HLL01 BioMedical Yoga Therapy – Mental Wellbeing


Understand how the body and mind work together, as well as why and how specific practices can alleviate the detrimental effects of a disconnected and apprehensive lifestyle. During this weekend yoga retreat you will be guided in understanding and applying state-of-the-art science and traditional wisdom to practices that assist the self and other in releasing and overcoming states of stress, anxiety, insomnia, and depression.

People have a hard time letting go of their suffering. Out of a fear of the unknown, they prefer suffering that is familiar.

~ Thich Nhat Hanh

Suffering is grace.

Suffering is optional.

Suffering exists to wake us up.

When you begin to see that your enemy is suffering, that is the beginning of insight.

~Thich Nhat Hanh

If the above teachings speak to you in any way, then it might be a consideration to attend this 2-day retreat weekend training. Some people attend primarily for professional development, others for personal development. However, it is your own personal inner work, the transformation of your own suffering that allows us to hold another’s suffering with both gentility and compassion.

This 2-day retreat on Yoga for Mental Health will merge science & spirituality and assist us to ease the suffering within ourselves.

By developing insight into the teachings of oneness and impermanence, we can hold and embody these teachings for others.

We learn to engage fully in the moment, the breath, our bodies to truly observe and see the miracle unfolding in front of us.

This moment is an utter miracle unfolding in front of us.

What You Will Learn

Over these two days you will cover the following:

BioMedical Yoga Therapy for Mental Health: Anxiety, Stress, Irritability

Time & Date: Saturday 24 February 2024, 9:30am – 1:00pm
Hosted By: Celia Roberts BSc Senior Yoga Teacher and Yoga Therapist

This retreat and training is an immersive experience of evidence-based science and evidence-informed practice combined with ancient applications for overcoming suffering and moving towards physical and mental liberation through the art of clinical yoga therapy. Celia’s session introduces the theory and research behind the neuroscientific link between meditation, yoga, and natural therapeutic remedies to the body’s reactive states. Clinical yoga therapy for mental health offers practical wisdom for overcoming anxiety, stress and irritability.

We will be exploring:

  • How stress, anxiety, addiction, depression, and the like are in the body, not just the brain, as well as how adverse mental health affects the microbiome and vice versa
  • How and why the size of the amygdala and its connectivity to the rest of the brain is linked to high levels of prolonged anxiety
  • How and why inflammation is connected to mental health
  • The neuroscientific foundation of how meditation positively affects in the body and the brain, including the biological and karmic fate in our genes (epigenetics)
  • How and why traditional yoga has always explored neuroscience through the sutras and philosophy
  • How and why some dietary changes can often show more significant improvement than psychological treatment while still acknowledging the imperative nature of utilising the two together in a successful manner
  • Practical application of breathing for heart rate variability
  • Eliciting nervous system control (vagal tone)
  • Inviting yourself to explore a pose with mindfulness of the internal perception of pleasant or painful sensation
  • Exploring consciousness beyond thought

Traditional Yoga Therapy for Mental Health: Viniyoga

Time & Date: Saturday 24 February 2024, 1:45pm – 4:45pm
Hosted By: Leanne Davis, Past President of Yoga Australia

This immersive experience of true yogic wisdom encapsulates what it means to be in a state of mental health and holistic well-being, that is, the state of yoga. This session aims to understand and cultivate states of peace, equilibrium, and evenness of mind through the philosophy of practice and the eastern yogic perspective.

We will be exploring:

  • What yogic states of mind are (exploring Rajas, Tamas, and Sattva)
  • Why yoga therapy is not about treating a condition
  • Why assessment of state is vital in underpinning the application of yoga therapy tools
  • How one assesses the activity of the mind
  • How we establish what is taking a person away from the state of yoga and clarity
  • How we know what tools to use in accordance with an individual’s needs and wants
  • Looking at intelligently placed steps for the practises according to the yoga sutras
  • Overall assessment, selection, sequencing, and application of yoga therapy tools

BioMedical Yoga Therapy for Mental Health: Depression, Low Mood, Melancholia

Time & Date: Sunday 25 February 2024, 9:30am – 1:00pm
Hosted By: Celia Roberts BSc Senior Yoga Teacher and Yoga Therapist

The morning session is an immersive experience of understanding the innate energetic connection between body, mind, emotional states and breathing. We will together be exploring BioMedical Yoga Therapy for Mental Health, particularly looking at depression, low mood, melancholia.

In this session, Celia will assist your scientific exploration of breath to cultivate alertness, concentration and qualities of the ‘sattvic’ state: calmness, tranquillity, lightness, comfort and attentiveness.

You will come to understand the deep mind-body connection through the science of psychoneuroimmunology. We will explore our posture and stance along with facial posture, microexpressions and vocal tones as avenues to overcoming low mood or negative mental states.

Celia will then offer guidance in asana on cultivating certain states of mind and body through top-down and bottom-up processing, using sankalpa and bhavana in yogic terms.

Finally, we shall explore overcoming the mind with the heart. We will learn about the heart-brain and Anahata Akash (yogic term for heart space), which can also be translated to mean ‘unstruck or unbeaten’. We will use meditations relating to the yoga sutra, “vishoka va yotishmati” through practice, which can be understood as concentrating on the ‘everlasting light of the heart’.

We will be exploring:

  • Understanding how the body, mind, breath complex relieves stress-related conditions and depression
  • Using breathing practises to influence our psychology and physiology
  • Top-down and bottom-up processing
  • Depression and Psychoneuroimmunology
  • Depression and Epigenetics
  • Depression and the Biome
  • Yoga Asana for low mood & depression
  • Cultivating a whole heart-orientation toward life
  • Strength training through asana for depression and low mood
  • Heart-Brain training

Kundalini Yoga Medical Model for Addictions and Mental Health

Time & Date: Sunday 25 February 2024, 1:45pm – 4:45pm
Hosted By: Samantha Lindsay-German, Kundalini Yoga

This is an immersive experience of understanding the Kundalini Yoga Medical Model by David Shannahoff-Khalsa and the protocols for use for addictions and mental health issues.

This session aims to understand addiction as a way in which we view and process life – not as a specific attraction to a harmful substance.

This session aims to see addictions and mental health issues from a different perspective in accordance to Yoga sutra 2.16, creating a “future free from suffering”.

We will be exploring:

  • How and why Kundalini yoga is proven to work for addictions and mental health, building a resilient brain
  • How to strengthen the nervous system – parasympathetic and sympathetic
  • How to challenge and reprogram the nervous system through the Kundalini Yoga Medical Model
  • Understand the Medical Model of kundalini yoga techniques by David Shannahoff-Khalsa and the protocols for use
  • Learn to practice and teach the 40-day Kundalini yoga program for healing addictions and incorporate everyday short meditations for healing addictions into practice

Course Video Preview


BIYOME’s Higher Level Learning can be undertaken as Continuing Professional Development (CPD) with Yoga Australia and may obtain Continuing Education (CE) recognition with Yoga Alliance. The course contact hours non-contact hours (CPD’s and CE’s), allocated across the two registering yoga bodies, do however differ. Please contact us for more information. 

Should you wish to complete a full yoga certification (150 hours – 650 hours), please see details available here.

About the teachers

Celia Roberts BSc Senior Yoga Teacher and Yoga Therapist

Leanne Davis, Senior Teacher, Yoga Therapist

Samantha Lindsay-German, Kundalini Yoga, Senior Teacher

Course Category
Professional Development CoursesOther General PD CoursesProfessional Development for Yoga Therapists
Delivery Mode
Online - LiveIn-person at School