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It's All Transformation: Yoga Teacher Health
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It's All Transformation: Yoga Teacher Health


Learn the fundamental principles of classical yoga practice and a modern approach to personal wellness for modern yogis, including vegan and vegetarian tips, healthy eating rules, yoga neuroscience, …

Learn the fundamental principles of classical yoga practice and a modern approach to personal wellness for modern yogis, including vegan and vegetarian tips, healthy eating rules, yoga neuroscience, top nutritional supplements, and how to interpret your own blood tests.

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  • Agni is the God of Fire. He is forever young. One head is immortal and the other is of this life. Ayurveda considers that Dehagni is the cause of life, complexion, strength, health, nourishment, lusture, oja, teja (energy) and prana (life energy).
  • Sattva:Sweet,Raw,Organic,Fresh – Salads, Fruits,Nuts,Sprouted SeedsRajas: Lean Meats, Fish, Fried and Grilled, Spicy foods, Bitter taste, Sour flavor – Tea, Coffee, Tamas: Fatty and greasy foods, Alcohol, Strong cheese, Processed, Canned, Preserved – Roots and tubers
  • Metabolism is a general term for all life-sustaining chemical transformations within the cells of living organisms. These enzyme-catalyzed reactions allow organisms to grow and reproduce, maintain their structures, and respond to their environments.
  • Plants contain many acid family molecules including amino acids and essential fatty acids.
  • 35 year old woman, 5’4”, 130 lbs yoga teacher needs at least 25 grams. Foods usually have mixture of both soluble and insoluble fiber.
  • 8 essential glyconutrient compounds including glucose, mannone
  • Urine color test: clear is too much, light yellow is good, brown is dehyration
  • We think of modern yoga – both in India and in the West – as primarily asana-based. But it also has a scientific aspect. Think of modern scientific yoga in two parts: body and mind, or physiology and psychology.
  • Vagus nerves transfers information from the organs to the brain.
  • Deep breathing is key – long slow exhale decreases heart rate. Yoga flexion, compression, and slow breathing improve vagal tone.
  • MERGING - Samadhi


  • 1. Yoga Teacher & Practitioner Health Thames Street Yoga – Newport, Rhode Island August 10, 2013
  • 2. Sri T. Krishnamacharya Ashtanga Vinyasa is the system of Hatha Yoga taught by Vamana Rishi in the Yoga Korunta. This teaching was imparted to Sri T. Krishnamacharya in the early 1900’s by his Guru, Rama Mohan Brahmachari.
  • 3. Kriya Yoga Hot Yoga Alignment- Based Yoga Flow Yoga Mysore Ashtanga Vinyasa
  • 4. My Spiritual Journey
  • 5. Your Life’s Yoga Journey 1 2 5 Yoga Mind AwarenessPl aceholder Asana Awake Breath BECOMING
  • 6. Four Objectives 1. To learn why yoga works. 2. To learn how to choose a balanced healthy diet. 3. To learn how to improve wellness and longevity. 4. To encourage the lifelong practice of yoga.
  • 7. Four Requirements/Conditions 1. Knowledgeable and experienced teacher 2. Capable student with the right attitude, making the right effort 3. Regular sustained practice over time 4. Application of yoga principles and passing on the teachings
  • 8. Six Basic Aspects of Practice 1. Dedication 2. Alignment 3. Balance 4. Awareness 5. Sequence (flow or static) 6. Attitude (including visualization)
  • 11. ANNA “All that is born, is born of ANNA. Whatever exits on Earth is born of Anna, lives on Anna, and in the end merges into Anna. Anna is the first born of all things.” Taittreya Upanashad
  • 13. THE THREE GUNAS Goodness: purity, illumination, order, stability, permanence, happiness, spirituality, cleanliness, essence and health Passion: action, creation, desire, lust, attachment, movement, and striving Darkness: inertia, destruction, madness, disease, dissolution, ignorance, intoxication, heaviness, and sleep
  • 14. ANNA & ASANA Asana practice paired with disciplined eating habits and healthy food choices are important in modifying the course of disease and establishing a base for intensive yoga practice.
