|Ayurvedic Yoga Therapist Subcommittee|
In 2010, the Standards Committee formed the Ayurvedic Yoga Therapist Subcommittee to explore the concept of Ayurvedic Yoga Therapy (AYT). The subcommittee considered many factors including the need for this category given that the field of Yoga Therapy currently exists. The subcommittee is now in the final stages of consideration to determine the training requirements and standards for the Ayurvedic Yoga Therapist category. This is undertaken with the expressed intention to work with other interested and associated parties (such as the International Association of Yoga Therapists and Yoga Alliance) in a collaborative effort to avoid any confusion for the general public and practitioners in associated fields regarding the value and necessity for such a category.
The subcommittee is tasked with working through the details of the scope of practice and educational standards for the Ayurvedic Yoga Therapist designation.
The following definitions and scope were approved by the board of directors in January 2015:
Definition of Ayurvedic Yoga Therapy
The application of the practices and principles of Yoga to promote healing and to achieve a harmonious state of body, mind and spirit, as based on the Ayurvedic understanding of the nature of the patient, the nature of the imbalances, and the nature of the therapies.
Scope of Practice for an Ayurvedic Yoga Therapist
The Ayurvedic yoga therapist shall have competency to design, implement, demonstrate, instruct and teach a yoga therapy program to help with the healing process of the patient based on the Ayurvedic prakrti/vikrti paradigm and Ayurvedic definition of health:
Balanced constitution; balanced metabolism; balanced tissues, waste passages, actions; Contentment in senses, mind and spirit: thus is a person established in well-being.
Samadosha samagnischa samdhatumalakriyaha prasannatmendriyamanah swasthitiabhidhiyate (Sushruta Sutra Sthana)
Competencies of an Ayurvedic Yoga Therapist
They would be competent from an Ayurvedic perspective to design, implement and provide instruction to their patients regarding various yoga practices, including but not limited to: yama, niyama, asana, pranayama, pratyahara, meditation, mantra, mudra, bandha, shatkriya, as any of these practices can be effectively utilized for therapeutic purposes.
Shall demonstrate a basic familiarity with various paths of Yoga, including but not limited to the following: bhakti yoga, karma yoga, raja yoga, hatha yoga and jnana yoga.
Shall demonstrate familiarity with basic western medical nomenclature regarding disease (roga) and pathogenesis (samprapti) for the purposes of collaboration, referral, research, and interaction with other health care providers (of both accepted and alternate disciplines). With the primary goal of designing, implementing and reformulating individualized and group-based Ayurvedic yoga therapy programs to achieve swasthavritta for the patient (rogi).
Ayurvedic yoga therapists shall be able to assess the following: prakruti, vikruti, strength of agni, presence of ama, quality of dhatu, mala, srotorodha and stage of samprapti for purposes of treatment and referral.
Shall understand the professional ethics of their training as Ayurvedic yoga therapists, and, adhering to the defined scopes of practices of their discipline, shall refer out to other health care providers for additional therapeutic interventions beyond their specific scope of practice.