When I began my yoga journey some 21 years ago, I went at it like most newbies do. I just thought yoga was yoga and that it didn't matter where I took a class or with what teacher. I expected the offerings would be generally the same. I couldn't have been more wrong!
It took me a few years to sort through the various yoga styles and philosophies. I visited as many studios/teachers/workshops as I had time for while raising 2 kids. I eventually landed my full attention on a practice that made a whole lot of sense to me. Viniyoga is a style of yoga that uses scientific, evidence based research as it's fodder for its primarily therapeutic asana style. I say therapeutic because it is a practice that incorporates most all standard yoga asanas but adds the undeniable wisdom of the individuals story to the asanas creating an art form to be used in tandem with the ancient and still growing science.
Viniyoga took me to a whole other level. It was clearly not the popular favorite of the day nor perhaps is it now. It may not be considered to be great fun if you are a thrill seeker because it tends to focus on the needs of the individual and doesn't go for the big group oooohhhs, ahhhhhs and wows. You don't go to Viniyoga to practice your "tricks" or to stroke your ego. The art form takes each individual as deep as he or she is ready to go, shifts the asanas to suit the need and proceeds with caution as the understanding is that we have but one body to live in. Why do damage to that one body?
Enter the current wave of Sound Baths and Sound Healing workshops that are cropping up all over Los Angeles just like the onslaught of yoga and yoga studios did in the 80's. These are generally wonderful feel good opportunities but are not always being offered by practitioners who understand the powerful science behind their art. After all, who doesn't enjoy music and ambiance that sets the tone for rest and relaxation! Add a darkened room with candles, a soft voice that welcomes you, a place to rest your stressed body, mind and spirit and you're in heaven right? I've attended many different varieties of this genre and most times came away feeling good. But not always. Just like with my yoga journey, there were workshops I came away feeling downright cranky and agitated. In the beginning I didn't understand that there is a whole science behind the experience of "sound healing" and, as it turns out, it seems many practitioners offering the workshops don't fully understand the power behind their offering either. So although their may be wonderful musicians with good intentions offering sound healing/baths, they may not necessarily be well trained in the science that stands behind their art.
It's no different than yoga and the plethora of yoga teachers out there. Some yoga teachers took a weekend course and called themselves teachers. Others took 2-5 years to study their craft and partake of continuing education opportunities on a regular basis throughout their careers. There simply is no comparison between the two offerings.
About a year and a half ago, I attended a live drumming session with Christo Pellani at the weSPARK Cancer Support Center in Sherman Oaks. There was something about him and his presentation of the program that got me to thinking more about the actual science of drumming and the profound effect it has on the whole human. It was clear to me that Christo had done his homework and invested in authentic training. I've come to know Christo a little better now and am completely fascinated by the body of work known as Tama-Do created by Fabien Maman. (No I'm not going for yet another training haha.) Fabien has used research based evidence to create a sound healing program that stands head and shoulders above anything else out there in this field. It's intentions is to integrate your whole human experience. Through sound and color vibrations as well as the study of chi, the web of an exceptional practice comes complete with instruments played live; NO ELECTRONICS.
Fabien created Tama-Do, The Academy of Sound Healing, Color Therapy and Chi . This well-researched health science is not only fun, it is full of integrative useful daily practices as well! Christo is a graduate student of Fabiens'. I am so grateful to have "drummed" my way into Christos' life and am now enjoying incorporating his passion for sound healing into my personal and professional life as well as thrilled to be partnering with him to get the word out about Tama-Do. I'm a healthier and happier person for it to be sure.
I'm really hoping that many of you chose to rise above the crowd and come join me here at Out Back Yoga on March 18 for a truly unique experience with Christo and a full Tama-Do Harmonization. See the events page for all the details! I look forward to greeting you Out Back.