Family Yoga – The story of Emma and her children


The story of Emma and her children

Emma is a single parent of three children. The family experienced family violence for several years from Emma’s former partner and father of the children. The family had no sense of fun, connection or togetherness. The effects of the family violence were expressed in hostile family patterns of communication, with unhealthy and aggressive ways of interacting with each other. This impacted on each family member’s anxiety and stress response. They were not in tune with their bodies and each other, which impacted on their safety.

Family Yoga supported Emma’s family to shift patterns of communication from hostile and aggressive to respectful and kind. It also created a sense of team work and togetherness. Family Yoga provided the space and permission for Emma and her children to enjoy being around each other.


Emma about Family Yoga

“Make it longer. We loved it! Haven’t had so much fun with my kids in years… ‘Mum, it’s Tuesday, yeah, we have yoga’. Thank you so much for this course. It has brought my children and I together in a happy, healthy, safe and fun environment”.

About the program

Family Yoga is a unique program, which was developed in response to the needs of families. Counsellors talk a lot about theories that will help clients but it is often a challenge to help them to shift from understanding to being able to apply it to real life. Family Yoga involves all members of the family in the ‘doing’. We have found it more successful in shifting family dynamics than family therapy and individual child counselling. The program uses trauma aware principles to create a safe environment to support individuals with their emotional and physiological states, while also strengthening family attachment relationships. This program has been responsive to, and made improvements based on client feedback. For example, the group changed from a six week to an eight week program.

Road to Excellence and International Recognition

The Family Yoga program was presented at the International Childhood Trauma Conference in Melbourne this year, giving EACH an opportunity to showcase this program and demonstrate the excellence in our trauma informed practice in supporting our vulnerable families.