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Toyosu Bosai Festival 2024 | Yoga x Disaster Preparedness

Toyosu, Tokyo Japan: Patanjali Japan Foundation participated in the Toyosu Bosai Festival 2024, held on March 9th and 10th. “Bosai” translates to “disaster prevention” and is a key concept in Japan where natural disasters like earthquakes, typhoons and tsunamis are a common occurrence. The event aimed to provide essential resources and information for such occurrences, as well as to raise awareness on the importance of not only disaster “prevention” but also “preparedness”.



The Toyosu Bosai Festival collaborated with its ambassador "Idol Master Million Live”, a renowned anime in Japan, in the wish to attract young audiences and add playfulness and comfort in all the seriousness of the matter. As expected, the event drew in many fans of the anime, and visitors were given special cards featuring “anime idols” in exchange for purchasing goods or subscribing to services at various booths.



There were a total of 27 booths set up in the Toyosu Park area promoting goods and services related to “Bosai”, ranging from food and drink stalls (mainly emergency rations), hands-on AED training, and emergency tools such as backpacks, sanitary supplies and portable toilets, etc.




PJF Booth

The Patanjali Japan Foundation team also set up a booth which focused on promoting yoga for stress and anxiety relief in the case of an emergency, as well as maintaining physical stability at evacuation shelters. 


In Japan, it is very common that evacuation centers have very limited space. After a few days, people start experiencing what is called “economy class syndrome” where pressure builds in the lower legs and blood flow is reduced due to limited movement. This can eventually cause blood clots to form in the lungs which can lead to serious health issues.


We promoted yoga asanas as a way to maintain a healthy blood flow as well as certain breathing techniques to alleviate symptoms of stress. Our teachers Varada sensei and Nivi sensei also conducted health counseling sessions offering personalized advice to those who shared their current health issues. Over 70 counselling sessions were held in the course of two days and many recurring health issues amongst visitors were shoulder/neck pain, and anxiety issues.


Teachers suggested Sukshma Vyama (micro-exercises) for pain in the shoulders and neck, and Bhramari Pranayama for alleviating symptoms of anxiety. We also distributed flyers to promote our upcoming event in Yamanakako for International Day of Yoga and many registrations came through successfully.




Stage Demonstration

Amongst the many booths, there was also a stage set up for organizations to deliver pep talks and special dance performances for anime enthusiasts.


Our Chief Sewa Officer Ashutosh Sensei along with Koto-ku City Councilor Kaname Yoshida san conducted a 30-minute pranayama session on stage, in wish to promote yoga and bosai as a symbiotic concept.



Many visitors actively participated in the pranayama session and found their perception of yoga changing. Prior to the event, many believed that yoga required ample space, flexibility, and special equipment. However, they were pleasantly surprised to find that yoga could be easily practiced anywhere at any time. We hope that this realization leads to more people incorporating yoga into their daily lives which is ultimately the biggest goal for our organization.



Conclusion

The Toyosu Bosai Festival 2024 proved to be a valuable platform for educating and engaging the community on disaster preparedness while introducing them to the benefits of yoga for mental and physical well-being. It was a pleasure to see a younger community engaging in our practices and showing interest in our services and we hope to contribute to similar events in the future.


We express our gratitude to the organizers of the event and all those who volunteered in promoting our services at the event.



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