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We are at the three day countdown until the Winston Salem Yoga Festival begins! I am so excited about this yoga festival for many reasons. The first is that I will be participating in it by giving a talk on how to be a traveling yoga teacher! The second is that for one whole day I will be surrounded by yoga teachers who are changing the world! Let’s meet these world changing yogis, shall we? Intention Setting with Jacqueline Brooke

Get ready to dive deep with Jacqueline to learn how to set our intentions and how setting them can transform our whole life! I think I’m most excited for this session simply because I want to know how to go about doing it. Will we be making vision boards, speaking our dreams out loud, meditating? What will it be?

Creating Inclusive Communities with Kennae & Kate

These two yogis are from Charleston, NC. They will be leading a breakout session on yoga, social justice and having a relationship with ourselves and those around us. What I’m looking forward to most in this session is learning how I can be a voice for those who need one and how being a voice in the yoga world can serve the greater good of our community.

Rainbow Yoga: Honoring the LGBTQ+ Community

Lana Skrypnyk, founder of Healing Vibes by Lana is teaching a session on connecting to our true selves, shedding the “should be’s” of society, and exploring our boundaries. I’m excited to learn about how Lana creates safe spaces in the the yoga community for our LGBTQ+ yogis and to bring these safe spaces out into the world.

Skill in Action with Johnette & Maria

There is nothing I love more than a good meditation and discussion to follow! Especially when that discussion is centered around liberation and creating a just world for all! I have a feeling this session will be a light in educating the yoga community on what it’s like to really take our yoga off the mat! Stay tuned my fellow super yogis!

Get ready to learn my traveling yogis and to change the world at the Winston Salem Yoga Festival! Excited about the Winston Salem Yoga Festival? Share this blog post with your yoga community! Let’s raise the vibration together!

The post Winston Salem Yoga Festival 2019: Four Most Anticipated Breakout Sessions! appeared first on Xanadu Yoga.

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Today I am officially 25 years old!   *Cue all the sparkles, dancing, and delicious birthday cake!* I decided that I want to share my birthday with the world.  So to keep it in theme of what I do and love, today I am sharing with you 25 places to practice yoga before you turn 25! 1. Montezuma Yoga, Costa Rica

I found this studio by accident as I was traveling through Costa Rica. The teachers at Montezuma Yoga teach from an anatomical viewpoint and break each pose down so the student fully understands what is happening in their body as they move through the practice. The studio also happens to be located in the jungle directly across the from the ocean. So clearly it’s a win for everybody involved!

2. YogaWorks – Boston, Massachusetts

There are six YogaWorks studios in the Boston area and I love all of them in different ways! Some of them make me feel like I’m practicing in New York City and others like I’m in Bali. Each location has a different spark to it and that’s why I keep coming back!

3. My Yoga Body- Dublin, Ireland

I also found this studio by accident and I’m so glad I did! I loved this studio because of the adjustments I learned in class and the fact that it was heated vinyasa. I love heated yoga especially in chilly places like Ireland!

4.  HotPod Yoga – Lisbon, Portugal

Hot yoga in a glowing purple tent. Need I say more?

5. Yoga Satsanga Ashram – Wales

Tucked away in the countryside of Wales, this ashram teaches with the Eastern yogic philosophy that originated in India. I love this ashram as I left feeling so much healthier than when I had arrived. They will be opening a second ashram in the countryside of Portugal soon. Stay tuned! 

6. The Boat Dock – Chios, Greece

This isn’t a yoga studio or ashram. It’s a boat dock where you can always practice with a view! In front of you is the beautiful downtown of Chios. Across from you are the mountains of Turkey and above you are the stars! It’s the perfect place to practice!

7. Hang 5 Fitness – Chicago, Illinois

You get to do yoga on a surfboard! Hang 5 Fitness is the place to be when you need to practice your surfing skills, get a workout and a challenge all at the same time!

8. Y7 – New York City

The original hip hop yoga studio! The classes at this studio kick my a$$ every time and that is why keep coming back. I love a challenge in my yoga practice and damn do I love the music!

9. Balance Yoga and Wellness – New Orleans

Maybe you like to yoga. Maybe you like to handstand. This studio got em both as they make room for play in every class they teach!

10. Yoga Studio Barcelona – Barcelona, Spain

I had one night to practice yoga in Barcelona and this studio welcomed me in with open arms. I don’t say this often, but this studio was truly a sacred space that I think about it often. I’m excited to go back and be in community with this heartwarming studio!

11. Radiantly Alive – Ubud, Bali

Probably my favorite studio of all time! This studio is on a quiet street in Bali and the moment you walk in it is a yogi’s paradise. I love this studio because they have teachers from all over the world who teach from their hearts and challenge their students to dive deep within themselves and their practice. Radiantly Alive is a special place in the world so if you’re ever in Bali don’t miss out!

12. Create Yoga – Los Angeles, California

I loved this studio for many reasons. The first being that two of my best friends took class with me. The second being the epic rocket yoga class taught by the talented Sara Bowers Yoga. The third being the beautiful crystals the studio had all around the space!

