Find information about my current classes here.
In 2016, I taught yoga to students on a wind-powered sailing ship that was cruising the Greek Isles. It was so far from anything I'd ever pictured myself doing when I first came to yoga years prior (heck, I couldn't have imagined this experience even a year prior!).
My journey into yoga began much as many people's, I think — with an asana class at the local YMCA during the late 1990s. This particular class took place immediately after a high-intensity step class, and the studio was not only smelly but freezing cold. And while I only attended a few of these classes, there was an immediate draw to ... something.
A few years later I found a more traditional yoga studio and my first long-term teacher, Marlene Linkhart. Her area of expertise was in restorative yoga; her teacher was Judith Hanson Lasater, whose book Relax and Renew would become a big part of my studies along with Marlene's guidance.
Marlene and restorative yoga found me at a time in my life when I was overwhelmed by chronic depression, panic and anxiety, and obsessive compulsive disorder. These classes, and the home practice I would develop, certainly would not solve my issues, but they would become a tool in management, and a way for me to look more closely at myself.
I began taking classes taught by Jessica Patterson in the mid-2000s, and after completing an intensive Yoga of Nutrition workshop with her, knew that I wanted to learn more from this amazing woman. During the 2012-13 winter season, I participated in, and graduated from, the six-month, 230-hour RootEd Yoga Teacher Training and Apprenticeship program. It was life-changing.
During that time, I wrote this to explain the process to friends:
Thanks to all who have been asking me about "yoga teacher training." I love being asked and I hate being asked, because, honestly, most days I have no idea how to describe what I'm going through. RootEd is so much more than learning how to teach an exercise class. Or how to meditate. Or what each chakra means. At this point, it's about a real shift in my thinking. About who am I, what I do, how I'm doing it. About who I connect with, and why, and how. About learning how to be in relationship with myself and loved ones and the earth and the air that I breathe and the food that I eat. It's about letting the tears flow and releasing a lifetime of not feeling good enough. It's about reading more from authors I've already been drawn to over the years and really letting their words settle deep inside. It's about finding my inner tree, rooted to a larger consciousness, and growing up, and reaching out. It's about finding a place for my particular dance (literal and figurative), and it's about, as Jessica likes to say, revealing the teacher who already resides within. The one who knows herself, and meets everyone knowing, innately, that we all come together as whole and complete beings to travel this journey together.
If you're wanting to more fully explore yourself, and yoga beyond the poses you can make on a mat, I highly recommend checking out Jessica's program.
During RootEd, and since then, I have had the privilege to expand the list of people who have become my teachers. My love and gratitude goes out to each of them:
- Mark Whitwell
- Michele Lawrence
- Judith Hanson Lasater
- Matthew Sanford
- Becca Roodhuyzen
- Jenny Finn
- David Abookire
- Neil Pearson
- Antonio Sausys
- Dyanna Taylor
- Jillian Pransky
When I entered RootEd, I had no intention of teaching in any formal format. I have learned, very clearly, that you should never say never. Jessica honored me by naming me as a 2013-14 RootEd Mentor, and I am now a 200-hour RYT (Registered Yoga Teacher through the Yoga Alliance) and Heart of Yoga teacher under Mark Whitwell. I received my Relax and Renew® Trainer certification, through Judith Hanson Lasater, in February 2015, and I've received additional training in yoga for pain care and grief relief.
I currently teach two weekly restorative classes at Root: Center for Yoga & Sacred Studies. I also conduct one-on-one sessions with individuals wanting to set up a regular and tailored home restorative practice, and offer group workshops. And you'll find yoga showing up often as a topic on my blog.