December 2018
As we approach the threshold of winter this coming Friday, Dec. 21st, are you prepared for the upcoming 2019 New Year? The Ancient yogis believed that in order to live a joyful life and experience freedom, we need to balance four components in our life:
  1. Our health (physical/mental/emotional)
  2. Our career/occupation
  3. Our relationships
  4. Our spiritual or religious or higher self connection
If one or more is out of balance, then there is suffering (even if you claim to be an atheist, as my father did, what touches our heart, touches our spirit). Once we can align these areas of life, then our life's purpose or dharma is being fulfilled.
In YOY's upcoming Yoga and Food: The Art Of Living Well workshop, we will closely look at these four components as well as address the six pillars of Yoga. Much of the information my daughter, Stacey and I will be sharing will be directly from the ancient teachings of Patanjali's Yoga Sutras and the Hathayogapradipika This is tried and true knowledge that has endured over 2,500 years.

November 2018
After being away for almost 6 weeks and driving 8,401 miles (phew!) in my CRV it’s good to be in the same state as my license plate. I visited several yoga studios around the country to get a better sense of our yoga community at large and I’m happy to report that YOY is still my favorite. Me? Biased? Probably. There are so many yoga teachers and studios across this country but many of them are more of a fitness or health club than a yoga studio. Even though YOY is a small neighborhood studio, we definitely pack a powerful punch into the body, mind and spirit and I believe it’s because we have some of the best yoga teachers and students in our community.
Highlights Of My Road Trip
1. Seeing starling birds during a phenomenon called murmuration" while driving. (Kansas)
2. Hiking in the Grand Tetons and driving through the Tetons Pass.
3. Revisiting a Halloween aerial duet that I performed 23 years ago. I filled in during a rehearsal for a missing dancer in a flying “coffin.” (Boulder, CO). Funny how movement memory never leaves the body.
4. Giving Mom support to my daughter, Talia, as she ran her 2nd marathon (Columbia River, Oregon).
5. Visiting my aerial mother, Terry Sendgraff, now 85 years and in hospice. (Oakland, CA)
6. Helping daughter Stacey with her San Diego business FitFlexyFresh and then brainstorming for our first collaborative workshop: Yoga and Food: The Art of Living Well (San Diego, CA)
7. Watching landscapes change before my eyes, esp. in Idaho, Oregon, Utah, Colorado, Wyoming.
(below photo of Eastern Oregon)
Make sure to stay bendy in these last few months of 2018!

October 2018

I'm writing from Portland, OR after driving 8 days from Baltimore (with overnight stops in Toledo, OH; Walnut, IA; Boulder, CO; Jackson Hole, WY; and Baker City, OR).  Staying for a week with my daughter Talia, then heading to San Diego to visit my other daughter, Stacey.
The roads leading from Baltimore to Portland, OR are quite spectacular and one of the reasons for driving cross country was to not only to visit my two daughters in Portland and San Diego but to visit other yoga studios along the way. Well, I could go on and on about my travels, but don't want to diverge from the purpose of this newsletter.  I am still remotely working from the road (yeah technology!) and we have a bunch of exciting new classes, workshops and trainings planned in the next few coming months at YOY.  

August, 2018

It's been a busy summer for us at YOY, and if you haven't seen me around lately, it's because I've been away working in other parts of the country.  I've recently returned from teaching and performing in Boulder, CO, where I was joined by fellow aerialists to celebrate the 20th Anniversary of the International Aerial Dance Festival.  It was so nice to return to my aerial "home" and be recognized as the inventor of aerial yoga (way back at the 2003 ADF).  
I am also taking a sabbatical this Fall from teaching at Towson University and YOY.  I've been teaching for 35 years and 19 of those years have been at TU and 8 at YOY.  It's a much needed break even though I really miss my YOY family and all of those regular smiling faces and the afterglow of their practice.  But, don't worry....I'll be back with the change of seasons - renewed and charged up for the holiday season.

May 2018

Food is one area of my life that I try to bring more mindfulness to.   I remember growing up with a lot of rules around the family dinner table. My brother couldn't wear his baseball cap to the table; our hair had to be combed; we couldn't answer the phone or bring anything to the table except our appetites. Family dinner was a sacred time that I didn't appreciate until I grew up and had a family of my own.
Throughout history and with people of many cultures, taking pause before eating is an expression of gratitude for the nourishment the plants and animals give us. When we bring attention to what we put into our mouths, it helps to nourish our body and soul to honor the life-giving sustenance of the meal we are about to receive.
Ketul (my first yoga teacher in 1987) taught his students to chew slowly and mindfully, to feel the texture of the food as it entered your mouth. Don't read newspapers or magazines while you eat so you can fully appreciate what you are eating, enjoy the flavor and to feel the energy of the food as it slides down into your belly.  He believed that eating food is another form of yoga.
The food is brahma (creative energy). Its essence is vishnu (preservative energy). The eater is shiva (destructive energy). No sickness due to food can come to one who eats with this knowledge.
     - Sanskrit blessing
We receive this food in gratitude to all beings
Who have helped to bring it to our table,
And vow to respond in turn to those in need
With wisdom and compassion.
     - Buddhist Meal Gatha 
n this plate of food, I see the entire universe supporting my existence.
   - Zen blessing from Thich Nhat Hanh
This food is the gift of the whole universe - the earth, the sky, and much hard work. May we live in a way that makes us worthy to receive it. May we transform our unskillful states of mind, especially our greed. May we take only foods that nourish and prevent illness. We accept this food so that we may realize the path of our practice.
     - Thich Nhat Hanh's meal chant
Om, beloved mother nature, you are here on our table as food. You are endlessly bountiful, benefactress of all. Grant us
health and strength, wisdom and dispassion, and help us share this with one and all.
      - Hindu mealtime prayer
Let us be together; let us eat together. Let us be vital together, let us be radiating truth, radiating the light of life. Never shall we denounce anyone, never entertain negativity.
     - The Upanishads

March 2018

How do you react when you see signs of neglect, disinterest, disregard for the health and well-being of the earth and other beings?  Do you get stuck in a sense of helplessness or rage? Do you think we're all screwed anyway and decide no effort to make things better is worth it?  Are you moved to political action?  Are you moved to take better care of self, family, and friends, even if you think you cannot make much of a greater impact beyond your intimate circle? Can you remain engaged and still find joy, whatever the apparent immediate results and how hard the battle seems to be?
The Bhagavad Gita, says that to live a life of yoga, we must do the last of these.  The first teaching from the Bhagavad Gita on this point is that we must live in accordance with our  dharma (duty).  The second teaching, and more important for having peace of mind in a life of duty, is that of "actionless action."  The true yoga is to live a life of action in accordance with dharma, but without attachment to the outcome (i.e., live in an orderly way and accepting the tendency of the universe to be chaotic). We make a difference on an individual basis. 
Recently, I've been moved to bring attention to the natural elements: earth, air, and water through choreography.  My latest inspiration is Sylvia Earle a.k.a "Her Deepness."  Ms. Earle was the first to walk on the bottom of the ocean below 1500 feet in the 1970's and has dedicated her life to the health of the ocean.  Watch her award winning TedTalk here.
INTRODUCING .....drum roll please...................................
Our freshly minted YOY teacher training graduates from the 2017-18 program.  What a privilege it was to work with this amazing (and fun) group of humans.   Watch a testimonial about the training here.
YOYTT Final Weekend Mar. 30-31 at Kelly and Eddie's Farmhouse in Glenn Arm, MD. 
Healing Arts of Asia
I am co-curating a wonderful exhibit at the Asian Arts Gallery, Towson University running through May 19 called Asia's Healing Arts. The exhibit exploresyoga, taiji, acupuncture (with our own Heather Johnstone), shiatsu, Chinese medicine, and Ayurveda and covers the histories and philosophies of these traditions as well as their unique features, commonalities, global journeys, and how they transform lives. I'll be leading a 2pm Yoga Nidra workshop on April 16th at the Gallery and it's open to the public.  More information.
Please remember to "refuse the straw" and stay bendy!

January 28, 2018

We all experience different kinds of love but I think it is difficult to put love into any kind of container with a label.  Obviously, it is a very strong form of positive energy.  Perhaps it is the supreme feeling that encompasses many different feelings.  Joy, courage, taking risks, jealousy, happiness, sadness, self-abandonment, patience, being silly, you name it.
So this February 14th, go beyond those commercial candy hearts or box of chocolates and explore how you can express your love in a new and unique way.  Offer your skills for free, choose an experience as a gift, create a handmade card. Join hearts to appreciate the presence of love in all forms of your life.  May it be the love of your spouse/significant other, sister, brother, parent, child, friend, pet, tree, painting, music...or any other form that adds beauty and color to your life. 
All this time
The Sun never says
To the Earth,
"You owe me."
What happens
With a love like that.
It lights the 
                       - Hafiz

March 2017


My father was a cartoonist in his spare time and loved to portray our family.   When I was about ten, he drew a cartoon (that I didn't understand) of my mother taking a walk with her close friend, Mary Jean.  The caption read:  "Housework is a real grind.... you have to make the beds, cook, do the dishes, sweep the floors.....then, in a couple of weeks turn around and do it all over again."  
Spring is traditionally a time to clean out all of our "stuff" that gets accumulated during the colder winter months.  Spring cleaning helps for a smoother transition into the warmer months ahead. Change of season means change of clothes, closets get shifted around;  the kitchen is stocked with more colorful fruits and veggies from the produce section...
Spring is also a good time for internal cleaning to help clear out some of the kinks, cobwebs and get to those deep crevices and dark spaces that tend to get overlooked.  What better way clean out the body and mind then with a yoga practice to stir things up and unblock stagnant energy. 

February 2017

My goal for this newsletter was mid-February around the time that we celebrate love in our hearts.  I thought this quote by Courtney Walsh was a perfect reminder that we are not perfect.
So, let your life and yoga be one in the same:  It's a practice.

Congratulations to our 8 newly minted & certified yoga teachers who just graduated from YOY's program February 5, 2017.

