This article brings together the ancient practice of yoga, specifically the postures (asanas) and other therapeutic techniques in a holistic approach to therapy that includes understanding of birth and prenatal experiences as basic. With a focus on the potential for using yoga postures in psychotherapy, research was completed involving 22 children, ages four years and eight months through nine years and eleven months. These children were video-taped while performing a series of five, especially selected, yoga postures. Their birth stories were then collected through interviews with the child, mother, father, and/or another person who had been present at the birth of the child. Analysis of these data resulted in identifying specific elements in the performance of the yoga postures that could be perceived as clues to the child's prenatal and birth experience. The proposal is put forth that yoga postures have the potential to activate birth memory in the body and can be used both diagnostically and therapeutically in dealing with prenatal and birth issues.
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Jeane Marie Rhodes, Ph.D.
Jeane Rhodes, Ph.D. teaches psychology, including a course on Prenatal Development, at Bed Rocks Community College. She also has a private psychology practice in Lakewood, Colorado and offers therapy for families and children through a foster agency in Aurora, Colarado. Correspondence may be directed to 611 S. Simms Street, Lakewood, CO 80228 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
JOURNAL OF PRENATAL AND PERINATAL PSYCHOLOGY AND HEALTH publishes research and clinical articles from the cutting edge of the science of prenatal and perinatal psychology and health. The journal, published quarterly since 1986, is dedicated to the in-depth exploration human reproduction and pregnancy and the mental and emotional development of the unborn and newborn child.