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Yoga for Depression: A Compassionate Guide to Relieve Suffering Through Yoga Paperback – December 23, 2003
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From Publishers Weekly
Long-time yoga teacher and writer Weintraub offers readers yoga as an alternative to antidepressants, which, she explains, treat the symptoms of the problem but not the whole person. By contrast, "a daily practice of yoga will bring your physical body and your emotional body into balance, restoring a sense of well-being and energy." Weaving in her own triumphant story and those of her students, Weintraub seems to beg readers to give yoga a chance to relieve their suffering. She constructs a convincing, if at times plodding, case by reviewing the medical evidence, such as the practice's impact on stress levels and the healing principles of yoga, which include developing both your energy and your self-awareness. Weintraub also discusses the roles of breathing and meditation, and, most interestingly, explains how holding certain poses can help release trauma that may be "stored" in the body. Although descriptions and pictures of specific stretches, poses and breathing exercises are scattered throughout, Weintraub encourages readers to use the book as a guide and to find a class taught by a qualified yoga instructor. Perhaps some readers will be motivated to do so because of the author's enthusiasm and well-researched material. But the New Age language-"Ishvara-pranidhana can mean that separations between you and your partner may begin to dissolve so that you experience the wholeness of sacred union with the divine through your partner"-might discourage others.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Depression has become a worldwide epidemic; in the U.S. alone more than 17 million Americans are diagnosed with clinical depression each year. Weintraub makes a viable case for incorporating yoga in the treatment of depression. A writer and yoga teacher, she suffered from debilitating chronic depression and spent many years on antidepressant medications. Through yoga, Weintraub was able to gradually go off medication, and she has been free of a recurrence of depression for more than 15 years. Through her own story and the stories of others, she defines and describes various types of depression, anxiety, and other emotional disorders, and offers yoga techniques for their treatment. Beyond anecdotal evidence, Weintraub presents summaries of several scientific studies that show that various yoga techniques have measurable effects on relieving depression for people all over the world. Jane Tuma
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