13. K10 Yoga CoOp – Winston-Salem, North Carolina

 I love this yoga community because they’re all inclusive and make classes affordable for their community. Meaning they believe this yoga is for everyone and they stand by that with every class and student they teach. They also have a super creative teacher training that involves taking your yoga off the mat and into real communities! And this studio is hosting the first ever Winston-Salem Yoga Festival on May 18th! You better come because it’s gonna be awesome!

14. Rolok Fitness Center – Siem Reap, Cambodia

Tucked away in a jungle shala, this studio is my home away from home and it could be yours too! This studio is all about bringing the world to you through yoga! Every month they have a new teacher from a different place in the world who teaches you what they know from their part of the globe! Pretty cool, I know!

15. Island Yoga – Aruba

I got my SUP Yoga certification at this studio, but honestly this is the studio I come to when I need to be reminded why I do yoga. Whether I’m out on the SUP, in Carolyn’s terra wave class or practicing meditation with Rachel I always feel like I’m coming home to myself. And isn’t that what yoga is? A coming home.

16. Envision Festival – Uvita, Costa Rica

This is the BEST yoga festival in the world and I’m not playin! Every year Envision has the most incredible yoga teachers who hold space for thousands of students. By the time Envision is over I always feel as if I’ve finished a college level yoga class. Why? Because I leave more educated on this practice than when I had arrived. And that’s why I keep coming back. I love to learn and Envision provides that educational platform for their festival goers.

17. Modo Yoga – Prince Edward Island, Canada

PEI is freezing and Modo Yoga is a hot yoga studio. You picking up what I’m putting down? This studio has an awesome community of yogis who love welcoming new students to their space. That’s why I loved my experience there so much! Also the yoga is AMAZING!!!

18. Kindness Yoga – Denver, Colorado

I loved the quiet of this yoga studio or maybe it was the peace. All I know is practicing at Kindness Yoga was the silence I needed to hear. It was everything.

19. BaliRica Casitas – Ojochal, Costa Rica

A yoga shala jungle paradise surrounded by fruit trees, mountains, cute animals and a loving community! BaliRica is an alternative jungle hotel inspired by the mystical Bali and jungles of Costa Rica with a yoga studio on site! They also host weekly Buddhism and Tai Chi classes so if you’re in Costa Rica definitely stop by for a class!

20. Studio Fit Chicago – Chicago, Illinois

I personally love practicing at this studio because it is a studio that is dedicated to empowering women and that is what we need in the world! I also love this studio because of the MANY classes this studio offers. They have dance, yoga, barre, kickboxing and more!

21. The Cruise Ship Dock – Lisbon, Portugal

This is a secret dock completely separate from the “real” cruise ship dock. It’s so secret that most locals don’t even know about it. This dock is the perfect place to watch the sunset in downtown Lisbon as you practice on your mat!

22. Wanderlust Festival

This is a traveling yoga festival that is led by Chelsey Korus, DJ Drez, and MC Yogi. I mean if you like yoga this festival is for you and if you you like to dance this festival is for YOU! Not to mention you get to travel to a cool destination in the US on top of the yoga and epic dance parties.

23. Amazing Yoga – Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

I once took class here twice in one day and was called a psychopath. That’s how hard the classes are. They are insane, but I live for a challenging yoga class! This studio is located on the Southside of the ‘burgh looking out over E. Carson Street.

24. Riverside Drive Park – Upper West Side, Manhattan

They have paintings of Goddesses and it’s a park so high up in Manhattan you can’t even see the city. Talk about the perfect yogic escape!

25. Empty Rooftops

No this isn’t a yoga studio. These are places throughout the world where you can experience an entire city, the ocean or watch the sunset from the highest seat in the house while doing what you love on your mat!

Wherever you’re at in the world, my birthday wish is that you take a moment for YOU and your mat today! So pick a studio, pick a location or pick your favorite rooftop and go yoga your heart out! Then tell me about your experience! This traveling yogi is off to my mat and then to eat all the birthday cake I want! Happy Birthday to me!

The post 25 Places to Practice Yoga Before You Turn 25! appeared first on Xanadu Yoga.

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Earlier this year, I had the opportunity to attend Envision Festival. While at the festival, I attended a talk led by filmmaker Céline Cousteau on the Indigenous Tribes in the Amazon. Meet Céline Cousteau Envision Festival speaker and founder of The Céline Cousteau Film Fellowship What was your biggest joy of speaking at Envision Festival?

Any opportunity to gather I think is necessary for human beings to come together as a community and to have a sense of a belonging which creates a safe space to be vulnerable and a place to be who you are.

Tell me about your upcoming film Tribes on the Edge

The root of it is the interconnectivity of everything. If we think about something that’s happening to indigenous people in the Amazon and we can understand how it relates to us then we have an understanding of connecting to those people because they protect an ecosystem which provides oxygen for us. That ecosystem is also rich in biodiversity which is potential future pharmaceuticals for them and future pharmaceuticals for us on the outside. In a more direct way, these are the guardians of an ecosystem of which we depend. When they go, that ecosystem is up for grabs for those who have other priorities.

