A Yoga Weekend with Jen Ren’e

Join Jen Ren’e at Centered City Yoga  for a wonderful weekend of yoga in a weekend series of technique mixed with joy, created for all levels! We are delighted to host one of our nations most talented teachers of yoga in Salt Lake City. Whether you are advanced, or learning to find proper alignment with breath in your practice, you will benefit deeply from this special weekend with Jen.
Dates: 
Friday September 7th-Sunday September 9th
Yoga Workshop Signup
Yoga Essentials
Friday, September 7th, 6-8:00pm
This workshop will focus on the essentials – Tristhana, Vinyasa and Sun Salutations.

Tristana loosely translates into three standing places – in Ashtnaga this is the breath, posture, and gazing point. These important places of action should always be a part of the asana practice.

Vinyasa is the breathing and moving system. This generates heat and cleansing. The perfect example of when vinyasa occurs is with the sun salutations.

The sun salutations – stringing together body, breath, mind and soul. Sun salutations connect our breath and our movement and begin the practice of yoga and meditation. We will fine tune the most basic asanas and relate them to more advanced asanas.

This workshop is appropriate for all levels. 

Be Hippy : A Hip Opening Workshop

Saturday, September 8th, 10am-12:00pm

There are so many reasons to do hip-opening poses. As humans we store a lot of negative emotions and stress in our hips. And as westerners we spend way too much time sitting – causing a lot of tightness through the hips which can lead to back pain and poor posture

This workshop will take the student through a sequence to improve range of motion in the hips and work towards difficult asanas like foot behind head and lotus.

This workshop is appropriate for all levels.

Weightless Transitions
Saturday, September 8th, 1:00-3:00pm

In yoga transitions can be more difficult than the pose itself. This workshop is designed to break them down and make them more accessible. In their simplest form, transitions are just physics – it’s all about transferring your body weight and knowing when to lift.

This workshop will focus on moving from your center and moving effortlessly through the transition like sun salutations, jump backs and jump throughs.

This, in turn, easily relates to inversions like handstand and pincha mayurasana – so we will be sure to save some time to transitions our weight out of our feed and into our hands.

This workshop is appropriate for all levels.

Introduction to Second Series
Sunday, September 9, 11:30am-1:30pm

Join Jen for an exploration of the Intermediate Series of Ashtanga Yoga. This challenging sequence covers it all. You’ll be twisting, back bending, hip opening, arm balancing, stabilizing and moving in just about every direction.

The Second Series works the central channel of the body. The poses challenge both strength and flexibility and has an energizing effect on the body and mind.

This workshop is appropriate for all levels

Yoga Workshop Signup

Investment:

$160 for entire weekend, or $40 each segment

We encourage you to sign up early!

Jen’s Biography:

I’ve been teaching and practicing yoga for about fifteen years now – hard to believe. All those years ago, I dropped into a class while living in a brand new city, and the teacher told me I could either sign up for two months or go home.

I chose to stay, and the rest is history.

Although I have dabbled in various styles of yoga, Ashtanga has always felt like home, and I have been a devoted Ashtanga student since 2007. My practice and teaching are mainly influenced by Tim Miller, who has been my teacher for the past decade. I’ve learned all of primary, intermediate and advanced A series from him and am currently in the home stretch of learning advanced B. More importantly, I’ve learned how to be a devoted and equanimous teacher from watching Tim.

Other sources of inspiration in my teaching and practice include Richard Freeman and Mary Taylor and David Garrigues – all of whom I’ve logged hundreds of hours of study with. My teaching is also influenced by my formal training in Pilates apparatus – so if you find your abs to be extra sore after working with me, that’s why.

After graduate school and a few unfulfilling attempts at holding down corporate jobs, I decided to focus on teaching Mysore – after all, I knew that was where my heart was. I built an awesome Mysore community here in DC. I see around forty students a morning in all their sweaty glory. I have taught students all of the Primary, Intermediate and Advanced A asana. But beyond asana, my biggest goal (and greatest reward) is to instill in my students a devotion, faith and enthusiasm for this practice. I believe wholeheartedly that Ashtanga Yoga is for everyone, and I like to take a real approach to it – it can be beautiful, but usually it’s much more of a beautiful mess.

