Centered City Yoga Teacher Highlight ~ Emily Lamberty

Centered City Yoga Teacher Highlight ~ Emily Lamberty. 

Part of the process of moving into the season of fall is letting go of fiery summer activities, and choosing to find a place of rhythm, with an air of steadiness. Beginning to sleep more as the darkness falls each evening a bit sooner, settling into school and work schedules, and practicing yoga regularly are great ways to help our bodies feel the steadiness of patterns. This in turn will calm our nervous systems, assist clear thinking, and allow space to breathe into the change of summer heat and activity, to crisp cool nights and refreshing energy.

Part of my shift back to steadiness is continuing with our Centered City Yoga Teacher Highlights. I LOVE to celebrate people. How perfect to celebrate our empowering teachers, while also giving our students a taste of their lives, and what fills them with passion!

This month I share with you a special biography of Emily Lamberty!  Sometimes I tell the story. This time Emily tells her own story of curiosity and adventure, wound into her journey on her path of life:

From Emily ~

Years ago, standing outside my office building at 902 Broadway in Manhattan, I can remember telling a colleague I would like my next endeavor to be teaching yoga. I wanted to do something more meaningful in a professional capacity. I had worked as a commercial photo assistant, a stylist, photographer, mixed media artist, I managed operations for a Pilates certification company, then I did A LOT of temping in offices in NYC until I became a Happy Accident in Hugh Hardy’s office at H3. He brought joy to my life everyday, and I was deeply immersed in the culture of New York. Although it was an extraordinary experience, I knew there was more to my professional life than being someone’s assistant, even if that someone was a gem. (Also, he was 81, I knew he wouldn’t be around forever).

It was 2013, I was nearing the end of my mentorship with William Spear, during which I studied Feng Shui, I Ching, Macrobiotics, Vital Design and Non-Violent Communication. I had started attending studio classes more regularly, and even used yoga in my healing process when I sprained my ankle. (It was described by the physical therapists as an extraordinary sprain, the worst they had in their office all year.) When I moved to Utah a couple of years ago to heal from different trauma and be near extended family, it seemed like the right time to pursue the yoga teacher dream. What I’ve found is that it compliments my feng shui practice perfectly, and I can even incorporate art and photography (my first career) into my practice and teaching. 

Things I love about Yoga and other areas of Life:

What I love most about yoga is its versatility and the space it provides for personal growth. I have always been more drawn to the spiritual and meditative aspects, than the physical aspects. (I do enjoy the milestones and benefits achieved physically, but I didn’t come to yoga for athletics. It is certainly a happy by-product.) We live on this amazing planet in these complex bodies, both are full of mystery, wonder, and surprises. I love looking at dualistic relationships to solve problems and gain insight. 

I also love the overlap I’ve found between yoga and my feng shui practice. Most people think feng shui is about the furniture in your living room; but, more accurately, it is a holistic approach to life. It taps in to the energetic world, as does yoga. For me, Yoga is another tool in the tool box of Feng Shui. Or, perhaps they are two tool boxes side by side with shared tools. I love that they both offer tools for coping with challenges and opportunities. 

Most of all, I love that we’re all connected here on this amazing planet. It brings me joy and mystery to explore. Approaching life as if there’s only one of us here warms my heart and gives me a greater capacity for kindness and compassion. 

Things I focus on as a teacher:

When I teach, I focus on creating a calm and safe space for students to practice. My goal is for people who attend my classes to have a positive experience, whether it’s going deeper into a practice or having a therapeutic effect. As a teacher, I do my best to curate a sequence that flows well from one pose to the next. I really like core work, mainly because it is something I work on in my personal practice, but also because of the opportunity it offers to focus on grounding and centeredness. I look at alignment in each pose. Inserting philosophy and wisdom to accompany the practice is important to me. I love to share what I’ve learned from my teachers! My biggest focus, though, is the breath. I think it’s the most important part of the whole process. 

This winter I’m offering a workshop, Mixed Media and Meditation. We’ll start with an hour of light asana and meditation, then we’ll spend two hours making an art piece you can take with you. You can read more details HERE

I love having Emily as a dear teacher at Centered City Yoga. She teaches a Breathe, Move and Meditate class on Tuesdays 7:15-8:30pm. She also loves to sub for our other teachers when they need help. She is a wonderful human, and yogini.



P.S. More lovely photographs of this Dear Soul, Emily Lamberty

Postpartum Preparation Workshop, Preparation for the 4th Trimester

Postpartum Preparation Workshop, Preparation for the 4th Trimester
October 6th, 11:00am-3:00pm
12-1 PM  “ALIGN”
Investment: $100 full day or $25 per session 
Yoga Workshop Signup
Destiny S. Olsen CD(DONA), PCD(DONA), RYT, RPYT
Destiny S. Olsen is the proud owner of SHAUNTEA, a company focused on individualized health and wellness. She has taught Somatics since 2005 through yoga, dance and meditation. As a DONA certified birth and postpartum doula she believes developing mental and physical health throughout the childbearing year is essential to creating well-balanced children, happier parents and a overall healthier lifestyle.

Destiny S. Olsen will help you look within to find your inner strength through a balanced Prenatal Yoga practice. Tune into your breath, focus your mind and move your body in a empowering, intentional way as you prepare for baby’s debut. Together, you will create a plan that you can set in motion before baby’s arrival. Place down some foundational support to help ease the transition to adding a new family member to spend optimum time with your baby.

