Winter into Spring Special!!
Get $40.00 off of your 3-session package!!
Normally private sessions run from $100 to $125 (Ayurveda) each, but for a short time this Spring, I am offering 3 sessions for $260.00 total -- that's $40.00 savings! Each session is a full 60 minutes in length and includes unlimited email support and access during the time we are working together.
Sessions are typically spaced at least 1 week apart and I've found that 2 weeks is even better -- it will give you a chance to really try out the routine/recommendations that are offered and implement them into your daily life.
It is strongly recommended to keep a daily journal while we work together, making note of the poses and other practices that work well for you -- what feels good, better and best -- as well as what doesn't work. During each session, I will tweak the routine as needed -- making additions and changes.
I highly recommend seeing your Primary Care Physician first and receiving a diagnosis -- better yet, if you have x-rays and/or an MRI results, these are also very helpful to the work we will do.
Purchase 3 Back to Balance sessions here through PayPal.
The Benefits of Private Sessions using Integrative Therapies
Over the past decade, I have worked with a wide range of ages and issues. I have watched clients make remarkable progress, complete recovery from disease in some cases and/or effective changes in maintenance of a chronic disorder. As with any healing program, medical or alternative, you get out of it what you put into it. If you surrender completely and follow the suggestions offered, the benefits of a customized, holistic recovery plan will be many. Just look around at the various "wellness" programs offered through many major medical facilities/hospitals and it's a great confirmation of the direction things are taking within the healthcare industry.
I have also found from my own personal health challenges and healing experiences, as well as working with others, that there is no one "cure" or "therapy" that works for every person, every time. That's why I have trained in different complimentary modalities over the years. I now focus on four of them which I regularly bring into my private sessions: THERAPEUTIC YOGA (including meditation, breathing techniques, mantra chanting), AYURVEDA (lifestyle, connecting with nature, daily ritual and nourishment practices), REIKI (hands on energetic healing) and EXPRESSIVE THERAPIES (creative writing, art, music & dance).
I have grown to specialize in orthopedic/low back and neck pain, due to my own knee and foot surgeries and repeated low back injury and recovery. I also work with many clients who have digestive issues -- it's really the "other side" of low back pain (both in the 2nd chakra area, with digestion getting up into the 3rd chakra also).
Others have sought me out for my gentle/restorative approach with yoga and breathwork and have created great healing for their bodies. Together, we created a vision for their healing and a customized recovery plan. I serve as coach, guide, advisor, consultant, all-around listener and feedback giver.
Back & Neck Pain/Injury
I am intimately acquainted with the pain and discomfort associated with herniated discs in the past, as well as slipped discs (spondylolithesis). I was told I needed a spinal fusion at the age of 37 and said "no, thanks." There's been no looking back since that time. This episode is what brought me fully into yoga therapy practice and training, and then my clients suggestions lead me to write my book Back to Balance: Heal Your Spine, Heal Your Life and to create an audio CD of guided visualizations.
Besides my 30-Day self-directed program, I offer one-on-one sessions to help you get started and "back to balance" as the title of my book indicates. You get my book and CD if you sign up for a 4 session package. So, when I'm not around, you have some tools to use to help yourself.
IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) & other Digestive Issues
The Ayurvedic practices and dietary considerations are very healing and cooling for this very uncomfortable "pitta" disorder. I have worked with many clients now who have learned how to manage this condition and in many cases bring their systems back to balance.
IBS literally means that you have too much fire in your belly!! Fire speeds things up and that's not a bad thing, but in this case, it's extreme: food goes in and comes out much too quickly, as if it's burning right through you. Nutrients have no chance of being absorbed and you can become exhausted quite easily with this chronic condition.
The other end of this would be a "vata" disorder such as constipation, where there is too much cold and dry in your intestines, so nothing moves through. We all need digestive fire to breakdown food and move it through -- the trick is to find that balance and most of this can be accomplished by an Ayurvedic consultation and evaluating your food choices and eating habits to see what is stimulating your symptoms.
PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder)
One thing that has been fascinating to me over the years is the connection of low back pain to IBS and PTSD. This is the beauty of Ayurveda -- when clients fill out all of their information, I can get the "bigger picture" and help find the root of the problem they are experiencing.
Many clients initially have come to me for their low back pain. In reading their histories, I discovered they also had IBS, ulcers or were colon cancer survivors. Digging deeper, all had in common a traumatic event in their past -- molestation, rape, or another violent crime, or being a witness to any of these events or a violent.
So, once the event is pinpointed, this all begins to make more sense. The first and second chakras are located from the tailbone up to the area around the belly button. They correspond to all of our basic primal issues of survival and safety -- belonging to the tribe or family -- and trust of self and others. Anyone who has been through a traumatic event has repressed anger -- this anger is the "fire" that shows up in the digestive tract and the lower back area.
My clients who have made a commitment to healing themselves from the inside out and surrender to this process have made amazing strides forward in their lives after years of living in terror and pain and lonliness. No one is ever alone. There is always a way.
The yoga therapy, Ayurvedic practices and Reiki have been the main components in their healing path and these are well-supported by any counseling/psychotherapy.
Pranayama is a great first line of defense in treating this very tricky combination. These conditions can often be a result of experiencing or witnessing a traumatic event and may be a bi-product of PTSD>
There is no pill that addressses an anxious mind and a depressed body or likewise, a depressed mind and restless/anxious body. The pills are either anti-anxiety or anti-depressant -- the anti-anxiety drugs calm you down, but you are sleepy most of the time and have trouble waking up; the anti-depressant drugs can pep you up, but then it's difficult to calm down your system when you want to sleep.
Breathing and gentle yoga movements and poses can stimulate and calm at the same time. I can offer a custom-made program for one or both of these issues.
Group classes can be a good complement, but if you are serious about managing and healing your condition, you must see me privately. I cannot offer individual suggestions within a class setting.
(Alzheimer's, Dementia, Parkinson's, Stroke Recovery)
Because of my mother, I began working closely with Alzheimer's and Dementia patients at her facility. That has lead to private work with Parkinson's patients as well.
I also work with patients recovering from stroke. My father has been my greatest teacher in this. With the help of some wonderful music therapists, speech therapists and others, we are helping my father communicate in spite of aphasia and nerve damage to his right side sustained in 2009. A speech pathologist in Japan is putting together a case study on my father, based on his documented and measured progress. We hope to use this to create a program to help many others with similar issues.
Spinal health and the breath are two key components of yoga therapy, allowing for healing and rejuvenation of the whole nervous system. The more oxygen that can be brought into the blood stream and the brain, the more healing is possible for the damaged areas of the brain.
What Happens in an Integrative Therapy Consultation?
Ayurveda and yoga are sister sciences and therefore complement each other very well. I use them both together and sometimes incorporate other therapeutic modalities.
Ayurveda requires effort on the part of the client -- essentially, if you follow the recommendations of your consultant/specialist, whatever you put into it you will get out of it.
I will email you paperwork to fill out at least a week in advance in order to save you and me some time. There are three forms I use -- one is simply an "intake questionnaire" for your basic contact information, plus why you are seeking help and what you hope to gain from the sessions.
You also will get an Ayurvedic medical history form (it's long). Please fill it out completely. The better I know you and your issues, past and present, the more I can offer you in the way of healing suggestions.
Lastly, the body-type questionnaire is a snapshot of your Ayurvedic constitution -- answer these questions as honestly you can. In this tradition, the body is believed to be made up of various configurations of the fire elements called the "doshas": vata (air/space), pitta (fire/water) and kapha (earth/water). These doshas refer to your tendencies/ qualities/sensitivities.
