Image: Sarah Brumgart
In recent years I have become surrounded by yoga fanatics. Many things impress me about their relationship with yoga but, above all, it’s their dedication to telling me (and anybody else that will appear interested) just how great yoga is for them. Their proselytising eventually put me in a yoga class. What a disaster. My introduction was less than ideal because, unlike the patient yogini who has worked for years at their practice, I looked for signs of instant progress. I also went to the wrong class, full of indefatigable yoga ninjas who stood on their heads while singing. But this certainly hasn’t curbed the enthusiasm of my friends nor has it stopped me taking an interest in this practice. For instance, I’ve come across some very interesting research that explores the relationship between yoga, health and wellbeing. Pod Academy, the podcasting initiative that I have worked for over recent years, have produced this introductory podcast that reflects upon the potential of yoga and tells of the interesting exchange between researchers, teachers and practitioners. Listen to the podcast here. And you can also find a list of references to scholarly articles which explore the therapeutic effects of yoga here. The interview turns towards issues relevant to research being pursued here in CMH. For instance, the body’s relationship to mental well being, the significance of breath as both a regulating and a regulated action, and the way in which health is thought about and discussed outside the clinical encounter.