Teaching Yoga for ME/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome/ME is an exhaustive condition known to have stress and its immune effects as key contributing factors. By understanding its common symptoms and the implications for those it affects in the changes of creating and using energy, you will learn how to help students safely regain strength and find new ways of coping.
Type of Event
- Teacher Training
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS aka ‘ME’) is an exhaustive condition known to have stress and its immune effects as key contributing factors. By understanding its common symptoms and the implications for those it affects in the changes of creating and using energy, you will learn how to help students safely regain strength and find new ways of coping with these symptoms and living life.
As with the previous course on Teaching Yoga for Stress and Burnout, this course will explore how psycho-social stress – the ‘neck-up’, ruminating stress we tend to get stuck in in modern societies – can affect people and how the modern body needs special consideration for the way the average student lives their lives. Stress and trauma will be discussed as key contributing factors to CFS. This course follows on well from the Teaching Yoga for Stress and Burnout one, for a well-rounded and in-depth experiential understanding of how it feels to move and live from an exhausted state. It can also be done without participation of that course as will reiterate points brought forward.
The subjects outlined below will be covered and in-depth notes provided, so that much time can be spent practicing the applications and felt sense of the yoga teaching work. Many aspects will be covered within practice itself, with time allowed for teaching practice, to makes notes and for reflection.
The themes in these days will be woven throughout the entire course, both in discussion and experientially.
- An overview of definitions, contributing factors and the latest scientific understanding of fatigue conditions
- Specific physical and emotional considerations for those with CFS and ME conditions; how it feels to for the person with these conditions to move, open and stretch
- Considerations for the mind-set of those with CFS and Burnout; how habits as samskaras can affect the very practice that could help with observing and unravelling these unhelpful habits. Guidance for teachers on how to direct students in understanding the energetic balance of their yoga practice and their illness. How to manage energy within yoga to learn to increase resilience without relapse
- The relevance of trauma within fatigue and stress states and how this can manifest in practice and ‘rebound’. How trauma and inflammation create fatigue and chronic pain and how to work with these
- The recent research and implications of relapse in ME/CFS
- The need for both restoration and movement and finding the balance within fascia, body fluids and structural needs
- The effects of trauma (shock and developmental) on the primal body, how this can manifest and how it needs to be approached to prevent relapse
- The importance of identity – how the teacher can help the student not attach to the identity of suffering in chronic illnesses
- How it feels to move and experience asana and attention with pain, exhaustion and intense emotional reactions
- The necessity of compassion (ahimsa and karuna) and deep listening within our practice, our own bodies and our world, to be able to work with people’s needs on an individual level
- Working with the yamas and the gunas as guides for working with chronically heightened energy and mind-sets
- Unhelpful samskaras in stress and the modern world; examination of personality types, how this can work against recovery and how yoga can help
- Teaching language; using mindfulness, creativity and compassion to encourage practice with a soft mind and body – with humour to release and create a positive sensory experience!