Conference Schedule

Plan your weekend with us!

Friday, October 9

All times are shown in Pacific Daylight Time (PDT). Find your time zone here.

Live Sessions will be recorded and available to watch on-demand within 24 hours. Community Networking Sessions will not be recorded.

Keynote: The Future Is Ours To Embrace

Keynote description forthcoming

8:30am - 9:30am

Dianne Bondy

8:30am - 9:30am

Keynote: The Future Is Ours To Embrace

Keynote description forthcoming

Dianne Bondy
9:45am - 11:00am

Radical Inclusion and Subversion is Yoga: Reflections on the Historical Bhakti Movement and Honoring our Feet

In this presentation, Lakshmi will share her reflections on the historical Bhakti movement in medieval India as a social justice movement by sharing stories of revolutionary bhaktas who challenged casteist, patriarchal, communalist norms and how their courage is relevant to our times. We will end with a meditative practice that honors and elevates the feet, a part of the body that in Indian culture is considered lowly and polluting and is (not by accident), associated with the Feminine and also with low-caste peoples. We will also discuss what this means in terms of cultural appropriation.

Lakshmi Nair
9:45am - 11:00am

Yoga & Resilience in the Face of Adversity, an interactive Q&A with Yoga Alliance Foundation

At this session, hosted by Yoga Alliance Foundation, we will share brief stories about yoga providing resilience to teachers and others in this time of crisis. We would like to hear how yoga has supported and enabled you to maintain your practice throughout pandemic.

Please plan to share your experiences and perspectives on the following questions (responses may be submitted prior to the workshop or during the session):

  • How has yoga supported you during this period of crisis and challenge?
  • What has been the role of “community” in strengthening your ability to navigate adversity?
  • What other types of support do you need most during these challenging times?
Maya Breuer, Vice President of Cross Cultural Advancement, Yoga Alliance; Kristina Graff, Managing Director, Yoga Alliance Foundation
11:15am - 12:45pm

The State of Union (Yoga) Address: "How Much Time for Your Progress?"

"Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed if it is not faced." - James Baldwin

Now is the time to acknowledge and bring power to unified voices. This unique panel is filled with cultural leaders in the field of Contemplative Practices who will share a discussion inspired by the words of James Baldwin and his extensive fight to create a more just, accessible and equal nation. The panel is composed of Dana Smith, Kiesha Battles, J Miles and Shankari Goldstein, four thought leaders that have lent their voices tirelessly to the upliftment of Black, Indigenous People of Color and underserved communities. They will ask the listener to give rise to the following questions:

  • What is our greater humanity asking Black people to reconcile themselves to?
  • How long is the road to justice and progress?
  • What is the price of trust and are White people or those in power willing to pay for it?
  • What does it look like to examine one's own culture and your own inner spirit and shadows?
  • What is the role and future for Contemplative Practices and Yogis in this profound moment?
  • What does it look and "feel" like to preach the Gospel of Equality?
  • Our panel will take you on a cultural journey through the history of the Black Yoga experience and how Black voices are powerfully emerging as the pioneers and leaders in the field, not only in our larger national conversation on systemic racism, but the Wellness World as a whole. We will dive into what it looks like to ""Reassemble the house of our fallen Heroes,” as James Baldwin asked of us many decades ago.

We Call Forward the Change Makers who like Baldwin, brought the cry for freedom into cocktail parties, universities, and the streets. So to have these presenters who have been asking the Yoga Industry to craft new visionary ways to practice the very traditions and knowledge with the Black and Indigenous people that helped bring them to life.

Will this profound step in the right direction we are witnessing be enough? Time and love will tell, but in the words of brother Baldwin, "How much time do you want for your Progress?”

Mic Drop.

Dana A. Smith
Kiesha Battles
J Miles
Shankari Goldstein
11:15am - 12:30pm

Community Networking Session: Accessible Yoga for Neurological Conditions

Sarah is an experienced yogini and teacher who has worked in multiple communities across the US. Come enjoy a brief lecture on best practices for working with neurological disorders, disabled athletes, and SCI. And then engage in a conversation about finding your voice as an Accessible Yoga teacher in a tempestuous industry.  