  • 15. Three Reasons To Practice Asana Text CIKITSA SKISHA UPASANA
  • 16. For personal transformation & spiritual progress, the attainment of oneness, highly systemized and very disciplined UPASANA “classical yoga”
  • 17. SKISHA “yoga for the masses” For physical improvement, to promote health, and prevent disease, including body transformation
  • 18. To recover from disease or injury, lifestyle adjustment, disease modification CIKITSA “yoga therapy”
  • 19. PRANAYAMA Smooth Breath, Calm Mind Keep the body still Be aware of the breath Regulate the breath Focus the mind on the breath
  • 20. Ujjayi Pranayama “warrior's breath” Thin, long, slow, smooth (not forced), strong, clears the throat and fully expands the lungs so the chest is puffed out like that of a victorious warrior.
  • 21. Purpose of Ujjayi Pranayama 1. It stimulates the nadis in the sinuses and at the back of the throat, and helps promotes mental clarity and focus. 1. It provides a sound to focus on so that the mind becomes still.
  • 22. Bandhas Bandhas intensify the cleansing process created by pranayama, directed by agni to specific areas of the body: Jalandhara Bandha Uddiyana Bandha Mula Bandha
  • 23. Asana & Pranayama Mind-Body Linked Through BreathThe mind is more subtle than the body. Prana – “energy” – is more subtle than the mind. Prana and mind are closely connected
  • 24. Vinyasa • Vinyasa means the careful linking of breath and movement – pranayama & asana. • Vinyasa creates heat in the body – supports agni. • This type of heat generates purification. • When yoga practice is sustained with great diligence and dedication over a long period of time, the heat generated burns away the six poisons from around the heart, and the light of our inner nature shines forth.
  • 25. Asana Siddhi Mastery over asana is the ability to combine asana with pranayama – to remain in an asana for a long time while maintaining normal breathing.
  • 26. FOOD POSTURES ENERGY Yoga’s Three Building Blocks ANNA ASANA PRANA
  • 27. YOGA & FOOD
  • 28. Yogic Diet Rules Honor Your Self and Respect Anna • Eat 30% less • Never starve yourself • Eat according to you dosha • Eat based on your daily needs • Eat a balanced diet
  • 29. Making Changesk • Emphasize positives • Do more yoga asana • Add healthy choices • Avoid and remove unhealthy ones • Reward yourself when you succeed
  • 30. Agni The Fire of Life • All Transformation • Cause of Life • Responsible for All Health • Digestive Capacity
  • 31. Sattva Rajas Tamas Proper and simple food combining Combined for maximum flavor and taste No appropriate combinations Food Combining
  • 32. Why We Need Food • Building Blocks • Fuel • Nutrients • Fiber • Bacteria • Fluids
  • 33. Metabolism Anabolic Catabolic • Constructive – Energy is used to synthesize building blocks – Building up occurs in steps (proteins, fatty acids, carbohydrates) • Destructive – Break down large molecules (digestion) – Energy is released
  • 34. Positive Choices • Eat more plants • Eat fresh foods • Eat local and seasonal • Eat variety of greens and colors • Use simple combinations
  • 35. First Rules 1. Avoid refined foods: sugars, fructose, carbohydrates, sandwich meats 2. Avoid high glycemic index packaged foods 3. Avoid allergenic foods: dairy, wheat, soy 4. Avoid processed foods 5. Avoid GMO foods and commercially farmed 6. Eat less meat and dairy
  • 36. Vegetarian Benefits PERSONAL • Lowers cholesterol and promotes heart health • Lowers blood pressure and stroke prevention • Lowers glucose and prevents diabetes • Promotes healthy weight • Prevents many cancers PLANETARY • Saves water • Protects animal rights • Saves trees and preserves land • Reduces methane gas • Reduces animal borne pathogens including pandemic influenza
  • 37. SHOPPING RULES Shop on the outside aisles for 90% of your purchases. Buy whole foods like vegetables, fruits, seeds and nuts, and grains. Buy organically grown and non- genetically modified produce. Buy seasonally fresh foods. Pick firm, ripe, and richly colored fruits and vegetables.
  • 38. Vegetarian Food Pyramid
  • 39. Dr. Weil’s Anti-Inflammatory Food Pyramid
  • 40. Cooked or Raw COOKED RAW • Kills microbial infectious organisms • Breaks down cellulose • Improves absorption of carbohydrates, proteins, and lipids • Removes toxic plant acids • Retains key nutrients and enzymes • High fiber • Low calorie • Low fat • Retains water content
  • 41. Plant Acids • Phytic Acid – combines with iron and lowers its absorption: flax seeds, sesame seeds, lentils, soy, spinach • Oxalic Acid – combines with calcium and lowers its absorption, and can cause kidney stones: spinach, sorrel, rhubarb, amaranth, asparagus
  • 42. Polyphenols • Large molecules found in plants and intimately linked to their ecology • Used as food, beverages, and herbal medicine: – green tea, black tea, red wine, coffee, chocolate, olives, pomegranate, extra virgin olive oil.