Please fill out all three forms and bring them with you to your first appointment. First appointments run anywhere from 75 to 90 minutes long. All follow-up appointments run 60 minutes. I see clents on Tuesday and Friday mornings and early afternoons. During the summer, I do have some evening and Saturday AM appointments available.
The first session will be more conversational as I read over your history and ask you more questions. I usually have time to offer a couple of pranayams and a short yoga routine that fits your needs and issues. I will also make some dietary suggestions and offer some daily Ayurvedic practices for detoxing and building up your immunity.
Sometimes I will use Reiki in your session in order to calm the nervous system and/or stimulate healing in a certain area of the body. I also do individual Reiki sessions. I also incorporate mantra chanting and guided visualizations as they feel right.
I always give you a typed set of notes and recommendations to follow, and I do include photos of poses/movements as available. I am available by phone and email for questions on your session and the recommendations I offer.
What to Expect
Everyone is different and I strongly believe from my own personal experience and from my work as a health and wellness coach that there is no one formula for healing a certain ailment. We are complex, multi-layered beings and what works for one may not work so well for another.
It is important to remember that many times you end up feeling worse before you feel better. When you've eaten something harmful, your body responds by triggering you to vomit it up and out -- this is an extreme example, but it's worth keeping in mind. Similarly, if your body has years of toxins that have built up inside of you and you begin a consistent practice of deep yogic breathing, stretches, meditation and Ayurvedic practices, all kinds of junk is going to get stirred up inside. This is a necessary step before it can dissipate and be transformed, transmuted into a form that can somehow leave your physical body.
There may also be a bit of a rollercoaster ride that goes along with this -- swinging from feeling great to feeling really crummy. The good news is that there is movement and change.
Effectiveness of Yoga Therapy, Ayurveda, Meditation, Chanting, and Reiki
As with most anything in life, if you really commit yourself to this process, the program will work. It takes time, patience and trust. I always recommend that each client give themselves at least 30 days of working consistently with the suggested adjustments to their schedules and routines.
Harvard University and Mass General Hospital have been at the forefront of yoga and meditation research for a number of years now. The Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health has teamed up with researchers there to conduct its own studies on the effects of yoga, pranayam (breathing) and meditation on certain populations.
Here is a link to an excellent article that just came out on the documented effects of yoga, meditation and other relaxing practices:
Optional offerings and possible extra costs
The Boston Wellness Center is pleased to work with an Ayurvedic herbal company called Banyan Botanicals, based in New Mexico. Through our affiliation with Banyan, we offer several basic herbal remedies in herbal tablet form or a powder, as well as medicinal oils and basic items such as tongue cleaners and lead-free ceramic nasal rinse cups (neti pots). We use these products ourselves and feel very comfortable suggesting them to you.
Exclusive Services for Private Clients
Therapeutic Yoga -- We specialize in orthopedic issues, especially chronic low back & neck pain and injury, as well as neurological disorders, recovery from stroke, Parkinson's disease and pulmonary/respiratory conditions. We also work effectively with clients experiencing chronic anxiety, depression and PTSD.
Ayurvedic consultation -- These practices complement the yoga therapy and are frequently combined in private sessions, depending on your situation. Ayurveda can be used to stimulate or calm the digestive system. It is very effective in maintaining IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) and many other diseases and disorders. Food, drink and lifestyle habits are examined, changed and used as the main "medicine" in Ayurveda.
Reiki treatment session -- Hands on healing can help at any time to calm the nervous system and send healing energy to the areas of your body that need it most.
Kripalu Yoga Session -- A private yoga session is the perfect way to go deeper in your practice. You will get personal, one-on-one feedback and we will create a customized home yoga program that you can use any time. As always, emphasis in on coordinating breath with movement.
Phone consultation -- If you live outside of the Boston, MA area or are not able to travel to meet with a practitioner in person, we are available for yoga therapy and Ayurvedic consultations by phone (recorded) or by Skype. Email us for rates and availability.