Sarah E Helt
12:45pm - 2:00pm

Creating Safer Spaces for Persons with Intellectual and/or Developmental Disabilities

In this workshop, we will begin with a typical Guided By Humanity All Abilities sequenced practice for grounding. We will discuss the importance and need for trauma sensitive practices within the I/DD community. We will discuss factors such as physical access and barriers, person centered language vs. identity first language, unexpected behaviors that may show up in your class and varying physical abilities. We will end our discussion with a Q & A session and resources.

Mary Medellin-Sims
12:45pm - 2:00pm

Community Networking Session

Join other Accessible Yoga Conference participants in an interactive community networking session around a topic such as yoga for seniors, yoga for Blind people or folks with low vision, yoga for folks in larger bodies, and more.

Facilitator TBA
2:15pm - 4:30pm

Accessible Flow  

Accessible Flow is a gentle chair vinyasa practice where props are encouraged for added support and stability. 

Natasha Chaoua
2:15pm - 3:30pm

Community Networking Session: Accessible Yoga for Larger Bodies

Join other Accessible Yoga Conference participants in an interactive community networking session. More details to come! 

Jacquie Barbee
3:45pm - 5:00pm

Trauma Informed Yoga and Neurodiversity

Trauma informed yoga is taught with a sensitivity to the various needs of trauma survivors in mind. The focus is on creating as much safety as possible and minimizing harm to people who may already feel vulnerable in their bodies and in yoga spaces. Unresolved trauma can cause hypervigilance, anxiety, depression and shut down. Being neurodivergent, although not necessarily a trauma, can be traumatizing in a world oriented towards neurotypical brains. It is also important to be aware of how trauma may present differently for neurodivergent students. Trauma informed yoga must include understanding and awareness of neurodiversity and the different needs of neurodivergent people. This class is taught by Hala Khouri, a neurotypical trauma therapist and yoga teacher, and Laura Sharkey, an autistic yoga and meditation teacher, and disability justice activist. Together they will collaborate to offer best practices for working both with trauma survivors and neurodivergent people. Topics we will cover include.

  • What is trauma?
  • Basic elements of a trauma informed practice.
  • How to support neurodivergent students.
  • How to distinguish neurodiversity from trauma symptoms.

This workshop will also include a short practice.

Hala Khouri
Laura Sharkey
3:45pm - 5:00pm

Community Networking Session: Accessible Yoga in Asia

Come visit with Dr. Yoko Nakano and Dr. Teruki Nakano, founders of MEDCAREYOGA in Japan. Meet other participants living and working in Asia and discover how Dr. Yoko Nakano and Dr. Teruki Nakano have learned about Social Distancing and Frailty in Older People and what yoga instructors can do in the "With Corona" Era.

Teruki Nakano MD., MBA., RYT
5:15pm - 6:15pm

Keynote: Embracing the Roots of Yoga Can Help Make Yoga Accessible

In this keynote we will explore the roots of yoga as socially engaged and accessible. We will cover the history of colonization and oppression, cultural issues, appropriation, modern day segregation in yoga, and explore concrete tools for how to create inclusion such as allyship and accompliceship. In this immersive talk, for practitioners, teachers and students of yoga Susanna Barkataki will guide participants on a rich cultural journey into the roots of yoga, breakdown inaccessibility, colonization and oppression and invite participants into intersectional skill-building for accessibility with inclusion and diversity while embracing the heart and roots of yoga.

Susanna Barkataki
6:30pm - 7:30pm

Conference After Dark: Opening Night Celebration

Just because we can't gather in person doesn't mean we aren't gonna party! Join us for a joyful opening night celebration with fun, games, and a dance party! Dress however you feel best (glitter! fancy clothes! costumes! messy hair and PJs!) and come to mix and mingle with the Accessible Yoga Board and other conference participants! See you there!