January 2017


Martin Luther King would have been 88 this year and we honor him today for his legacy and work in advancing all human beings regardless of gender, race or color.  In his 1963 I Have A Dream speech, he said:
"In the process of gaining our rightful place we must not be guilty of wrongful deeds. Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred.  We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. We must not allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence. Again and again we must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical force with soul force."   

 These words remind us to gain our rightful place in the world through right action so we don't allow ourselves to "degenerate" but instead "rise to the majestic heights...."  Yep, spoken like a true Yogi even though he probably never ever stepped onto a yoga mat. 

December 30, 2016

On behalf of all of us here at YOY (Tanya, Lisa, Becky, Jessica, Dave, Paul, Emily, Katie, Nancy, Christina D, Christina B, Sylvia, Heather, and Melissa), I'd like to send a warm thank you to each and every one of you for bringing your light into this studio. Without you, we wouldn't be here and it's been an honor and joy to watch how YOY has grown and changed over the last 6 years.  Our mission is to serve up healthy doses of mindfulness and well-being and we have so much to be thankful for as 2016 comes to a close.  We also hope that you are taking good care of yourself during this holiday season!   
Samskaras and Sankalpas
When moving forward into a new year, set aside some time to comb through 2016 to remember and reflect on those impressions or "samskaras" that have remained with you.  Whether good or bad, samskaras are there to help guide you into making your future decisions.  
We typically think about an intention or "sankalpa" like setting a New Year's resolution.  Sankalpas are also known as a guiding light that can help you to break free of unproductive thought patterns or tendencies. Kind of like removing those obstacles that are holding you back from achieving your dreams in the coming year.  If you're curious to learn more about sankalpas, please join us on New Year's Day for a special sankalpa yoga class.  

December 2016

Feels like we're living in the DIVIDED STATES OF AMERICA instead of the United States.  What ever happened to "United we stand....divided we fall."
Skill In Action is a chapter in the Bhagavad Gita, (required reading in my teacher training course).  In order to skillfully move through our lives despite the troubled times we're in, we need to stay balanced and true to ourselves.  But, how do we do this when we continue to get hit with a barrage of information that assaults our nervous system? I'd like to pass on 5 post election tips to consider for staying healthy during these troubled times:
1.  Keep your daily routine as regular as possible so that you can stay in sync and balanced during turmoil and tension.  Most of us want to move to Canada or Iceland to escape our new Prez-elect, but you're better off keeping to your normal routine.  We're all in this together and we'll get through this together!
2.  Meditate.  Meditate.  Meditate.  This is now becoming a requirement for living a healthy lifestyle.  It reduces stress, improves concentration, increases happiness, slows aging, increases self awareness and so much more. (see my upcoming Meditation and Yoga Nidra workshop below).
3.  Make sure that you are getting enough sleep. As we move into these darker days of the year, your body requires more sleep in order to follow the natural rhythms of the season.  If you're sleep deprived, you're walking around in a fog and that can lead to a host of other health related issues.
4.  Take a rest and/or cut back from your screens (T.V., phone, computer, tablet, etc.)  In this day and age, we can't live without them, but try to cut down so that they don't control you.  There's so much out there in media land and everything that we take into our senses effects us....and takes energy from us.  So be wise as to what you are bringing into your body, as we have to digest it, as well.
5. And lastly, please try to keep up with your yoga practice.  Whether you are practicing at home or at the studio, it's important to feel your prana....your breath/energy or life force moving through your body to help cleanse and wash through body, mind and spirit for a renewed sense of wonder and awe for this life we've been given.   
I could have mentioned diet, too, but that's enough for now.  Plus, I just mentioned it (ha ha : - ) and put a trim (and trimmed) Santa below.
Stay warm and bendy!

November 2016


It's been 6 years since YOY opened its doors and introduced yoga to the Anneslie and surrounding neighborhoods.  When I think back at how many people had never experienced yoga prior to stepping into YOY and now have been coming to classes for a 1/2 dozen years or so, it puts a big smile on my face.  See below for some free classes as a way of saying THANK YOU for your continued support!
There are so many different styles of yoga out there and many unfamiliar with yoga have their ideas, impressions or stereotypical ideas of what yoga is. I can't tell you how many times I've heard "I'm not flexible enough" or strong enough, or yoga is for sissies or hippies or ___  fill in the blank.  Yoga is really what you make of it.  It can be as individual as you are. 

Take Mick Jagger, for example.  He does aerial yoga as a way of keeping himself bendy. Read article.  In a nutshell, yoga is about observing ourselves in action.  When we can be mindful of our actions, then we are practicing yoga.  I know people who have never practiced yoga in their life, but they are the most yogic people I know. So, it's not really about how much time you spend on the mat, but more about the quality of time you spend with yourself and others.

September 2016



Raise your voice and join CHANT4CHANGE, an event taking place on October 8th, 2016 on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial.

You'll have an opportunity to raise your voice and join thousands across the spiritual, political, social and cultural spectrum to come together to rise up and be heard as ONE VOICE and help change our world. Be a part of history!

Some of the headliners are some of the biggest movers and shakers in the yoga/spiritual world today. Musicians and musical groups such as Jai Uttal, Sweet Honey In The Rock, MC Yogi, David Newman, and much more. They're expecting thousands! This is a free event. Here's the Chant4Change website.

Noteworthy News
I love hearing about the different ways people are bringing positive change into

the world, especially when it come to our schools. Here's an inspiring story about a Baltimore school using meditation instead of detention. Read here


Quote for October: "Kindness is the language in which

thedeafcanhearandtheblindcansee." -MarkTwain


Happy Fall and PLEASE! don't forget to stay bendy!! Jayne 


September 2016



I'm preparing for two yoga trainings in October with my teacher, Yogarupa (Rod Stryker), founder of ParaYoga. I usually don't do two of these 40 hour trainings back to back due to intensity, but because they are in Colorado, it makes sense to stay on and do the second training a few days later. Plus, these trainings only come around every few years, so I'd have to wait until 2019 before Guru Parampara comes around again. Guru what? (you may be asking......I asked myself the same thing).

Guru Parampara is the culmination of his nine master trainings. "It is an intensive training focused on growing power and authority as a teacher and awakening the lineage of the Himalayan sages." (quote from 

When I opened Yoga On York in 2010, I had been practicing for 25 years but yoga is a 5,000 year old system of health and well being, and knew I was only scratching the surface. When I found Yogarupa on a weekend retreat (Sept. 2011) at the Omega Institute in NY, I knew I had struck gold! His depth of knowledge around the asanas (postures), pranayama (breath work), subtle body work (chakras) and meditation techniques had a profound effect on my practice. It motivated me to dig deeper into these things called our body, our mind and our spirit so that I could bring quality teachings to YOY.



Studio News 

Balance in yoga can be challenging, but try it on a paddle board, and it's the ultimate challenge!

We had a blast doing paddle board yoga class last month (August 21st). Hope we to offer it again next summer. Keep a watchful eye in our newsletter 

Tot to Teens Yoga Teacher Training

Nov. 4-6, 2016

Designed for anyone who would like to share yoga with children and adolescents. This interactive, playful and hands-on weekend will prepare participants to share yoga with the next generation of yogis. Open to yoga taechers as well as yoga students, and those who work with children....grade school teachers, P.E. teachers, school counselors, child psychologists, pediatritions, camp counselors/directors, OTs/PTs, and anyone else who works with children are welcome! 

July 2016


Want to add a little adventure to your practice? YOY is teaming up with FloYo on Sunday, Aug. 21st at 8am to take your practice out of the studio and on to the water!

Maybe you've seen photos of people paddle boarding and doing yoga? Well, now's your chance to give it a try! There are only 12 spots so space is very limited!

Who's going to join me? I've never done this before, either, so we're bound for a few good dunks (and laughs!) 

Here's the description:

FloYo is stand up paddle board yoga and your instructor will guide you through a 90 minute journey on Bear Creek, just outside of Baltimore City. Class will start with an on-land introduction to stand up paddle boarding and the equipment being used. You will then hop on board for a tour of Bear Creek which will take you to a quiet cove nestled in front of Sparrows Point Country Club. Once there you will anchor your board and be guided through a 60 minute FloYo class in which you will engage your core and challenge your balance as you flow through a series of SUP yoga poses. The experience will end with a paddle back to B'More SUP! No prior paddle board or SUP yoga experience necessary, we will teach you everything you need to know! 



Reminder that YOY will be closed for 3 days next week (Aug. 1-3) to protect your ears from the sound of the sander and your nose from the smell of varnish that wafts upstairs during the bowling alley's annual resurfacing of their lanes downstairs. Thanks for your patience and understanding. 

Emily Rossell and Michael Graham's Ecstatic Kirtan concert

View here for a little glimpse of the Ecstatic Kirtan concert at YOY last Friday. Emily and Michael's music are the results of their time traveling through India. Their music is a joyful and spirited celebration of Being and my heart was so full when I walked out of the studio. 


Our First Yoga Camp at YOY was a HUGE success !

Just look at their big grins! And a Huge THANK YOU to Lisa and Christina for their amazing pedagogical skills with these young yogis, shaping their consciousness, one breath at a time .

Studio News & Reminders

* * * New * * *

Aerial Yoga added to Monday's schedule with Nancy Jeffreys (some experienced recommended) Monday 7:30 - 8:45pm. Drop-ins welcome but please pre-register in advance.



Sunday, August 21st, 3-4pm

What about you? Interested in teaching Yoga? Come to our open house and meet and greet with Jayne Bernasconi. Ask questions and get answers about what it takes to become a yoga teacher. Bring a friend, too. Our next 7 month 200 hour program begins September 9, 2016 and runs through

March 5, 2016.


Yoga On York is a Yoga Alliance approved school. 

