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Yoga for Pain Relief: Simple Practices to Calm Your Mind and Heal Your Chronic Pain (The New Harbinger Whole-Body Healing Series) Paperback – December 2, 2009
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-Penney Cowan, executive director of the American Chronic Pain Association
“Kelly McGonigal’s Yoga for Pain Relief is easily one of the best books I have ever read on yoga therapy, and includes plenty of research and practical tips for dealing with pain. This book is perfect for anyone who lives with any kind of physical or emotional pain, as well as for those working with these conditions professionally, including both conventional and alternative health care providers and yoga teachers. The book has heart and soul, is both kind and informative, and recognizes the individual experience without being reductionist or prescriptive. This book will be required reading for all of the students in my yoga therapy training program.”
—Molly Lannon Kenny, MS-CCC, founder and director of The Samarya Center, an internationally recognized training institute for yoga and yoga therapy
“Yoga for Pain Relief will help you to find your ease, courage, and ability to transform your chronic pain. Unlike many other pain treatments, McGonigal’s book illuminates a path free of adverse side effects that is synergistic with your present pain therapy. Yoga for Pain Relief is a jewel, and its brilliance and clarity will touch the heart of healing within.”
—Julie Good, MD, DABMA, clinical assistant professor of pediatric pain and symptom management at Stanford University
“Yoga for Pain Relief is an empowering toolkit for people living with pain or illness.”
—Halle Tecco, founder and executive director of Yoga Bear, a nonprofit organization that teaches yoga to cancer patients and survivors
“In this important book, McGonigal elegantly and simply empowers us, through science and ancient practices, to compassionately transform pain and suffering into ever-present joy blossoming in our hearts. A gift for us all!”
—Nischala Joy Devi, international yoga teacher and author of The Healing Path of Yoga and The Secret Power of Yoga
“Yoga for Pain Relief is an epic book for an epic condition. McGonigal is a quintessential teacher and a brilliant author. Highly recommended for healthcare providers, yoga teachers, or anyone in pain.” —Larry Payne, Ph.D., director of the Yoga Therapy Rx Program at Loyola Marymount University and coauthor of Yoga for Dummies, Yoga Rx, and The Business of Teaching Yoga
“Whether you are in pain now or you treat those who are, Yoga for Pain Relief will broaden your view of suffering and change your life. McGonigal outlines a clear, step-by-step method, evidence-based yet ancient, to reconnect with the wisdom and joy that is your birthright—the source of wellness that is so much bigger than your pain.”
—Amy Weintraub, MFA, E-RYT 500, is founder of LifeForce Yoga Healing Institute and author of Yoga for Depression
“In this book, McGonigal provides insightful pathways that can lead those with chronic pain toward a healthier life. Highly recommended for those suffering with chronic pain as well as healthcare practitioners and yoga teachers who work with people in pain.”
—Shoosh Lettick Crotzer, director of Mobility Limited and Enhancement, Inc., and author of Yoga for Fibromyalgia
“From a place of personal experience, McGonigal reaches out of these pages with clarity, knowledge and warmth. I was not only educated about my pain, but left hopeful that I could come to view it as a beloved teacher. This book not only provides a map for developing a yoga practice through which I can change my relationship to pain, but also empowers me to find my own way via my unique experience.”
—Elissa Cobb, director of programs at Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy and author of The Forgotten Body
“Yoga for Pain Relief provides accurate, easily understood principles of self-care in a user-friendly format. The book offers professionals immediate activities for clinical adaptation with the best, most up-to-date evidence. The person in pain can celebrate the artful bridging of ancient wisdom with the genius of the author in creating an easy-to-follow, personalized road map that is sure to sustain hope and allow him or her to remember joy!”
—Matthew J. Taylor, PT, Ph.D., RYT, president of the International Association of Yoga Therapists and founder and owner of the Dynamic Systems Rehabilitation Clinic
From the Publisher
In Yoga for Pain Relief, Stanford psychology instructor and prominent yoga teacher Kelly McGonigal shows readers how the wisdom of yoga and the latest skills drawn from mind-body research can end the physical and emotional suffering of chronic pain.
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Reviewed by Jerry Woolpy
According to contemporary neuroscience, the nervous system is no longer thought to be fixed once it has developed, it changes with experience, which neuroscientists call neuroplasticity. The feeling of pain is not located in the part that hurts, but resides in the central nervous system. Chronic pain occurs when peripheral pain persists beyond the immediacy of the trauma that caused it. Chronic pain can result in physical or emotional trauma. Chronic pain is an adaptation that protects against the recurrence of the injury that provoked it. Sometimes chronic pain persists well beyond the healing time when it was protective. Various mind-body treatments address the reduction or even the elimination of chronic pain, whether the origin is physical or emotional. This book delineates one highly successful approach to the reduction or elimination of chronic pain based on the thousand-year-old practices of the breath-centered body movement of gentle yoga and mindful meditation. McGonigal explains, demonstrates, and documents, various yoga practices that have worked for many. She provides alternatives so that each person can develop a practice suitable to their needs. This is a welcome introduction to the application of our current understanding of the integration of mind and body. Whether you are seeking the relief of pain or just catching up on the application of the latest neuroscience, this book is well worth reading.
Perhaps the answer lies later in this process, however, I haven't arrived at that point yet--assuming that it is included.
But for me as a person who has been doing yoga and trying to keep my mindfulness practice alive, focus in this book on 'bhavana' or attitude while entering meditation or yoga practice makes it a very refreshing exploration of these practices in journey to befriend the pain
Only 1 complaint: There's tons of pictures in the book, but video for exercises (breathing and poses both) would help a lot! Thank you, Kelly!
How do you best handle a chronic condition in you body? First, befriend your body, and enlist your body's aid. Remember, the two oxen pull the cart better in cooperation, than they do in contention.
I have a yoga student with chronic pain. I began guiding her towards controlling the suffering she was experiencing, and she responded very well. Then I found this book. It expressed in words, what I had been doing by intuition. I read the book in one (rather long) sitting. It is engaging, enlightening, and honest. I shall gift her this book at the next class.
The clearly laid out logic of why this approach works, and how to utilize this approach, are helpful for people who have not yet distinguished between pain and suffering.