Posts Tagged ‘yoga physical therapy’

Fizzy Yoga? Really?…God’s Sense of Humor Exposed

Sunday, September 15th, 2013


OK, I get it… God [ Insert your favorite word for That which is greater than you ] delights in mischief, surprise and irony.

I knew that, but now I really know it….

In 1997 with my new-found discovery of how yoga offered me deep insight into an integrated understanding of health by eliminating my chronic back pain (we call that a biopyschosocial model today) so I set off to share the idea of merging the ancient life science of yoga with modern rehabilitation as what I taglined,  "The Future of Rehabilitation…Now!".      

I did all the "right" things to share the idea:

  • Took extensive professional training
  • Opened a seminar business to teach CEU courses around the country
  • Authored peer-reviewed articles and textbook chapters
  • Sought and obtained a doctorate investigating yoga and chronic back pain as well as other research
  • Joined and eventually ran the board of directors of the Intl Assoc of Yoga Therapists
  • Presented at state and national physical and occupation therapy conferences
  • Opened and successfully ran a yoga-based rehab clinic in a busy metro area for 10 years

And what did I hear in response to all these heroic efforts?


…. Near silence…. or was that a Yawn rather than "OM"?


And then on August 20, 2013 (16 yrs later), He/She delivered the punchline!…


Sarah Jordan pens an article for the Huffington Post titled: "Kim Cattrall Claims "Fizzy Yoga" Saved Her Life".


WTH(eck)?!? [It's God's joke, so I have to watch my language]


An actress gets some relief of persistent knee pain from a combination of yoga and physical therapy and her "life is saved"???

….and it spreads like wild fire through the social media???

 [ My colleagues Shelly Prosko PT and Shari Ser PT each do a great job of offering detail and historical perspective on fizzy/physio yoga]




Very funny….and it is, very funny. 

This "movement" is so much bigger than fixing achy joints and bent spines.

In fact the American Physical Therapy Association  is in on "it" (using the body and movement to advance the evolution of consciousness of the species) in their new Vision statement adopted this summer of 2013 (they just don't know it yet!!!): 

"Transforming society by optimizing movement to improve the human experience." per here.

And the very bright and dedicated folks at Evidence in Motion are climbing on the band wagon as they watch (become conscious) of the evidence supporting the need for a whole person approach (yoga = union)… to even suggest empathy is important to adopt in care (aka, the higher koshas ala ancient Upanishads). The evidence they've collected is encouraging and points to the wisdom of addressing the whole person.


So where does the "movement" go now?

Obviously I'm the wrong guy to ask!!!


But let me leave you with a simple example and a "charge"….

We live in a society that is exhausted, depleted and literally/metaphorically bankrupt.       [Damn yogi's...they always say it straight.]

Every major system (govt, education, health, politics, etc) is heaving and creaking under the seismic shifts of the realization of our intimate interconnectedness as a breathing, living global system of systems. (See Otto Scharmer of MIT's new book "Leading From the Emerging Future" for an excellent primer)

The Simple Example:

This week I see a patient in the mid-30's with a 10 wk complaint of persistent L heel and Achilles pain. The person has been to a DPM, then an orthopedist that specializes in foot and ankle problems, and finally most recently a conventional PT. All the care was consistent and what would be described as standard of care for the respective professions. 

And the person still has pain, can't raise up on their toes and is unable to recreate, work out, etc. 

What is Fizzy Yoga then? [ Real funny, but I'll use it Big Guy/Gal ]

Fizzy Yoga listens deeply and digs deeply to understand the whole person, not the squeaking part.

Fizzy Yoga hears the part story, then dives deep to understand (empathy?). 

What else is going on in this person's life? Oh, recent unexpected death? Business pressures in a tough market? Grief processing? Sleep disruption?

What's that got to do with a sore heel?

….Everything according to a biopsychosocial (Fizzy/Physio yoga model).