July 12, 2016


My heart is breaking for our country right now with all of this hatred, intolerance and racial discrimination. I'm afraid to turn on the news and hear another breaking story that just breaks my heart. What are we learning from all of this social unrest and what can we do about it? I wish I had a "soul-ution." But what I do know is that many of us have forgotten one basic fact: We are all human beings living on this planet together. We all have the same basic needs including eating, breathing and sleeping.  
Why can't we evolve past this kindergarten mentality and learn how to share and get along with one another? Building walls is not the answer, Mr. Trump!  But living in a country that honors difference is.  Different cultures, different colors, different languages and accents, different styles, different foods, different books, different ideas can only makes us a richer country, right? LOVE THY NEIGHBOR! When you smile at someone, it breaks down so many walls. ONE simple little smile is such a powerful way to take a stand against the injustice that's poisoning our country.  

WOW! 2 Teacher Trainings In 2 Weeks!

Friday, July 22nd at 7:30pm

June 20, 2016


YOY stands strong to unite with our LGBTQ community, both locally and beyond. In light of the tragedy in Orlando, YOY will host a benefit class on Sunday, June 19th from 5-6:15pm instead of our regular community yoga class.  All donations will go to Equality Florida Action, Inc. a fundraiser for the Orlando victims.  We come together as a community and as a country to unite our hearts during this difficult time.   We must stand strong for ALL human beings, regardless of race, gender or sexual preference.  If you can not attend, please consider a donation. 

After the shooting, many local gay and bisexual men wanted to give blood to help the victims - but they couldn't.  According to a decades old Food and Drug Administration policy, any man who has had sex with another man in the past year is legally banned from giving blood.  After the attack on Sunday, a petition was started calling for an end to the FDA ban.
Because this tragic shooting shows yet again that the fight against homophobia is far from over, you can support the Human Rights Campaign to help with its ongoing advocacy efforts for LGBTQ equal rights worldwide.  Offer your support here.
Teacher Of The Year Award
Congratulations Lisa Warren!
Big shout out to Lisa Warren for winning Teacher Of The Year for exemplary service to the students at Beth Tfiloh Dahan Community School.  The award states: "Lisa encourages students to take academic risks, knowing that they have her full support. Lisa is able to reach each individual student to create a safe and positive environment."
Lisa teaches our kids and teens as well as community yoga at YOY. She is also leading a Tots To Teens yoga teacher training (see below for details).  On behalf of everyone at YOY, we are proud of all that she does, and the quality of education she provides for our community.
Studio Happenings This Summer 
We have a busy summer ahead of us; chock-full of classes, workshops and teacher trainings. Our aerial yoga teacher training is completely full, so I'm not even going to list that. Our next aerial training will be in Jan. 2017.  I am just so grateful to be able to share all of these amazing offerings with you and I couldn't do it without all of my wonderful teachers!  It feels like we're the little studio that COULD!  For one small space on York Rd, we have one BIG powerful voice!  Here's a glimpse of what's going on:
Summer Family Yoga with Lisa Warren 
Sundays,  11 - 12pm
July 17th, August 7th and August 21st 
Summer can be a busy season for families. Take some time to slow down and spend some time together practicing yoga. Bring the whole family together for one or all of these special family yoga workshops! Kids of all ages, parents, cousins, grandparents, and friends are all welcome. This class is designed to celebrate the season and allow families to spend some time together playing with yoga. Each class will be unique, so sign up for as many as you'd like! Cost: $15/parent & child, $5 each additional family member. 


June 14, 2016

Take Me On Vacation With You!
Did you know that I love to travel and I'm available to go on summer vacation with you? Yep, I'm just a mouse click away if you have Wi-Fi.  I've posted 8 different classes on our website under "Practice online". Each video has it's own trailer (just like the movies!) so that you can get a glimpse of what the class looks like and what kind of a practice it is.  Some are even filmed on a beautiful lake in Vermont (last summer) for a peaceful and calming practice.
Also, the mantra that I chant at the end of class (Maha Mitrunjaha Mantra) is now posted on our website (Practice Online) if you'd like to chant it with me. Here's the link.

April 25, 2016

OK, I'm going to admit that I've been a FB junkie ever since I heard the news of Prince's passing on Thursday.  I can't seem to get enough of the videos posted on his music, his life, the interviews, his hilarious spot on the Muppets (raspberry sorbet), his humanitarianism, and even his spiritual connection with God. Here's a great one of Prince and Misty Copeland).  


    I came into adulthood in the 80's when Prince was a rising star and his music has been embedded in my personal history. Dare I say he's akin to a spiritual guru?  Yup, I know that might sound crazy, but he definitely had the markings of a guru.
  • His mastery over his music is all about mastery over the mind and body.
  • Watching him perform, he was ONE with his music (which is Divine!)
  • He touched his audiences/fans deep down to the core.
  • He admitted that when he composed his music (sometimes a song a day), that it flowed through him and it came from a higher Source.
  • He was a humanitarian (see this video) and helped people get back on their feet. Remember?  He came to Baltimore last year during the riots to help bring people together!
     There are not a lot of artists out there today that have had such a profound effect on such a wide and vast population of people.  Prince transcended boundaries, culture, gender, ethnicity, socio/economical populations, rich, poor, black, white, young and old.  His music is globally loved.
     And, like many of us, Prince had his dark side, too.  He was also known as "The King Of Shade."   But, in the bigger scheme of things, Prince's death should be a wake up call as we contemplate what we are doing with our life? Maybe ask yourself: Am I following my life's purpose/dharma?  Am I doing what I was meant to be doing while here on earth?  Am I passionate about what I'm doing in life?  You certainly don't need to be a rock star in order to be on your life's path, but you do need to be passionate about what you're doing.  Does it make you happy and serve others in a positive way?
      Thank you, Prince, for having such incredible devotion, for staying humble as a rock star and for bringing so many people together through your music.  The world has lost an amazing artist and beautiful human being. RIP.

April 14, 2016



The last thing I want to do is write another "Celebrate Earth Day" crunchy granola yoga newsletter, so I'm going to try my best to keep it real and simple.   And this is what popped into my mind first:
The Sri Vidya yoga tradition makes it clear that we need to be indebted to three things in our life: 1. Our parents; 2. Our ancestors; and 3. The earth. 
As individuals, we have our own unique path that has been created and guided (or unguided) by our parents, and our parent's parents, and our parent's parent's parents, etc. That's numbers 1 and 2.  But by understanding the significance... the IMPORTANCE...I mean the MAGNITUDE of this third category on the indebted list..... then, things are put more into perspective.
In The Dark?
It wasn't until I thought about a simple question: "Where would we be without the Sun?" that it dawned on me (pun intended) how much respect and appreciation I have for this earth.  My appreciation continues to deepen with each day that the sun rises.  ALL of our food comes from the sun (or is grown from sunlight). And, the rain gives us water to grow the seeds that grow our food.  And the earth gives us dirt so we can grow the seeds, that grow our food, that comes from the sun. 
And that is why I'm asking you to take a brief pause on Friday, April 22nd to remember Mother Earth.  Maybe before wrapping your teeth around that first bite of food on Friday, stand in Tadasana (mountain pose), feel the earth beneath your feet and raise your water glass to the earth:  "Here's to the sun that grows the seeds, and to the water and the dirt and the worms and the winds that help to grow my food to sustain a healthy body and mind."               

March 17, 2016


About a year ago, I received an email inquiry from a mother interested in bringing her daughter to an aerial yoga class.  Her email signature, Lynn Tomlinson, showed that she was faculty at Towson University in the Electronics, Media and Film (EMF) dept., which is part of the College of Fine Arts... where I also teach.
My curiosity grew so I replied back about our classes at YOY and also asked what she taught at TU.  When she told me her specialty was visual effects and animation, my mind started whirling with ideas about how we could do a collaboration.  I looked at her website ( and saw that she was accomplished in her field.  So, after a few brainstorm meetings, we decided to work on a project together, not really knowing where things would lead. 
Fast forward a year later, and we are now less than two weeks away from presenting "Breath & Air" at Baltimore Theatre Project.  This collaboration is part of a larger show that marks my 20th year in the field of aerial dance. I am super excited to be producing my first show in 5 years (since opening YOY!).     
Tickets are on sale now at Baltimore Theatre Project.  If you're interested in coming, reserve your tickets soon as we might sell out.  We also have a Kickstarter campaign running for a few more weeks and if you believe in live performance and the arts, please consider a tax-deductable donation.

February 14, 2016



My feet have landed back in Baltimore but it's going to take some time to absorb and digest all that I experienced in India over the last 3 weeks.  My travel partner, Lisa, from Toronto, and I covered a lot of ground starting in New and Old Delhi and Agra to see the beautiful Taj Mahal.  Then, a 7 hour drive to Jaipur (a.k.a. the Pink City) known for it's pink marble and elephant rides to the top of a mountain for a panoramic view of the city. Then, to Varanasi, the oldest city known to civilization. The Ganges River runs through Varanasi and people worship it as Divine.  They bath in her every day to cleanse and purify their souls.  (read more:  We then made our way south to Orchha, where we stayed at an old palace that was converted into a hotel.  Finally, we landed in Khajuraho, a small village known for it's temples and where we stayed put at the Himalayan Institute for the final10 days of our journey.


My teacher, Yogarupa Rod Stryker (founder of ParaYoga) lead 40 yogis on a spiritual quest and admitted (jokingly) the first night we arrived that he tricked us into coming to India not to study with him but to experience the power and energy of this new shrine built 3 years ago in 2012. The leader of this new Ashram, Pandit Rajmani Tigunait and other yogis have been seating the Himalayan Masters energy through a fire ritual called "Havan" (pronounced hoven, like oven). These rituals are ancient and can only be accessed through a master teacher.
This sacred fire is known as a living entity or Divine. During the havan ritual, she was feed mango wood (representing karma); ghee or clarified butter (representing ego) and then, each of us offered 27 red/orange flowers called "flame of the forest" specifically picked with our thumb, second and third fingers.  We waited for Yogarupa's mantra cue (with wrists turned upward) and tossed the flowers into the fire 27 times.  As I describe this ritual, I'm at a loss for words at how magnificent and powerful the Fire/Divine entity was.  Truly one of the highlight of my journey, I now have a deeper respect and understanding for the ancient healing powers of yoga. 

