Dr. Parker who is renowned for her efforts to combine psychology, yoga, and meditation as effective self-care strategies that enhance emotional balance and contribute to people’s overall health and wellbeing. Her area of expertise includes utilizing and teaching Restorative Yoga and meditation as self-care practices for managing ethnic and race-based traumatic stress.
This 222-page book is a guide to exploring and examining our racial identity and biases. It’s also a practical book on yoga. It opens up a new world of possibilities for healing for everyone, regardless of race and ethnicity. This book is an intentional self-study and instructional guide on how to utilize and teach Restorative Yoga as a self-care practice to alleviate the pain, stress, and suffering of ethnic and race-based trauma.
The book describes how race-based traumatic stress differs from PTSD and how people can begin to heal from different approaches. Dr. Parker addresses various topics, including white privilege, the culture of silence, people of color, but in one particular chapter, the topic that stood out to me was color blindness. She explains how skin color matters. She states that’s, “Claiming not to see skin color is a false claim. The claim that “I don’t see skin color” is a defense against being a racist.” On this topic, she further explains that color blindness relies on the concept that race-based differences don’t matter, and ignores the realities of systemic racism.
The book also focused on Restorative Yoga, a type of yoga that directly works on the nervous system and, in particular, down-regulates our stress response. In the book, Dr. Parker explains how awareness of your personal state is an essential self-care skill for managing your emotional reactions. Becoming aware of where tension is held in your body can help you detect emotional distress before you become overwhelmed. She mentions that it’s vital for people to learn how to manage their emotional responses, for the reason that if you don’t, it can cause people to act out in ways that do not fit a situation.
This book will help you identify:
- What Race-Based Traumatic Stress Injury is, and how it differs from PTSD
- How to identify areas of stress and trauma
- How to utilize Restorative Yoga as a self-care tool to effectively manage the stresses and traumas that arise from daily-lived experiences as a person of color
- How Restorative Yoga buffers the nervous system, increases resilience, and strengthens your psychological immune system.
If you are looking for alternative ways to cope with stress and trauma or these are topics that you read or study, then I’d highly recommend this book to you as it is a must-read for ALL, regardless of one’s familiarity or experience with the practice of yoga. As the world continues to tackle various restrictions due to the pandemic, this is a perfect time read Restorative Yoga for Ethnic and Race-Based Stress and Trauma. I have added this book to my 5-star summer reading list because this book has given me a sense of peace and understanding about the world that we all live in, add it to your home library today!
Dr. Gail Parker is a licensed psychologist and certified yoga therapist, yoga therapist educator, and meditation coach. She has presented at SYTAR and the Black Yoga Teachers Alliance conferences and is currently serving as president of the Black Yoga Teachers Alliance. She is a faculty member teaching Yoga Therapy for Emotional Balance at the Beaumont School of Yoga Therapy. Gail lives in Michigan USA.
To order a copy of, “Restorative Yoga for Ethnic and Race-Based Stress and Trauma,” please visit: https://www.drgailparker.com/book.
Reprinted from the Michigan Chronicle.
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