Monday, March 25, 2013

Yin Yoga and Yoga Nidra Coming Soon!!!!!

Starting NEXT WEEK, I'll be offering a Yin Yoga class on Wednesday nights at HeartStream Yoga and Wellness.  I'm very excited to have the opportunity to offer this class.  I first encountered Yin yoga 4 or 5 years ago, and have taken every chance since to engage in this luscious practice.  It is a very simple, but very deep and very effective practice of long holds (3 minutes or more per pose). 

Yin Yoga with Yoga Nidra

Yin Yoga is a quiet, internal practice of being present with the body and with what is arising in the mind.  It is a physically passive practice of deep compression and release.  It is derived from Taoist Yoga and is a beautiful complement to an active (vinyasa, yang) yoga practice by making your regular yoga practice ‘juicier.”  Additionally, Yin Yoga can be an effective way to address postural and structural imbalances in the body.

In this yin yoga class we will:

  • Create space in the body
  • Lubricate the joints to find ease and greater range of motion
  • Clear and open the energy channels in the body, allowing from greater circulation of chi and prana
  • Release the tension held in the Fascia (this is the same tension that massage practices such as myo-fascial release and Rolfing address)
  • Marinate the connective tissues- tendons, ligaments and fascia- as well as the bones and joints in order to increase ease and flexibility and improve the functioning of the body as a system

Each class will end with a Yoga Nidra session.  Yoga Nidra is a practice of dynamic relaxation that has been shown to dramatically reduce stress.  In studies, it has been shown to be effective for battling burnout, curbing anxiety, and alleviating PTSD.  It is also incredibly supportive to creative work.  Yoga Nidra is practiced in a comfortable lying down position and is similar to a guided visualization.  It encourages the body’s parasympathetic nervous system to engage the rest and heal response while it invites the mind to drop into theta brainwaves thereby effecting profound restoration and healing. 

For More info on Yoga Nidra, Check out these articles:

 Reflections of Peace: Yoga Nidra for Anxiety article in Yoga Journal by Katherine Griffin

Healing Life's Traumas article in Yoga Journal by Denis Wills

Article by Karen Brody (iRest is a version of Yoga Nidra)

For More info on Yin Yoga, Check out these sites

Paul Grilley's Website

Yin Yoga article by Paul Grilley in Yoga Journal

Yin Yoga Interview with Sarah Powers

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Spring Equinox

It is snowing today.  Yesterday marked the Spring Equinox, the mid point fo the solar year - the moment of balance between night and day, between light and dark.

It is a time for reflection, as moments marking shifts always are.  It asks what part of yourself hides in darkness?   Can you choose to honor that part of yourself?  What part of you walks in the light?  Can you choose to celebrate that part of you, in all its imperfect glory?

On the equinox we balance on this cusp between the flood of summer sun and the chill of winter dark for one moment only.  For one day of 12 hours sun and 12 hours moon.  We are poised to begin movement again.  We can only move forward into the lengthening days.  We cannot walk backwards into the future.  What in your life is no longer serving you?  Does it consume your energy and your vision?  Can you choose to let go of anything that is keeping you from living fully in the here and in the now, poised in balance?  It is only by releasing that we make space for the growth of what we already are.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Donation Based Lectures at HeartStream!

This coming week on Tuesday and Wednesday nights you'll find me at HeartStream, participating in what promises to be a couple of pretty amazing lectures.  They are being offered for a suggested $15 donation, so if you're a poor hippie/student/yogi, they are still accessible.

Its so exciting when we get to experience master teachers here in our own frozen and remote northern home!  I personally thrive on the chance to engage in learning from amazing human beings, and would love to see this continuing to happen in Fairbanks.  So if you're at all interested, please come join us!  These lectures promise to be as rewarding for the student of philosophy or the student of life as for the yogi. 

Jai Bhagwan,

More information is available at

Donna has invited Christopher Tompkins to visit Fairbanks   before his workshop at Inner Dance Yoga Studio in Anchorage!     His weekend workshop in Anchorage will be an in-depth 10 hour workshop, March 23-24. Visit Inner Dance for more details. Christopher Tompkins, MTS, MA, PhD track, has 3 degrees in Religion and Sanskrit, including Master’s Degrees from Harvard and UC Berkeley. Christopher lectures nationally in Universities and Yoga centers on the history, philosophy, and practices of Indian Yoga. He is the co-originator of the Foundation for Yoga (

March 19- 7:30-9pm- I. Defining Yoga. Come and learn what it means to experience ‘Yoga’ as the liberated state of Being, how this state is accessible to us in every moment, and how we may attune to it.
“Yoga is the state experienced when the cyclical, anxious activity of the mind (suddenly) dissolves.” –Yogasūtra I.2.
March 20- 7:30-9pm   Samskāras: Identifying Our Unconscious Mental Habits (citta-vritti) that Trigger Cycles of Suffering 
Christopher will guide us toward identifying and eliminating the source of all self-created suffering–the subconscious ‘impressions’ which unconsciously perpetuate the anxious ‘mind cycle’ (chitta-vritti), that obscures the Self within and causes us to unconsciously grasp for happiness in the materialistic world of impermanence. Visit Christopher Tompkins on Youtube.

