336: Yoga for Endo and Pelvic Pain with Sarah Garden
About 190 million girls, women, and people with uteruses of reproductive age worldwide are affected by endometriosis (“endo”). A chronic disease that produces severe, life-impacting pain and other symptoms, endo is still not very well understood. There is no known cure and treatment is often aimed at managing symptoms. Sarah Garden shares how yoga can help endometriosis and pelvic pain.
Sarah is the Director of Bodhi Tree Yoga Therapy and the full-time Pain Educator and Yoga Therapist at The Chronic Pain Clinic in Regina, Saskatchewan Canada. Sarah has taught throughout North America and also offers classes and courses on Yoga International. She has been actively working in the field of yoga therapy for over 20 years. Her practice focuses on chronic pain, chronic pelvic pain, and the role yoga can play in treating nociplastic pain and central sensitization.
Sarah shares more about her own long journey with Endo and why she started specializing in yoga therapy for chronic pain and endometriosis. She explains the symptoms that accompany endometriosis and what we know about this disease, as well as why yoga is helpful. Sarah also gives other strategies for coping with endo and pelvic pain. Tune in to this episode to learn more about endo and pelvic pain, plus get the details about Sarah’s upcoming 7-week yoga series.
[3:15] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode – Sarah Garden
[8:21] Where did Sarah’s journey with endometriosis begin and why did she get interested in this area?
“Yoga has this really incredible capacity to down-regulate or provide us with tools to help us down-regulate our nervous system provided we’re working with it in a way that’s accessible to people with pain.” ~ Sarah Garden
[11:02] What is endometriosis?
[13:34] If you are keen to learn more about endometriosis, there are some great resources (recordings of calls with experts) inside Pelvic Health Professionals, as well as an upcoming 7-week series with Sarah herself!
“Once we’ve worked on and developed that awareness, we then have the capacity to start to regulate what we need to regulate or re-regulate what we need to regulate.” ~ Sarah Garden
[14:56] How can yoga help endometriosis?
[22:01] Yoga can help bring more awareness to what is going on in your body and brain and that can be helpful too.
[27:24] What is one thing Sarah wishes she would have known about persistent pain?
“What the evidence shows us is that education alone is actually really helpful.” ~ Sarah Garden
[33:34] Getting curious and keeping the nervous system calm and steady is one way to approach pain and movement.
[34:34] How does Sarah approach the conversation with people who have chronic pain to try new movements or to help them down-regulate their nervous system?
[39:54] Shannon pops in to share a conversation she recently had with a yoga teacher about how she is using OfferingTree in her business.
“There’s a lot we can do with self-management and a lot we can teach people for self-management as well.” ~ Sarah Garden
[45:08] Sarah has an upcoming 7-week series to learn more about yoga for endometriosis. What does she want people to know about this series?
[51:08] Endometriosis can be really difficult to diagnose because it presents in many different ways.
[54:42] Sarah reflects on how her work is impacting people everywhere.
[56:15] Shannon shares some of her takeaways from this conversation with Sarah.