About the Guest
Shailla Vaidya, MD MPH CCFP (EM) C-IAYT is a Physician / Yoga Therapist practicing Mind-Body Medicine in Toronto, Ontario. She studied Medicine at Dalhousie University, did her residency in Family and Emergency Medicine at the University of Ottawa, and completed a Master’s in Public Health (Management and Policy) at Harvard University. She has also served as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Family Medicine at McMaster University and the University of Toronto.
Dr. Vaidya grew up in a cultural tradition of Yoga and Ayurveda and has been bridging Eastern Wisdom with Western Medicine throughout her 20 years of medical practice. She completed her yoga teacher training and yoga therapy training with the Mohans and the Svastha Yoga Therapy. She is the creator of the Yoga of Stress Resilience Burnout Recovery Program, and the Reconnect Concussion program, both of which combine the path of yoga with the science of human function for healing and recovery. As a “Compassion-it” Change Agent, she is effecting change within the health care system by healing our healers and by bringing a more holistic approach to the management of stress-related illnesses.
In this episode we discuss:
- Growing up Indian in a majority white culture, shame and the impact of disconnection from culture.
- The value of yoga and mindbody practices in medicine and education.
- Stress, trauma and burnout, and ways in which embodied practices can help.
- The impact of the pandemic and isolation on us as social beings and the value of yoga and stress relief in times of Covid.
- Practicing compassion, stress relief, and strategies to generate compassion for self and others.¬†
- Yoga and the importance of taking into consideration who you are and where you‚Äôre at; reducing harm with a better understanding of yogic practices.
- Cultural appropriation of yoga and Indian culture and how to honor lineage and context.
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I’m not convinced my yoga is better than your yoga because I am not in your body or your life or your circumstances or family constellation. I do not know where you come from or what makes you tick. I do not know what your body “needs”.
If the yoga industry wants to thrive again, it needs to start teaching more than fitness. Fortunately, we don’t have to reinvent the wheel- all the techniques already exist within yoga’s traditions to offer a class that touches every part of our being. By offering more integrated classes that include pranayama, mantra, meditation and kriya, we can now provide a yoga experience, instead of just yoga poses.
Just as each feature of cosmic order has an essential nature, cosmic order itself has an essential nature. Bringing ourselves into harmony with the essential nature of cosmic order is the way by which we can live peacefully in the world. Conversely, dissonant action relative the essential nature of cosmic order brings about chaos and destruction.
Nikki Costello is an educator with 30 years of teaching and training experience in the Yoga and Wellness industry. She works at the intersection of social justice and Yoga with a focus on facilitating new models of embodied leadership.