Amber Karnes

Watch Anytime

This on-demand content will become available Friday and then will be ready on-demand to watch 24/7 in your Conference Participant Portal.

Trauma-Informed Yoga for Survivors of Sexual Assault: Empowered Pathways Towards Healing the Mind, Body, and Soul

Survivors of trauma, in the broadest definition of the word, share the experience of navigating their lives in the aftermath of a life-changing event. Survivors may have a range of body-based symptoms that pervade their entire lives, long after the trauma occurred. Bodily sensations associated with trauma can overwhelm the nervous system, which can create a lack of safety. Trauma permeates all aspects of one's lived experience: physical, psychological, mental, behavioral, social, and spiritual. Trauma-informed yoga and mindfulness practices offer modalities to help heal the whole person.

Trauma-informed yoga can help survivors gently tend to embodied trauma imprints and bring them to the surface. And with greater awareness, time, and patience, survivors often feel empowered with new tools to name and address their symptoms and survival responses and identify ways to work through them. This can ultimately lead to a space where survivors can expand their capacity for neuroplasticity, post traumatic growth, safety, and healing.

Being trauma-informed is a philosophy and a systemic framework of the way we truly see people and honor their humanity. It is a lifelong commitment to leaning in and doing the work of being an ally, educating ourselves, being aware of our biases, and engaging in culturally affirming practices. It is committing to and engaging in our work that at all costs: avoids retraumatization. It helps us to compassionately and empathetically hold a safe container. And it allows every interaction to be a powerful reminder: people are the experts of their own experience.

This session will provide mental health professionals, yoga instructors, educators, administrators, activists, medical professionals, survivor advocates, or anyone who is interested in teaching from a trauma-informed lens and integrating this modality into the scope of their work with supportive tools and experiential practice to create a safe environment for survivors of sexual trauma.

Zahabiyah Yamasaki, M.Ed., RYT

Womxn of Color Voices: Representation in Publishing Matters

This presentation will address the lack of diversity, inclusion, and representation of womxn of color voices in mainstream wellness publishing. Yoga and meditation books are a space that have been co-opted by white cisgender men and women. The lack of BIPOC and LGBQTIA+ voices is starkly visible. Yoga is not just for white and able-bodied people so why are our stories not being told? We cannot change the narrative if we are not given an opportunity to have our lived experience heard.

Join Anusha Wijeyakumar one of the very few South Asian Hindu women to get a mainstream publishing deal in the west to write about her indigenous faith in her upcoming book Meditation with Intention. Anusha will discuss the importance in this time of unrest of understanding that yoga is the path of social justice, anti-racism and unity. With the continued co-opting and spiritual bypassing in yoga there is a great need for more authentic voices in this space. In this presentation Anusha will unpack how we all have a part to play in dismantling white supremacy in wellness publishing and beyond. Anusha will do a reading from her book and the session will conclude with a pranayama practice and meditation.

Anusha Wijeyakumar

Fat Kid Yoga Club: Creating Space for Joyful Movement and Liberation

Created with folks in larger bodies in mind, this practice celebrates joyful movement and liberating ourselves from limiting thoughts. This 60-minute practice includes meditation, breathwork (pranayama), and physical postures (asana). Postures will be practiced primarily while seated, standing, or laying down on the mat. During this class, you may be asked to get up and down from the floor. Options for adapting postures are provided and participants are encouraged to experiment with other variations or postures to support their practice.

Marc Settembrino

Creating a Consent Culture: Teaching Towards Empowerment & Embodied Agency

Workshop description forthcoming.

M Camellia

Saturday, October 10

All times are shown in Pacific Daylight Time (PDT). Find your time zone here.

Live Sessions will be recorded and available to watch on-demand within 24 hours. Community Networking Sessions will not be recorded.