December 7, 2015

 Did you know that six of the top 20 books on Amazon are adult coloring books? Did you know that when you color you unlock your creative potential?! Perhaps more important, it helps relieve tension and anxiety. Coloring unlocks memories of childhood and simpler times. As psychologist Antoni Martínez explains: "I recommend it as a relaxation technique. We can use it to enter a more creative, freer state.


The Anneslie/Stoneleigh neighborhood shopping district (6700 - 6800 York Road) is having an open house December 10th from 3-7pm to celebrate the holiday season and to recognize and support local small business.  Santa is stopping by the shops, too! At YOY, we'd like to give a huge THANK YOU to everyone in the community by offering *15% off all gift certificates including our annual membership. You'll have an opportunity (both kids and adults) to color a beautiful mandala (see below). And here's the breakdown of the discounts offered ONLY during our open house:


5 class card = $70, 15% off =$59.50

10 class card = 120, 15% off = $102.

20 class card = $200, 15% off = $170

Annual Membership = $799,15% off = $640

*(Stiff Guys or $30/30 days not included)

November 9, 2015

Yoga Nidra and Your Brain (The Science Behind Sleep Yoga) 

STOP what you are doing and take three DEEP breaths. 

1. Inhale....................................................Exhale..................................

2. Inhale....................................................Exhale..................................

3. Inhale...................................................Exhale...................................

Thank you.

Now, take a moment to ponder the word "consciousness." 


..........................conscious pondering........................................

What is consciousness?..............................Consciousness is mind................

...............................Mind Is Consciousness...........................................


In general, we typically think of consciousness as our mind. And our mind as consciousness.  And..... our minds are either awake or asleep, right?  




When you're awake, you have your conscious mind and you also have your unconscious mind. But, it is your unconscious mind that guides your 

conscious mind to determine what we think. Let me repeat that:  It is your unconscious mind that guides your conscious mind to determine what we think.


Contrary to popular belief, our minds do not shut off when we go to sleep; our minds stay on, we just move into our unconscious minds.  As we are sleeping, our brains are still firing, which means our consciousness is still moving. 


And that movement in our mind has five different patterns of electrical currents or "brain waves" that they move through in any given day. These five brain waves are (from highest to lowest frequency): gamma, beta, alpha, theta, and delta.


Each of these 5 types of electrical patterns serves a purpose as to how we cope with various situations - whether it is to help us process and learn new information or to help us calm down after a long stressful day. 


If your mind has disturbances, you will probably have disturbed sleep. But, no matter if you're awake or asleep, your mind never stop moving, it's always in motion.  Let me repeat: YOUR MIND IS ALWAYS IN MOTION. Now do you understand why you might feel so exhausted some days? Our minds never rest!! Our body rests, though. But our mind governs our body and our brain (or mind or consciousness) tells our body what to do.  

While you are fast asleep and dreaming, think about how much motion your mind has going on inside your head.  Some mornings you may wake up and feel like you haven't slept at all.  Well, that's because your dreaming (unconscious) mind has been actively trying to process all of your "stuff" that you didn't get a chance to process in your conscious waking mind. 


Especially during R.E.M. or rapid eye movement. Your brain (and eyes) are rapidly moving as it tries to keep up with all of your "unprocessed stuff."  When we're dreaming and in REM (rapid eye movement) stage, we are in our theta brain, the most active state of (un)conciousness as we sleep.   


Just like when we encounter stress, our minds become alert and our adrenalin starts pumping strong.  Our brain is working in an alpha or beta state and our brain waves are maximizing electrical currents and activity. One the other hand, when you are in a very relaxed state, your brain waves are at their slowest - barely firing at all, which is known as the delta stage.


So what does this all have to do with Yoga Nidra?


When we are able to slow the patterns of our mind we enter the delta brain, the slowest and most restorative way of being in our conscious mind. And this is where the natural healing in our body can begin.  This is a profoundly deep and restorative place where we can go in our mind to help build our immune system, and begin to rejuvenate, regenerate, revive, and reinforce peace and harmony that is our natural state of being. Yoga Nidra stops the movement of our mind.  It's as if you said to your mind:  "Come here, sit down and take a load off! Ahhhhh.  Doesn't that sound wonderful?


This delta phase of sleep is when we are not dreaming so our minds are at their most restful state.  But, on an average night we only get about 20 - 30 minutes of this deep restorative (delta brain wave) rest. The practice of Yoga Nidra is to bring our consciousness to it's lowest frequency and keep it there for about 20-30 minutes or longer through guided focus, awareness and visual imaging in your body.  Science has proven that 20 minutes of Yoga Nidra is like taking a 2 hour nap.  The ancient Yogi's practiced Yoga Nidra every day and were completely rested on less than 4 hours of sleep each night. Some even argue that Yoga Nidra is just as beneficial to the body as meditation is to the mind. 


My teacher, Yogarupa, Rod Stryker, says that we need to practice both meditation and yoga nidra daily.  They are similar yet different. With meditation you are concentrating and with yoga nidra you are just experiencing it without trying to concentrate. 


On Sunday, November 29th, I am offering a special workshop on Yoga Nidra and Meditation to honor your health and well-being. 




Thanks to each and every one of you who has helped grow this community yoga studio into a special space where neighbors can gather, share stories and get some peace of mind, health and well being. Even if you've just come once or twice for a class, please know that you've all mattered to us and we couldn't have come this far without you. 
A special shout out and HUGE THANK YOU to all of our fabulous teachers, staff and work-study at YOY including: Lisa Warren, Tanya Krasauskas, Katie White, Adrienne Bergthold, Christina Danaher, Becky Perlmutter, Amanda Mizeur, Paul Shapiro, Dave Ransone, Italy Sandgren, Martha McLaughlin, Jessica Klaitman, Melissa Hew, Heather Johnstone, Lida Garner, Sarah Bregel, Melissa Haigley, Christina Bollino.
Today, September 23, 2015, is Autumn Equinox, where both day and night are of equal lengths. This period of 1-2 weeks around the equinox can throw us off balance, so it's good to get ahold of things before they takes ahold of us.  As we get rid of the stuff that isn´t useful to us, we can make way for the goodness to move in. For me this means working on getting more rest, attempting to uphold a daily meditation practice to keep me centered and eating wholesome warmer meals. 

Autumn is a time to rebalance ourselves after the intense work we've done during those heated revved-up summer months.  When we turn inward, we can become more attuned to the changes of the season.  Perhaps you're feeling a bit more tired than usual?  Sniffles start to emerge or a chill in your bones?  Throat starting to get that closed in cave feeling or lips a little chappy?
As we observe the changes in the weather, our body and the colors of the landscape, we take our cues from nature.  What can we let go of to lighten our load?  The trees give up their leaves, so what can we let go of?  As we release our past and look forward with more clarity to prepare for the coming winter, we can also look forward to new opportunities. And it's good to remind ourselves that no matter what situation we find ourselves in, we always have options.
And speaking of wholesome meals, I'd like to share a delicious Ayurvedic recipe that is designed to stoke the digestive fire and reduce ama or internal toxicity 

Fall Kitchari
1 c basmati rice 
½ c organic whole mung beans (don't use split mung beans), soaked for at least three hours before cooking
4 c purified water
2 T organic ghee (clarified butter) 
1 tsp. black mustard seed
1 tsp. cumin seed
2 pinches hing (asafetida)
1 tsp. fresh grated ginger
½ tsp. sea salt
½ tsp. turmeric
1 ½ tsp. coriander seed
1 ½ tsp. oregano
3 bay leaves

Optional extras not included in nutritional breakdown;
Two cups chopped vegetables, including zucchini, leafy greens, green beans.
1. Rinse the rice and mung beans and soak for three hours or overnight. Drain. If using vegetables, cut into cubes. 

2. In a pot, warm the ghee over medium-high heat. Add the mustard, cumin and coriander seeds and sauté for 1-2 minutes or until aromatic. 

3. Add other spices, mung beans, and rice. Then add water and ginger. Bring to a boil then cover and simmer for 40 minutes. 

4. If using vegetables, add starchy ones (burdock or carrot) halfway through the cooking. Zucchini and beans should be added 10 minutes before the kitchari is done. Greens can be added in the last five minutes. If you need to add a more water, do so, but the kitchari should be the consistency of stew when done. 

5. Garnish with fresh cilantro chutney and add salt to taste. You can have steamed vegetables (broccoli, carrots, beets, green beans, asparagus, fennel, and summer squashes) as a side dish. 

Eat enough to feel satisfied, about 1 to 1 1/2 cups, and then relax for at least 15 minutes to support good digestion. 

Enjoy!  And please don't forget to stay well and stay bendy!!
Hari Om,

August 19th, 2015

I'd like to share part of a letter that I received recently from my teacher, Yogarupa (Rod Stryker).  This year marks his 35th year of teaching yoga:

I think that in fifty or one hundred years, individual writers will look back on this era and someone will want to write a story about the explosion of yoga.  How it went from seeming obscurity in the 1960s and early 1970s and became ubiquitous.  It will be a story about its popularity growing from a few thousand hippies to millions and millions of people.  And not long after that story is written, it will fall into oblivion like most of yesterday's news.  The fact is that it isn't a story. Yoga, the one that you and I have come to know and love, is not one story about 18 million, or 30 million people who practice it, it's actually 18, or 20, or 30 million different stories. - Yogarupa

So now I'd like to ask you: What's your story? What inspires you to practice yoga? Please reply to this email with a paragraph or a page describing why you practice yoga."  My hope is to maybe pass your story on in a future newsletter this Fall or Winter (anonymously or with your name attached to the story).


