Lorna Evans is an integrative Psychotherapist who works with a primary model of Transactional Analysis. Registered with UKCP & BACP, holding an MSc in Body Awareness & Psychotherapy.
She will deliver her CPD workshop on Saturday 18th May 2019
What drew you to integrating your work as a therapist with the practise of yoga?
It was actually the other way around, as for the past twenty years I have been practising yoga. Yoga helped me with my own mental health and maintaining being well, and I wanted to understand how this worked and what was the science behind yoga.
Also whilst teaching at yoga retreats around the world and attending classes, I witnessed many events that concerned me involving boundaries, unsafe practices and false medical claims about yoga.
It was important for me to be in a position of clinical knowing and credibility, so I could then educate clinicians and yoga teachers about the science of yoga and why yoga significantly improves mental health. Without my clinical training and the science to back-up my recommendations, yoga would not be credible in the medical world today.
Are there any books you would recommend for therapists wanting to learn more about yoga in their work?
I am sure most people are aware of Bessel Van Der Kolk’s research and his brilliant book, The Body Keeps The Score. David Emerson runs the yoga programme at Bessel Van der Kolks Trauma Centre and has written a book specifically for therapists wanting to safely incorporate yoga into the therapy room.
Trauma Sensitive Yoga in Therapy: Bringing the Body into Treatment
Trauma Sensitive Yoga is by far the safest yoga I have come across and I will be incorporating some of this work into the workshop in May. Trauma Sensitive Yoga has foundations in Trauma Theory, Attachment Theory, Neuroscience and Hatha Yoga practice with an emphasis on mind body connection, movement and breathing and is a proven treatment for survivors of trauma and post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) offering effective healing and symptom reduction. It is a clinically validated method of yoga developed and researched by Bessel van der Kolk at his Trauma Centre in the USA.
To understand the power of yoga, I must encourage people to not read books, but get on their yoga mat and feel in their own bodies, the nurturing power of yoga.
In a recent workshop I was asked “Lorna, do you need to believe in this to do it?” after some time the answer was very clear to me, yes, yes you do. You have to have felt the power of yoga yourself to be able to congruently and safely integrate it into your clinical practice.
How do you feel yoga benefits clients coming to therapy?
Yoga provides a safe space where people can begin to reconnect with their bodies and over time learn to be present and begin to experience the effects of taking positive actions and making choices.
Yes, yoga can become part of a self-care routine, however, I have seen to most extraordinary results that have transformed a clients way of being, when they simply connected with their breath for the first time. The power of these moments is why I continue to do this work.
“The guiding principle of recovery is restoring a sense of power and control to the survivor”. Judith Herman
What are do you hope delegates booked onto your CPD with us will take away?
Therapists attending this workshop will take away the following knowledge and tools for their clinical practice…
- A deeper understanding of the body and non verbal phenomena in the history of therapy
- Understanding yoga as more than a physical practice and its benefits for positive mental health whilst exploring the Yogic and Eastern perspective on mind-body connections
- The science of yoga from the Autonomic Nervous System to Neuroscience and Trauma. We will focus on Trauma Sensitive Yoga and the importance of safety when working with clients.
- Awareness of our embodied relationship with our clients.
- There will be many practical yoga breathing techniques and postures for depression and anxiety as well as accessible yoga resources for both clients and therapists eg, reading list, audio and online practices
For more about Lorna’s work:click here