The person isn't breathing which disrupts postural control and stability (see my 3-diaphragms for the evidence train). 



So in 40 minutes of Fizzy Yoga (NOT just yoga asana as therapeutic exercise but numerous biopsychotools!….for all the levels of being)… the person can walk, climb steps and raise up on their toes without pain. 

And even looks different (caution it isn't just the parts, but parts matter too). 










So in less than an hour and for $125 the person has insight, active home fizzy exercise program and a progression of return to activities. And the person will sleep better, pursue support for related issues, and for those physical therapy colleagues that fret re: reimbursement issues ….the person will refer many high quality friends to my all-cash practice declaring:

"Just go, it's worth it."

And Fizzy Yoga says EVERY patient we see has multiple layers of meaning and being affected by or generating their presenting complaint.


The Charge

We in the rehabilitation world have access to and the responsibility to seize the opportunity to make EVERY intervention an invitation to deeper consciousness and awareness for both ourselves and our patients.  

Transforming society is our responsibility and opportunity. 

Fizzy Yoga is the "joke" that brings us just a little closer to that realization.

(For an interview of me and more details of how and why we can transform society see here.)



To find a Fizzy Yoga provider see our international directory:







  Bridge Builders to Awareness in Healthcare

To join a group of over 230 rehab pro's using yoga to transform society, friend me below on Facebook and I'll bring you into our closed FB group to learn, question and explore in this grand adventure!



Fizzy Yoga….really?????  : ))))))   



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Yoga and Stroke Rehabilitation

Saturday, June 11th, 2011

Here's your opportunity to learn how to incorporate yoga into stroke rehabilitation!

Dr. Arlene Schmid, PhD, OTR

I'll be teaching "Yoga for Stroke Rehabilitation: The DSR Method" a 2-day continuing education course in Scottsdale AZ on Sept 24-25, 2011. Details at .  


There was quite a buzz re: the new study my colleague and lead researcher Arlene A. Schmid, OTR, PhD presented this week. Her bio is here. The summary is below beneath the APTA banner. The study made the news on the EIM Daily Dose, Twitter and weekly APTA News Now. 

After teaching the techniques and value of bringing Yoga principles and technologies into rehabilitation since 1998, it is gratifying to see the clinical evidence begin to emerge. One of my first students, Julie Bastille, PT in 1998 went on to break ground by having the first yoga-based stroke rehab study in the PTJ.















Now today, as Dr. Schmid is quoted this week, the research around Yoga is "really taking off" and no better evidenced than at the 2011 Symposiums on Yoga Therapy and Research I helped launch in 2007 as then vice-president of the International Association of Yoga Therapy, and later president 2008-2009.   

Please spread the word about this exciting course offering coming up in September. The course is designed for rehab professionals and Yoga therapists. I presented it last year for past AZAPTA's president Kay Wing, PT's company, SWAN Rehab, the spring 2011 AZAOTA Conference, and at the 2009 APTA Annual conference. Pruitt Rehabilitation out of North Carolina also sponsored me in GA in February of 2011.

Here's some feedback from those courses:


“The hands-on with actual patients. At first we  all looked at each other like “what do we do”?  But then it just started flowing…Matt was very approachable and the small class size was a big plus” … “I didn’t expect this to be such an emotional experience, but I think it will help me have closer relationships with my patients.” - Jocelyn Unger, DPT Tucson

 “The amazing work and energy that Matt has put into this development…what an honor!”…
“I will tell as many people as possible about your course.” - Betsy Shandalov, OTR   Owner,

“The simplicity.  Less is more!  Breathe!” - Tanyia Schier, OTR Swan Rehab

“The practical applications.” … “No improvements – it was a perfect blend of theory, experimental learning.” - Karen Mueller, PT, NAU Faculty

“Great interaction and personal growth with breathing – yoga components.” … “The patient interaction to ‘put it all together’ was very helpful.  Good hands on throughout.”  – Barbara Timmers, PTA, Mayo, Scottsdale

“Watching change ‘arrive’ in fellow participants.” - Cheryl Van Demark, PT, RYT
Hope to see you there! Enrollment is limited to the first 12 registrants….you can't learn this from the back of an auditorium!

