RiNo Yoga Social, A Collective of Independent Yoga Teachers

RiNo Yoga Social, A Collective of Independent Yoga Teachers

RiNo Yoga Social

RiNo Yoga Social, located in the River North neighborhood of Denver, is unlike any other yoga studio in Denver.

RYS is a collective of independent yoga teachers with the mission to “keep the practice of yoga fun, creative, and accessible while empowering yoga teachers to build their own businesses.” What this means is that…it is a shared yoga space and event center where teachers rent the space to have the creative freedom to create yoga and meditation experiences that fit their unique talents, strengths, and visions.

At RYS you can find all kinds of yoga classes and styles from traditional Vinyasa (one breath to one movement), to Yin (a mostly seated meditation with physical postures giving you a deep stretch), to Restorative (a highly relaxing class mostly laying down supported by lots of props), to Trauma Informed Yoga (led by a trained Yoga Therapist), to Buti Yoga (a dance inspired yoga class) to Mala making classes, and so much more.

Each class has affordable drop-in rates or is donation-based, so that anyone can afford to make yoga a part of their day and regular self-care regime.

The building where RYS is located has a lot of history. It constructed to be a church in 1921 and was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2004 for it's unique Renaissance architecture. The yoga studio is located in the basement of this building with exposed piping and bricks giving it a very industrial and earthy feel.

To decorate the walls, they commissioned Robin Munro, owner of Colorado Crush graffiti street festival, and his team tag glow in the dark chakra's on the brick walls.

To visit their website, and check out the schedule visit



How We Keep Aerial Yogis Safe at Atherial

How We Keep Aerial Yogis Safe at Atherial

Atherial Aerial Yoga

Is this hammock safe? Will it support me?  These are some of the questions we hear at Atherial and we want to assure you that, yes, our setup will definitely support you! Aerial Yoga is safe for yogis of all sizes and this article will explain why we are certain of that.  

1. Our rigging points have been tested and certified for aerial yoga. Before Atherial opened its doors, all of the rigging points on the ceiling were tested and certified by a structural engineer and an architect. Each rigging point was certified to hold up to 950 pounds! You may also notice that our aerial yoga setup is attached at two points – one for each pole of the fabric. Both poles are certified to hold 950 pounds so the aerial yoga setup as a whole can support 1,900 pounds!

2. Our fabric is 40 Denier Polyester Tricot which supports over 2,000 pounds of moving weight.  Plus we use figure 8 knots which are used in many rescue operations. Firefighters use figure 8 knots and so do climbers.  Figure 8 knots are designed in such a way that when you pull on them, they become tighter.

3. Daisy Chains are another part of our rigging set up.  They are the black straps that we hook each carabiner to. You’ll notice that each daisy chain has several loops.  Each loop can hold 3,000 pounds and the overall daisy chain supports 5,000 pounds.  If your daisy chain loop did happen to break open, which is highly unlikely, the next rung on the chain would catch the carabiner and stop the fall – this is also why you’ll never see Atherial staff hang the carabiner on the last loop. We purchase our equipment from Aerial Essentials, the same company that supplies some of the well-known aerial professionals in the industry.

4. Spansets are the black tube that hangs from the rigging point for each of our Dancefly and Sling rigging setups. Spansets are certified to hold even more weight than daisy chains. This extra support allows for more dynamic movement which you may have the opportunity to practice in Atherial’s Sling & DanceFly classes. The spansets are certified to hold up to 5,300 pounds of moving weight.

5. We use a variety of carabiners in our set up.  At Atherial, you’ll see steel auto-lock carabiners which hold up to 5,620 pounds, aluminum carabiners which hold up to 5,395 pounds, and swivels which hold over 8,000 pounds. The swivels are used exclusively for our DanceFly and Sling rigging setups.

6. Atherial also utilizes safety mats and they have a variety of sizes available.  The smaller safely mats are used in Aerial Yoga classes when trying inversions. Atherial also uses large safety mats, the same kind that are used for rock climbing, in Sling and DanceFly classes where you’ll have the chance to get higher off the ground.

