Yoga for the 12 Steps

Enhancing Your Life and Recovery with
Yoga for the 12 Steps

I have created a beautiful program for everyone! Curious? I will be offering this program – Yoga for 12 Step Recovery- in a 12 week format in groups of 3 or more beginning in March of 2018. Also, available one-to-one coaching with me over FaceTime or Skype.  If you are interested in joining one please e-mail me for pricing and schedule. There are no prerequisites. Enhance your recovery – begin your recovery journey – curious how the 12 Steps of Recovery + Yoga can work in your life? Yoga for 12 Step Recovery welcomes everyone! CEUs are available!

My Story

In 1992, I made a decision to stop self-destructing with alcohol and drugs. I began attending 12 Step recovery meetings every day. There I found unconditional love among people living their lives without using substances to numb. All were healing one day at a time by sharing from their hearts their experience, strength and hope. By attending these meetings and working the 12 Steps, I began to “grow up,” heal relationships with friends, family and myself.  There was also a deep desire to reconnect with my spiritual self – something I left behind with my first drink at 16 years old.

Five years after I began working the 12 Steps, I discovered Yoga at Sun & Moon Yoga Studio. The picture of recovery was then complete. Since physical health is not addressed in 12 Step programs, I discovered that Yoga was the perfect partner on this path. Just like in my meetings, at the Yoga studio I found a place filled with unconditional love and like-minded souls wanting to heal and evolve mindfully, emotionally, spiritually, AND physically.

Addiction to anything is a complete distraction from emotional and physical sensations. In my early days of recovery, I was dealing with a lot of emotional pain and sitting in chairs and talking about it. But it wasn’t until I sat down on a yoga mat and began to move my body that I felt entirely connected to my whole self. I was astounded by the physical awareness that yoga brought to me, and it was precisely this awareness that would no longer tolerate self-abuse.

By the spring of 2009, I had been teaching yoga for ten years. I noticed that my recovery friends were not attending yoga classes. The tools I’d gained through yoga that helped me manage stress, anxiety, fear, and emotions were too valuable not to share, so I created Yoga for 12 Step Recovery as a way to blend the wisdom and guidance of both traditions.

How it Works

Each week we pair one step with one aspect of yoga practice, including:

BODYseven energy centers in the body (chakras)

MINDmindfulness (Pause, Breathe, Relax and Feel)

SPIRITtwo approaches to spirit (Consciousness and Service)

By weaving yoga throughout these 12 steps, we connect the body, mind and spirit — we address the whole person.

An example is the work we do with the first step and how it relates to grounding and feeling safe. When we admit that “we are powerless over the effects of addiction,” we turn to the concept of “sangha,” or community. There we find like-minded souls who gather to support each other. We practice a beautiful version of tree pose in a circle, where uplifted hands connect and support the swaying and deeply rooted tree, recognizing the support that’s available all around us.

As we all know, modern life offers many forms of addiction – food, consumerism, cell phones, Facebook…and we’ve all got some version of a default place we go to numb out or disconnect from ourselves. This class/approach is for all of us. These classes are not a 12 Step meeting, but rather a safe place for anyone looking to enhance any aspect of life.

One long-time participant in the class describes her insights about mindfulness as “a form of honesty…both the 12 Steps and yoga really demand a presence and a willingness to look at what is real and true…for 90 minutes, I’m finally able to quiet my mind and leave the extraneous voices outside. This is how I check in to reality.”

Namaste’ and Many Blessings,