I believe in the healing and transformative effects of this practice, and I’m so excited that I get to share my love for it with you!

Please learn more about Jen, and her beautiful gifts to humanity on her website

West Jordan Middle School Shines Light on Centered City Yoga

West Jordan Middle School Shines Light on Centered City Yoga
I believe in creating a bright future for our children. With all of my heart. A couple of months ago one of our Centered City Yoga incredible yoga and Qi Gong teachers, Olin Leavitt (Oli), reached out to me asking if I would mind a conference call the next day with he and Dixie Garrison, the principal of West Jordan Middle School. “Of course!” I said, wondering what they wanted to ask me about. The next day I went from curious, to completely excited when I was asked to host 20 students from their school, of which Oli is the psychologist, for a very special field trip in celebration of their learning yoga, meditation, Qi Gong, and other mindful techniques through the school year.

Students Arriving From West Jordan Middle School! Looking from the inside, out.
PC: Dixie Garrison. Students have arrived!

I am delighted to say they came yesterday and spent a very cherished two-hours at Centered City Yoga! It was thrilling to see them all playfully find their way to the studio; I couldn’t help but take a photo from the inside, looking out, while at the same time they were taking photos outside.

Quiet and polite. Respect and kindness from each and all

Upon entering the studio, I met some of the most respectful, kindhearted middle school kids I have ever had the pleasure of teaching. They quietly removed their shoes and tip-toed down the stairs to begin their studio experience in our Earth studio. Each of our three studios has a very special energy. The Earth studio feels like an old school yoga shala. Darker and semi-cool. It is a space that allows the outer world to completely let go of our hearts, while we turn inward deep within ourselves and our practice.

Earth Studio

We began with short introductions. Myself and a sweet warmhearted Ashtanga teacher from our studio, Lauren Holman, talked a bit about how we began to practice yoga, and what it means to us, and how the practice guides our lives. Then we all were led by Oli through a short and delightful Qi Gong session, and into a peaceful guided meditation.

Oli leading Qi Gong. The principal, and other adults practiced right along with the kids!
CCY teacher, Lauren Holman practicing Qi Gong in Earth studio with the youth

Refreshed from the quiet, we then went upstairs to experience the Heart studio on the street level. This studio has no outside windows, but a bit of light comes in through the frosted doors, and stairways. It is more like a veil to the outside, while still allowing a very deep and relaxing quiet to lead our hearts. Here, Lauren taught us some Ashtanga, which is also my daily practice! What fun we had twisting into postures rarely taught outside of the Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga system.

Lauren Holman leading Ashtanga Yoga in Heart studio
Ashtanga Yoga with Lauren Holman, Oli assisting

We had few extra minutes while waiting for a class to finish in our upstairs studio. Oli asked me to give an Ashtanga demonstration. Yikes! The yoga teacher who gets nervous to share her practice. Haha! I tried not to show my nerves (or how not warmed up I was!) yet with trust, I breathed my body into motion demonstrating a few more common poses from the standing and Primary series. I then showed the students a taste of the Intermediate series with Tittibhasana, or firefly pose, all four of the series’ expressions. And then Vatayanasana, or air vehicle pose. How fun! Afterwards the kids played around trying to mimic what they saw. Love! I hope they all keep going with their practice.

Rachel Cieslewicz demonstrating Tittibhasana, meaning “little firefly.” PC: Dixie Garrison
Rachel Cieslewicz demonstratingTittibhasana, meaning “little firefly.” PC: Dixie Garrison

When it was time to go upstairs the students were greeted and blessed by the Crown studio. The Crown studio is the Sun of Centered City Yoga. It is where the outside meets in inside in perfect ying-yang balance. The studio is filled by day with natural light, and a cherished full wall of windows looking out into the vibrant 9th and 9th district. This studio meets each student with exactly what they need from a strong power class, to a restful yin practice.

West Jordan Middle school kids practicing yoga in Crown Studio at Centered City Yoga. PC: Dixie Garrison
Savasana in Crown studio, Centered City Yoga.
Savasana in Crown Studio. PC: Dixie Garrison
Peace begins with each soul. PC: Dixie Garrison

For this last part of our time together I took the students through a few restorative asana, and assisted them in settling into a relaxing Savasana to celebrate the closure of our time together. And as I always love to do, I played one of my crystal singing bowls. When Savasana was finished, we sent a message of love out to our communities, and beyond of peace, happiness and freedom.