PT in<br />
 Motion - News Now

Yoga Increases Balance, Endurance in Veterans, Says Indiana University Researcher
Balance measures improved in older veterans with stroke who performed yoga poses…



Taking Yoga to the Last Breath

Sunday, March 27th, 2011

It is now in print and available here .

Abstract reads as so:


This article describes how Yoga therapeutics can provide preparation and support for end of life geriatric rehabilitation. As an integral practice Yoga therapeutics provides the geriatric rehabilitation professional with practical tools and rationale as either sole providers or as members of an interdisciplinary team. Context is provided for how Yoga addresses dying and death with techniques that employ skills within the traditional providers╩╝ scope of practice. Yoga therapeutics offers both self-care for the provider as well as the extensive list of techniques to share with patients. Following proper training and personal practice, the provision of Yoga therapeutics has the potential to facilitate a “good death” and minimize suffering in end of life geriatric rehabilitation.


Looking forward to see this article in print later this month. Final proof is done and now ready for the "birth" of the idea that traditional rehabiliation, to include physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech pathologists should add yoga therapy to their available modalities in supporting geriatric clients. 













Do you use yoga in supporting people in the end of life?


If so, how?


Do you need resources to support those in end of life or grief?

Jennifer has developed very powerful resources for just that, and to encourage healthy conversations about death and dying at


Spread the word…we're all headed for savasana…it's the only pose we get to keep!

MS and Yoga with Matthew J. Taylor in AZ

Tuesday, May 25th, 2010

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Presents a 2-day Professional

Education Certification on Yoga & MS


A 21st Century Yoga Response to MS:

 Moving beyond just asana to be in the world with an MS diagnosis


Date: Sat/Sun October 9 & 10, 2010

Time: Registration/Pre-test 8:30 a.m.      Instruction begins at 9:00 a.m. – 4:30 pm

Location: Nina Mason Pulliam Conference Center in the Disability Empowerment Center 5025 E. Washington, Phoenix, AZ (map below)

CEU’s: AZAPTA and Yoga Alliance ceu’s applied for 12.0 contact hours.

Tuition: $180 (All proceeds go to the AZ MS Chapter because Dr. Taylor is donating his time.)

Intended Audience: Yoga teachers, physical therapists, licensed healthcare professionals.

Agenda: Click here.

The format of the workshop will be a fast-paced, fun mix of lecture instruction, case studies and lab experience. The second day will include volunteers with MS to demonstrate and practice teaching principles. 
Emphasis will be on safety and appropriate employment of Yoga technologies (philosophy, postures, breathing, meditation, imagery and corrections) and how Yoga employs exciting new neuroscience breakthroughs. 

Curriculum will include business development instruction in HIPAA compliant communications with the healthcare team, professional languaging and marketing to referral sources. The criteria for certificate will be 90% on post-test. 

Read the announcement in the AZ MS Society Chapter Summer Newsletter here

The Instructor
The course instructor will be Matthew J. Taylor, PT, PhD, RYT, a nationally known leader in integrative rehabilitation. He is the immediate past-president of the International Association of Yoga Therapists, a clinician, researcher, and textbook author on Yoga Therapeutics in Rehabilitation. Dr. Taylor owns a yoga-based rehabilitation clinic in Scottsdale. He first became acquainted with MS when his father could no longer catch his Little League curve ball due to optic neuritis as his father’s presenting symptom. He has nearly 30 years of clinical experience and his doctoral work was grounded in Integral Yoga philosophy as it applies to modern change technology.

His curriculum vitae is available at


To register for the program log onto the AZ MS Society site here  or phone 480-968-2488, ext 222.

Hope to see you there and please spread the word through your networks!
Downloadable flyer at here

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