Tell me about the Céline Cousteau Film Fellowship. Who is this for and how can it help future filmmakers impact the world?

We want to give young activists an opportunity to take part in caused focus films and really feel what it means to tell good stories while not having the pressure of an income.

It’s these real grounded movements that will move films forward in meaningful ways. It’s all about telling a story to help people connect. Part of the energy of this goes out into the world and is in existence whether we know it or not. We all have to have faith in that.

How can one person make a difference for indigenous people and the ecosystem they protect?

Look at what we consume and trace it back to its origin. See if there is destruction of indigenous land because of it. Radical forms of revolution and anti-consumerism is creating your own food. We should also all cut out palm oil and support established organizations that are already fighting the good fight.

On your website it states that you’re someone who reconnects the human tribe, what do you mean by that and how do you go about it?

A lot of it is storytelling and talking about the interconnection of people everywhere. We are one species on a planet. We might look, speak, talk, eat and live in different ways. But when we talk about extinction, right now the tribes in the Amazon are people facing extinction and that’s going to be us someday.

We need to get humans to move and do things. We need experiential learning to keep someone’s attention like we have at Envision Festival. The festival goers are in their space, dancing, ready and open. Then they sit in lecture and absorb it. Then they go back and be in movement again. Catch people where they are and speak the language they’re accustomed to. Show people we feel and give them the license to feel too.

Why did you choose to speak at Envision Festival?

Costa Rica is a land I know and love. I lived here for three years working at a peace and conflict resolution conference. Envision Festival was a great opportunity to come back. There is a lot of thought put into all walks of this society and Envision is a sanctuary people can go to.

How do you go about finding opportunities to impact the world?

Most have been timely and organic, but I’m known for putting my energy out. They asked in the Amazon to tell their story so it came to me. I was working as a spokesperson for a skincare brand and did an interview for German Vogue and spoke about missing the creation of making jewelry. From that interview, I got a letter from the brand development president of Swarovski Crystals to be a guest designer. I said I’m going to write a book one day and now I’m in the negotiation for writing a book. I never went looking for it. I followed the conversations to the one I’m having now. I always take the meeting and I always take the conversation. That’s what got me to where I am. It’s all one. Put your real intention out into the world in an authentic way. If you’ve done the work to get there, it comes back.

What is the light or hope that you want the world to hang onto for the indigenous tribes in the Amazon?

It’s not an easy one. That’s why people shy away from this project and subject. I don’t have that perfect nugget for you, except that there is no reason to stop fighting. They’re not gonna stop fighting because they’re fearing extinction. I don’t fear extinction, but I know them so I can’t stop. I don’t think you would call it hope but it’s determination, hard work, focus and tenacity. Don’t let go. You can be tired and you can have your off days but do not let go.

If you could give one piece of advice to someone who wants to impact the world, what would that be?

You have to focus on your passion. Because if you’re truly passionate about something you will give everything. And don’t be swayed by the superficiality of the world and what they think is important. You have to be bold and courageous to follow through on what you feel is right. You’ll do a much better job at what you’re passionate about than what other people think you should be doing.

Connect with Céline Cousteau

Céline Cousteau is an explorer, public speaker, jewelry maker, filmmaker and Envision Festival speaker. To learn more about Céline and her work you can check out her website HERE or to apply to her film fellowship, you can do that HERE.  

The post Interview with Céline Cousteau- Founder of The Céline Cousteau Film Fellowship appeared first on Xanadu Yoga.

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This past March I had the opportunity to attend Envision Festival. I experienced amazing concerts, ecstatic dance, sound workshops, and some of the most life changing yoga classes! A few of those classes were led by international yoga instructor, Sianna Sherman. Sianna’s class challenged the students to dive deep into Mantra and learn that we are all interconnected on this Earth and in our yoga practice. Meet Sianna Sherman, Envision Festival yoga instructor and founder of Rasa Yoga.

What is your biggest joy of teaching at Envision Festival?

The interconnection, the interrelationship and intersection of yoga, the healing arts, the music, the eco-awareness, the sense of collective empowerment, family, and really honoring the earth.

The feeling of respect here and openness and receptivity of the radical inclusivity. Spiritual activism within the yoga and festival scene and that it’s for the evolution of who we are on the planet.

Why do you teach yoga? What inspires you to teach?

The great mother, the holy mother and the holy father. The Intermingling of god/goddess. A vessel of love and to be here to serve. To strengthen the alchemical vessel of who we are then getting out of our own way so spirit can move through us.

Tell me about your upcoming 300-hour teacher training in Bali. What should we expect and who is it for? Is there a theme around this training?

It is a Rasa Yoga 300-hour training. Anyone who has a 200-hour that wants to go deeper and wishes to learn the whole alchemical spectrum of yoga. There will be mantra, mudra, pranayama, shadow work, leadership, conscious communication, emotional intimacy and the relationship with our emotions that weave the tapestry of our being. The students come if they’re called from the spirit or want a refresh and rejuvenation.