8:00am - 9:00am

Keynote: Addiction & Healing In A Pandemic

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R. Nikki Myers
9:15am - 10:30am

Making Relaxation Accessible

Making relaxation accessible means more than just adding props to ensure students are physically comfortable, it means creating an environment and adjusting practices to help students feel safer. This workshop will provide an overview of the autonomic nervous system, polyvagal theory, as well as relaxation and meditation practices. Learn how to create an open dialogue around the challenges people face when practicing relaxation and meditation. Explore the multi-factorial backgrounds that often lead to people feeling unsafe. Engage creatively with an overview of how to make spaces feel safer, how to adapt practices to treat pain, work with trauma, and help students feel more comfortable and more at home in their practice.

Sarah Garden
9:15am - 10:30am

Community Networking Session: Accessible Yoga in Europe and UK

Join other Accessible Yoga Conference participants in an interactive community networking session. More details to come!

Alessandra Uma Cocchi
10:45am - 12:15pm

Accessing the Benefits of Yoga in Pain Management

Join in on this panel discussion by 3 of the authors of the ground-breaking white paper, "How Yoga Therapy Serves in Comprehensive Integrative Pain Management." The focus of this discussion will highlight the barriers to access of services, the limitations of training for yoga professionals, and practical action steps for increasing pain literacy and access for all stakeholders. This promises to be an engaging and aspirational discussion for anyone interested in expanding yoga access for people living with pain.

Shelly Prosko (PT, C-IAYT)
Marlysa Sullivan
Matthew Taylor
10:45pm - 12:00pm

Community Networking Session: The Path of Service, Building Sustainable Models

This presentation, through the story of Shri in New England, will provide insight and direction into how to create your own effective social enterprise serving large populations of students with an intent on building community and empowering both teachers and students.  Best practices and methodologies will be discussed in a call for action approach.

Alison Bologna
12:15pm - 1:30pm

Retreat to Spirit, Expand into Service and Leadership

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, we were overworked, stressed, and lacked self-care tools and consistent contemplative practices. Due to the demands of social and physical distancing, and a shift in how we work and communicate, we are collectively experiencing a new level of overwhelm, and emotional and mental exhaustion.

Creating a paradigm of compassionate collaboration and community that is rooted in conscious relationship, self-care, and contemplative practice, Amina and Pamela will help you discover how to use yogic practices to serve others. These include:

  • Unpacking the consequences of moral injury
  • Developing distinctive and empowering self-care techniques
  • Using yogic principles, compassion, and energy healing tools
  • Discovering unconventional methods of collaboration, partnership, and community building to help you navigate your personal and professional lives.

This workshop immersion is designed for everyone, including those searching for more meaning and purpose to discover embodied, synchronistic connections. When our inner spirit is depleted, everything suffers, including our service to others. Through self-inquiry, discussion, breathwork, meditation, and embodied movement, we will learn how self-care and healing are a necessary part of a life of service.

Pamela Stokes Eggleston
Amina Naru
12:15pm - 1:30pm

Community Networking Session: Yoga for Blind People, People with Low Vision

Join other Accessible Yoga Conference participants in an interactive community networking session. More details to come!

Natasha Baebler and Aly Slaughter
1:45pm - 3:00pm

Bilingual Yoga Class

Honoring the classic structure of a hatha style class – one breath, one movement- When moving in a symmetrical way, the right side is usually the first to move, thus, all setting and refining cues provided on the right side are in English, by the time we transition to the left side, which usually is the second side to move, we also transition to a different language: Spanish! Do not fret, all cues remain the exact same on both sides and languages.

Open to all levels of experience, with demonstration along the way so you never feel lost and always know where you are going. Together we will support our asana practice with the usage of props. What a joy spending time in community furthering malleability in all your bodies: physical, mental and spiritual!

Noemi Nunez
1:45pm - 3:00pm

Community Networking Session: Accessible Yoga for Children with Disabilities

Join other Accessible Yoga Conference participants in an interactive community networking session. More details to come! 

