Trauma is both biological and physiological. Trauma affects the body in complex ways. For women and girls that have been raped, tortured and sexually abused, it is simply unsafe for them to feel the sensations within their bodies. It is unsafe for them to truly be in their bodies.
When the body cannot be inhabited, women and girls find it extremely difficult to heal the wounds of abuse. In healing trauma, it is vital to address the sensations within the body and to help women and girls to reconnect with their bodies in a safe and gentle way.
Trauma-informed yoga, together with mindfulness are tremendously effective in supporting women and girls to safely reconnect with their bodies. As we bring attention to the body and work towards healing through yoga and mindfulness, the healing of the mind and opening of the heart swiftly follow.
“Yoga has helped me to increase my self-care. Before practicing yoga, I was not connected to my body, and the idea of caring for myself. After participating in Art to Healing yoga programs, I have realised that I am also worthy of care and love from myself.” – Manju B.K, Nepal
Combining mindfulness based practices and trauma-informed yoga help those severely impacted by sexual abuse to:
• Calm their nervous systems, reducing debilitating stress and anxiety
• Re-awaken to subtle physical sensations
• Become fully present to the here and now
• Practice developing self-control and self-mastery to make powerful choices
• Create healthy, safe boundaries
• Connect to their unique strengths and inner resources
• Develop a direct, trusting relationship with their feelings and instincts
Physical self-awareness is the first step in releasing the tyranny of the past.”
― Bessel A. van der Kolk