7. Despite all of this, injuries can still occur when flyers fall out of their hammock. This is why it’s important to listen to your instructor and watch demonstrations before attempting things on your own. Ask your instructor if you’re confused or want additional help. Our instructors are trained in spotting techniques and can help you get where you want to go.  Always practice within your own limits and don’t push yourself further than you’re ready to go.  Trust with the hammock is developed in time. And when you’re ready to try those new moves, we have a variety of safety mats to support you.

If anything ever did happen, all of our instructors have been trained and certified in providing first aid.

We hope this information gives you the space to find trust in your rigging set up so you can feel safe while practicing at Atherial.  If you ever have questions about your rigging set up or practice, ask your instructor!

About the author: Jen Callahan is a Denver-based yoga instructor.  She teaches aerial yoga and aerial restore classes at Atherial and also serves as the Community Marketing Manager for the studio. Connect with her on Instagram at @jendoesaerial.


Magnify Your New Year’s Resolution


Magnify Your New Year’s Resolution

Eating a Plant-based Diet to Achieve Your New Year’s Resolutions

VEEP Denver

Have you considered your resolutions for 2019? Perhaps you wish to bring more awareness and compassion into your daily life. Or maybe you want to improve your health. Perhaps you want to reduce your environmental footprint, world hunger or contribute to world peace. What if you could do them all without a significant investment of time or money?

In addition to your regular yoga practice, following a plant-based, vegan lifestyle can help align your ethics with Ahimsa. Ahimsa is a key virtue of yoga philosophy to do no harm in thought, words or actions. It is a precursor to Asanas, or the physical postures of yoga, implying success in our physical practice can only be achieved upon implementing compassion in our daily living.   

According to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, following a plant-based, vegan lifestyle has many health benefits and is suitable for all stages of life, including athletes, older adults, pregnant and breastfeeding individuals. Health benefits of vegetarian or vegan diets include achieving and maintaining a healthy body weight, improving modifiable heart disease risk factors, decreasing inflammation markers, reducing risk of type 2 diabetes (and improving glycemic control in people with type 2 diabetes), and reducing risk for cancer.

An incredible 18% of greenhouse gas emissions is estimated to come from the production of livestock (vs. 15% from all transportation). Livestock production is also the single largest driver of habitat loss. Producing animal protein requires 18 times the amount of land in comparison to plant-based protein (not to mention the health benefits of plant-based protein). Diets containing less animal products require less water, energy, fertilizer and pesticides. Want an easy way to nurture Mother Nature? Go (and stay) vegan.

Reducing world hunger is a complicated issue. While following a plant-based, vegan lifestyle may not affect it directly, we could theoretically feed another 350 million people if the U.S. population replaced animal products with plant-based alternatives (comparable in calories and protein content). With the world population projected to reach 10 billion by 2050, it is imperative we develop ways to increase food production. Growing plant-based foods in place of producing livestock is an effective and inexpensive solution.

How, you ask, does following a vegan lifestyle contribute to world peace? According to Alex Hershaft, founder of Farm Animal Rights Movement and Holocaust survivor, “it’s not about the animals”. It’s about ‘the oppressors’ or the power humans have and what we are capable of doing with it. And it’s not just the perpetrators who are responsible. We take responsibility as bystanders as well. As Hershaft states, “It’s about us. It’s about who we are, how we treat the least defensible, the most oppressed, the weakest in our society. What does it say about us?” It is imperative we treat all living beings with compassion to lay the foundation for peace. Additionally, reducing meat processing plants may directly reduce violence.

So, if you want to have a significant impact this year, try a plant-based, vegan lifestyle. Sure, it takes a little courage, an open-mind and time to acquire a taste for new foods and cruelty-free products, but the rewards are magnificent. Plus, we’re here to help! Come join us at Rino Yoga Social on Tuesday @ Noon (including New Year’s Day!) for a creative, challenging, donation-based workout; friendly community and plant-based expertise to help you navigate a vegan lifestyle.  

This post is sponsored by RiNo Yoga Social as a part of the 2018 Unlimited Yoga Studio Partner Program.

Author: Lorin Harik is the founder of VHEEP (Vegan for Health, Ethics, Environment & Peace). She has a M.S. in Health & Exercise Science with a specialization in Nutrition from CSU along with a B.S. in Environmental Science from the University of Michigan. She has worked and consulted for the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine. Lorin loves teaching yoga and fitness classes and has been doing it for over 15 years. She has been plant-based for 18 years, including her tenure as a professional dancer and through two pregnancies, and is currently raising two vegan children. She is dedicated to supporting others on their plant-based journeys.