Brenda Bakke and Mary Fuhr
3:15pm - 4:30pm

No Peon, No Water - Intersection of Casteism and Yoga: A Call to Action

Casteism is a taboo subject in the mainstream and yet its pervasiveness has seeped insidiously in every realm of life in India and the Indian diaspora, much like racism here in the United States. We will first understand the complexity and the history of the case system and how this is manifested in Yoga. For those of us who want to think about equity and accessibility, the caste system has played an often silent role in the way we learn and practice Yoga that many are unaware of. We will then discuss how we can help disrupt this power paradigm in our Yoga classes.

Anjali Rao
3:15pm - 4:30pm

Community Networking Session: Accessible Yoga in Español

Join other Accessible Yoga Conference participants in an interactive community networking session. More details to come! 

Amma Maria Fandino
4:45pm - 5:45pm

Keynote: The Audacity of Taking Up Space: Re-imagining Power In The Body

Dominant culture teaches that our bodies are problems to be solved or projects to constantly be worked on. No wonder most of us end up criticizing or hating our bodies. Maybe we think that self-love is the answer, but the how escapes us. Or maybe we feel guilty for spending so much time obsessing over our small problems (cellulite! wrinkles!) in a world with so many big problems. But the truth is that the personal is political. And the dynamics of oppression and power in dominant culture replicate themselves in our institutions and in our relationships (including the relationship to our bodies). The way we think, feel, and act toward our *own* body informs the way we think, feel, and act about *all* bodies. And so these big and small problems are one and the same. This session will explore how divesting from oppressive beliefs about the body can enable us to reclaim personal power. We will examine how fatphobia and diet culture show up in our yoga spaces and how dismantling those systems (in our minds, relationships, and businesses) empowers us to “take up space” in activism and service. Amber will through-weave her own body image story and how her self-acceptance work grew alongside her yoga practice. Finally, this session will explore the role of community in reclaiming personal and collective power and how yoga practitioners and teachers can be the resilient community leaders we need to move through the wild, uncertain experience of being human.

Amber Karnes
6:00pm - 7:15pm

From Trauma-Informed to Trauma-Transforming: Yoga, Social Justice & Spirit

Join Mei Lai Swan, founder of Yoga for Humankind, for an exploration of trauma-informed yoga that is woven with social justice and spirit for a trauma-transforming practice of hope, healing and collective wellbeing.

Trauma-informed yoga is expanding rapidly around the world with our growing understanding of the prevalence and impacts of trauma, and the benefits of yoga, contemplative and body-based practices in recovery and resiliency. Much-needed and powerful, many current trauma-informed yoga approaches draw from traditional hatha yoga, mindfulness practices and neuroscience, with a focus on important theoretical, practical and clinical knowledge and skills. But they often miss out on the heart of what humanizes us: the honouring of our unique and individual wholeness, and our inherent interconnectedness with each other, the world, and spirit.

This approach offers us a whole human, whole system framework and practice to move from trauma-informed to trauma-transforming.

In this workshop, Mei Lai combines a presentation and embodied practice that explores:

  • Understanding and transforming personal and collective trauma through the yoga of embodied experience, spirit, social justice and trauma theory
  • Honouring our humanity, wholeness and uniqueness
  • Exploring connection, hope and possibility
  • An introduction to knowledge, practices and skills for trauma-transforming yoga and facilitation
Mei Lai Swan

Watch Anytime

This on-demand content will become available Saturday and then will be ready on-demand to watch 24/7 in your Conference Participant Portal.

Looking Beyond Physical Accessibility

We often think how do we make yoga accessible only in terms of the physical practice. However, if the student has a disability, there may be obstacles from the time they leave home for the class to the time they return home. These obstacles may be at the yoga studio or in transit to or from class. In this workshop we will look at what some of those obstacles are, as well as ideas on how to make the class presentation more inclusive.