We chose Bali because it is a sanctuary within nature. Another part is Ceremony and Rituals with the Earth and ocean. It has the land and the trees and is run consciously by people who very much care about Bali. We become part of it together.

If someone has never practiced Rasa yoga before, what could you tell them about it? Where does the energy flow with it?

It’s the whole body, but it’s physical and subtle. That’s a big thing. We dial into the intelligence, the creativity and the functional anatomy and biomechanics. It’s also about the whole magic of the subtle body working together. The flows are Fire and Nectar flows. The Fire stands for the governing origin of transformation. That kind of energy moves us. Then Nectar is what baths us and heals and rejuvenates. The way I teach in Rasa is that you want the energy of the practice to transform you, but not burn you out. You also want it to rejuvenate you without condoning your laziness or complacency. If you don’t move it you come into a place of dullness and stagnancy. The power of fire is to transform and distill so that the nectar can nourish, heal and restore you.

What is your modern day mystery school for women Ritual about?

It is a 13 moon mystery school for women who wish to serve the goddess and priestess. I train women as a priestess. A priestess wheel that moves through the moon. And how she learns ritual and ways to work with magic and ways of working with that part of her life so that she can really cultivate herself in this way. They learn medicine songs and a whole lot of things through empowerment, sacred tools and symbols of the priestess. I do this to lead moon circles and to bring community and women together.

On your website you wrote that yoga saved your life. Could you dive a little deeper on this?

It did. I’m 50 now. Ages 13-18 were super intense self sabotage on every level kind of years. I hit the underworld. Substance abuse, Anorexia, suicide thoughts and eventually attempts were part of this. At the same time, I was very academically accomplished which is how the world saw me. But I was dying on the inside. There were a lot of deep prayer and visions with the mother Mary. Back then, there was no way of understanding this experience as I grew up in a very conservative world. I was in a big confrontation but spirit made me see. Later on, I was in medical school and pulled out. I knew I wouldn’t last much longer so at 19 I sold everything.

I worked for the Nelson Mandela campaign. I had a meltdown at a 2000 person vigil where a photographer came and took photos with very loud shutters. It snapped something inside of me and I broke out into tears. I realized I was in prison and had to free myself out. Right after that, the Berlin Wall came down and everything in me cracked because of walls around my heart. I eventually went to work with teenagers and helped them through these tough times. Yoga came into my life and by 21 I started traveling to India and all over the place.  

Then I met my Irish teacher (A Celtic Priestess) and I became happier and happier.

Why do you bring chanting into your classes? And how do you think chanting highers the vibration within the yoga student and within the class as a whole?

Everything is energy, frequency, and vibration.

Songs, sound and using our voice is connecting the whole gateway of our being physically and subtlety. Even if people have never done it before or resistant, it will start to sync up and change the vibrational field as a collective and recalibrate our cells and dna. It is healing our bodies.

It will open up the mind body connection and the neuroplasticity within the body and the intelligence within the cells over time if we step into mantra.


Man- To think and to feel.

Tra- A device, a tool, and an instrument.

Traverse- To connect them so they’re integrated into their whole beingness.

 Mantra- A tool and instrument to heal and protect the mind and heart.

Mantra is medicine. Very specific mantra is very different medicine. Mantras all have medicine and are connecting the field in an interrelated way.

When we awake the heart energy and touch on the ancestry in our blood lines, we start changing our life through the mantra and the practice.

Do you have a prayer or mantra that you’re currently bringing into your own practice?

Abundance which is called: Flame of Love Community

This is to help people align and recalibrate with the codes of abundance within them.

Om shreem maha lakshmiyei swaha

(Prosperity of the heart and being. Love and harmony with all beings. And True abundance)

Yoga is an invitation to the soul, not an obligation. It’s beautiful to be alive. Let’s practice and let’s sing, chant, evolve and change the world together! We gotta call everyone home again. Mantra does that.

What do you feel your purpose of being at Envision Festival is?

I come because I’m invited and I love it. I genuinely love Costa Rica and have taught here for 23 years in a row. Costa Rica is home for me and my purpose is to serve however that might be. Right now I’m being asked to serve through the teaching of yoga and I’m so happy to serve. To help people remember the whole alchemy of the practice of yoga and for the artistry of our lives. To honor the inner tug on our souls as devotional beings.

How do you see your feminine energy or presence expands Envision Festival?

One of the empowerment’s of feminine energy whether it comes through a man, women or however someone identifies is the energy of embrace and of real respect. And listening in such a way where we honor the depth of the soul beauty in other people. Blessing the energy of all of us and the interrelationship of how we’re all connected. I always say we all belong to each other to bear witness together and to be part of the transformation together.

If you could give one piece of advice to aspiring yoga teachers or studio owners, what would it be?

Truly practice whatever it is you’re called to practice and be committed to practice. To trust your embodied wisdom and trust the wisdom that’s coming through. Your practice is going to source you to real wisdom. Don’t worry about impressing, getting it right or about the agenda. But do plan, show up and do your own shadow work so you can be an accountable leader and teacher. Also when stuff comes up with students and when projection hits, you won’t take it so personally. Accountability is essential for leadership. Be willing to be able to say sorry. Trust your embodied wisdom. Keep practicing, keeping growing and learning. The more that you learn and embody and the more that the wisdom comes through, the more you can share that. It never ends.

