Does the program distance itself from yoga being a classical philosophical study that is rooted in ancient tradition and knowledge?
No we do not distance ourselves from yoga's origins. What we DO is evolve yoga to address the chronic lifestyle-related diseases that are now epidemic worldwide. We follow WHO and IOM guidelines, and are an evidence-based program that pays it homage to yogic philosophy, which we do include in the program; however we are non-dogmatic because yoga is more important than a single lineage, and certainly deserving of more scientific inquiry and study. That is what PYTS exists for - to advance the study and application of yoga as medicine.
I am a devout Christian. Does practicing yoga violate my beliefs?
Yoga does not contain religion. Religion can contain yoga, however. Where your concern comes from is likely related to your knowledge of religions that contain yoga. PYT is non-dogmatic and therefore teaches yoga therapy separate from any religious connection. We do not teach toward any form of yogic philosophy which would steer you away from your religious roots/foundations. There is a large amount of misunderstanding in the western world about yoga and its connection to spirituality. The bottom line is studying yoga should ONLY bring you closer to your spiritual roots. And ultimately, you have the choice of whether or not to include spiritual practice in your own yoga teachings and personal practice. There are a plethora of benefits to practicing a yogic lifestyle. PYT allows you freedom to grow and explore all facets of the being, whether or not you choose to pursue a spiritual practice.
What else can you tell me about your programs?
We are a unique program because we are teach graduate and post-graduate curriculum in medical therapeutic yoga, geared for experirenced licensed health care professionals. Our high prerequisites make for an elevated environment of learning and application as clinicians can intimately intertwine their knowledge of western medicine with the art and science of yoga therapeutics and Ayurveda.
What yoga styles and methods does PYTS teach in their programs?
Our founder attaches the PYT method to no one particular style of yoga. Medical therapeutic yoga is a nondogmatic, multi-disciplinary style of yoga that can be used and embraced by students of any system. In her own clinical practice, she teaches her patients and students according to what they need in their season of life.
Our program serves to graduate the kind of student who can think critically and apply yoga to any population.
The creation of PYT rests on not teaching just one style or forcing students to adopt one rigid discipline of yoga but in allowing students to blend their own clinical expertise with PYT. PYT embraces yoga and other cultural healing modalities, while allowing room for their own spirituality.
Diversity in programming and inclusion of all types of Yoga and other cultural methods are the hallmarks of PYT, and one of the main reasons that Ginger founded PYT. In the words of the founder, "no 1 culture owns the market on healing (or Truth) - not east or west."
What is the difference between an RYT and PYT?
A Professional Yoga Therapist is a licensed medical professional with extensive post-graduate training in using yoga as medicine. They have a license to practice and as their legal scope of practice allows, can evaluate, diagnose, and treat using yoga as integrative medicine. Professional Yoga Therapists typically have masters or doctorate degrees in their respective specialty in medicine or mental health. A medical or mental health degree is required to practice as a PYT.
A registered yoga teacher has attended a 200 or 500 hour training and has no formal education in medicine. The RYT is not a certification or degree. It is a voluntary registry organized by the Yoga Alliance. The Yoga Alliance is not an accrediting or licensing body, but it recognizes lay indivdiuals who have paid their fee and voluntarily reported the minimum requirements to be registered as a 'yoga school'. It is not a regulated or recognized medical license or degree. They are also not allowed to evaluate, treat, or diagnose any injury or condition, nor are they bound by legal law. In other words, anyone can teach yoga. An RYT is not needed.