Along with the more traditional forms including hatha yoga and kundalini yoga, there is now also hot yoga, tantrum yoga, and even goat yoga. Part of the reason this exercise form has become so popular is because of the many health benefits associated with yoga. This is also why at Banyan Pompano, we use yoga for drug addiction recovery.
Yoga and meditation focus on connecting the mind, body, and soul. Because addicts tend to have many physical and mental health issues from their addiction, yoga for drug addiction can be beneficial in many ways including stress relief, improved overall mental health, increased self-awareness, and improved physical health in various aspects.
Unfortunately, addiction recovery can be stressful for addicts as they attempt to change their way of life and battle against drug cravings and withdrawal symptoms. A study of women who participated in 3 months of yoga classes had significantly decreased cortisol levels, the primary stress hormone, compared to the control group.1
Many addicts struggle with mental health disorders in addition to their substance abuse problems. Our dual diagnosis treatment in Pompano is designed to help addicts attack both of these problems at once, and yoga is typically part of their treatment plan. Numerous research studies have shown beneficial effects of yoga for reducing anxiety and depression, but often only to the same extent as setting time aside for relaxation; however, overall mental health improved more with yoga than just relaxation and the results also lasted longer. 2
All too often, drug addicts lose part of their identity to their addiction and let it control them. Because they are so consumed with getting their next high, they sometimes lack the proper self-awareness to see how their actions are affecting others as well as themselves. Yoga allows people to focus their attention inward and promotes mindfulness. They are able to examine themselves more clearly.
Yoga also has great physical health benefits. For drug addicts who have been pumping their bodies with heavy toxins, getting their physical health back in check is important. Yoga has been proven to help coordination, muscle strength, cardiovascular endurance, lung function, and lower blood pressure.3
We understand that addiction is not the same for everyone and healing is different for everybody. By using yoga for addiction recovery as well as other addiction recovery therapies, patients are given the best possible chance of having long-term sobriety success.