Cancer and Yin Yoga

This is the place to discuss the energetic aspects of Yin Yoga and its Daoist heritage
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pcyoga
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Oct 20, 2015 2:02 pm

Cancer and Yin Yoga

Post by pcyoga »

Hi Bernie,

One of my yoga students is encouraging his friend (who has cancer), to try Yin Yoga. She said that she has heard that practicing Yin yoga can cause cancer to spread because Yin Yoga can encourage qi to flow freely between the organs, which allows the cancer cells to spread. Thoughts?

Thank you so much for any info you may share Bernie!
Bernie
Posts: 1161
Joined: Sat Sep 23, 2006 2:25 am
Location: Vancouver

Yin Yoga and Cancer

Post by Bernie »

This is always a tricky question to answer because everyone is different and every type of cancer is different. I have talked about breast cancer on the forum before, and you may want to read that posting. I also reported on what was discussed in a fascia conference about the risks of massage for cancer patients. Basically I said,
  • “Massage therapists are advised to never massage tumours: the reason is that it is already very difficult to deliver drugs to a cancer tumour because the interstitial pressure (the pressure of the water in the extracellular matrix between the tissues) is low while the pressure in the tumour is high, pushing back anything that tries to enter the tumour. If we stress the tumour area through massage, we may make it even harder to get the drugs into the tumour. The pressure may also decrease our own body's immune response from getting at the cancer. This would imply for yoga that we don't want a student with cancer to stress the areas around a tumour."
So, can you do Yin Yoga with cancer? Yes, no and maybe. The best person to work out the answer is your health care provider. Tell her what you want to do and see what she thinks? As I mentioned above, for people with breast cancer, Yin Yoga may be a great way to deal with the stress of the treatment. Restorative yoga may be even better.

There are many yoga teachers who believe Yin Yoga, due to its restorative nature, is very good for cancer patients. You can find many such testamonials, like this one, via Google.

Cheers
Bernie
pcyoga
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Oct 20, 2015 2:02 pm

Post by pcyoga »

Thank you Bernie! Restorative Yoga sounds like a great idea. You are knowledge! Would love to take a Yin Yoga teacher training part 2 with you. The 50 hour was fantastic.
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