Op Ed: A Few Benefits to Including Aerial Hammocks in Your Yoga Practice


If you haven't tried aerial yoga yet, it's fun! And, unlike any other yoga-inspired class you've taken. Plus, there are some real benefits to working with and flowing with an aerial hammock.

Here are just a few of them, in my opinion:
~ You're in the present. Working with silk hammocks requires some concentration and balance. In combination with paying attention to your breath, aerial helps clear the mind, which reduces stress. 

Aerial Yoga at Atherial in Denver

~ It's strengthening. Pulling yourself up by your arms, stepping into the hammock, getting into plank with your feet in the hammock...and other movements facilitate an experience where you are using your own body weight to make it all happen. 

~ It's a safe place to get inverted, and practice handstands. Inversions (or, poses where your head is below your heart) are proven to be good for increasing blood flow throughout the body, which naturally helps our circulatory system. From a handstand perspective, the hammocks can help you get a feel for the proper alignment needed to stick a handstand - which is stacking your hips, torso, and shoulders directly above your hands. 

~ The hammocks act like straps in certain postures like dancer (pic) to help deepen your stretch.

This post is sponsored by Atherial Yoga as a part of the 2018 Studio Partner Program.

Author: Founder of Unlimited Yoga Denver, Lynn Koves



Improve Flexibility & Calm Your Mind with Yin Yoga

Yin Yoga Denver

If you haven't tried Yin before, here's a bit more information on the practice: 

~ Unlike many styles of yoga that include a lot of movement ("Yang" styles of yoga), Yin is a mostly seated or laying down experience. 

~ The purpose of Yin is two-fold: 1. To calm the mind and internal chatter. Give the brain a break, and find a meditative state. 2. Physically, many people think of Yin as a deep stretch. By applying a healthy amount of stress to the connective tissue around our joints, over time we can increase our flexibility and mobility. 

~ Each posture is held for 2-5 minutes, although advanced practitioners will sometimes hold for much longer (like 20 minutes).

~ Yin is different than Restorative Yoga that uses a lot of props to create a fully relaxing experience. (Because they are both seated, some times people get them confused)

~ Finally, some thing to note is that Yin poses should never be painful, although it is normal to feel a mild to moderate sensation in the areas where stress is being applied. 

Yin is one of my favorite classes to each. I love that my students walk out of class and say things like "that felt so good" or "I'm so relaxed". It's a great feeling to be able to help people relax and feel good in their bodies.

To find a Yin class locally, you can find them at many studios in Denver including Kindness Yoga (7 locations; accept donations), RiNo Yoga Social (RiNo), Whole Yoga (Uptown), Elevate Yoga (E. Colfax), Samadhi (several locations throughout Denver and Englewood), The Freyja Project (LoHi)...and I'm sure many more. 

Author: Written by founder of Unlimited Yoga Denver, Lynn Koves



All About Fascia and What You Need To Know About It

All About Fascia and What You Need to Know About it

Blog sponsored by our friends at Atherial Fitness, in Northwest Denver

Blog sponsored by our friends at Atherial Fitness, in Northwest Denver

“If you’re feeling discomfort, that’s the fabric breaking up your fascia!”  This is something aerial yoga instructors say often, but you may be wondering, “what is fascia?” and “do I want to break it up?”.  Yes you do! This article will explain why. 

What’s Fascia?

There are four types of tissue in our body: muscle, nervous, epithelial, and connective. Fascia is a connective tissue.  It exists throughout the entire body and it helps to support your muscles, bones, and organs. Fascia has been described as being similar to a spider web or like the white part of the orange after you remove the peel.

Fascia is made up of three components. The first is collagen which is a type of protein. Collagen fibers are long, strong, and can support ten thousand times its own weight. Collagen provides structure and support which keeps our muscles and bones in place.  The second component of fascia is elastin. Elastin allows the tissue to stretch (like when we do yoga poses) and it absorbs shock (from running, jumping, etc.).  The final component of fascia is ground substance.  This substance allows muscle fibers to slide over one another with ease. An interesting fact about ground substance is that it changes from gel to liquid when pressure is applied. This process is called thixotropy.

