This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
spiritual aspects of life to achieve optimal health. It uses natural herbal remedies, non-traditional therapies, yoga and meditation, among other things, to correct or maintain that balance. Its popularity in the US as an alternative medicine continues to increase steadily. As more and more people turn to Ayurvedic healing for their healthcare solutions, the search for trained professionals in this specialty field also grows. What is an Ayurvedic professional? In the US, the term can refer to an assortment of different practitioners that might vary from highly trained physician to self-taught novice. Since the practice of Ayurveda embraces the belief that treating the emotional and spiritual states is equally as important as treating the physical, the vocational possibilities for potential future Ayurvedic professionals are numerous. In the US, there are no regulations on Ayurvedic training or practice. What this means to the person considering Ayurvedic healing as a profession is that, no matter what an institution proclaims about the title you receive from them, there is no Ayurvedic medical degree recognized in the US. This is important to remember because a number of schools found online award Bachelor and even Master Degrees in the specialty, but these are certifications that are only recognized by the institutions themselves. Many Ayurvedic practitioners in the US have had previous formal medical training before specializing in Ayurvedic medicine. Other professionals in the field who have no medical training may narrow their focus to specific areas of Ayurvedic healing, such as massage therapists or yoga instructors. More typically, most Ayurvedic practitioners in the US today practice as consultants. There are some excellent schools found in the US that offer comprehensive training in the discipline, including color therapy and the preparation of herbal medicines. The National Ayurvedic Medical Association is the nationally recognized professional association for the US. The purpose of the group is to increase the credibility of the Ayurvedic healing arts and ultimately establish licensing regulations. To date, they are responsible for establishing a set of minimum standard requirements for Ayurvedic practitioners in the US today.
As with any other doctor, true Ayurvedic physicians are formally trained. They attend medical school in India for 5-6 years, at which point the successful candidate is certified by a medical degree in Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery. If an Ayurvedic physician chooses to practice in the US, he is restricted by law from using the title of doctor in any form. He will, however, have BAMS listed after his name to indicate his certification.
of pursuing a professional specialty status becoming an Ayurvedic practitioner might specialize in a
What should you look for in an Ayurvedic practioner? The true Ayurvedic medical doctor has been formally trained in India. The letters DAMS or BAMS will follow his name, signifying his degree in Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery. As an extra precaution, you can check the doctor’s certification by his degreeregistration number with the Department of AYUSH in India, since all practitioners are required to register with the government. The increasing popularity of ayurvedic medicine has, unfortunately, also increased the number of professional imposters that only claim to be practioners. If an Ayurvedic physician chooses to practice in the US, he is restricted by law from practicing as a doctor. Since the US has no national regulations on who can be called an Ayurvedic practitioner,
Ayurveda can be defined as a system which uses the inherent principles of nature to help maintain health in a person by keeping the individual's body, mind, and spirit in perfect equilibrium with nature
Practice in the United States
Practitioners of Ayurveda in the United States have various types of training. Some are trained in the Western medical tradition (such as medical or nursing school) and others in a whole medical system called naturopathic medicine, before or after they study Ayurveda. Many learn at one of India's many colleges for Ayurveda. Practitioners may differ as to which aspects of Ayurvedic practice they are trained in (for example, being trained in massage but not in preparing herbal treatments, and vice versa).
The United States does not have a national standard for certifying or training Ayurvedic practitioners. Some Ayurvedic professional organizations are collaborating to develop licensing requirements. Consumers should know that not all practitioners who offer services or treatments that are called "Ayurvedic" have been trained in an Ayurvedic medical school. (Services in spas and salons often fall into this category.) It is important to ask about a practitioner's training and experience.
Ayurvedic Health Studies include training in Ayurvedic physiology, traditional vedic medical theory, healthy living practices and disease management. Students will learn how to determine body constitutions (prakriti), and how to treat disharmonies of the constitution through the four main classifications of Ayurveidic disease management: cleansing (shodan) palliation (shaman) ; rejuvenation ( rasayana) ;.and, or mental hygiene (satvajaya). Students will learn how to serve as lifestyle counselors regarding diet, breathwork and yoga instruction, and as therapists performing vedic massage, herbal, and aroma therapy treatments. FCIH is offering the first degree granting program for Ayurveda in the U.S. The Associates degree program also includes a massage diploma thus giving the graduate a gateway to practice. The certification programs interface with the degree program giving an option also to allied health professionals and lisenced massage therapists to learn this ancient effective healing system. Lisenced massage therapists and allied health professionals may elect to take the certification courses or transfer into the Associates degree program. Graduates from our Ayurvedic Practitioner Certification II and Associates of Science in Ayurvedic Health Studies Programs are eligible for the National Ayurvedic Medical Association (NAMA) certification. In a culture changing its attitude toward health, and with increased
An Ayurvedic practitioner may choose to have a private practice or to join other health care practitioners at a wellness center, teach public education classes on Ayurvedic principles, supervise a pancha karma center, teach at an Ayurvedic college, and conduct workshops, seminars and retreats. There is a bright future ahead for dedicated and competent Ayurvedic practitioners, both as this type of healing increases in popularity, and personally and financially. As with other holistic health practices, the amount of money an Ayurvedic practitioner can expect to make varies with location and their client base, as well as how they apply their practice.
