I first met Elena Brower this October when we both presented at the Ojai Yoga Crib, although we’d been acquainted through email for about a year prior. Elena walked into the faculty dinner and seemed to carry a piece of the sun in her essence.
Now I know that might sound a bit “woo-woo,” and if you’ve been reading my blog for the past five years, you know that I am a straight shooter and tend to refrain from sharing heavy doses of mystical or esoteric phenomenon with my readers. But I tell you, I can also recognize a galvanizer when I see one, and I was immediately drawn to Elena’s intense stare, clarity of tone and poetic spirit. She’s awesome! And I am happy to now call her my friend.
So when I found out she was about to publish her very first book Art of Attention, a yoga workbook designed to inspire your yoga practice, contemplation and creativity, which she wrote with co-author Erica Jago, I wanted to have a heart-to-heart interview: teacher-to-teacher, innovator-to-innovator and woman-to-woman. Here is the result of that conversation:
A guest post from Lisa Sunshine of Urban Zen
Anyone who practices yoga regularly knows that it can be a healing experience, both mentally and physically. In addition to the health benefits to be gained from a regular yoga practice, yoga therapists teach their patients specific ways to use yoga to combat everything from depression to back problems to side effects from cancer treatments.
Recognizing the importance of yoga and other Eastern healing techniques such as Reiki, essential oil therapy, nutrition and contemplative care, Donna Karan’s Urban Zen Integrative Therapy Program (UZIT) in New York trains its students to combine these therapies with traditional Western medicine to create a holistic approach to patient care. During the program, each technique is taught separately, then instruction is given on how to interweave them to create a truly integrative healing session. Graduates of the UZIT program leave with experience working bedside with patients and their loved ones and caregivers in hospitals, as well in yoga studios, private practice, outpatient clinics, cancer support groups and a variety of other settings.
Is yoga therapy right for you? Have you tried everything under the sun to eliminate an ache, pain or chronic condition? If your doctor has suggested that you try yoga therapy (and not just yoga classes), the first step is to find a great yoga therapist to steer you into a customized practice that may potentially improve the conditions of self-healing in your body, mind and spirit.