Both are donation based lectures. Suggested donation $15/lecture

Inspiring me :

image courtesy of

Sometimes the universe sends us the message we need to hear.
And when we don't listen, we are sent it again.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Workshop: Chakra Journeying

Chakra Journeying
with Elissa and Jasmine

All Workshops on Sunday from 3:35-5:30
All Levels; Beginners Welcome

$100 for the entire series or $30 drop-in
Stone sets and pendulums available for purchase

April 7: Introduction and the Root Chakra:

Have you ever wondered what exactly the chakras are, or why this energy system is so important?  Do you know about the chakras but want to engage with your own energy more consciously?

In the Introduction you will learn

·        What is a chakra
·        How to use a pendulum to dowse your own chakras and read what they have to say
·        Advanced pendulum techniques for in-depth personal exploration
·        How to tell if you have a block in your chakra
·        How to re-balance a blocked or excessive chakra using aromatherapy and the energies of stones
·        What is the relationship between the chakras, the nadis, kundalini, and samskaras
·        What do chakras have to do with electromagnetism and the endocrine system
·        How Peruvian Shamans use the "rivers of light" and the chakras to heal
·        How body language, posture, chakras, and your aura effect what happens in your life

The Root Chakra provides our foundation and is associated with grounding, manifestation, security, the skeletal system and the color red.  We will:

·        Dowse the root chakra with a pendulum and discover what your root energy is
·        Work with a "balance" aromatherapy blend to target the root chakra
·        Explore the resonance of hematite (emotional protection, assists with grounding, maintains boundaries) through a guided meditation
·        Energize the muladhara through a practice of grounding asanas
·        Explore the relationship of the bones and skeletal structure to energetic and postural stability
·        Celebrate grounded energy with the mantra "om gam ganapatayai namahah"

April 14: The Sacral and Solar Plexus Chakras

In this workshop we will celebrate the sweetness of life, passion, and creativity.  We will explore the seat of our personal power and the fire of our will.

The Sacral Chakra is the seat of our emotions.  It is associated with movement, water, creativity, desire, pleasure, and the color orange.  We will:
·        Dowse the sacral chakra to see the sacral energy's movement
·        Work with "allure" essential oil blend to access this chakra
·        Explore the energies of carnelian (increases concentration; helps find courage) in relation to the sacral chakra through a guided meditation
·        Unlock the svadisthana through a hip opening asana practice

The Solar Plexus Chakra is the home of the will and our personal power.  It is associated with the sun, transformation, fire and the color yellow.  We will:
·        Read the solar plexus chakra with a pendulum
·        Use "harmony" aromatherapy to release this powerful chakra
·        Access the energies of citrine (manifests abundance, transmutes negativity, energizes) to support this chakra through a guided meditation
·        Stoke the fire of your solar plexus with kapalabhati pranayama
·        Energize your manipurna with an asana practice of warrior poses and core support

April 21: Heart and Throat Chakra

Join us to celebrate our expansive capacity to hold love and express truth!

The Heart Chakra is the home of unconditional love.  It is associated with compassion, devotion, connection and the color green. We will:
·        Read the heart energy with a pendulum
·        Greet the heart chakra with "compassion" essential oil blend
·        Engage the vibrations of rose quartz (unconditional love for self and others) to support the heart's expansive nature through a guided meditation
·        Unlock the anahata energy through a backbending asana practice of heart openers
·        Celebrate love and compassion with the mantra "lokah samastah sukino bhavantu"

The Throat Chakra is the home of self expression.  It is associated with communication, creativity, truth and the color blue.  We will:
·        Dowse the throat chakra with a pendulum
·        Access your "expressive" self with aromatherapy
·        Engage with the energy of sodalite (stone of truth; enhances communication) through a guided meditation
·        Open and Energize the vishuddha through an asana practice balancing compression and release of the neck and shoulders
·        Explore the resonances of the bija mantras: lam, vam, ram, yam, ham, om.

April 29th: Third Eye and Crown Chakras

In this fourth and final workshop, we move into the chakras that are our connection with the subtle and the universal.  We will access our intuition to perceive our connection to the divine. 

The Third Eye Chakra is the seat of our intuition.  It is associated with imagination, clear-seeing, insight, dreams, and the color indigo.  We will
·        Use a pendulum to dowse the third eye chakra
·        Open the third eye with an “insight” aromatherapy blend
·        Invite the qualities of Amythyst (opens intuition, enhances psychic gifts) through a guided meditation
·        Use the microcosmic orbital breath to invigorate the third eye
·        Support and activate the Ajna through an asana practice of supported forward folds
·        Follow your own inner wisdom in a guided posture flow of meditation-in-movement

The Crown Chakra is the seat of wisdom.  It is associated with divine connection, bliss,
Consciousness, and the color white. We will:
·        Read the energy of the crown chakra using a pendulum
·        Expand into our own consciousness with a “cosmic” blend of aromatherapy
·        Attune to the resonance of clear Quartz (stone of power, raises consciousness, purifies) through a guided meditation
·        Energize the sahasrara through an asana practice of engaged standing poses and gentle inversions
·        Celebrate your connection to your own higher self, the universe, or the divine with the mantra “So Hum

The Teachers:
Elissa Turner is a gifted energy healer.  Her healing practice SoulAscent operates out of HeartStream Yoga and Wellness.  She is a Certified ChiBall instructor.

Jasmine Johnson-Kennedy is a 200-hr certified Kripalu yoga teacher with a fascination for the relationship between the energetic and physical bodies.

For more information or with questions please contact