Teaching Trauma-Sensitive Yoga
A Practical Guide
A practical, hands-on, experienced-based guide from a military veteran turned yoga teacher
Brendon Abram combines his first-hand experience with PTSD in the field and years of teaching to offer this practical guide to bringing trauma-sensitive yoga to both clinical and studio settings. Drawing on his work with military veterans, first responders, and survivors of domestic and sexual abuse, he emphasizes the importance of respecting the uniqueness of every individual and demonstrates how to use the foundational principles of yoga to create a safe experience. Abram explains that basic principles of yoga bring power to the practice and that breath, mindful movement, focused awareness, and acceptance of present-moment experience form the foundation of any yoga offering.
About the Author
BRENDON ABRAM is a 30 year veteran of the Canadian Forces who served with the United Nations in El Salvador and NATO in Bosnia. A Yoga Alliance registered EYT (experienced yoga teacher), he has trained with David Emerson, is certified by the Trauma Centre in Boston to teach trauma sensitive yoga, and has taught yoga to United States Military veterans with PTSD. He was also an instructor for a research study that examined the effects of yoga on people recovering from operational trauma. As an associate at Trent View Counselling in Trenton, Ontario, Abram has worked under the direct supervision of a clinical psychologist for the past three years to teach yoga-based self-regulation practices to those living with trauma and other stress related disorders. He has worked with military veterans, first responders, and survivors of domestic and sexual abuse. Applying what he has learned in the clinic, Abram frequently teaches trauma sensitive yoga at teacher trainings and Yoga Alliance certified workshops to yoga teachers and mental health care professionals.
—David Emerson, director of yoga services for the Justice Resource Institute and coauthor of Overcoming Trauma through Yoga