DAWN MILLER, C-IAYT
CERTIFIED YOGA THERAPIST
Specializing in Viniyoga Therapeutic Yoga
After practicing yoga personally for several years, I trained as a yoga therapist because I realized that studio-based yoga classes weren’t serving a large segment of the population. A yoga class can never truly be a ‘one size fits’ all approach because what benefits one person may be what makes another feel worse.
For example, movements that benefit someone with a herniated disc are not the same as those that provide relief from spinal stenosis. Those two conditions require opposite movements of the spine. That’s why some people leave a group yoga class feeling fantastic and others leave in more pain than when they walked in the door.
Most of my clients find me through referrals from orthopedic surgeons, primary care physicians, physical therapists, and massage therapists. But you don’t need a referral from a health care provider to work with me. You can schedule directly with me, and we’ll co-create a customized practice program that you can do on your own with as much or as little support from me as you need. The goal eventually is that you won’t need me at all because you will have a maintenance program that you can do on your own that supports your best health.
Over the years, I’ve worked with hundreds of clients with a wide variety of personal goals and health conditions. Most of them didn’t come to me because they wanted to learn to practice yoga. They came to me because there was some aspect of their lives that they wanted back. They wanted to be able to pick up their grandchildren, get up and down from the floor, garden, travel, get better sleep, or walk without pain.
Yoga therapy is conducted from a clinical perspective. I’ll ask you to complete a health history form about current and past conditions. But yoga therapy does not reduce you to your symptoms; it’s a wholistic approach that encompasses your health on multiple levels: physical, emotional, mental, spiritual and takes as it’s starting point that all of those are intertwined. Considers your work environment, relationships, what level of stress you experience and how you navigate that. I’ll ask you about your goals, what you want to accomplish, and what gives your life meaning and purpose.
I’ve long had an interest in health and healing. Almost 30 years ago, I moved to Cleveland to attend graduate school at Case Western Reserve University. I wanted to study how people make decisions about health care, how they think about illness, disease, health, and healing. I subsequently worked in healthcare related research for three of the hospitals in the Cleveland area. And then I discovered there was an ancient system for self-health that could fill some of the gaps in Western healthcare.