Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Mysore-style medicine

Mysore-style yoga is self-practice of Ashtanga yoga. Each student individually learns the poses and practices them every day. In Philadelphia and in cities all across the globe, Ashtangis meet every morning for this practice (and many more practice in the privacy of their own homes).
Mysore-style yoga means that:
  • Each student practices at the pace that works for him or her.
  • The practice room is silent except for the words exchanged between teacher and student.
  • The teacher is educated in the theory behind the practice.
  • The teacher watches each student closely, provides guidance, and gives adjustments to each student.
  • A community is created based on the shared values of health and commitment, and the shared experiences of struggle and progress.
What if our medical system were to provide preventive medical care using the mysore-style paradigm?
  • Where patients commit to a “self-practice” of health and prevention.
  • Where doctors help teach, guide, and “adjust” each patient.
  • Where the community supports, encourages, and strengthens each individual’s self-practice.
  • Where physicians work together with patients to create health, rather than react to disease. 
Mysore-style medicine is good in theory (the 1%). How might it work in practice?

I think Dean Ornish's lifestyle program (where patients commit to a low-fat vegetarian diet, exercise, and stress reduction) is one successful example.

1 comment:

  1. Great thought. Yes yoga is the "tool kit" for life; it can be the enabler of so many great things both in a person's life and for the betterment of society. And I'd add one more idea - reimbursement for our yoga fees by the health care providers for being proactive about our "self-practice" for preventative health! :)