Finally, there are different types of fascia.  Superficial fascia which exists close to the skin, deep fascia which exists around muscles and bones, and visceral fascia which is around our organs.

How Do We Keep Fascia Healthy?

Fascia needs to be cared for just like our muscles and bones do. Otherwise it can become distorted making us more susceptible to various medical issues like chronic pain after injury, plantar fasciitis, and IT Band Syndrome.  Thirsty fascia will pull itself together very tightly and cause puckering in the skin (cellulite).  Fortunately there are a couple of different ways to keep our fascia healthy.

1. Staying Hydrated. Fascia needs hydration to be in an optimal state. Just like a car engine needs oil to work properly, our fascia needs water. An engine without oil will freeze up and stop working. The same thing happens to our body and our fascia when we aren’t properly hydrated. Water ensures our fasciastays well-lubricated and malleable which makes movement easier overall. 

With that being said, drinking more water won’t necessarily solve all of our issues.  As mentioned earlier, fascia is like an intricate spider web and it has many valleys, nooks, and hidden pathways. In order to hydrate these hard-to-reach areas, we need to work into our soft tissue and make the pathways more accessible.  There are many ways to work into our soft tissue, including massage, use of a roller ball, and aerial yoga.  In aerial yoga, the fabric works on our soft tissue through compression and release, ultimately opening up fascia in the part of the body we are working on.

2. Movement. Our fascia will also freeze if we don’t move around.  Sitting at a desk all day, poor posture, and tension from chronic stress all result in our fascia becoming hard and immobile. We can combat these effects with movement.  One way to implement more movement into your day is by rolling around in bed before you get up in the morning.  Stretch out and wiggle around before you get your cup of coffee to keep your elastin (a component of fascia) healthy and happy.

Another component of fascia, collagen, is very strong and made to withstand pressure.  Because of this, a quick stretch won’t change much.  We can work into these strong fibers by holding gentle stretches for longer periods of time (3-5 minutes). This is why Restorative and Yin yoga is so beneficial for the body. As we hold poses for a minute or longer, the tissue begins to release. 

Atherial Fitness offers unique Restorative and Yin Yoga classes which work to keep fascia healthy.  During these classes, you’ll hold postures for longer periods of time which helps to release tight collagen (a component of fascia).  Plus the fabric is a great tool for self-massage. As your body weight is transferred to the fabric, you’ll work into your soft tissue, break up those hard-to-reach pathways, and give your body the space to hydrate more efficiently.


About the author: Jen Callahan is a Denver-based yoga instructor.  She teaches aerial yoga and aerial restore classes at Atherial and also serves as the Community Marketing Manager for the studio. Connect with her on Instagram at @jendoesaerial.



5 Ways Aerial Yoga Can Lead to Gains in Your Mat Practice

5 Ways Aerial Yoga Can Lead to Gains in Your Mat Practice

If you’re looking for a new way to take your mat practice to the next level, consider aerial yoga. Aerial yoga gives you the space needed to challenge balance and strength in a new way.  The fabric is used as a prop, just like a strap or block, and will help you gain the skills needed to make progress on your yogic journey.  Read on for five ways aerial yoga can lead to gains in your mat practice.

5. Gain Confidence in Your Own Ability

One of the first things you’ll learn in an Aerial Basics class are the various locks which keep you safe and secure in your hammock.  Even with this new knowledge, it will still take time until you feel comfortable in the fabric and begin to trust your new skills. Many new students are amazed at their ability to get into a pose for the first time and it’s always a great moment to see people go from “I could never do that” to “I can’t believe I’m doing it!”  This newfound trust and confidence in your own abilities carries over to the mat practice, too.  Soon you’ll have the confidence to attempt (and nail!l) difficult poses, like Scale or Bird of Paradise.

4. Improved Balance

Aerial yoga is a major balance challenge. Tree pose, for example, can be done standing entirely in the hammock. While you’re completely secure in your locks, the hammock still moves around and can throw you off center.  This will challenge your balance in new ways. As you become more stable in moving, aerial variations of poses, you’ll notice greater stability in the mat version, too.