I love to play my crystal singing bowls for my students! PC: Dixie Garrison

Saying goodbye, I was filled with gratitude for the experience to teach these incredible youth. I have long believed that weaving mindfulness teachings into our school systems would be a viable way to create a kind and cohesive environment within our schools. West Jordan Middle School is a pinnacle example of the benefits of bringing mindful programs into schools as a way to feel community, learn to resolve stress, and most important, help these kids understand their deep value as a human being.

The completion of our amazing time together! PC: Lauren Holman

I thank Dixie and Oli and their amazing West Jordan Middle School yogis again for blessing my day in such an inspiring way. Indeed, with leaders such as Oli and Dixie, our children do have a bright future on the horizon. And for now, they are practicing each day to be strong, peaceful and positive impacts on our communities!

Love,
Rachel

Teacher Highlight ~ Chris Timmins!

Teacher Highlight ~ Chris Timmins! Centered City Yoga is fortunate to have the best teachers in Utah sharing their expertise with each student. Our teachers create divine beauty in every direction, while working from incredibly deep places of their hearts. So many are quiet in their ways of it, through voice, yet they are shine like the sun in heart and action! I love to highlight our teachers and what they offer not only our amazing yoga family, but also beyond to all they reach in their various paths of life! This month I am delighted to highlight divinely talented musician, knowledgeable teacher, and one of the best humans on this planet, Chris Timmins!

Chris Timmins is a man of many talents and varied interests. He weaves thoughtful yoga classes winding together teachings for the soul, while also intelligently seaming the body into balance, in both strength and flexibility.

A phenomenal musician, Chris plays as one with the guitar, drums, jawharps, walkabout dulcimer, and pretty much anything that shakes, rattles and rolls! I have been dropping hints to (or really begging!) Chris to offer a Friday yoga and music night for months! If this happens, you must come! He is so very talented. His love of music is profound. He is heading to the Telluride Jazz Festival later this year, and he is taking his parents!

 
Any great musician also loves going to concerts and enjoying the work of other artists. In perfect sync, Chris loves going to concerts and shaking his tail feather or banging his head to the rhythms! He wanted to share a favorite song with you, so here you go!

Chris was born to travel. His birthplace was in Dallas, Texas. At age 7 he moved to Denver, then London, and then New Orleans! Yet he graduated high school in Connecticut! He attended college in Durango, CO and Olympia, WA. From there he was on to San Francisco, then Talent, OR, then Ashland, OR, after which he came full circle back to Dallas. And then to Jackson, Mississippi where he discovered yoga! Now he has lived in Salt Lake for 7 years. If you want to learn what brought Chris to Salt Lake City, certainly attend his Monday 5:45pm Power 1 & 2 class and ask him!

Clearly travel is in his blood. As often as possible Chris sets out to see more facets of this world. His favorite travel activities are scuba diving and practicing yoga with people he’s never met until that moment!

He is also an avid sports fan (Go Jazz!), and especially the Dallas Cowboys (he says please don’t hate him for this!) and the Dallas Stars hockey team. As a child he played soccer, football and tennis as a kid.

Chris embodies a beautiful perspective of yoga. He lives what he teaches, and the energy of the studio when you walk in for practice mirrors this. He truly believes yoga is for everyone and is much more than just the physical practice. In addition to learning asana led by breath, you will receive a sweet lesson of philosophy and spiritual traditions of yoga he expertly winds into his classes.

I thoroughly love having Chris teach at Centered City Yoga. We are incredibly fortunate to have this humble human share his knowledge. I highly recommend you take his classes and enjoy a full spectrum practice that will balance even the most challenging of days.

Chris believes strongly in helping those in need. His favorite charity is Aqua Share

Love,

Rachel

Centered City Yoga 2018 Yoga Challenge Winners

Centered City Yoga 2018 Yoga Challenge Winners ~ I love to share the powerful practice and teachings of yoga, truly with all of my heart. Through many years of my own evolution through practicing yoga, as well as teaching thousands of students over time, I have learned something so very important. It can be hard to get into the rhythm of a regular practice. And if one cannot practice with consistency, how will the student of yoga embody the full blessings of yoga?