Connect with Sianna Sherman Founder of: Rasa Yoga

To learn more about Sianna’s 300-hour teacher training in Bali, Rasa Yoga and more, check out her offerings HERE. To connect and practice with Sianna you can contact her HERE!

The post Interview with Sianna Sherman- Founder of Rasa Yoga appeared first on Xanadu Yoga.

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 Envision Festival  has officially come to a close, but it always feels like a new opening or deeper sense of being! This year’s festival brought me healing, trust in the universe and meaningful moments that changed my life for the better! If I could choose four moments that made my life more meaningful, it would be these four moments! CloZee

When you go to Envision Festival, everyone has that one set they are dying to dance to and every year it is CloZee! Her music lights up the crowd! We love the fire she brings into her sound and dancing to her at 3am is what the Envision community lives for! Most importantly, we love that she comes back every year lighting up the night with her music!

Rachel Brathen’s “Holding Space” Yoga Class

Every time I take a yoga class with Rachel, it is the feeling of coming home to who we truly are. Rachel taught us to listen, connect and hold space for other humans. Her class taught us to feel what needs to be felt. Whether that be laughing in the moment, crying in Savasana or truly holding and loving another person for who they are. All I can say is thank you Rachel. Thank you for teaching us about the much needed work we all need to do.

DJ Drez’s Ecstatic Dance

I won’t lie Drez’s ecstatic dance was lit! It was that end of festival dance party we all needed! What I loved was the energy he created with his music. The jungle and his music was within us all that night and did we let it move!

The Trevor Hall Concerts

Trevor performed Friday and Saturday night. Both completely different vibes, but I must say that his Saturday night show on Village Stage touched our hearts in the most delicate and beautiful ways. He let his music tell us a story that night. He invited special guests to perform with him from around the world and they were awesome! We were vibing and loving hard that night together as a community. That’s what Trevor’s music does. It brings us together so we can love a little deeper and listen with all of our hearts.  

Were you at Envision Festival 2019? What was a meaningful moment for you? What changed your life? Share your experience below! Let’s celebrate and create community together!

*Feature photo provided by Envision Festival

The post Four Meaningful Moments of Envision Festival 2019 appeared first on Xanadu Yoga.

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I have been traveling the world and teaching yoga for 5 years. From backpacking country to country while stopping at communities to teach to picking up studio jobs the moment I get home, it has been a non-stop adventure. To continue this trend, I bought a ticket to Portugal to start off 2019.

I ended up traveling throughout the country for a whole month! I really loved Portugal.

I visited family, explored tiny beach towns on the coast, pulled all-nighters to make deadlines happen, worked a part-time job and took language classes twice a week.

I was busy and completely exhausted.

Except I chose not to listen to the exhausted part.

I would go on incredibly long walks or skip the bus to walk to class which was ACROSS THE CITY from my apartment.

I would do two hours of uphill cardio, an hour of yoga plus the hour long walk to the boardwalk where I practiced most days.  

When I was tired, I thought I was out of shape so I would hustle harder.

By the middle of the month I was SO tired that I would sleep 11 hours a night and take naps during the day just to feel remotely like myself. Then I would get mad at myself for not being productive or active, so of course I would push myself to go on a long walk, practice yoga or more cardio or make plans when I was clearly too tired to do any of it.

Fast forward to my last day in Portugal.

I was fighting a sore throat and slight congestion, but I ignored it because I was in Portugal and wanted to feel good on my last day! I went out to dinner with family-friends and out of nowhere I got unbearable chest pain. It hurt so bad that I thought I was going to die.

I ended up in not one, but TWO emergency rooms.

Turns out I injured my ribs to my sternum and having mono like symptoms made it worse. The ER doctor prescribed no movement and strict rest for 10 days.

Well the next day I thankfully made it back home to America and have been resting for an entire month, because a month of ignoring my body means a month of much needed healing for my body.

So the healing journey begins…

Of course I was stubborn as hell the first two weeks. I wanted to work. I wanted to yoga. I wanted to hangout with people. I wanted to do SO MUCH!

But I couldn’t. I was too sick.

As week three rolled around, I still had a fever and the same symptoms as week one. So I finally gave in to actual rest.

I watched reruns of Sex and the City, lived on  popsicles, cuddled my cat and slept 15 hours a day! Resting was actually wonderful and everything I needed.

I’m happy to say that it has officially been 22 days of rest and I am FINALLY beginning to feel like myself again.

I tested negative for every disease known to the world and am slowly getting back to my yoga practice.

But how am I really healing?

By having TWO teachers of the universe tell me that I need to stop WORKING and just TRUST.

Because what’s that affirmation?

Ask. Believe. Receive.

It’s not (As my friend Rae says):

Ask. Work until I die. Receive.

It is believe.

So I created two new vision boards and wrote brand new present day goals. I’ve also been meditating three times a day.

And sleep. And sleep. It is okay to sleep!