Susan McLaughlin, PT

Susan McLaughlin is a physical therapist, a pelvic health specialist, and the owner of ALIGN. People usually come to ALIGN for pain relief, but what they really walk away with is a greater understanding of their body. Susan is passionate about educating clients to tune into their habitual daily activities that affect postural alignment, tissue function and movement. With awareness, clients can create new patterns to build healthier tissues for structural support and fluid movement. Ultimately, the goal of ALIGN is to help people learn self care strategies to get out of pain, improve function, and become more vital. Because when we have the tools to heal ourselves, that is when we thrive!

Susan will teach you how to sustain yourself through exercises that encourage healthy body postures and habits. Adapt new ways of moving to to gain strength during pregnancy and to heal you in postpartum.

Elizabeth Smith, MPH, ICCE, IBCLC, RLC

Elizabeth Smith holds a masters degree in public health with an emphasis in maternal child health. She began working at the University Hospital in 2000 as an educator and quickly moved into the management position for the Department of Perinatal Education. In 2003 she was asked to be on the Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative Steering Committee where she worked with a team to get University Hospital designated as thefirst Baby Friendly Hospital in Utah. She was asked to take the lead for Baby Friendly when the previous coordinator changed jobs. Since then she has worked to maintain that designation.Elizabeth is a certified childbirth educator and a board certified lactation consultant. In addition to her duties at the hospital she sits on numerous committees including the March of Dimes Advisory Board, Perinatal Bereavement Committee, Perinatal Professionals Conference, and the Utah Breastfeeding Coalition. She is a board member for International Childbirth Education Association, Mountain West Mothers’ Milk Bank and the Utah Maternal Mental Health Collaborative.

Elizabeth will show you skills and tips to having success for any way you choose to feed your baby. Wether that’s breast or bottle feed this class will help you learn the basics of lactation and feeding your new little one.

Sarah Caldwell, CS, Maternal Mental Health Specialist

Sarah Caldwell is a mental health therapist specializing in pregnancy and postpartum mood and anxiety disorders. She was first introduced to the world of maternal mental health as a graduate student in the Master of Social Work program at the University of Utah in 2015. Sarah had found her passion and from then on has devoted her career to working with moms and moms-to-be on their journeys to healing. She is especially interested in understanding and treating trauma resulting from pregnancy and childbirth. Sarah works with individuals, couples and groups, focusing specifically on maternal mental health and sex and intimacy. Her goal is that all women who experience pregnancy and postpartum mood and anxiety disorder symptoms know that they are good moms, they are not to blame, and they can get better.

Sarah Caldwell can teach you how to allow yourself to rest easy knowing how to keep yourself balanced throughout pregnancy and beyond. Adapt healthy patterns and have resources at your fingertips for when you are needing extra support.

Yoga Workshop Signup

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!


Teacher Highlight– Johnnae Nardone

Teacher Highlight– Johnnae Nardone  Any yoga studio owner knows intimately that having teachers who are timely, professional, and most important, incredible teachers, is an imperative divine gift to a yoga space. I am beyond grateful to our Centered City Yoga teachers who embody this. I truly am delighted to work with, and know some of the best yoga teachers, and humans on this planet! I would love to talk about a pinnacle example of a teacher who thrives on perfectionism in good and oh so beautiful ways!

Johnnae Nardone is originally from California. We are blessed she has chosen to make her home in Salt Lake City! Johnnae has been practicing yoga since 2002. She discovered the deep value and benefits of yoga initially as a way to clear and relax her mind. Of course, this ultimately led to the understanding of the beauty of yoga, in breath and depth, for mind, body and soul! She completed her 200-hour yoga teacher training through YogaWorks from Annie Carpenter, and her 300-hour teacher training with Annie Carpenter. She is a certified SmartFLOW instructor as well. She loves teaching yoga and has been teaching since 2009!

But she also brings that fierce passion and enthusiasm to few other things in her life…
She loves her English Mastiff, Babe most of all.
She’s grateful for her wise, strong, and compassionate teacher, Annie Carpenter.
Her climbing is on hiatus right now but when it’s in motion she finds it to be a natural counterpart to her yoga practice.
She’s worked for over 15 years in various nonprofits across the country and makes a point to stay politically engaged and involved in her community.

Johnnae specializes in precise alignment-based practices and restorative yoga. Yet, through her deep understanding of yoga, teaches amazing classes regardless of style. Keeping the truth and quality of yoga always at heart, she teaches a breath focused practice to assist her students in developing a strong present yoga practice. Students learn to stay centered in body and mind, while loving being in their bodies.

Johnnae blesses a wonderful following of students who appreciate her strong and fierce, yet sweet and inspiring teaching style. I highly recommend you try her Friday evening 5:45-7:15pm Power 1 & 2 class. You will understand in your body how amazing her teaching is! Johnnae loves helping out her fellow teachers, by subbing as often as her schedule allows. If you can’t make Fridays, please look for her as a sub and try her teaching! I have a feeling you will start to find a way to make Fridays available!

Her days are also filled up with her boyfriend, his two girls, his dog Murphy, the cat Brando and their two fixer-upper homes in Liberty Wells.

Join Johnnae on June 10th in the Crown studio! She is offering a workshop on sun salutations, and how to do them safely and correctly for a lifetime of yoga practice. Learn more about the workshop Here