For this reason, I held a yoga challenge for our Centered City Yoga community to celebrate the first two months of our new 2018 year, as an incentive for students to discover a steady practice, while also enjoying learning from the best yoga teachers in Salt Lake City.

Each student who either completed the challenge of attending practice at our beautiful studio at least 30 days, for the first two months completed the challenge. My hope is this has inspired all of our students to practice even one more day than they might have otherwise. I pray each yogi is enjoying the benefits of this dedication. The blessings of presence and balance in mind, body and spirit are priceless.

As an extra incentive to our yogis, I promised a 6-month pass for free to whomever attended the most classes. And for all of our students who attended at least 30 days of yoga, I created a certificate for each, also held a drawing for a second 6-month pass. We also held a separate staff and teacher challenge with prizes for them instead of a pass. What a joy it was to see an extra spark of dedication planted in the hearts of so many. I thank you all for sharing your amazing energy with our light filled space that is Centered City Yoga.

What amazed me was how not only did some students attend every day, some shared their practice more than once on many days. Each body has different needs and abilities. Each human also has different timing available. It was a joy to see those expressions. I love how so many chose, and continue, to cultivate their practice when it works for them. It brings tears to my eyes contemplating the many ways not only their bodies, but also their lives in general benefit from a steady authentically hearted practice.

When March first came, one of our younger students, Zo Kronberg won the challenge. She in two months practiced yoga at Centered City Yoga 95 times! Oh my goodness. Congratulations Zo! Of our students who completed the challenge, and thus were entered into a drawing, Rachel Rogers won the other 6-month pass. She sadly is leaving town and won’t be able to utilize the pass. So I decided to give each student who completed the challenge a one-month unlimited pass, rather than draw a second person.

For our staff challenge, our amazing darling of teachers, Liz Freedman won the challenge. And the ever dedicated and delightful dear soul friend of our studio, Jim Stringfellow, earned 2nd place for the challenge. I thank them each so very much for the loving kindness they share with our community in many ways beyond the practice. Thank you to all who participated!

I asked the challenge winners to share a few words about their experiences:

Zo Kronberg: Thank you so much! These past two months have been incredible, practicing so often has smoothed my transition through many life changes and kept me strong throughout.

Zo Kronberg
Zo Kronberg and fellow student partner yoga

Rachel Rogers: My favorite quote is, “Beginnings are scary.  Endings are usually sad, but it’s what’s in the middle that counts.  So, when you find yourself at the beginning, just give hope a chance to float up.  And it will.” – Sandra Bullock, in the movie “Hope Floats.” 

Traveling to Salt Lake City was a new beginning for me.  I moved more than 7,000 miles away from home and into the basement apartment of an Airbnb.  I recently graduated with my Master’s of Occupational Therapy degree in Cleveland, Ohio and not even a month later, I landed in Salt Lake City to complete a 2-month specialty fieldwork program with the University of Utah. 

I teach yoga in the Cleveland area and work as a front desk yogi at a studio called 3Sisters (with 3 actual sisters who own the studio).  Prior to my arrival in Salt Lake, one of the sisters recommended Centered City as a beautiful studio to practice at during my time in Salt Lake.  Conveniently, I was living less than a mile away from the studio and the kind people I was renting from even shared a spare yoga mat with me since I could not fit mine in my suitcase (although I tried)!  It seemed to all fall into place.

After my first class at Centered City, I was hooked!  It felt nice to be seen and supported by the Centered City community – all of the teachers, students, and front desk staff.  The studio served as my home away from home.  It provided a warm, welcoming space in an unfamiliar environment for me.   I enjoyed the opportunity to deepen my personal yoga practice and learn from the passionate, knowledgeable, and genuine teachers at Centered City.

As my time in Salt Lake is coming to an end, I am saddened to leave, but am leaving with a heart full of gratitude and positive energy.  Thank you all for holding the space for me.  I appreciate the connections and hope to visit in the future.  Expect a postcard from Cleveland! Namaste.