YOY Teacher Highlight
Tanya Krasauskas
Tanya has a master's degree in psychology and has been teaching yoga since 2008 and at Yoga on York since it opened in 2010. Tanya uses her experiences as both yoga teacher and therapist to create a welcoming environment and views her own practice as the best gift she can give herself enhancing her mind, body and soul.  She especially loves the positive effect yoga has on mood and the way it makes you feel both energized and relaxed and believes that practicing yoga can provide similar benefits for everyone. Her intention is to create a welcoming environment for each student to nurture their evolving practice. When she is not teaching you can find Tanya hanging out with her loving husband and three active children. She is grateful to be teaching what she loves!  You can find Tanya teaching Gentle/Beginner Yoga at YOY on Monday evenings at 6pm.

June 30, 2015

By now I'm sure you've heard that meditation is good for reducing anxiety and stress but Sara Lazar, a neuroscientist at Harvard is one of the first scientists to actually put this claim to the test.  She is doing some great research on meditation at Mass General using MRI technology to scan the brain.  

"A friend and I were training for the Boston marathon.  I had some running injuries, so I saw a physical therapist who told me to stop running and just stretch.  So I started practicing yoga as a form of physical therapy.  I started realizing that it was very powerful, that it had some real benefits, so I just got interested in how it worked."

June 16, 2015

June 1, 2015

Former YOY teacher, Angelika Breinlich, gave me a "scoby" a few years back so I could make my own Kombucha, a fermented tea the ancient Chinese called the "Immortal Health Elixir." The scoby, (a.k.a. "mother" because it reproduces a baby scoby) is a collection of microbes that resemble a giant mushroom or jellyfish.  Each time I brew up a batch, I grow a baby and put it in a jar to give away, similar to sour dough bread starter.  Then, I bottle and add flavor, such as black elderberry or fresh ginger.  It's pretty simple and costs only pennies to make, unlike buying a 12 oz bottle for up to $5 or $6.  You can make a gallon for under a dollar ( Try our "How To Make Kombucha" Workshop on June 12th).

Kombucha has been around for more than 2,000 years and has a rich history of health benefits.  Similar to yoga, kombucha didn't gain prominence in the West until recently.  After doing a bit of research for this newsletter, I didn't realize all of the health benefits, and I'm certainly not going to claim they are all true, but the fact that it's been around for thousands of years is testimony to the benefits it has on our health and well-being.  In brief, here are three main kombucha benefits:

#1. Detoxification
Detoxification because of the rich enzymes and bacterial acids that help to reduce the pancreatic load and easing the burden on the liver.  It also has glucaric acid, which have been show to prevent cancer.

#2. Joint Care
Kombucha contains glucosamines, a strong preventative treatment for all forms of arthritits.  Glucosamines increase synovial hyaluronic acid production.

#3. Aids Digestion and Gut Health
Because it's naturally fermented with a living colony of bacteria and yeast, kombucha is a probiotic beverage. This has countless benefits such as improved digestion, fighting candida (harmful yeast) overgrowth, mental clarity, and mood stability.

May 8, 2015

My mother's name was Carole Jane and I am Jayne Carole (the spelling was changed because she liked the way Jayne Mansfield spelled her name). Carole grew up in Barre, Vermont and never lived anywhere else.  She was very rooted in this small Vermont town and two very important things she taught me was:  
1).  Everything that happens, happens for a reason...even though we can't always explain it.  
2) Always root for the underdog.

              Friday, May 1st Baltimore's 10 mile Protest March, I marched to root for the underdog.

Sri Vidya, the yoga tradition I am initiated into, tells us that we are indebted to three things in our lifetime:
1.  Our parents
2.  Our ancestors 
3.  The Earth 

Please honor your mother this Sunday, whether she is with you on earth or in spirit.  If she is in spirit, light a candle and remember all of the wonderful attributes she gave to you.

Here's to you, Mom, and all the Mom's out there who have given us so much strength and encouragement! 

Say Hello To Amy! 

Amy Jessup is our new part-time evening manager at YOY.  Amy also works at Everyman Theatre in downtown Baltimore. If you need a recommendation on what's happening on stage, ask Amy.


Amy says:

"I enjoy the Eastern tradition of Shinrin-yoku, or 'Forest Bathing'. Taking a long walk through my favorite park helps clear the cobwebs and remind me of my journey. There is such a meditative and healing quality to being surrounded by the woods. Sometimes it's easy to get caught up in all the business of a city and forget how much peace and quiet can be found when surrounded by nature!" 


She also writes that  "Mother's Day and Memorial Day happen so close together that it prompts me to pause and feel gratitude for those who have sacrificed so much for those they love".

April 18, 2015

Earth Day

My teacher, Yogarupa Rod Stryker, says that "Nature is supremely elegant.  It doesn't waste energy and it's very efficient." Yoga teaches us that we are a part of the earth.  What we do to our body we do to the earth.  Our bones are the rocks; our breath is the wind; our tears and blood are the rivers and oceans; our passion is the fire.  


Please take a moment to still your mind this Wednesday, April 22 to ground and connect yourself to mother nature. Contemplate all that the earth has given and continues to give you each and every day.  Those old hands (pictured above) are filled with dirt and love.  


Earth Day

By Jane Yolen


I am the Earth

And the Earth is me.

Each blade of grass,

Each honey tree,

Each bit of mud,

And stick and stone

Is blood and muscle,

Skin and bone.


And just as I

Need every bit

Of me to make

My body fit,

So Earth needs

Grass and stone and tree

And things that grow here



That's why we

Celebrate this day.

That's why across

The world we say:

As long as life,

As dear, as free,

I am the Earth

And the Earth is me.

March 27, 2015

Sometimes I'm amazed at what's just hanging around in our kitchen cabinets, waiting for us to discover their incredible healing properties. Lately, I've been on a turmeric kick and every morning I start the day off with a warm lemon & honey turmeric drink. (See recipe at bottom of this newsletter).   


Turmeric is a widely used medicinal herb used for thousands of years. Of more than 7,000 studies testing its effectiveness and safety, very few report any side effects whatsoever. Although, inherent dangers do exist for certain people (such as allergies), the vast majority of research findings are on the turmeric health benefits and it's healing properties.  Some of the health conditions that turmeric has been shown to help with are:

  • Chronic Inflammation and Pain
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Depression
  • Diabetes
  • Cancer
  • Skin and Aging
  • Brain Health and Memory

February 17, 2015

If I were not a physicist, I would probably be a musician.  I often think in music.  I live my daydreams in music.  I see my life in terms of music. 
Albert Einstein 



  • Everything that moves vibrates, from the smallest molecule to the whole universe itself.
  • As long as there is vibration, there it some kind of sound.
  • When an organ or body part is healthy, it creates a natural resonant frequency in harmony with the rest of the body.
  • For thousands of years, cultures the world over have been using sound to attune, invoke, and transform consciousness.
  • A crystal singing bowl will bring physical, mental, and emotional cleansing to your body.
Sound Healing With Crystal Bowls
Saturday, March 14th 7 - 8:30pm  $20
Sound Healer and Reiki Master, Andrea Wenger will bring her crystal signing bowls to Yoga On York for a memorable evening event. Crystal bowls awaken an ancient remembering, touching the essence of our soul. They have been known to calm the mind, release stress, center and ground your energy to help connect with your true nature.  Crystal bowls are made up from 99.99% pure crushed quartz and heated to about 400 degrees in a centrifugal mold. The bowls emit a powerful, pure resonance.  Pre-register here.

January 27, 2015

Where did January go? Seems like we were just ringing in the New Year and it's already the end of January!  Well, I know exactly where mine went.   It quietly began at the Himalayan Institute for a New Year's Retreat (Dec 31 -Jan 4th) with my teacher, Yogarupa Rod Stryker.  Then, (Jan 4 - 8th) was a 5 day aerial yoga teacher training. Next, (Jan 9 - 11th) was the first weekend of a new 8 month 200 hour teacher training group at YOY.  And finally, (Jan 13 - 22, and perhaps the most intensive 10 day time warp I've ever experienced), I ventured into a 10 day written test for my ParaYoga Master Training exam to become a certified ParaYogi.  Phew, I can finally come up for air!


One of the first things we learn as yoga teachers is about the 8-fold path (or 8 limbs) of Yoga.  The first limb is called Ahimsa or truthfulness.   I recently came across this poem and believe it aligns with this first limb:

Hope by Victoria Safford

"Our mission is to plant ourselves at the gates of hope -

Not the prudent gates of Optimism,

Which are somewhat narrower;

Nor the stalwart, boring gates of Common Sense;

Nor the strident gates of self-righteousness ...

Nor the cheerful, flimsy garden gate of 'Everything is gonna be all right;

But a very different, sometimes very lonely place,

the place of truth-telling, about your own soul first of all and its condition;

The place of resistance and defiance;

The piece of ground from which you see the world;

Both as it is and as it could be, as it might be,

as it will be; the place from which you glimpse not only struggle;

But joy in the struggle - and we stand there;

Beckoning and calling, telling people what we are seeing;

Asking people what they see." 

December 2014

Winter Solstice is fast approaching and it will be especially dark this year as a new moon falls on Sunday, Dec. 21st.  Yes, indeed, a very dark, longest night of the year.  I can't think of a better time, though, to set your resolve and look deep within to find your guiding light for 2015

The yoga tradition uses the word Sankalpa, which means to resolve.  And in many classes, you may hear a teacher asking students to "set an intention" before the practice. 


A resolve is similar to a New Year's resolution, but a sankalpa practice is under the belief that you already are who you need to be to fulfill your life's dharma (or life's purpose).  The sankalpa helps you to find your ultimate goal or purpose in life.


San, refers to a connection with the highest truth. Sankalpa, then, is a vow and commitment we make to support our highest truth. "By definition, a sankalpa should honor the deeper meaning of our life. A sankalpa speaks to the larger arc of our lives, our dharma-our overriding purpose for being here." The sankalpa becomes a statement you can call upon to remind you of your true nature and guide your choices. 

YOY was recently approved as an advanced 300 Hour Yoga Teacher Training School!  Check out our new video on what we offer in this training program!

Testimonial from a regular student at YOY:

"For most of my life I had been an extremely active, athletic person, but I had been through 2 nasty foot operations in the previous 9 months and was suffering from crippling arthritic pain in my lower back, shoulder problems from months on crutches and a sadness I was unaccustomed to experiencing.  Perhaps yoga would help me?

