Rajan Narayanan isn’t just like your average yoga instructor. In his classes, he makes use of words such as “neuroplasticity,” avoids Sanskrit terms and sometimes even show up to teach in his formal suit and tie. In fact, the majority of his students are made up of either doctors or nurses. This was the same case on a recent Monday at a Maryland conference center.
In all, there were a total of thirty students stretched out on orange and green yoga mats for a weekend-long workshop. During that weekend, they were able to learn breathing techniques, lifestyle tips as well as research findings that support the health benefits of yoga. Narayanan, a longtime practitioner of yoga and an economist by day, is one of the founders of Life In Yoga, a nonprofit organisation that seeks to educate people on the benefits of this ancient Indian practice. One of the main aims of the workship is actually to integrate yoga therapy into the mainstream health care system by training medical providers to make use of yogic breathing and techniques to treat various maladies. “We need to expand the horizons of physicians — yoga is much more than just relaxation response,” he stated.
Since beginning this push back in 2010, Life in Yoga has trained 145 doctors. Its programs, jointly sponsored by Howard University College of Medicine, are recognized by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education. This also means that doctors will be able to earn credits they need to keep their licenses current by learning about yoga. According to Dr. Murray Kopelow, president and CEO of the ACCME, yoga therapy is a rather new addition to the list of accredited courses. Despite it being relatively new, it has still been proven helpful to physicians. “These are things our professionals need to know,” he said.
Dr. Harminder Kaur, an internist in Clarksburg, Md., agreed with Dr Murray. Harminder, who also practices yoga in her own personal life, mentioned that the Life in Yoga curriculum has helped her patients with illnesses such as sleep apnea and arthritis. “It takes one case to be successfully treated, then your mind is open to it,” she added. For the remaining story, you can check it out here.
At OMG Yoga, we are constantly trying to promote the practice of yoga to as many Singaporeans as possible. We believe that by taking up yoga classes, one will be able to lead a much healthier and stress-free lifestyle.