Rachel Rogers
Rachel Rogers

Liz Freedman: I can’t believe l won the CCY Staff Yoga Challenge! Check out this cool beanie and hoodie l received. Wow! Thank you Centered City Yoga. Now I will always have a piece of CCY with me. Congrats to all the participants. Time and time again yoga has provided me with hope, support, and strength to carry on. I love sharing space, breathe, and connection with my community. The highest light within me, bows to that very same light shining within each of you. Namaste.

Liz Freedman

Jim Stringfellow: The challenge! It spurred me on. I enjoy yoga and the obvious good that comes to my body and mind. When I don’t quite feel like braving the (cold, heat, wind, rain, lack of one more coffee, walk to the studio, camel drivers – check all that apply), getting there and doing  yoga makes it so much better. The studio, teachers, staff, and general camaraderie are genuinely pleasing.

Jim Stringfellow

Thank you to all who share practice and create such high vibrational energy at Centered City Yoga. I love our students, staff and teachers dearly. I am humbled be a part of your yoga path.

Love,

Rachel 

 

 

Happy New Year 2018 Yoga Challenge!

Happy New Year 2018 Yoga Challenge! 

Happy New Year Dear Yogis! We LOVE helping our students find ways to fully realize the benefits of a consistent yoga practice. For 2018 we are offering the chance to earn a 6-month unlimited regular class pass for FREE! This way you will have the opportunity to experience the best Utah yoga studio, with excellent yoga teachers to guide you through your practice.

There are two free 6-month passes available you can earn. Join us for a 2-month Yoga Challenge. It is easy! Just come to the studio and take class at least 30 times during the months of January and February. Our software will keep track of attendance and we will be sure to keep a leaderboard starting January 10th!

To help you have an affordable way to complete this challenge, use the promo code:2018Yoga! to receive 20.18% off these passes:
6-month unlimited
Quarterly unlimited
1-month unlimited pass
30 class pass

You can sign up for a class pass in our studio located at 926 East 900 South, Salt Lake City, Utah 84105 or through Mindbody

The first 6-month unlimited class pass will go to the yogi with the most class attendance by the end of February. For the 2nd all of our students who complete the challenge by practicing at least 30 times at #CenteredCityYoga will be automatically entered into a drawing for the second class pass.

Check out our schedule here 

See you at the studio,

Love Rachel 

Black Friday Specials at Centered City Yoga

Hello! We love the holidays and want to ensure you can join in the fun with our weekend of Gratitude savings. Read here to learn all about our Black Friday Specials at Centered City Yoga. We selected these specials with the intention of creating the most cost effective ways for our treasured students to enjoy Centered City Yoga in 2018! With these specials you will have the ability to learn from the best yoga teachers in Salt Lake City.

You will be able to purchase these as gifts, and also for yourself. If you purchase as a gift, we have cute gift certificates available at the studio you can gift as a stand alone, or pair with some of our lovely Soul Essential oils, a Manduka Pro or travel mat, a Centered City Yoga embroidered beanie, and more!

To get the deals you will have two fantastic offers from Thanksgiving Day, Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, Sunday, and through Cyber Monday to purchase online, or at the studio:

  • Select the BLACK FRIDAY One-Year Unlimited Pass. You will receive a full year unlimited pass for all regularly scheduled classes. This special gets you a year for only $999.00. This means you will be paying only $83.25 per month for an entire year for all of the classes on our daily regular schedule! Our regular month pass is $150.00!
  • Select the BLACK FRIDAY 20-Class PassThis pass is our most popular class pass. Our special price for this special is only $160.00! This means that per class you will be paying only $8.00! Our regular drop-in rate is $18.oo. This 20 -class pass has a 6-month expiration date, so you have plenty of time to use it all.

You can purchase these passes online, or in the studio. If you experience any issues at all, please do reach out to us, and we will take great care of you.

We do have a secret. You may purchase these deals starting now if you like. 

Peace and Love, 

Rachel 

Centered City Yoga Teacher Highlight— Oli Levitt!