In my first gentle yoga classes at YOY I discovered that I could barely bend from my waist without pain, my upper body was weak, my confidence was low, and my foot was not completely healed. With the help of Jayne and the other instructors, their consistent reminders about using the core muscles, posture and proper form, along with the comradery of fellow students, over the months I slowly became stronger, more flexible and most importantly, a happier person.

Within a few months of starting at YOY, my son and I were offered the opportunity to join a small group of trekkers in the Himalaya in Tibet. My orthopedic surgeon gave me the go ahead after taking out another one of the screws in my foot, and I started to build my aerobic endurance and strength  along with my yoga classes at Yoga on York. I had 6 months to train.

Along the way, I tried various other yoga classes around Baltimore including some of the power yoga and Bikram classes. I realized that Yoga on York was more tailored to my lifestyle and it was a better choice for me; I could take my own yoga practice to a higher level at YOY.

The hard physical training paid off and we experienced an amazing trek in October, 2014 to Tibet reaching altitudes of 18,000 feet and sleeping at heights up to 16,500 feet.

I can honestly say that had I not started yoga to prepare my mind, body and spirit for long-term health, I don’t think I could have attempted the climb. Not only had yoga strengthened my endurance and flexibility, it gave me the confidence and peace of mind to attempt our adventure. For me, this will be a lasting transformation."        ~ Mark (Margaret) Hoffberger 

October 30, 2014

As I sit down to write this newsletter, I'm sipping a warm *Ojas drink. What's an ojas (pronounced oh-jus) drink you ask? Well, let me tell you...... it's a delicious ayurvedic drink that nourishes your body if you're depleted or can even help you sleep at night. There are many different versions of this drink, but the recipe that I just made is at the bottom of this newsletter. 


* "Ojas is a Sanskrit word that means "vigor." According to the principles of Ayurveda, it's the essential energy of the body which can be equated with the "fluid of life." Those who practice Ayurveda say that Ojas is the sap of one's life energy which, when sufficient, is equated with immunity and, when deficient, results in weakness, fatigue and ultimately disease." (wikipedia)


Happy 4th Birthday YOY!!

Thanks to each and every one of you who has helped grow this community yoga studio into a special space where neighbors can gather, share stories and get some peace of mind & health and well being. Even if you've just come once or twice for a class, please know that you've all mattered to us and we couldn't have come this far without you. A special shout out and HUGE THANK YOU to all of our fabulous teachers at YOY including: Adrienne Bergthold, Mariko Crafton, Christa Del Giorno, BeeJay Hart, Tanya Krasauskas, Sandra Nicht, Becky Perlmutter, Dave Ransone, Italy Sandgren, Paul Shapiro, Lisa Warren.  Woo Hoo!!!


Interested in becoming a Yoga Teacher?  Stop by our OPEN HOUSE  Sunday, November 23rd, 3:30-4:30pm

We'll answer all of your questions about our three (yes, three!) upcoming trainings coming in January 2015.  200 hour training, 300 hour advanced yoga training (prerequisite:  200 hour training), and an aerial yoga teacher training. Light refreshments served. Bring a friend or relative. No RSVP needed. Here's a glimpse in the yellow window below:

For more info:



(recipe from


2 cups organic milk (use whatever kind you like - regular milk, almond, soy or rice)
2-3 organic pitted dates
20 soaked or blanched and peeled almonds*

a pinch ground cardamom
1/8 tsp cinnamon
A few threads of saffron (optional) 

10 whole peppercorns (optional)

Other optional ingredients: 1 tsp ghee
1 tsp honey

   Pour the milk into a heavy bottomed saucepan. Add the dates, almonds, and spices.

   Slowly bring to the mixture to a boil - stirring frequently.

   Once it begins to boil, remove from heat. Add honey and ghee, if you like.

   Pour everything into a blender and blend until frothy.

Drink and enjoy!!

** to blanch almonds - pour hot water over almonds and let them sit for a few minutes. Then, use your fingernails to slip off the almond peel. (removing skin makes the almonds easier to digest) 


And please, for goodness sakes......STAY BENDY!


September, 2014

Congratulations to our New Yoga Teachers from YOY's 2014 Teacher training program

Earlier this year National Geographic did a study on the health benefits of yoga and cancer.  Here's an excerpt:
Researchers looked at 200 breast cancer survivors who had not practiced yoga before. Half the group continued to ignore yoga, while the other half received twice-weekly, 90-minute classes for 12 weeks, with take-home DVDs and encouragement to practice at home.

Blood tests before and after the trial showed that, after three months of yoga practice, all three markers for inflammation were lower by 10 to 15 percent. That part of the study offered some rare biological evidence of the benefits of yoga in a large trial that went beyond people's own reports of how they feel.

No one knows exactly how yoga might reduce inflammation in breast cancer survivors, but Kiecolt-Glaser lays out some research-based suggestions. Cancer treatment often leaves patients with high levels of stress and fatigue, and an inability to sleep well. "Poor sleep fuels fatigue, and fatigue fuels inflammation," she says. Yoga has been shown to reduce stress and help people sleep better.  Read National Geographic's article

august, 2014

I recently touched my feet back down in Baltimore again after spending 6 weeks in Brazil.  I haven't taken that much time off since I was in graduate school backpacking through Europe one summer with a student eurail and international youth hostel pass.

I went to Brazil to deepen my spiritual practice with Templo Guaracy.  The Guaracyan philosophy closely aligns with yoga and it's symbol also shares part of the OM symbol (see below). 


Guaracy was founded in Brazil 40 years ago by Carlos Buby and has spread throughout Brazil as well as 7 other countries: Austria, Switzerland, France, Portugal, Haiti, Canada and the US (California, New York, and D.C.).  I was introduced to this group by one of my aerial dance students a few years ago after inquiring about the Guaracyan symbol tattooed on her arm.   After picking her brain and asking questions for two hours, I decided to go check out one of their giras (gatherings). 


Snapshot of 6 weeks in Brazil

For the first three weeks, I stayed in Sao Paulo with my Guaracyan hosts, Monica and Cicero.  I had a small bedroom on the 14th floor of their tiny guarded high rise apartment with a beautiful view of the city.  Sao Paulo is the 2nd largest city in the world.  The people are very kind but there's also a lot of crime.  I took a bus and then subway one hour each way through extreme conditions (both poverty and wealth) in SP to get to my daily language class.  On the weekends, I travelled to Mataganza, to attend Templo Guaracy's gira.  A gira is a gathering of sacred drumming, singing, dancing and spiritual work through mediumship. 

After that, I traveled north the city of Fortaleza where I stayed with another Guaracyan family for two weeks before meeting up with my D.C group.   Fortaleza is a beautiful city near the ocean and this is where I learned how to shred coconut to make some awesome Brazilian foods.

For the final 10 days, we traveled north 3 hours to a small fisherman's town called Flecheiras.  This little undeveloped village is where Guaracy has recently established a retreat center for their camirinhas (or sacred rituals).  Camirinhas are led by the founder, Carolos Buby to help develop and deepen our spiritual light.  Camirinhas are quite special and other Guaracyan groups from around the world travel to Brazil to attend each year. This year we spent 10 days with groups from Austria, Paris as well as some of the Brazilians folks.

july, 2014

The Bhagavad Gita 
 One of my tasks as a yoga teacher trainer is to cultivate awareness and appreciation on the history and philosophy of yoga.  When and where did it all begin?  How has it changed today?  Where will it be going in the future? Yoga is a 5,000 year old tradition and one of the first mentions of the word Yoga was in a book called "The Bhagavad Gita"  or "Song Of The Lord" written in 3137 B.C. (so history says).  We spend every Friday evening during our 8 month training discussing this book and how it relates to our lives today. I've read it now about 5 times and each time I read it, it feels new.  Read more about the Gita after our "Studio News" to get a few samples of this epic and important book.   
YOY will be closed for the 4th (after Yoga Bootcamp) and open for the rest of the weekend.  No Together With Toddler on Tuesday due to Aerial Yoga teacher training, though, and we are canceling our Monday Gentle Yoga Also, Monday Noon Gentle Yoga is canceled due to lack of interest. 

May, 2014

Maybe you are planting a garden this summer?   Well, I'd like to offer suggestions for planting in your garden:

Plant 3 row of peas:

1. Peace of mind

2. Peace of heart

3. Peace of soul

Plant 4 rows of squash:

1. Squash gossip

2. Squash indifference

                                                                         3. Squash grumbling

                                                                         4. Squash selfishness

Plant 4 rows of lettuce:

1. Lettuce be faithful

2. Lettuce be kind

3. Lettuce be patient

4. Lettuce really love one another

No garden is without turnips:

1. Turnip for commitments

2. Turnip for service

3. Turnip to help one another

To conclude our garden we must have thyme:

1. Thyme for each other

2. Thyme for family

3. Thyme for friends

April 25, 2014

Brian Lottman recently contacted me to see if YOY would be interested in hosting a *Satsang in May. I have to admit that I receive dozens of emails from solicitors and I typically hit the delete button seconds into reading them. But after doing a bit more research I discovered that his story is quite remarkable. Brian has been traveling around the US for almost two years and is now making his way to Maryland on May 1st. He renounced his old life by selling most of his belongings (home, business, etc.) and is now sharing his stories about the Path to Enlightenment at the behest of his Spiritual Teacher, Sri Sri Sri Svami Purna Maharaj. (yes, that is three Sri's). On Friday, May 2nd, 7:30 - 9:30pm YOY is hosting a *Satsang (spiritual teachings) with Brian. He will also be playing harmonium and singing kirtan. I hope that you will come out to support his journey and hear his words of wisdom. Please pass this information on and save the date!! *Sat-sanga is a sanskrit word meaning, 'Company of Truth'. This can be explained as good fellowship or good company, it is keeping in the association or company of Truth-seeking souls: those who seek to learn and practice truthfulness, love, duty, devotion, and peace. True friends encourage only the best in us. Satsang enables us to see through the delusion of worldly desires. This is particularly true when one has the blessing of being in the blissful company of a true Self-realised guru, saint, or realised sage.

