Yoga for Fatigue

Fatigue is the most common symptom of MS, as well as many other chronic illnesses. For some people, fatigue means not being able to get out of bed. For others, it’s flu-like full body pain. For me, fatigue is mainly a cognitive phenomenon. I can’t read or work because my eyes refuse to focus. I can’t listen to podcasts because I can’t follow the discussion. And forget conversations: my words are mixed up, I ramble and I often forget my point before I’ve finished delivering it. 

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Mindfulness, Meditation & MS

Given that it is not expensive … and that it has countless health benefits, why wouldn’t one meditate?

Dr George Jelinek, founder of the Overcoming MS Programme

When exploring the benefits of yoga it’s easy to focus on the physical practice, and how it can help with strength, balance and proprioception. To do so is to overlook the best bits.

Mindfulness and meditation are at the heart of yoga. For thousands of years, meditation has been practised as part of yoga and Ayurvedic medicine to bring mental clarity and wellbeing to yogis. Over the last few decades, western medicine has also recognised the benefits of meditation, with hundreds of studies conducted to explore them.

This article assesses mindfulness studies with people with MS to discover whether – and how – meditation can help us to reduce disease activity and manage symptoms.

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The Path to Samadhi

Part of our “Eight Limbs of Yoga” series

In the final part of our Eight Limbs of Yoga series, we’re exploring the latter four limbs: pratyahara, dharana, dhyana and samadhi. These are the tricky ones, but once you understand them, this is where the truly magical powers of yoga are found. 

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Pranayama – The Power of the Breath

The mind is the king of the senses, but the breath is the king of the mind

Hatha Yoga Pradipika

Part of our “Eight Limbs of Yoga” series

Pranayama is the practice of conscious breathing. Sounds easy, right? After all, we breathe all the time. Every day, every moment, no matter what else is going on, we keep breathing without even thinking about it. So why should we pay attention to it?

Because pranayama is one of the most powerful and accessible tools of yoga.

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Exploring Asana

Part of our Eight Limbs of Yoga” series

Asana, the third of the Eight Limbs of Yoga, refers to the physical postures of yoga. The asana practiced in yoga classes today is almost recognisable from the asana taught in ancient times. Despite that, there is still plenty to learn from the ancient teachings about asana.

This article explores what the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali can teach us about the principles of asana, the role of the breath and why there are so many poses. A separate article explores practicing asana with MS and other limitations.

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The Eight Limbs of Yoga

Yoga is a movement from one point to another, higher one that was previously beyond our reach.

It doesn’t matter whether this shift comes about through practicing asanas, through study and reading, or through meditation – it is still yoga.

T.K.V. Desikachar, The Heart of Yoga

The internet abounds with promises of life changing transformations through yoga. The promise is real, but here’s the thing. When we say “yoga”, we don’t just mean the physical postures and movements. If we did, all gymnasts and ballerinas would be enlightened. The transformation from yoga comes when we delve into the broader teachings. The Eight Limbs of Yoga were the first teachings I encountered when seeking to uncover the true essence of yoga.

This article is the first in a series that explores what the Eight Limbs are, what we can learn from them, and how to practice them.

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What are the Yamas and Niyamas?

Your beliefs become your thoughts,

Your thoughts become your words,

Your words become your actions,

Your actions become your habits,

Your habits become your values,

Your values become your destiny.

Mahatma Gandhi

Part of our “Eight Limbs of Yoga” series

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What is Yoga? History & Origins

“Yoga is a series of practices that release extra-ordinary capacities in the mind and body”

Chase Bossart

Yoga. Almost everyone thinks they know what it is, but surprisingly few know the full story. The common perception in the western world is that yoga = exercise. In reality, the physical practice – asana – is only one part. One eighth in fact! To understand what yoga really is we need to go back in time.

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6 Key Benefits of Yoga for MS

Yoga is good for everyone, but it’s especially important for people living with health conditions. MS and other autoimmune conditions can feel like your body betrayed you, but yoga can help you rebuild a loving relationship with your body.

Yoga is so much more than what happens on the mat. It’s a comprehensive toolkit for wellbeing, combining exercise, meditation, breathing, philosophy, ethics and spiritual tools.

Don’t be intimidated.

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