Olin Levitt

Centered City Yoga Teacher Highlight— Oli Levitt! As the owner of Centered City Yoga, I have to step back regularly to marvel at the expertise our teachers embody, not only as the best yoga teachers in Utah, but also in the other colorful light giving facets of their lives. Each excellent yoga teacher at our sweet studio seeks to share goodness and light in myriad ways in order to assist each human they touch, in marvelously balancing ways.

Yoga is not just about finding your way through a pose. Yoga is about using your breath and cultivating consciousness through practice. Our teachers embody this. If you have a teacher who lives what they teach, it becomes clear by working with them in  the powerful ways their knowledge transcends the practice into grace and wisdom.

Olin Levitt is an exemplary example of this culture of our studio. He loves to help others find their best self. He has a meaningful career teaching middle school students empowering mindfulness practices! Oli’s classes are thoughtful, kind and filled with the energy of metta (loving kindness). He truly inspires his students to live to their greatest potential. And he has a fantastic charismatic energy. He is amazing!

My personal experience of Oli is one filled with respect, grace and infinite humanitarian love. Every time I think of him, I smile and notice my expanding heart of joy.

Oli currently teaches three classes at Centered City Yoga. He is a fantastic teacher for beginners and seasoned yogis. I highly recommend you try his classes. You will adore him and his teaching. The beauty of his classes is they are truly accessible to all. If you haven’t tried Qi Gong, please do. You will be amazed at how it positively influences your yoga and other mindful practices!

Here is Oli’s Current Class Schedule 

Wednesday 6:00-7:00pm Qi Gong ~ Oli co-teaches this beautiful mindful movement class with his sweet Sarah-Elizabeth

Saturday: 7:30-8:45am Yoga for Stiffer Bodies 

Saturday: 9:00-10:00am Free Intro to Yoga 

True Warrior of the Heart in Centered City Yoga’s Beautiful Crown Studio!

Please read below a message from Oli, to you!

Hi I’m Oli,

I began my yoga journey as a teen in the turbulent sixties with the purchase of a book called “Yoga For Perfect Health” by Alain. Using this book as my guide, I started a yoga and meditation practice on the floor of my bedroom. My first session was profoundly impactful as I felt peace in my body and mind as never before. Fifty years later, I continue to approach each new session as an opportunity for opening and growth.

“Yoga For Perfect Health”

I’ve been utilizing yoga as a therapeutic tool with children ever since I received my doctorate in school psychology thirty years ago. I love my work and also serve as director of a school-wide mindfulness program at West Jordan Middle, a school comprised of dynamic and heart centered administrative staff and teachers. As a result of our collective effort we are building a new world, one precious student at a time. Sharing my love of yoga with others, whether they are young in body or mind, is a privilege. I also enjoy incorporating a taste of qigong, which I began studying eight years ago, into my classes.

Oli, Yoga with Kids

Another passion includes my relationship with Nature, which I’ve been deeply connected to, since my early days as a child in the magical land we call Michigan. My family and loves, Sarah-Elizabeth, Alexis, Jack and Perry-Layne, also mean the world to me.

Grandeur Peak

International travel has become a fun, new interest, where I have the opportunity to continue my play in the world of form, such as walking across Abbey Road in my bare feet.

Oli on the Storied Abbey Road

I am so very grateful to be part of the CCY family under the leadership of Rachel and Eric, who are steering our sacred space with dignity and grace.

Namaste,

Olin Levitt

I thank you, Oli, for being a part of Centered City Yoga. Our communities are stronger, more balanced, and filled with love because of your presence and teachings.

Love,

Rachel

Centered City Yoga Teacher Highlight— Brooke McNaughton

 

Centered City Yoga Teacher Highlight— Brooke McNaughton  Highlighting our fantastic yoga teachers one-by-one on this blog is one of my favorite things to write about as the studio owner. Each teacher is experienced, professional and of the best in Utah. It also allows me to speak about the other facets of what brings these teachers happiness and passion in life outside of the yoga studio.

For this post, I am thrilled to tell you more about Brooke McNaughton. She is one of the sweetest humans I have ever met. He heart shines through her eyes, while a deep sense of human love emulates through her teaching.

Brooke is an incredible soul. She winds mindfulness into all of her life passions and endeavors. She has been practicing yoga for 10 years, and teaching for five. Salt Lake City is blessed to have her here. Being an outdoors enthusiast through and through, Utah captured her heart and soul.