April 15, 2014

I've been known to call myself  "The Queen of Insomnia." Ever since I came home from a loud concert in 1989, my ears have never stopped ringing. It's neurological damage and the name is called "tinnitus." I've had to learn how to re-adjust to these high pitched "tea-kettles" going off in my ears every night when I lay my head down on the pillow in order to fall asleep.  At first it was extremely difficult and frustrating because the ringing would not leave me alone.   For the first 6 months I was a walking zombie, cranky and sleep deprived.  It wasn't until I realized that I had to make friends with these high pitched shrills in order to fall asleep.  It's going on 25 years now, and for the most part, I've adjusted and accepted that they are not going away.  It took a shift in consciousness in order to get some sleep.


Recently, I heard a lecture from Dr. Rubin Naiman called the Yoga of Sleep (different than Yoga Nidra).  It was about how we don't get sleep because we don't "get" sleep.  We need to shift our consciousness about the way we approach sleep; similar to what I had to do many years ago.  He's been studying sleep for over 30 years and believes we need to view sleep as sacred.  This lecture introduced me to the spiritual aspects of sleep.   What a revolution for me!  I've been fighting and cursing sleep for so many years, (not very yogic of me, I know) but I now understand that my conscious mind needs to rest so my sleeping mind can awaken and heal my body.  Sleep is healing medicine in so many ways.  If you'd like to learn more about Dr. Naiman, his website is:

April 2, 2014


"Do not ask your children 
to strive for extraordinary lives. 
Such striving may seem admirable, 
but it is the way of foolishness. 
Help them instead to find the wonder 
and the marvel of an ordinary life. 
Show them the joy of tasting 
tomatoes, apples and pears. 
Show them how to cry 
when pets and people die. 
Show them the infinite pleasure 
in the touch of a hand. 
And make the ordinary come alive for them. 
The extraordinary will take care of itself."

~ William Martin

The Parent's Tao Te Ching: Ancient Advice for Modern Parents  

I recently came across this quote and found it to be very much like yoga. To be in the present moment and feel the wonder and joy of every day things including our breath and our body. To be able to find the extraordinary in reaching our arms out to our sides to feel the expansiveness of body or the expansiveness of breath; to stand tall like a mountain and feel strength in your feet touching the earth. When you step off the yoga mat and out into the world, yoga helps us find a renewed sense of self.  How we pay attention to the different textures, colors, or movement of the wind makes all the difference in the world.      

Stay Bendy,


March 2014

 The Wise Woman's Stone

A wise woman who was traveling in the mountains found a precious stone in a stream. The next day, she met another traveler who was hungry, and the wise woman opened her bag to share her food. The hungry traveler saw the precious stone and asked the woman to give it to him. She did so without hesitation.

The traveler left, rejoicing in his good fortune. He knew the stone was worth enough to give him security for a lifetime.

But a few days later he came back to return the stone to the wise woman."I've been thinking," he said, "I know how valuable the stone is, but I give it back in the hope that you can give me something even more precious. Give me what you have within you that enabled you to give me the stone. ~Author unknown

February 2014

Yoga & The Olympics

It will be a great day when yoga goes to the Olympics.  I don't mean competing in postures and poses, but instead competing in who can reach enlightenment the fastest and who can stay there the longest.  These "mind athletes" would be about working towards the degrees of difficulties and endurance of staying in samadhi (enlightenment).  Of course, we'd need a whole new way to measure these athletes.  We'd have to substitute stop watches for brain wave sensory devices.


OK, I'm daydreaming, it's food for thought but I was happy to read this article in the Huffington Post about how some olympian athletes are embracing yoga

Studio News For January 2014

The Power of Mantra - December, 2013

Someone recently asked what it meant when I ended class with the phrase: "Om Mani Padme Hum....I bow to the jewel in the lotus."  I could attempt to define it but I think the meaning is best described by Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama.  He says:
"Om Mani Padme Hum is for beings and non-beings as it proliferates loving compassion and indivisible intelligent equanimity. That is the natural ubiquitous pervasive force of consciousness. These frequencies, in the Sanskrit tongue, act as a harmonic sound resonance against blocking energy, or sleeping energy. Plants reflect this action as well because of the phonetic strength of vibration that is stimulated by natural pronunciation."

So, the next time you hear this mantra, you can rest assure that you are being well cared for by these ancient words. 

What is a mantra you may ask?  Mantras are words that are repeated during meditation to bring the mind into focus and clarity.  But using mantras for meditation involves a lot more than just sounding like a broken record. They're generally sacred in nature - a name or sound that both uplifts and helps you keep your focus during meditation. In other words, they're designed to change you.

If you're interested in learning more about the healing powers of mantras and other yoga topics, please check out our workshops coming up in December.  You can sign up online here

October - Fall and Pumpkin Dahl

Because I'm from Vermont, Fall is one of my favorite seasons. Our first daughter was born mid Fall (almost 22 years ago!) and I couldn't think of a better season to welcome a new one into the world. So many beautiful colors with crisp, clear days.  It's been said that you should eat foods that are the colors of Fall. I've included my most delicious Fall recipe at the end of this newsletter: Pumpkin Curried Dahl.  Mmmmm!



Fall marks the time when night and day are perfectly balanced because day and night are of equal lengths.  This is the best time to work on what you can balance in both your yoga practice and life. Vrksasana (Tree Pose) is a great way to work on balance. As you stand on one leg, feel the roots grow deep from the sole of your balancing foot. Image the moist fertile earth beneath your rooted foot drinking in the nutrients to grow your tree. Feel the solar power energizing your tree upward.


As you transistion into Fall, here are some mindful Autumn meditations:


What seeds did you plant in your internal garden this year?

Which seeds have grown and which have not?

How would you do things differently for next year?

What do you consider to be your own personal harvest?

Who has helped you to achieve this and how could you thank them? 

As the trees let go of their leaves, what do you wish to let go of? And what seeds do you want to incubate over the winter, ready to grow and blossom next spring?


Curried Pumpkin Dahl

Pumpkin and black eyed peas are widely used in South Indian cooking. If you love curry dishes, you'll love this recipe. You can find most of the spices at health food stores such as MOM's, Whole Foods, Health Concerns or The Natural.


1 medium yellow onion

1/4 c. grated coconut

3 cloves garlic

2 serrano or Thai chili peppers, seeded and diced

1 Tbsp. fresh ginger root, minced

2 tsp. Garam Masala (Indian spice)

1 tsp. ground cumin

1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. turmeric

1/2 tsp. ground coriander

2 c. vegetable broth

1 Tbsp. canola oil

2 cups tomatoes, diced

4 cups fresh pie pumpkin or winter squash, peeled and diced

2 c. cooked black eyed peas

2 c. kale

3 Tbsp. mint, minced


Combine onion, garlic, coconut, chili pepper, ginger root, Garam Masala, cumin, cinnamon, salt, turmeric, and coriander with 3 Tablespoons stock in a blender. Puree mixture to a paste, scraping own sides of beaker as necessary. Heat oil in large saucepan, then add spice paste and cook, stirring often for 10 minutes. Add remaining stock and tomatoes and pumpkin or squash. Cook over medium heat until squash is tender about 20 min. Mix in black-eyed peas and kale. Continue to cook until kale is tender, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in mind just before serving. Serve over basmati rice and with naan, chapatti or papadam bread (Indian flat bread)





Pay Homage To Yourself

September 2013

Are you the type of person who always gives to others but not yourself? In order to live a healthy and balanced life, we need to give and take equally. If we constantly give, give, give, then we fall into exhaustion and we deny ourselves the rewards from giving. Why is it so hard for people to receive? Was it the way we were raised or by what society dictates such as: "You should stand on your own," "Don't be dependent on anyone," "Don't be a burden to others," or "You don't deserve that!" Even when receiving a compliment, it might be easier to dismiss it rather than to accept and acknowledge what we have done.


Take a deep breath this very moment and honor yourself.  Bring your palms together over your heart center (Anjali Mudra) and inwardly smile as you remember things in your life that you've achieved and accomplished. Pay homage to yourself. Recognize within yourself that you are special and were put on this earth for a reason.  

Highlight On Pre/Post Natal Yoga in September

Tuesdays 10:30-11:30am 

This specialize style of yoga is designed for the expectant mothers as well as brand new mothers who wish to gently move back into a work out routine. Prenatal vinyasa yoga (vinyasa simply means linking movement with breath) creates awareness in your body and mind bringing you into a deeper connection with yourself and baby. Prenatal yoga has been said to prepare the body safely for labor. Aid in digestion, minor or strong discomforts in the body, promote healthy circulation and provides relaxation to the body and mind.


During this practice you will safely strengthen and lengthen all muscles that support you during your labor and throughout your pregnancy. You will learn tools to use during early and later stages in labor to gently open the pelvis and relax the pelvic floor muscles. You will learn poses to use in times of discomfort during your pregnancy as well as more comfortable positions to sleep or rest in.

Open House for YOY's 7 month 200 Hour Teacher Training
Sunday, November 17th from 3-4:30pm   




To all of you who donated to the Tom Blanks Fund. YOY was able to raise $800. and we were so happy to present Tom and his family with a check from YOY. Tom was able to get home mid August but has had a few setbacks after a sepsis infection set in due to many surgeries, etc. Please keep Tom and his family in your thoughts and prayers as he continues to heal from his biking injury. If you missed the fundraiser and would still like to give, the Blanks are still in need to reach their goal. Here's the link where you can give: 


I usually don't go around asking people "What does Yoga mean to you?" But since embarking on a project to create a 3 minute video (to be entered into Yoga Alliance's "The Business of Yoga" video contest), I asked at least two dozen people this question walking in and out of classes over the last 10 days. 


Well, my heart is so full now, it could just burst.  What a gift it is to hear the different ways yoga has touched people's lives.  Thanks to all who contributed to our video project.