Ryan McGraw

Moving with Compassion

When inquiry and compassion are the foundations of our practice, the outcome of a shape or movement is not as important as what the technique reveals about our mind body relationship. My hope is for you to connect to more of yourself and the spaces around you in this practice session. I am not dogmatic about my personal practice and this will be reflected in my teaching methods. This practice is a combination of asana, gentle breath work, and mindful movement. As we put our bodies in different positions and move with intention, I will encourage you to become curious about the sensations and spaces that your body and breath are uncovering. Where is the resistance or relief? Where is the ease or discomfort? What places are off limits? What new places can be discovered? I simply wish to be the compass to your exploration and safely lead you to places of possibility. You decide what, if anything, you wish to investigate.

Carey Sims

Empowered & Inclusive: The Path Toward Self-Realisation

Some of Yoga’s most powerful and transformative practices have little to do with asana. In my years of teaching Yoga to children with special needs, the most effective are Mantra, Pranayama & Meditation/Mindfulness. Sanskrit, among other ancient languages carry a vibration that impacts a person’s frequency as well as cardiovascular rhythms, invoking a feeling of calm, centred focus.

This interactive workshop brings participants back to the core of the practice. Hersha will introduce some key tips in how these essential practices are helpful for children with special needs and disabilities, and then guide participants through a classic practice of mantra chanting, guided pranayama practices, ending with an extended meditation.

Hersha Chellaram

Get Fit Where You Sit! Doing Yoga the Lakshmi Voelker Chair Yoga Way

For so many people, the yoga mat can be a barrier: Physically getting up and down from the floor is not available to many who have injuries or disabilities. And some of us, as we age, prefer other options for practicing yoga. Chair yoga is a safe, effective, and accessible alternative to practicing yoga on a mat. It provides all the benefits of yoga and is available to everyone: Any BODY, any chair, anywhere!

The session will include the Chinese Acupressure Hand and Knee Movements, Sun and Moon Salutations, Matrika Shakti (Power of the Word), Pranayama (Breathing Techniques), and Asanas (Poses) from a number of yoga styles. Be prepared for joy and humor – ‘hold on to your chair’ for a fun-filled experience.

Liz Oppedijk

The Basic Yama

Before asana & beyond it, the practical philosophy of yoga makes the practice worth embracing at all levels & accessible too. The general misconception has always been around yoga philosophy being too cryptic and remote from the popularised practice. In truth, it is not! Understanding the foundation of the yamas & niyamas gives a whole new pathway to even approaching the yamas and niyamas through the sadhana. This presentation aims at providing us with the insight to recognize the ease of making yoga philosophy available to all practitioners through the very first & most basic of the yamas & niyamas.

Luvena Rangel

Workshop Title TBA

Workshop description forthcoming

Simran Uppal

Sunday, October 11

All times are shown in Pacific Daylight Time (PDT). Find your time zone here.

Live Sessions will be recorded and available to watch on-demand within 24 hours. Community Networking Sessions will not be recorded.

8:00am - 9:00am

Keynote: Meeting this Moment with Liberatory Practice

Michelle C. Johnson will offer a keynote focused on how we can most effectively meet this cultural and political moment with practices rooted in liberation for all. These are tumultuous times and we need to be creative in how we respond to the tumult from a grounded and centered place. This keynote will include conversation, meditation, and questions for your reflection. 

Michelle Cassandra Johnson
9:15am - 10:30am

Seated Yoga - Progressive Movement Sequencing

This seated class will focus on progressions of movement in a flowing motion. It is designed for wheelchair users or those with a mobility disability who have some upper body mobility. A graduate of the Chair Yoga Teacher Training Course by Yoga Vista Academy, I have been inspired by the movement philosophy of Sherry Zak Morris who is an aficionado of keeping the body moving in safe and effective ways for the ageing population. Hence I bring a lot of sequencing into my classes, when working on the upper body in particular, which is also so beneficial to wheelchair users with often over-worked muscles and joints in our upper bodies. During this class we will move steadily from one seated stretch to the next, progressively building on movements. We will be guided by the breath to bring focus while freeing up our joints and boosting blood flow. Multi-directional seated movements will be used to ease the muscles and fascia in our neck, shoulders, arms, wrists, spine and hips. Using sequences is wonderful for concentration and coordination, kind to our joints and brings life force to the body and mind. I hope you enjoy this class!