Dear words from Brooke,

I find that communing with our earth mother outside of suburbia and urban sprawl is some of the best medicine……especially when supplemented with heartfelt, mindful movement. About five years ago I decided to only move in ways intended to promote a sense of wellbeing, rather than to punish or change my body. Yoga, hiking, and living-room-dancing have captivated my spirit and healed my relationship with my body.

Brooke says that sometimes she moonlights as a cake decorator. She loves to bake when she is stressed. If you are ever hard up for tasty treats, find her during mid-terms or finals and she will lovingly share her latest baked goods!

Brooke is a life long active learner. She is diligently preparing to apply for dental school in 2018. Always one to help others, this is a wonderful direction for her to go to allow her to help others find their best smile. She already does in through her excellent yoga teaching. After sharing a yoga practice with her, the presence developed from within with her guidance, one cannot help but smile through the day! She is also a certified birth doula, as of last year. Her heart is filled with immense joy with the ability to support women in labor. While Being a yoga, dentistry and being a doula may initially seem somewhat disparate, Brooke has come to realize they all share one key trait:

I get to support others as they move toward their best versions of self, and to me there is nothing more satisfying.

Whether it’s through holding space in yoga, supporting a birth plan, or helping maintain or create a new smile, I love what I do and the beautiful communities of which I am a part. Centered City Yoga has been a pivotal part of my ongoing journey, and I am so glad to call it hOMe.

Bam Bam

Brooke also has a majestic cat named Bam Bam, and he is entirely too fluffy. She loves her cat and will always talk about him when gifted the opportunity.

I love having Brooke as a teacher with Centered City Yoga. She is a pinnacle example of a quality teacher. She practices yoga with a humble grace and then shares that grace with each of her students with an authentic heart.

You can read about her, and our other teachers on our teacher bio page HERE.

Or you can simply share practice with her when she teachers. Brooke also loves to help other teachers out as a sub, certainly attend her classes each possible time you can make it!

Brooke’s current teaching schedule:

Friday Power Hour 6:00-7:00AM

Sunday Soft Flow 10:15-11:30AM

Sunday Prenatal noon-1:15PM

Love, 

Rachel 

How to find a quality yoga teacher

This is my Astanga yoga teacher, Manju Jois. It took me 25 years of practicing yoga to find him and discover he is my teacher. I have had many other very influential teachers, but my heart knows Manju is meant to be the one I learn the deepest meanings of life teachings of yoga through.

How to find a quality yoga teacher

 A wonderful quality teacher can mean everything to a yoga practice. This is especially important during the first few years of a student discovering yoga. This allows the absolute best opportunity to not only develop a safe and proper yoga practice, but to also learn yogic philosophy, and a deep understanding of how to bring the balance of mind, body and spirit cultivated on one’s mat, into their everyday world.

If you are wondering how to find a quality teacher, first of all, please do practice patience! It may take trying different teachers and styles of yoga as part of your journey to finding what and who works for you. Here are a few thoughts to help you on your way to finding a teacher you resonate with, and whom will be a guide of wisdom as you journey through your yoga practice.

Qualities a great yoga teacher embodies are many. Some that come readily to my mind are:

