International Day of Yoga

on Monday, 10 June 2019. Posted in Charities

International Day of Yoga

International Day of Yoga is this Friday, the 21st of June. Originally established in India and backed by the UN, it’s taken place every June 21st since 2015.

What is Yoga?

Yoga is an ancient physical, mental and spiritual practice that originated in India. The word yoga derives from Sanskrit and means to join or unite, symbolizing the union of body and consciousness” – UN International Day of Yoga  

Yoga isn’t about flexibility and awkward poses – anyone can do it and you only have to do what you can. It can be modified to work around injuries or disabilities and can be fantastically beneficial, incorporating breath, focus, mindfulness, strength, and balance.

One case study example of yoga helping brain injury recovery is Kevin Pearce, former pro snowboarder, who credits yoga as a key factor in his recovery – read the full article here.

A brain injury is a life-changing event, and the physical and psychological needs of an individual afterwards are wildly varied. However, there is some evidence that yoga can help specifically those with brain injuries in a range of scenarios.


  • Can improve respiratory functioning - breath-focused yoga improved exhale strength, ability to hold breath, breathing rate, counted breaths, and heart rate.[1] [3]
  • Can improve emotional wellbeing and self-perception [1] [4] [6]
  • Can improve fatigue [5]
  • Can improve balance and balance confidence [2] [3]
  • Can improve strength and endurance [2]
  • Can improve flexibility [3]

I mean it’s rocked my world. It’s changed my life. I mean physically, emotionally, mentally, It’s given me you know my life back…” [2]

Some of our ILS Therapists also use adaptive yoga where appropriate – at our recent company conference, Lin Leong ran an adaptive yoga workshop (pictured) to share her expertise with Case Managers and fellow therapists.



[1] Sat Bir Khalsa et al. (2012) Respiratory, Physical, and Psychological Benefits of Breath-Focused Yoga for Adults with Severe Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI): A Brief Pilot Study Report. International Journal of Yoga Therapy. Vol 22. No.1. pp46-52

[2] Arlene A. Schmid (2015) Feasibility and results of a case study of yoga to improve physical functioning in people with chronic traumatic brain injury. Journal of Disability and Rehabilitation. Vol 38. No. 9.

[3] Amy Zellmer (2016) Healing From Traumatic Brain Injury With Yoga [online]  

[4] Laura A Grimm (2017) Yoga after traumatic brain injury. International journal of complementary and alternative medicine. Vol 8. Issue 1.

[5] B. Johansson (2012) Mindfulness-based stress reduction improves long-term mental fatigue after stroke or TBI. Brain Injury Journal. Vol 26. Issue 13-14

[6] Kyla Z. Donnelly (2016) The feasibility and impact of a yoga pilot programme on the quality of life of adults with ABI. Brain Injury Journal. Vol 31. Issue 2.