And having a mom who has taken care of me for a whole month who also won’t let me leave the house until I’m actually well. Thanks Mom!

The reason I’m sharing my story of healing is that we as a society need to learn how to set boundaries for ourselves. Especially in the health and wellness world where we are constantly telling people to better themselves.

We all have the ability and opportunity to do better, but it should not be the focus.

We need to focus on LISTENING to ourselves and knowing when enough is enough. We need to focus on saying NO so we can say YES to what actually serves us.

We need to LOVE ourselves unconditionally.

Loving ourselves can be singing our favorite songs or crying from the release it gives us, reading a book and gaining wisdom from it, eating delicious food because YOU want to eat it NOT because a stupid diet magazine told you to or practicing yoga because you fucking love yoga not because you want to be fit.

DO what LIGHTS you up! And LISTEN to that light. It’s there to guide you.

This traveling yoga goddess is off to Costa Rica now. A month later than planned or a month that is perfectly on time. We all are on time.

Pura Vida!

If you are in need of some extra healing, then check out my healing guides HERE! If you are going to Costa Rica for Envision Festival check out the lineups HERE!


Brytta is a world traveling yoga instructor from NYC. She is a lover of glitter, SUP Yoga and climbing waterfalls. When she's not adventuring around the world and teaching yoga, she's writing about her adventures and coming up with new ways to take her yoga off the mat and into the world! When she's not doing any of that, she's outside studying constellations and making wishes on shooting stars. A big fan of discovering new books to read, her current favorite reads are:You are a Badass, Polishing the Mirror and Yoga Girl

The post Why Healing Is An Imperative Step In The Journey Of A Traveling Yoga Teacher appeared first on Xanadu Yoga.

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Welcome to my traveling yoga teacher interview series! Each month, I interview a traveling yoga teacher I meet along my travels. This Month Features: Mariko Jana Azis Founder Of: Mariko Jana Yoga

What type of yoga do you teach & how long have you been teaching?

I teach a full range of yoga styles from active, energizing Ashtanga-inspired vinyasa to meditative, Hatha-based slow flow. One of my favorite classes to teach is a super relaxing restorative yoga class set to live music (sometimes we’ll even invite a massage therapist in to give massages while people are in their restorative poses!). 2019 marks my third year of being a yoga teacher!

Current favorite yoga pose or pose you’re working on?

Double pigeon / firelog pose is a yummy go-to for me right now!

What called you to want to join in leading our Cambodia Women’s Retreat?

I decided to join because I knew it was time for me to embark on a service-oriented phase in my yoga teaching career. As a participant, I’ve attended many women’s circles and found empowerment and healing in being a part of these communities. As a teacher, I love leading retreats and trainings because I have the opportunity to guide students through their exploration of yoga in a much more intimate and profound setting than I might be able to with 90 minutes in a studio setting. With this retreat, I’m excited to take my personal knowledge and traumas as an opportunity to help other women explore their own healing journeys.

This retreat focuses on healing from trauma. How do you think the yoga practice can contribute to that and how can you as an instructor hold space for healing moments and journeys?

As one of the retreat leaders, my top priority for students who are healing from trauma is emphasizing their sense of safety. This can mean making sure they completely consent to any gentle touch I offer, listening more than talking, allowing space to express emotions productively in whatever form they take, and making sure they feel they have the flexibility to have alone time or time to connect with others as much as they need throughout the course of the retreat.

What is your background in working with women?

I’ve had a passion for working with women since I was young. I spent most of my high school years tutoring women at a community center for Spanish-speaking female immigrants in a low-income neighborhood of Boston, and went on to participate and co-host women’s circles and women’s yoga teacher trainings in New York and Massachusetts. As I’ve mentioned, I find that immersing myself in women-only environments that cultivate empowerment and healing can be one of the most transformative experiences as a women healing through trauma myself.

What are you most excited for during our retreat?

If there’s one thing I’ve learned from hosting and going on retreats, it’s that it’s all about the people and the lifelong friendships and connections you make on a journey like this! I’m immeasurably excited to meet all the powerful women who will already have such a shared language, empathy, and understanding of one another because of our own traumas and healing journeys.

How has yoga helped heal moments of your life for you?

I started diving deep into yoga after a sexual assault that happened while I was abroad ~ an event so traumatic and unspeakable that I didn’t have the strength to tell anyone about it until recently. I completely hid my trauma from every single person in my life ~ while to the outside world, it may have seemed like I was immersing myself in this practice for my own fitness and physical health, I was actually doing yoga because it was the only space I could start to feel like my body was a safe and sacred space again. I could breathe into my belly again and be fully in the present moment ~ both things that trauma survivors and people with PTSD can seriously struggle with. In moments of anxiety or flashbacks, I continue to return to my breath, mantras, mindfulness, and all the other tools my practice has taught me. Yoga continues to be my primary method of self-healing on a day-to-day basis.

What meditation or mantra are you currently living by?

What happens to me always happens for me!

What does your dream yoga position or career look like?