  • Presence and sacred space. The ability to create a sacred space for students. Is the teacher present with the practice they lead? Do they help to cultivate a safe environment to share yoga? Are they honest? Do they have a sense of humor?–This one can go a long way! Do they care deeply about humanity? Do they teach with an authentic heart? What else creates presence and sacredness for your practice?
  • Live by example. Does the teacher strive to live by example what they teach, to the best of their human ability? Remember that teachers are human. They do make mistakes. But do they address their mistakes with love. Are they able to live what they teach and seek to learn from a mistake, and move forward with grace? Do they forgive others for mistakes they make, while also setting boundaries to protect themselves from anyone purposefully trying to cause harm?
  • Self Practice. Does the teacher practice yoga? No matter what a teacher knows, or what they have done in the past, if they are not keeping up their mindful practice of yoga and/or meditation or other mindful work, they will not be an effective teacher over time. Certainly seek a teacher who has the discipline to stay steady to the work they teach through practicing. This doesn’t mean they need to practice with you; they may very well practice at home. All you need to know is the quality of their teaching will be reflected if they are practicing, or not.
  • Passion. Any work worth doing is done with a passionate heart. Does your teacher love to teach? Do they honor the teachings of yoga? Do they respect you as their student? The passion of a teacher for their work will shine in the words they do, and do not say. The way their eyes shine when they speak about what they do will show the way to their passionate heart.
  • Guru? Be careful of any teacher who self-proclaims he/she to be a Guru. A guru is someone who has dedicated life to teaching and serving humanity. They are very experienced and knowledgeable teachers, with wisdom that bleeds from their souls. But they must remain humble, or this will quickly lead to their fall. If a teacher tries to force their students to call them guru, it is time to find another teacher. Humility and grace are two attributes that must always be embodied by a teacher. If students choose to call their teacher, guru, that is not for the teacher to decide or demand.
  • Love. If one were to sum up the qualities of a great teacher in one word. Love is the word. Love is the feeling. Love is the manifestation. Of body, mind and soul.

I believe our teachers at Centered City Yoga are quality teachers, and some of the best yoga teachers one could find. They teach for the right reasons and wish to share their love and knowledge of yoga with you. I encourage you to try many of our teachers and the different lineages and styles offered. If there are a few teachers you enjoy, go to their classes as often as you can. It may be that a few teachers create your wholeness in seeking a teacher, or you may find through time that there is indeed a teacher who you can learn from over many years, and may very well be your best teacher of yoga.

Much Love,

~Rachel Cieslewicz

 

Centered City Yoga Teacher Highlight— Jason Lawner!

Centered City Yoga Teacher Highlight—- Jason Lawner!   With the Yoga Journal coming to Centered City Yoga September 2nd, it makes perfect sense to highlight Jason Lawner. Yoga Journal will be at the studio with freebies and sharing their magic, with a highlight class taught by Jason at 9:00AM. This special day is not-to-miss! Jason will teach his precise, functionally accessible Power 1 class on this amazing morning. You will learn proper mechanics with breath, muscle engagement and bone alignment. He expertly winds in wonderful stories to help all relate to the practice of yoga. Prepare to awaken to your mind, body, spirit connection in unique and powerful ways. Jason attunes his classes to help you learn the deeper aspects of yoga while having fun! This is an all levels power class.

Jason’s humility is stark. But from his humble senses, arises a strength that can only be cultivated from within through time, practice and patience. Jason is dedicated to teaching each student in ingenious ways, as to relate to each individual, while also honoring the collective energy.

He listens. He loves. He is an excellent yoga teacher and beautiful seer of life, and what really matters.

Jason is our current best attended teacher at the studio. He is loved by his students, and fellow teachers alike. He always has words of kindness and intellect to speak, while helping all to feel at ease with his genuine warming personality. Students often comment about Jason’s gift of helping them to correct back issues and other ailments and misalignments they come to the studio with, even if he didn’t know beforehand they were experiencing the issues, and how they always leave feeling happy and balanced!

Jason is from Los Angeles and until recently, Miami. Somehow the Gods blessed the Salt Lake Valley, and Jason moved to Utah to share with you his excellent skills! He loves spending time in nature, and enjoys taking each spare moment spent exploring the mountains near, and far, by climbing, hiking and backpacking in the warm months.

In the winter you will still find him out there enjoying our incredible snow. Jason is in tune with nature, and shares his love of her rhythms with his classes, while also perfectly aligning each practice in movement and cadence in concise ways, through focus on structure and form of the body, within a balanced class.

Jason is also a trained musician as a trumpet player. And if you are lucky, he will share with you music from his harmonium as part of your yoga class.

If you are not already a student of Jason, certainly try his classes. Prepare to be wowed when you leave feeling better than you came in, in mind, body and spirit. Thank you for sharing your fantastic teaching, Jason. Centered City Yoga is fortunate to have you with us!

Jason’s current Schedule:

Tuesdays and Thursdays~

  • 9:15-10:45AM Power 1 & 2
  • 4:30-5:45PM Stiffer Bodies
  • 6:00-7:30PM Power 1 & 2

Saturdays~

  • 9:00-10:20AM Power 1