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How Yoga Can Help Manage Pain and Trauma

Content Warning: This piece discusses sexual assault, violence and suicide. Readers who are sensitive to these topics should be advised that this piece may be distressing.

Rebecca Kase is a 40-year-old who resides in Fox Island, Washington, and works as a clinical social worker. She is a survivor of sexual assault and has endured additional trauma in recent years. She credits yoga with her recovery from the most difficult experiences of her life.

Kase was sexually assaulted in college and spent years navigating therapy and utilizing tools she learned from yoga to overcome the traumatic experience. Through that process, Kase was also empowered to deal with a shock she experienced in 2017, when she witnessed her father being abusive and violent before eventually committing suicide prior to his prison sentencing date. Kase had been very close to her father, and the experience tore her family apart. She says that she transformed the most painful experience of her life into her life’s purpose.

Kase believes yoga and the therapy tools from her experience with sexual assault prepared her for the violent and heartbreaking encounter with her father. “As heartbreaking and jaw-dropping as that experience was, it felt very clear to me that I had been in training to pick up on this,” Kase says. “My senses picked up on, ‘Something is off in this room.’ I knew what to do. Between my own sexual assault history and what I learned through that, it felt very much like this was supposed to be me.”

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