I dream of someday running my own retreat center and hosting yoga retreats alongside my partner, who is a vegan chef that caters for my retreats and trainings. I’d love if we could find a place to cultivate our own organic garden and produce… somewhere beautiful, hot, and magical like Costa Rica or Indonesia (my home country)!

Connect with Mari Azis Founder of: Mariko Jana Yoga

Mari was born in Indonesia and raised between New York and Japan. She’s currently based in upstate New York and travels from there. She recently made the move to being fully nomadic, so she’s focusing her teaching to hosting retreats and workshops in different communities, including upstate New York, Cape Cod, Costa Rica, and (soon!) Cambodia. 

The post Interview with Mari Jana Azis- Founder of Mariko Jana Yoga appeared first on Xanadu Yoga.

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This post may trigger you.

Rape. Sexual Harassment. Yoga. One was horrifically painful and completely confusing. One was absolutely terrifying. One began my healing journey from both.

The first time a man raped me I was 15 years old. I’ll spare you the details, but it continued for three years. It didn’t stop until I left town for good.

While this was going on, a different man (who was actually from my church) was sexually harassing me while the elders and pastor at my church watched and let him do it. I was 15 in this moment too. 

The first time I found yoga I was 18 years old.

Yoga was this ever-flowing blessing in my life.

Yoga helped me heal. Yoga helped me shine my light again. Oh how I missed that light.  It helped me love myself in ways I never imagined. Yoga helped me beat my eating disorder that resulted from those three years. Yoga helped me love my body in ways I learn about everyday. I can honestly say that yoga is the BEST thing that has ever happened to me. Yoga saved my life and that’s the truth.

This isn’t a poor me story. This is a story of truth. This is a story of absolute light.

For the first time in my life I was able to speak the words out loud. I was in a sacred space at my home studio and I felt safe. So I said it.

“He raped me.”

That was my first day of healing. It was like tasting freedom for the first time. It was the first time I realized how much love and support there is out in the world. It was the first time I learned that I could somehow grow from this. I could get past this and move on with my life.

Four years later, I’m doing just that.

In four years time…

I became a certified yoga teacher.

I founded my own yoga business.

I beat a fucking eating disorder!

I got my SUP Yoga certification.

I climbed many waterfalls and a volcano!

I traveled to 18 countries teaching yoga in all of them while impacting communities along the way!

For four years, I stayed on my yoga mat and loved the woman on it.

That woman has fought battles she’s not afraid of winning.

I remember years of starving myself, threatening to kill myself, surrounding myself with toxic people. I remember days of crying on my yoga mat releasing what was never there to serve me. I remember moments practicing with dear friends and seeing bursts of light shine from all of us. Hello heart openers! I remember laughter and the moment I became a yoga teacher.

I’m not here to tell you that this yoga practice can heal you after one downward dog or that we are ever done healing because we are always healing. This healing and this practice take work. Self love takes work.

What I’m here to tell you is that I’m on this healing journey with you. You are not alone in your healing as you have a whole wide world community of women who are healing too. I love you and so does this yoga practice. It’s here to remind you that your mat is a safe space for you to heal, to move, to laugh, to cry and to FEEL what needs to be felt.

It’s all okay or it will be soon.

Trust that and trust YOU!

I’m someone who likes to take action in the world so I’m hosting a Women’s Retreat in Cambodia this April.

This retreat is for sexual assault and trauma survivors.

(Or as I call us “Super Badass Women w/ Incredible Self-Healing Powers!”)

This retreat is here to hold space for healing, to practice yoga and meditation, to swim under waterfalls, watch incredible sunsets and to create community with women from around the world.

So if YOU are a Super Badass Woman w/ Incredible Self-Healing Powers, send me an EMAIL or check out the retreat HERE. I would be honored to dive deep into this healing journey with you!

Loving, holding & healing with you!


Founder of Xanadu Yoga



Brytta is a world traveling yoga instructor from NYC. She is a lover of glitter, SUP Yoga and climbing waterfalls. When she's not adventuring around the world and teaching yoga, she's writing about her adventures and coming up with new ways to take her yoga off the mat and into the world! When she's not doing any of that, she's outside studying constellations and making wishes on shooting stars. A big fan of discovering new books to read, her current favorite reads are:You are a Badass, Polishing the Mirror and Yoga Girl

The post How My Yoga Practice Helped Me Heal From Sexual Assault appeared first on Xanadu Yoga.

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Envision Festival 2019 is a jungle minute away and this year the yoga lineup is fire! These 4 Most Anticipated Yoga Classes will have your body feeling all the vibrations! So get ready to move, meditate and flow with these four ladies!


Rachel Brathen

One of the first memories I have of Rachel inspiring my yoga practice was a quote she wrote on Instagram. The quote she wrote inspired me to buy her book Yoga Girl and a year later take her SUP Yoga TT. The way that Rachel holds space for her students is something so special and incredibly present. Her teachings empower her students to be their authentic selves on and off the yoga mat. I’m excited to see the yoga magic she brings into Envision this year with her classes and pre-festival yoga retreat: Wild Awakening.  