Nina Boswell Brown
9:15am - 10:30am

Community Networking Session: Accessible Yoga for Incarcerated Populations

Come meet Bill Brown, Executive Director of Prison Yoga Project (PYP) and discuss the personal, social, and intergenerational trauma yoga teachers face head-on entering into prisons and jails, an environment that compounds trauma. In this context, where everything, especially power dynamics, is intensified, how we show up is vitally important. Connect with each other and discuss how good intentions can inadvertently harm the people we seek to serve. To be effective, we need a deep practice that helps us face our attachments and conditioning to act without attachment to the outcome. When we can begin to do this, we create a healing holding space that is the foundation for personal and social transformation.

Bill Brown
10:45am - 12:15pm

Trans Yoga Project: Creating Accessible Yoga Spaces for Trans & 
Non-Binary Practitioners

Panel description forthcoming.

Chris Johnson
Daniel Sannito
Noha Arafa 
10:45pm - 12:00pm

Community Networking Session

Join other Accessible Yoga Conference participants in an interactive community networking session around a topic such as yoga for seniors, yoga for Blind people or folks with low vision, yoga for folks in larger bodies, and more.

Facilitator TBA
12:15pm - 1:30pm

Yoga is Dead

Yoga is Dead is a revolutionary podcast that explores power, privilege, fair pay, harassment, race, cultural appropriation and capitalism in the yoga and wellness worlds. Join Indian-American hosts Tejal + Jesal as they expose all the monsters lurking under the yoga mat.

Tejal Patel
Jesal Parikh
12:15pm - 1:30pm

Community Networking Session: Q&A with the Accessible Yoga Board of Directors

Join other Accessible Yoga Conference participants in an interactive community networking session. More details to come!

Marie Prashanti Goodell, Board President
1:45pm - 3:00pm

Mindfulness + Movement: Breath, Movement & Meditation

Mindfulness is a practice of paying attention to the present moment of thoughts, emotions, and sensations with curiosity, acceptance and compassion. This session will focus on the body and breath as anchors to introduce formal breathing practices, gentle movement and relaxation techniques that may be used to promote awareness, connection and clarity to the individual experience amongst the community. This session may be completed on a mat/towel and/or a chair.

Ashley Williams, MS, C-IAYT
1:45pm - 3:00pm

Community Networking Session: Accessible Yoga for Mental Health

Join other Accessible Yoga Conference participants in an interactive community networking session. More details to come! 

Elizabeth Crenshaw
3:15pm - 4:30pm

The Beloved Yoga Community: The origins of racial healing

Summer 2020 saw murders of unarmed Black people in the media, reignited Black Lives Matter protests, nationwide demands for racial justice, COVID 19, and a louder demand for racial healing.

In this virtual session, members of THE COLLECTIVE STL, will introduce participants to the ancient African philosophy of Ubuntu, meaning humanity to others, or- “I am because you are, you are because I am” . Having a clear understanding of the 11 principles, participants will be able to apply the learning to their yoga studios, or home practice, in order to create what Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. called the beloved community. Our beloved community is one in which Black lives matter, where Black lives are affirmed and where Black people are loved. This workshop is for anyone who is interested in creating safe/brave spaces for Black yogis as we construct the beloved yoga community.

Terry Harris
3:15pm - 4:30pm

Community Networking Session

Join other Accessible Yoga Conference participants in an interactive community networking session around a topic such as yoga for seniors, yoga for Blind people or folks with low vision, yoga for folks in larger bodies, and more.

