Valley Congressman Tim Ryan is on a quest to bring a little Zen to Capitol Hill.
Ryan and the Congressional Yogi Association hosted its first yoga event on May 1. It was part of the kickoff for Mental Health Awareness Month.
The efforts were led by former NFL linebacker Keith Mitchell. Members of congress, congressional staff and the public participated in Yoga on the Hill.
The event was part of an initiative promoting mental and physical wellness for veterans.
With the support of Embassy of India, Washington D.C., the newly founded Congressional Yogi Association organized the first-ever “Yoga on the Hill” on May 1st, 2015.
The event was organized to advocate better physical and mental health for US military veterans and worked as a curtain-raiser for the forthcoming First International Day of Yoga. Keith Mitchell, former NFL pro and a celebrity yogi, who suffered a paralyzing spinal injury and recovered through the practice of yoga, led the event. Prominent guests who participated were Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH), Rep. Charles Rangel (D-NY), Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA), Brennan Mullaney (Team RWB- veterans’ welfare organization) and Tom Voss (Iraq War veteran) besides senior Embassy officials. The event was well received and around 60 Congressional officials participated in the yoga and meditation session.
The yoga event was focused on practice of yoga as an effective tool for the physiological and physical healing of war veterans who get affected by mental illnesses upon returning from combat. It is estimated that since the start of the war in Afghanistan in 2001, more than 100,000 combat veterans have sought help for mental illness and yoga is considered to be a form of health care support in such cases of post-traumatic stress disorder.
Yoga is becoming an increasingly more popular therapy for veterans dealing with stress.