Sianna Sherman

Founder of Mythic Yoga Flow and Rasa Yoga, Sherman is an international yoga instructor. Sherman describes her vision as to serve the “Benefit of all beings and awaken magic into the world.” With her vision and Envision Festival being a place of magic in the world, I’m really excited to take her class and experience the magic that manifests with her!


Elana Meta

Elana Meta, founder of Wild Vessel,  has been a recent inspiration in my life as I love how she connects movement with how we connect to the planet and how we choose to empower ourselves as women. I am beyond excited to take her class to learn new ways on how to connect self and the Mother Earth.


Ashleigh Sergeant

Ashleigh is the Director of Yoga and Movement at Envision Festival so you can thank her for this epic yoga lineup! I watched Sergeant’s intro video on her website and something she spoke on inspired me.

“The body is the way we experience the world.”

I loved this as there is no other way to experience it. Our body is the one vessel that is with us day in and day out truly seeing and experiencing it together with us. I can’t wait to take a class with Ashleigh as her experience in the yoga world is vast including being the Global Yoga Trainer for Adidas and the youngest certified Anusara Instructor in the world. So stay tuned for some wisdom on the mat with!


Speaking of wisdom, Rachel Brathen wrote:

“There is a fire within your soul. Can you feel it? It burns for you. It tells you where to go. You can sense it intensifying when you’re on the right track, telling you not to hold back. Keep going.

Stoke it by breathing deeply. By doing things that scare you every once in a while. By traveling the world. By falling in love, even when it doesn’t make sense. By celebrating your body-every inch of it. There is a fire within your soul. Watch it burn by being unapologetically you, every moment of everyday.”

Ready to dive deep into the jungle? Check out my Yogi’s Packing List HERE.


Want more of Envision Festival? Check out the Music Release HERE.


See you in Costa Rica my yoga loves! Pura Vida!




Brytta is a world traveling yoga instructor from NYC. She is a lover of glitter, SUP Yoga and climbing waterfalls. When she's not adventuring around the world and teaching yoga, she's writing about her adventures and coming up with new ways to take her yoga off the mat and into the world! When she's not doing any of that, she's outside studying constellations and making wishes on shooting stars. A big fan of discovering new books to read, her current favorite reads are:You are a Badass, Polishing the Mirror and Yoga Girl

The post Envision Festival 2019 Yoga Lineup: Four Most Anticipated Yoga Classes! appeared first on Xanadu Yoga.

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Envision Festival 2019 is right around the jungle corner! Do you know what that means? It means that this is a time for moving, growing and learning about our fellow humans and the world around us! With that being said, I’m very excited to share with you my top four anticipated female speakers and workshop instructors of


Envision Festival 2019


Céline Cousteau

Cousteau is a filmmaker, traveler, jewelry designer, socio-environmental advocate and many more titles but all for the same cause! To bring humans and the environment together. Cousteau is the first on my list of speakers! I love that Envision has a speaker whose purpose in life is to bring humans and the world together. I’m excited to learn and most importantly to listen to what she has to teach us festival goers.


Mariafernanda Larraguivel

Larraguivel is a yoga sense instructor, Kinesiologist and co-owner of her business Aromaflor Organico. Her business is a plant + mineral based body care and essential oil line. I’m incredibly excited to learn about yoga, plant + mineral based products and how as a combination can help heal our fellow humans.


Adriana Ayales

Ayales is a Costa Rican native and the founder of Anima Mundi Apothecary. Ayales is known for her business of creating a “pure form” of healthcare through medicinal herb.  She studied plant medicine with teachers from around the world which inspired her company Anima Mundi Apothecary in New York City. As much as I’m thrilled to learn about medicinal herb in the form of healthcare, I’m even more excited to learn about the business side of medicinal herbs and what it takes to manifest a business that helps the world through the world.


Selva Bhairavi

Bhairavi is an Italian Visionary Weaver who uses plants and organic materials to weave her products. She uses walking as a meditation to channel the elements that make her weaves and believes we are all one as we are all weaved and interconnected into the same universe. I love mantras like that. I’m excited to see what this weaver has on the table for us. Will she teach us how to weave or will she give us a talk on the universe? Stay tuned my festival goers!

These ladies are your Top Four Female Speakers of Envision Festival 2019! To learn more about the speakers of Envision Festival, check out the full lineup HERE.


If you’re new to the festival, feel free to stop by my Envision Festival 2019 Packing Guide!


See you all in Costa Rica for four days of epic adventures, educational talks and life changing yoga! Pura Vida!

*Feature photo by: Bradford Watkins Creations



Brytta is a world traveling yoga instructor from NYC. She is a lover of glitter, SUP Yoga and climbing waterfalls. When she's not adventuring around the world and teaching yoga, she's writing about her adventures and coming up with new ways to take her yoga off the mat and into the world! When she's not doing any of that, she's outside studying constellations and making wishes on shooting stars. A big fan of discovering new books to read, her current favorite reads are:You are a Badass, Polishing the Mirror and Yoga Girl

The post Envision Festival 2019 Lineup: Top Four Female Speakers appeared first on Xanadu Yoga.

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