Facilitator TBA
4:45pm - 5:45pm

Keynote: Asana, Disability, and Asana

Is living with a disability an impediment to the yogic realization of asana? The truthfully complete answer, if not the socially and politically correct one, is both yes and no, but not for the reasons one might expect. Drawing upon his 42 years of living as a spinal cord injured person and 29 years of practicing yoga, Matthew Sanford shares some insights and challenges from his yogic path, especially with respect to asana. He explores both the advantages and disadvantages that come with his ‘dis’ability as a central feature of his yoga practice. Along the way, Sanford hints at a more expansive and possibly more fundamental conception of what asana is, at a deepened appreciation of what it means to be ‘dis’abled with respect to asana and within our culture at large, and whether he wishes his yogic path could have been otherwise. He asks the question, Is it really so bad to be considered ‘other’ within this mainstream, commercially-driven yogic landscape?

Matthew Sanford

Watch Anytime

This on-demand content will become available Sunday and then will be ready on-demand to watch 24/7 in your Conference Participant Portal.

F Your Gender Norms Fat Yoga Class

Come be your Queer & Trans self in a safe, welcoming environment. Class will be gentler in nature with a long savasana (final relaxation) at the end. This class centers Queer, Trans and Fat folx. I offer plenty of options and laughter. Nothing should be too serious; even yoga. This is a class where you are welcome to ignore me the whole time and do your own thing or take the options as they come available. I am a trained Dharma Yogi however there will be no headstands in this practice. Expect playful movements, free flowing dance moves and a little mantra. Mantra is good for the soul and we all need it right now. You'll leave feeling lighthearted and curious about yourself and your body. 

Allé Kamela


This Buddha Body Yoga class will focus on working with chairs. In developing your practice the chair seems to be the place that we all Wind up in. it is the seat of the 21st-century.

Our ancestors use the earth as grounding points. They sat, slept and walked barefoot on the Earth. Through the years of transferring to shoes, stools, and chairs created a 45° angles of holding patterns.

In this class we will play with those angles. Will use the chairs in many different ways to explore how to elongate those angles and why we hold them. If you use those angles you’ll Learn something different about how the body supports itself, and the cascade of habits that lead us into movements, holding patterns and emotional understanding. Come explore with me. There are no right answers, just many different pathways.

Michael Hayes

The Freedom of Movement

Join Adrian Molina for this 60min movement inspired class. Come prepared to open the body with familiar and new movements. Tapping into the breath and experiencing oneness as we flow. This is a mat class with mostly seated postures and movements.

Adrian Molina

LoveYourBrain Yoga for the Brain Injury Community

Whether you realize it or not, you know someone who has been affected by brain injury. Join this engaging workshop to learn new tools, skills, and information about how to make yoga and meditation more accessible to the brain injury community. You’ll come away with a deeper understanding of traumatic brain injury (TBI), the evidence-based benefits of yoga for healing from TBI, and experience examples of TBI-friendly yoga and meditation practices to inform your teaching. You’ll also learn about the LoveYourBrain Foundation and how to partner with us to offer in-person and online yoga, mindfulness, and education programs to expand access to TBI-friendly yoga. LoveYourBrain’s free, six-week programs are designed to foster resilience and community connection for people with traumatic brain injury and caregivers through breathing exercises, gentle yoga, guided meditation, and group discussion. We hope you’ll join us!

Kyla Pearce, PhD, MPH, E-RYT, CBIS

Accessible Yoga Workshop 

In the Accessible Yoga Workshop, we’ll answer the question, “Who deserves the teachings of yoga?” And we’ll look at a variety of ways to make the teachings and practices of yoga available to all students regardless of ability or background. In particular, we’ll look at the connection between yoga and equity, and how the focus of the teachings include ethical principles.

We’ll consider how the essential teachings of yoga are accessible to everyone, and how the challenges that come with disability, illness, and pain can lead to greater wisdom and insight. The program will include a mixture of discussion and practice.

Content includes:

  • How do we make yoga accessible? Considering the role of the yoga teacher in accessibility.
  • Variations of a few popular asanas, including chair yoga and bed yoga versions.
  • The relationship between accessibility and social justice in yoga
Jivana Heyman

Registration Is OPEN

Ready to dive into the world of Accessible Yoga and connect with our global community?

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