3. Gain Strength for Better Chaturangas

During an aerial yoga class, you’ll use the fabric to explore different variations of exercises like fabric-assisted pull-ups and planks.  Other aerial movements will require you to pull yourself up to get into the full expression of the pose.  All of this work will challenge your muscles in a new way and help you to become stronger overall.  After a few aerial yoga classes, you’ll notice mat postures like downward-facing dog and chataranga are easier to maintain.

2. Difficult Poses are More Accessible

Handstand, Scorpion, and Standing Splits are all difficult postures that become more accessible in aerial yoga. All of these poses are done with the hammock secured around the waist and legs.  Through this secure lock, you are able to enter the pose with the knowledge that the hammock will catch you and stop you from falling in all directions.  By practicing the postures in this way, you are able to build the foundation needed to nail the pose on your mat.

1. Reminds You Not to Take Yourself Too Seriously

Aerial yoga classes carry a different vibe then mat yoga classes. In a mat class, the room is laser-focused on the flow and yogis rarely make a sound outside of the Ujayi breath. This isn’t the case in an aerial yoga class where sounds include cheering (as other students support your efforts to get into a challenging pose for the first time) and giggling (as you find joy in movements you probably haven’t done since you were a kid).  We can bring this lighter energy back to our mat to remind ourselves that it’s ok if we aren’t where we want to be today.  Each day is different and we improve our lives and our practice when we remember to honor where we are in each moment.

 If you want to try aerial yoga and live in the Denver area, try out Unlimited Yoga partner, Atherial Fitness! Their supportive community and amazing instructors earned them the Best Place to Learn to Fly award from Westword this year. As an added bonus, all Unlimited Yoga subscribers get $12 classes at Atherial (40% off!). Use the code “UYFALL2018” when you sign up for class to get your discount. 

About the author: Jen Callahan is a Denver-based yoga instructor, Marketing Manager for Atherial Fitness, and aerial aficionada.  She currently teaches yoga to climbers at the Denver Bouldering Club and will soon be certified to teach aerial yoga. Connect with her on Instagram at @jendoesaerial


How Yoga Helps Us Relax (And Why We Need To)


How Yoga Helps Us Relax (And Why We Need To)

How Yoga Helps Us Relax (And Why We Need To)

Authored by: Annie Martens, Teacher at RiNo Yoga Social and Owner of Cosmic Kundalini 

RiNo Yoga Social

Whether you’re new to yoga or not, you’re probably familiar with that blissful state of peace after a deep practice. Why is that? And how is it that we often lose that relaxed feeling within hours, or for some, even minutes? Read on to discover what it is about yoga that actually makes us so relaxed, and why it is terribly important to be relaxed.

 Part of the basic truth of why we feel so darned relaxed after yoga practice is that the space and time it sets up for us allows us the freedom to rest. In a society heavily dominated by the need to “get more done,” work harder, make more money, get more followers, subscribers, clients, whatever — there is rarely a moment to rest just for the sake of relaxation. Rather, we reward ourselves with time to rest only after we accomplish said tasks. Haven’t you ever said something like, “if I can just get the last two things on my to-do-list done, then I can relax!” Oddly, in the name of relaxation, our life becomes about doing more. (1) In a yoga or meditation practice, the mind is stimulated in a way where it is allowed and advised to focus on only one thing — the breath or  bodily sensations — and suddenly all of that other mind-stuff gets to sit on the back burner.

When that happens, the brain changes. We can look at sleep as an example, because sleep is perhaps the most relaxed state you ever enter on a regular basis. During the deeper states of sleep, the brain enters what is called the Theta (deep) or Delta (deepest) brainwave state. In these states, the brainwaves rest somewhere in between 7 and 0.5 cycles per minute. That is extremely slow compared to the cycles in normal waking life, the state you are likely in right now, where Beta brainwaves can reach 100 cycles per minute. Unlike Beta, the slower states allow the body a chance to restore. It releases human growth hormones that maintain healthy metabolism and reduces cortisol levels, a stress-inducing chemical that accelerates the aging process. (Stay away!)

