A two day retreat and workshop learning and experiencing how Yoga can help in the prevention and treatment of heart disease

Yoga Teacher and Cardiac Nurse Sherezade Ruano with Consultant Cardiologist.

Day One - A comprehensive workshop program on Yoga, stress management and heart disease.

Learn and develop dynamic Yoga practices in order to release stress and tension in specific areas - combined with tools and techniques to slow down you brain-mind-body connection and activate your Parasympathetic Nervous System through Yoga Nidra and guided Meditation.

Tecniques to shift from SNS to PNS through breathing techniques used by Yogis (Pranayama). Practicing and learning how the nervous system works, and the consequences of the fight-or-flight response vs a mindful way of thinking.

Day Two has a Cardiology focus: Taking cardiology measurements and exploring the therapeutic approaches for treating different heart conditions such as Atrial Fibrillation, and learn how Yoga practice is designed for people wishing to avoid heart problems as well as therapy for cardiac patients.

Schedule. Content

Day one- Saturday                                                                                                                  dates tbc

10:30 am – 12:30 pm

Following a walk around the landscaped gardens, discuss the importance of our contact with nature and the need for an appropriate healing environment.

Stress, anxiety and learning how to breathe!

Group Presentation.

Workshop methodology


11:15 am – 12:30 pm

What is Yoga. How it is used around the world (therapeutically, fitness, mindfulness, ultimately to achieve enlightenment). 

Why Yoga was created

Importance of asana practice for meditation. Adjusting the body for long meditation. Meditation-key point for stress reduction program

Different uses for different medical conditions - the pureness of yoga.

Areas of the body where we hold tension and stress; neck, collarbone, shoulders and sternum. Explanation of how different yoga poses (asanas) helps cardiac patients; heart opening, gentle back bends, stretching.

PRACTICE: Stress release flow sequence. ‘Learn how to unhold/release these areas. Gentle practice for heart conditions. Experiential anatomy of the heart and vascular system by feeling your heartbeat, blood flow, body temperature, breathing pattern… simple techniques to measure heart rate.

What is Stress? Physiology of stress, causes, stressors.


Location in relation to the heart, lungs, pericardium, vagus nerve. Anatomy of movement. The four aspects of the breath.

PRACTICE: Correct technique for diaphragmatic breathing.

12:30 – 13:30 (Vegetarian Lunch)

13:30 – 15:00 pm  (Intro to Cardiology Day One)

Cardiology area

Using mindfulness and meditation to slow heart rate. Stress and anxiety programs. Walking meditation and contact with nature.

Where mindfulness and Yoga meet Cardiology.

The role and purpose of yoga for Heart Disease


Three main areas where yoga helps tremendously:

1)       Blood pressure – explaining what it is, how stress situations raised your blood pressure. How to measure and outcomes after a yoga practice.

2)       Heart rate – outcomes after yoga practice.

3)       Heart-Brain coherence/connection

* Scientific evidence research about heart conditions and the benefits of Yoga

15:00 – 15:30 pm    

Difference between Deep Meditation and Yoga Nidra

Guided Meditation + visualization

15:30 – 16:00 pm – Tea Break

16:00 – 17:00pm - The impact of deep relaxation; Yoga Nidra in a Stress management program. + PRACTICE: Initiation to Yoga Nidra

PRANAYAMA: Nadi Shodana and Brahmari Pranayama practice.

17:00 - 18:00pm - Yoga for Heart Disease patient’s PRACTICE + Theory.

18:00- 19:00pm - The Nervous System and STRESS

Division of nervous system; division (PNS, SNS)

How does stress affect our nervous system


Day Two

Sunday – The heart as the rhythm of life

The beginning of a good friendship; Yoga and the heart

10:00 – 12:00 am  - What do we know about our heart? Anatomy plus short reminder about relation with lungs and diaphragm

The breath as a way to control heart rate (pranayama group practice). Breath-mind-heart rate connection

Anatomy of ribcage and diaphragm (heart and lungs in relation to diaphragm). Pranayama guided practice to increase lung capacity. Vagus nerve activation - role in stress and anxiety


1 Pranayama or asana, influencing the vagus nerve.

2 Restorative Yoga. This practice will be focused on mainly twists coordinated with breath. Why twists to ‘access’ the vagus nerve?

Restorative Yoga will be divided in two:

1)       Partner work

2)       Group – teacher will guide the practice

12:30- 14:00 pm

Rhythm disturbance and yoga practice specifically designed for those conditions such as Atrial Fibrillation with scientific background

The importance of a new paradigm and model of care for patients suffering heart disease

Why yoga should be included in prevention, treatment, rehabilitation programs and hospitals

Cardiology final measurements; blood pressure, Respiratory rate, heart rate and ECG report

§  Q&A


See article - Stress Management through Mindfulness and Yoga

Yoga and Cardiology Weekend Masterclass

Yoga Teacher and Cardiac Nurse Sherezade Ruano with Consultant Cardiologist, Prof Avijit Lahiri

Stress Management through Mindfulness and Yoga

Medical science has taken giant strides forward, yoga employs a fully integrated approach; Read Full article

Weekend Workshop at Withersdane

Strictly limited attendance - reserve your place

‘A healing tour throughout your body’

“From the smallest cells in the body, transferring our attention to the bones, muscles, fascia, skin, outer and energetic body…using your mind as a vehicle to consciously explore, fix and heal your body.” Sherezade Ruano

Sherezade Ruano Santana Yoga Teacher

I’ve been practicing yoga for many years. I believe in adhering to the old teachings and principles of Yoga. It is important that what started out as a miraculous and wise healing practice does not become yet another commercial vehicle for business and thus lose its way.

Sherezade Ruano

Professor Avijit Lahiri
Cardiac Research Nurse and Yoga Teacher

Sherezade Ruano currently works as a Cardiac & Diabetes Research Nurse in a clinical study, PROCEED, in Central London. Strong motivation and an enthusiastic disposition has lead her to create and maintain a high quality clinical research environment. She also helps to run a Cath Lab clinic showing proficiency in developing and delivering education to all patients.

Being passionate about research, Sherezade identifies the need for change in the service and management of patients at risk of and with cardiovascular disease (CVD).  I believe that in medicine we need a different perspective and approach to health as a whole, in order to better meet the needs of all our patients. The work that Sherezade does in an excellent example of the new direction.

‘As health professionals, we must believe in what we do and offer. Promoting and nurturing patient’s trust are key points to successful and pleasant relationships not only within a research study but also in life’

Professor Avijit Lahiri