The Yoga On York walls will feature 2 new artists this coming Sunday, June 30th with an open reception from 2-4pm.  Chloe Niclas (Cleveland Institute of Art) and Jeremy Cain (Maryland Institute College of Art).  Please come out for light refreshments and help us celebrate these two young artists. 

April/May 2013

BRAZIL - April 2013

I recently returned from a 10-day spiritual retreat to Brazil and it will take me a while to absorb everything that I encountered and learned from this experience. Aside from participating in many Camarinha rituals, with drumming and sacred songs (ponto), I ate fresh guava, passionfruit and mangos fresh off the trees. On the grounds of Mataganza (the retreat center) there's a nature waterfall, two ponds with fountains, horses, chickens and roosters to wake up to each morning.


The founder, Carlos Buby, lives at Mataganza which is outside Sao Paulo. So after 2 years of practicing his spiritual laws, it was time to make the trek over to Brazil to meet and experience his teachings first hand. For the past two years, I've been traveling to DC weekly to learn from the spiritual tradition of Templo Guaracy. This group follows an oral tradition of Umbanda but combines with it the Orixa's (which are the forces of nature). Templo Guaracy has Afro-Brazilian and Native Indian roots and is based on the belief system that nature is the Divine. These forces of nature (fire, earth, water, air) are used to guide them.


The practice of Templo Guaracy has similar crossovers that connect to the philosophy of Yoga. I've found that the ultimate goal for both traditions is essentially the same: Enlightenment! It's fascinating to discover how different cultures are on the same spiritual quest to attain the same goals as the yoga community. It may be a different path, but both lead to the same outcome.


MARCH - 2013

I love to wake up each morning and read Eknath Easwaran's "Thought For The Day" (delivered to my inbox daily) for that extra little spiritual boost to send me on my way.  Easwaran takes a great quote and then writes his own interpretation based on his spiritual side of things.  I thought I'd share today's TFTD since the last line caught my funny bone:


The body is mortal, but the person dwelling in the body is immortal and immeasurable. 

  - Bhagavad Gita 


When I say that this body is not me, I am not making an intellectual statement. It is an experiential statement. If you were to ask me, "Who is this body?" I would make an awful pun: "This is my buddy. I give him good food and good exercise, and I look after him very well, but he is not me."

My body has always been my faithful buddy, through many trials, and during many difficult times; and I let him know how much I appreciate his faithful service. We have an understanding: I take very good care of him, and he looks up to me as the boss. As Saint Francis used to say, "This body is Brother Donkey. I feed him, I wash him, but I am going to ride on him." Whenever we use drugs, or smoke, or drink, or even overeat, the donkey is riding on us. Francis challenges us: "Don't you want to get that donkey off your back and ride on it?"


February 2013

In the spirit of Yoga and the month of February, I would like to share a beautiful love poem with you:

Love After Love

The time will come

when, with elation,

you will greet yourself arriving

at your own door, in your own mirror,

and each will smile at the other's welcome,


and say, sit here. Eat.

You will love again the stranger who was your self.

Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart

to itself, to the stranger who has loved you


all your life, whom you ignored

for another, who knows you by heart.

Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,


The photographs, the desperate notes,

Peel your own image from the mirror.

Sit. Feast on your life.


Derek Walcott




January News

January 2013

Well, now that 2012 is almost behind us, we can look forward to a new year with new beginnings, new possibilities, new hopes and new dreams. The end of a year is a wonderful time to reflect on aspects in your life that need closings. Do you have any loose ends that you need to wrap up or bring closure to in order to move forward? We can't think of a better way to start the year off right than by getting your yoga on!


As you're thinking about New Year's resolutions, why not think about these changes as forming a new habit. Good habits for positive changes in your lifestyle. Some believe it takes four to six weeks of "consistent" action for a behavior to become an ingrained action or habit. Making lasting changes involves going through phases of the change and please don't think that the change can happen over night. Start with small increments. Then, build yourself up so that it's not so overwhelming to your mind and/or body. Think of any new change as a beginner would in a yoga class.  


December News

The holiday season is upon us and the clock is tick, tick, tick, tick, ticking.   Chances are in the month of December you'll be wishing there were 36 instead of 24 hours in a day. One of the most simple and profound ways to help reset your nervous systems and recharge your batteries is by understanding the power of Savasana, a pose regarded by many yogis as the most important of them all and relaxed stillness offers the perfect counter-pose to our busy lives.


Savasana (pronounced Sha-vah-sana) means Corpse Pose. Sava means corpse in Sanskrit, and Savasana is a preparation for a conscious death in which supreme consciousness that is everywhere and in everything is released. By emulating a corpse through conscious relaxation, one symbolically dies in order to be born anew. Some instructors like to end with Savasana, while some start at the beginning of class to relax into greatness in order to center yourself before beginning to move into asanas.  



YOY is offering the final workshop in our Fall Series:  Yoga Nidra (sleep yoga). It's scientifically proven that doing 20 minutes of Yoga Nidra is like taking a 2 hour nap.  This class will help your body into the triple R's (restore, rejuvenate, renew) during the stressful month of December.  Sunday, December 16th from 2-4pm.  Pre-register online.


November News

We make choices in our personal life that reflect the values of our awareness and consciousness. The qualities we gain from our yoga practice can also be applied to politics: Accountability, self-responsibility, critical thinking, empathy and listening. Hala Khouri, (yogini, ambassador for Yoga Votes and mother of two) states: "How can I sit in the face of somebody with completely different political views and still be able to listen; still be able to see the humanity in that person so that we can have a dialogue. Right now it feels like the divided political system is just pointing fingers and not listening.  For me, to be able to look at somebody and see that they are a person, just like me, trying to do the best they can do - is the only place that dialogue can begin."



YOY has partnered with Yoga Votes an organization that brings awareness to the importance of voting. YOY has pledged to offer a free yoga class on Nov. 6th for people who vote.  6pm class or 7:30pm class.  (pending space availability)

Avoid the long lines at the polls and take advantage of early voting in Towson at Towson University's Administration Bldg. Oct. 27th - Nov. 1st. 2012.


Happy Birthday YOY!

YOY is turning 2 years old this November. To show appreciation for your support, we're running some November specials. Just in time for the holiday season!


Do you love yoga enough to want to share it with others? YOY is offering a 200-hour Teacher Training program (certified by Yoga Alliance) starting in January. The program runs one weekend a month for 7 months. For more information, dates, times and rates: 


Certified Yoga Teachers have many opportunities to teach not only at yoga studios but they can work in health care systems (hospitals, physical therapy, etc.) spa and fitness centers, community centers, schools and universities, cruise ships and that bring yoga instructors to their vacation resort to stay free in exchange for teaching yoga classes.  Training is once a month for 7 months beginning January 11, 2013.   Visit 


Aerial Yoga Teacher Training

Jan 4-8. You can also combine your love of both on and off the mat with an aerial yoga 5 day 40 hour intensive program. Continuing Education credits available.


Inspirational Thoughts:

To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; to earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty; to find the best in others; to leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch or a redeemed social condition; to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded."

- Ralph Waldo Emerson


October News


Looking out of my sister's bedroom window, I watch the foliage grow more intense with each passing day. Jan lives in the mountains of Stowe, Vermont; 30 miles from where we grew up.   Today is day 8 of holding her hand and trying to keep her as calm and comfortable as we can until the end, which is close. As a dancer/yogini, I can't even begin to imagine how she has endured this 5-year battle with ALS (Lou Gehrig's disease).  


All the Yoga that I've practiced in the last 23 years has prepared me for this present moment with my sister.   I am living my YOGA in its deepest, fullest, rawest form. It all boils down to these precious moments with Jan and she is my Guru.   As I help her through this final phase, she is teaching me how to die. Jan is also teaching me to live in each moment fully and deeply.


I am grateful to have Paul back in Baltimore to keep the studio in order during this difficult time. The studio is going through some changes, as well, but we hope that you will bear with us while these changes occur.   I am looking forward to returning to YOY as it gives me such healing strength and a sense of renewal and joy.  What could be better than to watch the afterglow of yoga shining on the faces leaving class at YOY?


(Note:  The above was written on Friday, Sept. 28th and Jan passed yesterday, Sept. 29th)



From The Prophet  by Kahlil Gibran  


If you would indeed behold the spirit of death, open your heart wide unto the body of life.

For life and death are one, even as the river and the sea are one.

In the depth of your hopes and desires lies your silent knowledge of the beyond;

And like seeds dreaming beneath the snow your heart dreams of spring.

Trust the dreams, for in them is hidden the gate to eternity.

Your fear of death is but the trembling of the shepherd when he stands before the king whose hand is to be laid upon him in honor.

Is the sheered not joyful beneath his trembling, that he shall wear the mark of the king?

Yet is he not more mindful of his trembling?

For what is it to die but to stand naked in the wind and to melt into the sun?

And what is to cease breathing, but to free the breath from its restless tides, that it may rise and expand and seek God unencumbered?

Only when you drink form the river of silence shall you indeed sing.

And when you have reached the mountain top, then you shall begin to climb. And when the earth shall claim your limbs, then shall you truly dance.  



September News

It's late summer and blood flows through bones like the sap through the limbs of a tree. Our physical activity influences the quality and quantity of bone mass, so if you increased activity, you'll increase your bone density. Yoga exercises the entire skeleton through pressure applied on all the bones. Bones can withstand much pushing and pulling and yoga utilizes strength in both directions. Mental and emotional stress can compress both muscles and the skeleton but yoga helps to reverse the effects of compression.


If you're stretching and doing lots of yoga, you're bound to get sore. Well, that's normal and it's all part of the process. Getting hungry and craving different kinds of foods is also part of the process. Your body is telling you what it needs, which leads me to announce YOY's upcoming Fall Workshop series and classes.  Take advantage of our mindful lectures on what your body needs to transition from late Summer into early Fall and beyond.  And, we are delighted to offer yoga to a wider range of abilities and populations starting in September.  After all, Yoga is for EVERYONE!