Certified Ayurvedic Consultant Certified Ayurvedic Practitioner, Licensed Massage Practitioner
Master of Arts – Ayurveda The NIAM Ayurvedic Spa Training Program Ayurvedic Massage Therapist
As of this writing, the quality of educational programs in the United States continues to vary widely. However, in 2004, the National Ayurvedic Medical Association established the first educational standards in the United States . Graduates of schools that meet these minimum standards are able to receive practitioner status in the national association. These standards, while not legal precedents, have motivated schools to uplift the quality of their practitioner training programs. The focus or vision of schools varies in the United States . The California College of Ayurveda is the leader in clinical practitioner training with the intention of educating its students to be fully qualified practitioners capable of disease management as well as lifestyle training. Almost all other schools focus on training students in lifestyle management and do not address clinical disease management. Ayurveda training programs in the United States fall into four major categories: (1) correspondence programs, (2) full-time training programs (3) weekend training programs, (4) short-term seminar courses. There is also a division within practitioner training programs, with some of these program offering internship and others not. In most States, schools require State approval to operate. State approval is based primarily upon financial stability and professional operation. Several institutions in the country have successfully by-passed State regulations by declaring themselves religious institutions or churches. While State approval is required for non-religious institutions, there are several programs operating in the United States without proper approval by their State governing body. These schools, operating illegally, are much less professionally run. Because of limited oversight, these schools continue to operate. The National Association has not taken any action against these schools.
Development of Ayurvedic Associations
The National Ayurvedic Medical Association is the major body in the United States representing the Ayurvedic profession. A non-profit association, it was founded in 1998 by four individuals: Dr. Marc Halpern, of the California College of Ayurveda, Wynn Werner, of the Ayurvedic Institute, Kumar Batra, and Cynthia Copple. The National Association represents the interests of Ayurvedic practitioners while trying to advance the Ayurvedic profession. The Association has held annual conferences attracting 150250 practitioners each of the past three years. The Association's most important accomplishment to date has been the establishment of minimum practitioner standards. The California Association of Ayurvedic Medicine is the only established Ayurvedic State Association in the United States . A non-profit association, it was founded by Dr. Marc Halpern along with his graduate students in 1997. Dr. Halpern left the board in 2001. The organization has held several State conferences attracting 75-300 practitioners. The State Association has been minimally active in recent years owing to
political infighting. The Association has adopted the National Association's guidelines for practitioner training.
Regulation of Ayurveda in the United States of America
There is no significant regulation of Ayurvedic practice or education in America . Schools in most states must apply for a State license or State approval to provide education. Several states do not have this requirement. The practice of Ayurveda is not formally regulated either. None of the fifty states require a license to practice Ayurvedic health care. Ayurvedic massage is regulated through the massage laws of most states. In two states ( Minnesota and California ) specific laws were passed protecting the practice of alternative medicine and the practitioners who provide those services. The practice of Ayurveda is protected within these laws so long as the practice falls within the limitations of the law and does not impinge on the scope of practice of other licensed health care professions.
A range of therapies: An Ayurvedic practitioner uses a range of healing therapies to balance the doshas and bolster prana, including:
• • • • • • • • •
Acupuncture Aromatherapy Diet Herbal medicine Massage Meditation Pancha karma - (lit. 'five therapies') a specialised treatment consisting of five therapies resulting in internal detoxification and balancing of the doshas or the three energies (Vata, Pitta and Kapha) Sound therapy, or the use of mantras Yoga.
WHO PRACTICES AYURVEDA? There are three categories of ayurvedic practitioners. Some have undergone a rigorous medical training for five or six years in India or Sri Lanka and are awarded degrees in Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery - they have the letters BAMS or DAMS after their names. There are also many western trained healthcare practitioners (both orthodox and complementary) who incorporate ayurvedic principles into their practices. There is no means of assessing or accrediting such trainings. The third type of ayurvedic practitioner is one who offers lifestyle guidance using ayurvedic principles. They do not offer medical advice but teach how to use the principles of ayurveda in everyday life. Practitioners from all three categories can be very helpful and, if at all possible, you should be guided by personal recommendations. If that's
not possible, I have listed resources at the back to help you find an ayurvedic professional.
This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
We've moved you to where you read on your other device.
Get the full title to continue reading from where you left off, or restart the preview.