I hear from so many that you want to accept diabetes and live your best life with it. But it is hard when the focus is on what's wrong rather than what's going right.
You try your best, but fear + perfectionism inhibit joy + play.
Your job is not to fix anything but to learn how to be more adaptable and autonomous.
Daily yoga practice is a tool and a skill for better diabetes management, but not an antidote. The only cure is the one in your mind.
The reality is we don't have time to practice 90 minutes a day. We need small, incremental, and equally powerful methods to help us feel better AND protect our bodies from the risk of long-term complications.
Your breath is the greatest of all tools because it encompasses every aspect of complete diabetes health: the physical, mental/emotional, and spiritual realms where we find genuine compassion.
My dharma, or personal responsibility, is to provide as many people with diabetes with this resource.
C-IAYT, E-RYT 500, T1D since 1998
The Power of Your Breath
Did you know that your breath is the most incredible medicine that you already possess?
Consciously breathing is the only way to intentionally change + retrain your body's automatic systems, improving the function of virtually every organ in your body, altering mood and behavior.
Although we are always breathing, many of us are not doing so efficiently. Irregularities in the breath create a cascade of metabolic disturbances, increase stress, insulin resistance, and disturbs our sleep.
Most people with diabetes lack something called parasympathetic tone, the part of your body's rebuilding processes, protecting your cells, heart and producing hormones like insulin.
Understanding how to breathe in specific ways can help you relax or increase energy, recover from a stressful event like a severe hypo, or train your mind to be more focused and aware in your diabetes management.
The long-term impact of regular breathwork prevents the risk of long-term complications along with glycemic control.
What is Breathwork?
It seems like our mind has a mind of its own. Every change detected by our senses elicits a response. We are on high alert. This fact is especially true for people with diabetes who exhibit higher sympathetic predominance, making it difficult to wind down, rest and regenerate.
The ancients knew this and devised practical breathing systems to calm the mind, internalize the senses, train the nervous system and allow Prana, the vital life-force to abide within the body.
Pranayama is an often overlooked subsect of yoga. Many teachers will ask you to breathe, but few are instructing with the breath as the central component of practice. You could arguably say that yoga without the breath is not yoga. According to the Yoga Sutras, yoga is the stilling of the fluctuations of the mind. The breath removes the obstacles obstructing the mind from experiencing its true essence.
Benefits for people with diabetes
*Increase parasympathetic tone
*Improve heart rate variability
*Lower hypoxia - risk for long term complications
*improve insulin sensitivity
*increase production of endogenous insulin (t2d)
*reduce production of glycogen reserves
*Increase physical fitness
*Lower risk for sleep apnea
*Be less affected by stressors
*Increase energy, vitality + resilience
In this 5-class virtual series, you'll:
Learn the principles of therapeutic breathwork for diabetes self-care.
Identify + shift irregularities in your breathing patterns
Train your attention and focus.
Create a daily breathing practice for yourself
Experience intermediate techniques not taught in regular classes
Receive guidance from a master trainer in breathing
The class is limited to 20 students. Registration closes on Monday, June 28th at 10p MST/12a EST.
WHEN: Tuesdays on Zoom
Week 1: Discovering + Retraining Your Breath
Week 2: The Foundations of Exhale
Week 3: Developing Inhalation
Week 4: Working with Breath Ratios
Week 5: Advanced Techniques
What to expect: Brief lecture to prime the class, simple yoga postures with breath ratios, and seated breathwork.
About Your Guide
Author and certified yoga therapist Evan Soroka has spent most of her life with type 1 diabetes. Diagnosed in adolescence, Evan struggled with the physical and emotional burden of managing type 1 diabetes and sought out yoga as a resource. Immediately drawn to the practice, yoga is a constant source of inspiration. Since those early years, she has received some of the highest credentials and accolades in her field. She is the author of Yoga Therapy for Diabetes and a regular contributor to Yoga International and Yoga Journal for her work with diabetes.
Evan wrote Yoga Therapy for Diabetes as a comprehensive and practical manual for working holistically with all types of diabetes. Written for the individual with diabetes and the professional who treats diabetes, she aims to empower autonomy in diabetes health, happiness, and longevity. Evan is based in Aspen, Colorado, with her husband Tyson.