Can you imagine what it would be like if we didnt enter these slow, deep brainwaves states that occur during sleep?! Life would be so stressful, we’d be tired all the time, and don’t even get me started on insomnia. We absolutely need to enter these slower brainwave states that are vital to our ability to relax, heal, rejuvenate, and some even say to experience empathy and compassion. (1)

But what about when we are not asleep? In a meditative yoga practice like yoga nidra, seated meditation, or a very mindful asana sequence, the brainwaves can slow down enough to reach Alpha, (8-12 cycles), or perhaps even Theta (4-7 cycles), allowing the body to restore in similar ways that it does in sleep. And ta-da! You leave feeling AH-MAZING! You just gave your whole body a beautiful gift, the chance to do what it is designed to do — to take care of itself, something it certainly cannot do when it is put under stress or is sleep deprived.

And the scary thing is, the less time we spend in a relaxed state, the harder it is for us to enter it. This relates to what we call in yoga philosophy samskaras — or deeply engrained habit patterns. Unhelpful samskaras (tendencies) are difficult to dissolve, but it can be done. The good news is, helpful samskaras become just as engrained, and once part of your regular lifestyle, they are easy to maintain. For example, the more time you spend meditating, the easier it is to do again. The more time you spend in a relaxed state, the easier it is to maintain even in a stressful situation. It is possible to stay calm and at ease in a high-energy, fast paced world. All it takes is practice and the ability to recognize just how important it is for your health.

Yoga is not just about flexibility or having a fit body, it is about your ability to experience the external world with a calm, relaxed internal state of mind. The more we engage in yoga practices that slow down the brainwaves, the more easily we are able to enter a deeply relaxed state of mind at any time! Not just in a yoga-setting… So, do you want to live a healthy and happy life? Then you better relax, my yogi loves.

1. Desai, Kamini. Yoga Nidra: The Art of Transformational Sleep. Lotus Press, 2017.



What is Yoga Therapy? Teacher Alexi Neal Weighs In

What is Yoga Therapy?

Yoga Therapy is a mind-body modality of healing that approaches life’s challenges with the assertion that each of us carries within us the potential to heal ourselves. There are many different types of Yoga Therapy- some that use yoga similar to the way you would physical therapy- prescribing certain poses, breathing techniques and meditations to work with the conditions presented. Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy is based on Carl Roger’s humanistic psychology, which asserts that your felt experience is your highest authority, and that transformation comes not from a prescribed set of poses, but from your own inner Truth.

Who can benefit from Yoga Therapy?

Some people come to Yoga Therapy to explore a physical concern, like chronic pain. Some people come because they're integrating trauma, experiencing anxiety or suffering from depression. Still others come because they feel stuck or off track in their life. Yoga Therapy offers a way for every part of you and your experience to be healed.  

What does a session look like?

Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy sessions are offered one-on-one, in a safe and supportive environment. The practitioner will guide you into an embodied experience completely informed by what is happening in your body right now, offering options for exploration, but with the only goal being to bring you into closer connection with your own felt experience.

So, how does this work?

So how does this work? Terms like “inner Truth” always carry with them a vague “wooey” feeling, no matter how much we may want to feel connected to it. There are more scientific studies and reviews coming together every year that supports this work, but this one in particular speaks to a different way of being that can lead to this transformation.

The study (1) was headed by Norm Farb and published in the Oxford Journal of Social, Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience. Farb and others wanted to look at the way we think about ourselves and our experience. It has long been theorized that there are two distinct mental pathways that we can experience at any given moment, narrative experience and direct experience.

Narrative Experience is our most common way of being and thinking. The analytical mind plans, remembers, worries, hopes, and projects. The contents of our thoughts are mostly about the past or future. This is a very important way of being – it allows us to move through our lives and make decisions.

Direct Experience, on the other hand, is a rarer phenomenon. The continuous narrative quiets down and ceases its planning, and the moment is experienced as it is, without analysis or judgment. Sound familiar? It has long been the goal of yoga practices to turn on this neural pathway!

So what happens when we slip into direct experience? The study showed that participants relatively new to mindfulness practices experienced less activity in the prefrontal cortex (the most advanced part of our brain, responsible for the continuous monologue of thought). Those participants who had continued the practice regularly also showed an increase in activity in the right hemisphere of the brain, especially in places responsible for creative, non-linear thoughts!  

