Article: 'It's Time To Visit Yoga Therapy Toronto'

 

Article by Devon Scoble,

Freelance Writer and Yoga Teacher.
First published in DEL Condominium Life, Spring Issue 2009.

 

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Newly opened on a bustling corner in Koreatown, Yoga Therapy Toronto is unique among the city’s studios. Steeped in the classical hatha yoga tradition of guru Sri T. Krishnamacharya, founders Ante and Felicia Pavlovic also employ the tools of Western psychology, often with astounding results.

“When I first started practicing yoga,” says Ante, “it was a standardized form. I enjoyed it a lot, but with time I started realizing that standardized classes can’t offer the optimal experience for body, mind and soul.”

In addition to group yoga classes and free community meditation sessions, the Pavlovics offer one-on-one therapy as part of an individualized approach to health and wellbeing.

Says Felicia, “Our students frequently come to us after having health problems assessed by a doctor. Western doctors are great at diagnosing symptoms, but are often too quick to deal with those symptoms invasively. At Yoga Therapy Toronto, we approach health holistically, understanding that an individual’s physical, mental, psychological, emotional and spiritual needs are interconnected. Once we’ve established the cause of a problem, we work with our students to develop an appropriate goal. These factors help us determine the best methods to address the issue, be it asana-s [physical postures], pranayama [conscious breathing], meditation, talk therapy, chanting, visualization, etc”

This is not just a theoretical exercise. 4 years ago, Felicia strained her back after a car accident. After a week in bed, she finally gained the strength to visit her doctor. Suspecting a herniated disk, he scheduled her for an MRI. Throughout her ordeal, Felicia had maintained her daily yoga practice, adjusting it to accommodate her bedridden state, and employing breathing and meditation techniques to ease her pain. In the end, she didn’t need the MRI: after another week breathing and meditating, she walked to her doctor’s office for a new diagnosis. Her GP had been convinced she would need surgery, but by applying the appropriate yogic tools, Felicia had popped the disk back herself. Before leaving his office, her flabbergasted doctor begged her to write a detailed account of her practice, so he could study the “miracle” she had performed.

There is no doubt that Ante and Felicia Pavlovic are committed to their cause, their calm demeanors becoming animated while they describe the benefits of yoga and share stories from their practice.

“Once,” says Ante, “we had a student come to us with so much prolactin [a hormone often implicated in infertility] her doctor declared she would never be able to have children. But you know what? We worked with her to develop an appropriate practice, and within a year she had given birth to a healthy daughter.” For this happy student, delivering a beautiful baby was just one major moment in a multitude of positive transformations. By adopting an appropriate, individualized practice she not only fulfilled her dream of motherhood, she also gained a new sense of peace, calm and focus

“People come to us for a variety of reasons,” says Felicia, “most often to improve their physical fitness. But they stay with the practice when they notice other parts of their life improving: their mood, breathing, mental clarity, self-esteem—even their relationships get better.”

For two teachers deeply committed to bringing the benefits of yoga to their community, there is no greater award than watching their students grow and prosper.

For more information about group classes, meditation sessions, teacher training, retreats in India, monthly events, or one-one-on appointments, please see www.yogatherapytoronto.com, or call Yoga Therapy Toronto at 416-850-0015. Yoga Therapy Toronto is located at 692 Bloor St.W, at the corner of Bloor St. and Clinton St.

 

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