Yoga therapy is not a replacement for medical treatment and one should always check with and follow the instructions of the attending physician. Prior to the first session, the individual will receive an intake form that will ask about any medical conditions currently being experienced and any medications taken, so that we can be aware of and monitor for side effects.
WHAT CAN I DO TO HELP MY HEALING?
Together in our sessions, clients are active participants in creating a wellness plan that is customized to that individual’s specific needs and lifestyle. In order to receive the greatest benefit, the program should follow as advised. It is also important to keep Cheryl current on any changes in conditions. Remember this is a personalized and EVOLVING practice. It is not a “magic pill,” but a method to help relieve suffering and restore balance in a progressive, non-invasive manner.
WHAT SHOULD I WEAR TO A SESSION?
Please wear loose, comfortable clothing. Special “yoga clothes” are not necessary, just loose-fitting pants and shirt. Wear something you can be easily move in that does not restrict range of motion. Depending on the condition being worked on, some adaptations in clothing may be necessary and will be discussed for subsequent sessions.
Cheryl Sidwell, Yoga Instructor / Yoga Therapist
Cheryl has been practicing Yoga for over 20 years. She is currently 1000 C-IAYT with Yoga Alliance. She earned her 200-RYT yoga teaching certification at Marianne Wells Yoga School and completed her 300-hour certification in Advanced Yoga Therapy with Joseph LePage’s Integrative Yoga Therapy school, now part of Kripalu. She is also a member of IAYT (International Association of Yoga Therapists).
Cheryl is trained in massage therapy and is a Level 3 Reiki Master. She worked for 2 years as a personal assistant to a client with Multiple Sclerosis and has led stretch and yoga classes for Seniors. She brings her understanding & experience working with different bodies to her practice.
Cheryl believes firmly that Yoga is for Everyone! She can design and lead a practice for clients ranging from Senior Citizens to Athletes. Cheryl specializes in Gentle & Therapeutic Yoga & Somatic Movement Therapy, Trauma Informed Yoga and Yoga for Caregivers. She has worked with a variety of clients on their journey towards health and wellness dealing with a wide range of illnesses including osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, heart conditions, multiple sclerosis, scoliosis, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, digestive disorders, cancer recovery, weight loss and anxiety disorders.