Transformation and Change

So, being supported in dropping in to Direct Experience in Yoga Therapy, means we can access new ways of thinking about ourselves, our concerns, and come up with creative solutions for transformation! In a Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy session, we use the tools of embodied movement, yoga poses, breathing, hands-on assists and support to facilitate moving past the Narrative Experience, into this quieter, more creative way of being. One of the most powerful ways of dropping into this space is finding what we call edges – places of powerful sensation where new information can be learned and changes can begin to take place.

While in this space, we talk about what you’re experiencing, so that your felt experience can be externalized, validated and processed. At the end of our session, you’ll have the opportunity to figure out what happens next, integrating the experience into your life in meaningful, tangible ways.

Ready to give Yoga Therapy a try?

Alexi Neal of The Neal Center for Counseling and Yoga Therapy is currently offering heavily discounted sessions while completing her hours for certification. That makes this the perfect time to try the work! You can also join us at the Free Therapeutic Yoga & Info Session on June 13th or June 27th!

1. Norman A. S. Farb  Zindel V. Segal Helen Mayberg  Jim Bean Deborah McKeon Zainab Fatima Adam K. Anderson; Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, Volume 2, Issue 4, 1 December 2007, Pages 313–322,




My Yoga Teacher Training Journey: Part 6

My Yoga Teacher Training Journey: Part 6

This last post is dedicated to the BUSINESS OF YOGA, and the things we learned about teaching yoga as a profession. 

Lynn Koves Yoga - Yoga Teacher Training at Kindness Yoga

Certainly, one part of yoga teaching training was reviewing how to find work and also the realities of what it’s like to be a full-time teacher.

My biggest takeaway from the lesson was that being a yoga teacher, in a lot of scenarios, requires having an entrepreneurial spirit. What I mean by this is that is it common to have to create your own opportunities in order to gain experience in the field.

One way to gain experience is by working within the community where people work, spend time, and have fun. Many businesses, schools, recreational centers, assisted living facilities and more value yoga as a part of their wellness programs. In order to find these jobs, it’s common to have to create the opportunity for yourself by reaching out to companies out of the blue.

Once you're teaching, it's helpful to have a following of students - which requires consistency in teaching, providing great experiences, and marketing yourself and your classes. 

To work at studio, often you need to have prior experience and/or know someone at the studio in order to get an audition. The Denver market is fairly saturated, which can make finding work challenging but not at all impossible or out of reach.

Another option for teachers is to rent a space for an hour at a time. Yoga studios vary in terms of what they charge teachers to rent their spaces, but from what I’ve heard, $25-40 per hour is fairly common.  This strategy has some risks associated with it, in that you need to find enough students make up the cost of the class before you can make any money.  

As an independent contractor, you’ll need your own insurance to protect yourself in the event that someone gets injured. (To that note, it’s also good to get people to sign waivers that release you of liability.) Also, most teaching scenarios do not offer health insurance, so you’ll have to buy independently or get your insurance through a family member.


Regarding the “realities” of being a teacher, something I learned is that many teachers only teach a few classes a week. Teaching can be draining, and also with scheduling, it’s not always feasible to go back and forth to a studio (or more than one studio) a few times a week.  One solid tip we were given was:  If you can, it’s a good idea to know a couple of styles of yoga so that you can teach back-to-back classes. 

In terms of salary, we learned that studios pay teachers a number of ways. Usually a studio either pays teachers a flat rate, or a flat rate + $ per head. Teachers often make anywhere between $20 and $75 per class on the high end if you have years of experience.  However, it’s definitely possible to make more. 


Lastly, one piece of advice I have for teachers in Denver is to join the Denver and Boulder yoga teacher Facebook Groups. Having been in the Denver yoga community for a few years, I’ve gotten to know and observed the teaching landscape. The Facebook Groups seem to be the best way to keep a pulse on the yoga community, and hear about teaching opportunities.

These groups are ~ 

Boulder and Denver Yoga Instructors

Denver Yoga Teachers

Yoga Teachers of Denver

There is definitely a lot more to it, but these were a few of my main takeaways. 🙏


Have any questions about my experience? Please leave any questions in the comments below. 



My Yoga Teacher Training Journey: Part 5


This post is dedicated to the WAYS I GREW and the LESSONS I LEARNED in yoga teacher training. 