  • 43. Fiber • Requirement: 14 grams per 1,000 calories • Balance: carbohydrates, protein, fat, and fiber • Two types: Soluble (oats, peas, apples, psyllium) and Insoluble (wheat, nuts, beans, vegetables) • Improves gut function, prevents colon cancer, lowers cholesterol, controls blood sugar, manages healthy weight
  • 44. Probiotics & Fermented Food • Boost immunity • Improve gut health • Fight obesity • Reduce allergies • Limit bacteria in urinary tract, prostate, and vagina Yogurt, Kefir, Sauerkaut, Kimchi, Miso, Kombucha
  • 45. Glyconutrients • Improve cellular communication • Prevent infection • Prevent cancer • Prevent heart disease • Slow aging Aloe vera, berries, medicinal mushrooms
  • 46. Fluids and Electrolytes • Daily requirement: women 2.5 liters; men 3.5 liters (6-8 glasses per day) • Increased needs: – Fever – Exercise (increase by 1 glass per 30 minutes) – Hot weather • Fluid electrolyte balance: sodium, potassium, magnesium, chloride, phosphorous
  • 47. PROTEIN RULES Get 45-65 grams of high quality protein daily. Choose cold processed whey unless you are lactose intolerant or dairy sensitive. Consume no more than 25 grams of dietary protein at any one time. Consume no more than 15 grams of supplemental protein at a time. Take a digestive enzyme and 50 mg of vitamin B6, or B complex, with your protein shake. Drink your shake within 20 minutes after exercising for muscle repair. Drink your shake one hour before bed for rejuvenation effects.
  • 48. PROTEIN-RICH VEGETARIAN FOODS Almonds 1 cup = 26 grams Lentils 1 cup = 15 grams Mixed Vegetables 1 cup = 4 grams Rice 1 cup = 5 grams Firm Tofu ½ cup = 10 grams
  • 49. Supplements • Multivitamin/mineral or prenatal • Vitamin C 500 mg • Vitamin D 1,000 IU • Vitamin E 400 IU (mixed tocopherols) • Omega 3 fish oil 1,000 mg • Probiotic
  • 50. NUTRITIONAL SUPPLEMENTS FOR VEGETARIANS • Calcium citrate 500 mg CLA – from safflower oil 1,000 mg L-Carnosine 500 mg L-Taurine 500 mg Magnesium citrate 250 mg Vitamin B12-methylcobalamin 1,000 mcg Vitamin D3 1,000 IU Zinc picolinate 15 mg Omega-3 from algae 500 mg Vitamin C 1,500 mg
  • 51. NUTRITIONAL SUPPLEMENTS FOR BALANCED PLANT-BASED DIET • Calcium citrate 500 mg Magnesium citrate 250 mg Vitamin B12-methylcobalamin 1,000 mcg Vitamin D3 1,000 IU Zinc picolinate 15 mg Omega-3 from fish oil 1000 mg Multivitamin & Mineral with polyphenols Vitamin C 1,500 mg
  • 52. Blood Testing • Get a baseline before age 30 • After 35, get tested every 4 years • After 45, get tested every 2 years • Over 55, get tested annually
  • 53. RECOMMENDED BLOOD TESTS • Complete Blood Count • Comprehensive Blood Chemistry Panel (metabolic panel) • Ferritin • Homocysteine • Iron • Lipid Panel • Liver Function Tests • Magnesium - RBC • Vitamin B12 • Vitamin D3 (25-hydroxy-vitamin D) • Omega-3 Fatty Acids
  • 54. Vitamin B-12 (cobalamin) plays a role in making DNA, and helps keep nerve cells and red blood cells healthy.
  • 55. Vitamin D is an essential vitamin that helps your body absorb calcium and phosphorus. Not enough vitamin can cause pain, hormone problems, muscle weakness, weak bones, multiple sclerosis, cardiovascular disease, cancer, and more.
  • 56. Homocysteine is a common amino acid found in the blood and is acquired mostly from eating meat. High levels are associated with increased risk for chronic inflammation, cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer’s, and bone fractures.
