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Therapeutic Yoga for Self-Discovery, Embodied Healing and Meaningful Change: Applying the Principles of Polyvagal Theory for Trauma Recovery: Video Course


Speaker: Dr Arielle Schwartz

Product: Video Course
Price: £225

CPD Hours: 9

Video course packs, including all notes are available immediately on booking. The access links are part of your ticket. Online video access remains available for 1 year from the date you receive the video course.

For more information on ticket types and order processing times please click here


Key takeaways from this workshop:

  • How is trauma held in the body and what you can do to heal
  • Key ways to apply polyvagal theory within therapeutic yoga
  • The two levels of co-regulation and how this benefits you and your clients
  • How pranayama facilitates optimal heart rate variability (HRV) to enhance your health
  • Applying principles of somatic psychology into therapeutic yoga for trauma
  • The relationship between posture and vagal tone
  • How to naturally and gently increase vagal efficiency
  • The Eight Limbs of Yoga & Trauma Recovery
  • Self-Havening as a restorative tool
  • The Polyvagal ladder and the 3 Gunas
  • Five types of Yoga Interventions in Therapy
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Full Course Information

“We cannot simply think our way out of traumatic activation”

– Dr Arielle Schwartz

By definition, trauma refers to any event that overwhelms our capacity to mentally, emotionally, and physically cope with or process the experience. Trauma survivors are often flooded by intrusive sensations or emotions and as a result can become hypervigilant to their surrounds, avoid places that remind them of their experiences, suffer from panic or want to shut down with fatigue and depression.

Therapeutic interventions that focus on telling the story about our clients’ experience or distressing events from the past are often insufficient to facilitate trauma recovery. Since these symptoms are as much physical as they are psychological, we need body-centered interventions to rebalance the body and mind. Without interventions that incorporate somatic awareness and movement, many therapeutic approaches are limited in their ability to help clients fully release the impact of traumatic events. In other words, we cannot simply think our way out of traumatic activation.

Yoga is one such path to healing, offering tools to address these physiological imbalances through practices that allow clients to sense their body, change how they breathe, move stuck energy, and rest into stillness. Through the lens of interpersonal biology, polyvagal theory, and somatic psychology, this highly practical and therapeutically oriented workshop explores the physiological repercussions of stressful or traumatic events.

Somatic Psychology emphasizes body awareness as an essential part of psychotherapy. When we observe the natural world, we see that animals have natural, inborn survival instincts that help them respond to threatening experiences. Within this course, we will explore how stress or trauma can get held in the body. When left unaddressed, these physical patterns can contribute to somatic symptoms and the worsening of mental and emotional health. When integrated into psychotherapy, simple yoga postures and movements can help clients access positive states of empowerment, strength, and relaxation.

At its core, therapeutic yoga bridges a path of healing between the psyche and the body. Dr Arielle Schwartz brings over twenty years of experience as a trained somatic psychotherapist, trauma treatment expert, and yoga instructor to this course. Through the lens of polyvagal theory, you will learn how the vagus nerve is a bi-directional information highway between mind and body—more importantly, we will learn:

  • How to fine-tune mental and physical health with breath, movement, and awareness practices that can easily be integrated within psychotherapy
  • A wide range of Yoga practices that facilitate brain and body integration through simple cross-lateral movements that can be used to assist therapy interventions by enhancing an integrated, felt-sense of self

Webinar Schedule:

Part 1

Applied Polyvagal in Therapeutic Yoga for Trauma

  • Explore the Eight Limbs of Yoga and Trauma Recovery
  • Understand the polyvagal theory and the social engagement system
  • Discuss the tiered response to threat and trauma
  • Explore ”hybrid” nervous system states
  • Discuss the Goldilocks Principle, the polyvagal ladder, and the 3 Gunas
  • Understand the benefits of co-regulation
  • Learn the five types of yoga interventions in therapy

Trauma Recovery and Therapeutic Yoga

  • Understand Trauma and Resilience
  • Stress, Trauma, and Thwarted Instincts
  • Recognize cues of threat and safety in the body
  • Explore Neuroception as Svadyaya
  • Apply dual attention within a yoga practice
  • Safety and choice as a “secure base”
  • Pandicular Movement

Part 2

Natural Vagus Nerve Stimulation in Yoga

  • Discuss heart rate variability and nervous system flexibility
  • Learn yoga based vagus nerve stimulation for neuromodulation
  • Learn pranayama (conscious breathing) practices for wellbeing
  • Explore how your posture impacts the health of your vagus nerve
  • Understand how sound and listening protocols enhance safety
  • Explore yoga for brain and body integration

Embodiment Strategies for Trauma Recovery 

  • Explore the Window of Tolerance, titration, and “Yoga at the Edge”
  • Discuss the connective tissue matrix and learn how to safely let go of the threat response
  • Understand Titration and Pendulation
  • Discuss sequencing and somatic repatterning as related to the koshas and the prana vayus

Part 3

Relaxation and Yoga Nidra

  • Understand the benefits of restorative yoga for nervous system and endocrine system health
  • Practice progressive muscle relaxation
  • Explore self-havening as a restorative tool
  • Learn a trauma informed yoga nidra practice for relaxation and healthy sleep

Equanimity Amidst Change

  • Enhancing Post Traumatic Growth
  • Making Meaning out of Suffering
  • Garden of the mind metaphor
  • The Healing Power of Loving Kindness, Compassion, and Gratitude
  • Awakening Compassion with the Lotus meditation

About the speaker

Arielle Schwartz, PhD, CCTP-II, E-YRT is a psychologist, internationally sought-out teacher, yoga instructor, and leading voice in the healing of PTSD and complex trauma. She is the author of six books, including Therapeutic Yoga for Trauma Recovery, The Complex PTSD Workbook, and The Post Traumatic Growth Guidebook. Dr. Schwartz has a depth of understanding, passion, kindness, compassion, joy, and a succinct way of speaking about very complex topics. She is the founder of the Center for Resilience Informed Therapy in Boulder, Colorado. Dr. Schwartz believes that that the journey of trauma recovery is an awakening of the spiritual heart. Discover more at

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