  • 57. Iron is a mineral that our bodies need to make the proteins hemoglobin and myoglobin. Hemoglobin is found in red blood cells and myoglobin is found in muscles. They help carry and store oxygen in the body. Iron is also part of many other proteins and enzymes in the body. Your body needs the right amount of iron. If you have too little iron, you may develop iron deficiency anemia. Too much iron is toxic to your body.
  • 58. Yoga Therapy Treatment for Common Conditions
  • 59. Traditional Yoga Therapy • Asanas • Dietary Changes • Ayurvedic Herbs • Pranayama • Lifestyle Changes • Meditation • Chanting • Rituals
  • 60. Modern Yoga Therapy • Traditional postures: static and flow • Individualized and condition specific postures • Lifestyle and diet • Super foods • Nutritional supplements • Herbal extracts • Food sensitivities management • Stress management and yoga counseling
  • 61. Common Conditions • Food Sensitivities & Gut Issues • Sleep Disturbance • Blood Sugar Issues • Fatigue • Pain & Injuries • Anxiety & Depression • Frequent Infections • Hormonal Imbalances: menses & menopause
  • 62. Science-Based Yoga and Yoga Therapy
  • 63. Mind Body Yoga Science Yoga Psychology - Wellbeing Yoga Physiology - Function • Autonomic nervous function – including vagal tone • Neurobiology of stress • Heart function • High blood pressure • Lipid levels • Low back pain • Menopause • Mental health • General wellness • Depression • Anxiety • Sleep • Coping ability in chronic pain • Quality of life in cancer patients
  • 64. Benefits of Yoga • Reduce stress • Reduce atherosclerosis • Lower heart rate • Lower blood pressure • Lower blood sugar • Lower cholesterol • Lower fibrinogen • Boost immunity • Raise antioxidant levels • Improves mood • Lengthen telomeres • Improve vagal tone – autonomic nervous system balance
  • 65. Autonomic Nervous System
  • 66. The Magical Brain
  • 67. Vagus Nerve
  • 68. Vagal Tone Index for the state of the PNS – Key for homeostasis • Regulates heart rate • Regulates immune response • Manages inflammation • Prevents heart attacks • Improves resiliency to stress • Restores autonomic nervous system balance
  • 69. Conventional Care
  • 70. Yoga for Life From BECOMING To BEING
  • 71. Six Stages of Life 1. Unseen potential 2. Birth - newness 3. Growth – building 4. Reproduction – seasonal changes 5. Decline – aging 6. Death - merging
  • 72. Yogic Disciplined Life Satya Age 400 years Treta Age 300 years Dvapara Age 200 years Kali Age Less than 100 years Now it has decreased to less than 80 years: Poor health decreases lifespan to 55-65 Increasing to greater than 78 years: Prolonging health increases lifespan upwards to 100-120 If you make it to a healthy 80, you can push it to 90. The Century mark is the challenge.
  • 73. The Three Phases of Human Life & Yoga Practice 1. CREATION PHASE: Birth to about 25-35 years old – youth, student, building strength; practice can be vigorous, focus on asanas. 2. SUSTAINING PHASE: By 35, body development is complete; up age 55-65 the goal is maintaining health by balance of pranayama and asana. 3. RENUNCIATION PHASE: 65 to 85 less asana practice, more pranayama and more meditation.
  • 74. Rasayana The capacity to impart superior rasa as well as balance the dhatus: rasa is the pure nutrient part of food. The body, instead of degrading and drying due to disease and aging, will be nourished, supplemented, and replenished. Rasayans are tonics for the whole body. This form of therapy is especially for aging when the ability to obtain adequate nutrition and maintain vigorous function declines. They are described in the Charaka Samhita (ca. 100 A.D.), in the section called "The Place of Chikitsa, treatment and medicine.
  • 75. Kriyas Detoxification & Body Cleansing • According to the Doshas: – Vata & Pitta should not overly cleanse – balancing is best. – Kapha people and those with excess Ama (increased body fat and accumulation of fluid and phlegm) should practice cleansing before pranayama and advanced asanas. • Not necessary for people who are well: – Better to facilitate the body’s natural functions and urges.
  • 76. Your Personal Yoga Timeline 2013-2014 2015-2019 2020 Adho Mukha Svanasana Adopt Yogic Diet Establish Baselines Padmasana More Yoga All phrases can be replaced with your own individual text. Evolve
  • 77. Parts of the Modern Yogi’s Lifestyle ANNA YOGA SUPPLEMENTS BLOOD TESTS DIET YOGA Science Lifestyle RASAYANA PRANAYAMAASANA