Lynn Koves Yoga - Yoga Teacher Training at Kindness Yoga

When you talk with people who have graduated a YTT program, it’s really common to hear about personal transformations, revelations, and the ways in which people grew in the process of training. 

I can’t speak for everyone (nor would I want to try), but it seems like the specific transformations that occur within people are specific to each person, where they are in life, and also based on who their teachers are.

When I look at back at my Kindness Yoga training, here a few very memorable lessons I learned and took to heart in my personal life:

·      Don’t do things out of habit.  Ellen and Jack reinforced to us that it is important to say things with intention. Not to go on autopilot with your teaching practice, or say things that you don’t wholeheartedly believe. Doing so can sound disingenuous and sometimes, like bullshit.

In life, live awake and make conscious choices for how you spend your time, who you spend your time with, and where your money goes.

Also, it’s impossible to change what you’re not aware of.  For me, this re-enforced the benefits of getting constructive feedback from mentors, peers, and people who observe my work. 

·      Words matter. Choose them wisely. In yoga, being a successful yoga teacher very much requires being a great communicator.  Ellen and Jack encouraged us time and time again to eliminate filler words, extra words, and confusing language in order to be affective teachers. Also, to be aware of the words you use when helping people get into poses or providing feedback on their practice as well.

In life, how you say things can determine the entire outcome of a situation, or even a relationship. Be mindful with your words.

·      Self check-ins are important. Ellen started week 2 with a question for people to self-reflect on. She asked us – “Up until this point, how have you shown up to training? And does it match what your goals are for the program? If yes, great.” If not, she advised that now was a good time to change course. 

In life, it’s a good practice to be self-aware of your participation in life, in your relationships, and amount of effort you’ve put towards your goals. I personally value self check-ins, and credit them for keeping me on track toward my goals, and also making sure I live a life that makes me truly happy.

·      Get out of your comfort zone.  There were plenty of times in YTT where I found myself a bit uncomfortable with the task at hand because it either put me on the spot, or was generally something I had never done before and wanted to do well.

During training, and in life, I recognize that getting out of my comfort zone is one of the best ways (if not the BEST way) to grow and evolve. When life gets uncomfortable, acknowledge that you are learning -- and appreciate where you are. It's all about the journey anyway. 


Have any questions about my experience? Please leave any questions in the comments below. 



My Yoga Teacher Training Journey: Part 4


This post is dedicated to all of the YOGA RELATED CONTENT we studied during yoga teacher training. 

Everyday during YTT we spent some time learning about other interesting and fun topics related to yoga, including:

  • the history of yoga and how the practice has evolved over the last 5,000 years

  • different philosophies of yoga that have been passed down from ancestors

  • benefits of particular breathing and physical practices

  • about the other 6 limbs of yoga that don't get as much attention in modern, Western forms of yoga

To summarize the topics we studied, the materials we utilized, and a few books that were recommended ~ here's a top-level list: 

Topics we studied:

What is yoga?

The history of yoga

The Yoga Sutras by Patanjali (with translation and commentary by B.K.S. Iyengar)

Bhagavad Gita

The Seven Spiritual Laws of Yoga

Pranayamas and bandhas


Modern hatha yoga, and the elements of vinyasa

Anatomy and biomechanics (including over 9 hours with guest teacher Jen Wilking)



Yoga & pregnancy



Ethics of being a yoga teacher

Our materials:

“Light on Yoga” by B.K.S. Iyengar

Excerpts from “The Yoga Sutras” by Patanjali

Excerpts from the “The Bhagavad Gita”

Excerpts from “Core Concerns in Teaching Yoga” by Judith Hanson Lasater

Our Kindness Yoga YTT binder which is packed with information

Other recommended books:

 “Wheels of Life” by Anodea Judith

“Theme Weaver: Connect the Power of Inspiration to Teaching Yoga” by Michelle Marchildon

"Yoga Toolbox" by Joseph and Lilian Le Page




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My Yoga Teacher Training Journey: Part 3


This post is dedicated to how much time we spent on our mats PRACTICING yoga.

It's probably pretty obvious - we did yoga every day during YTT! For most of the 4 week intensive program I participated in at Kindness Yoga, we started each day with 60 to 90 minutes.

A lot of days the theme of the practice we had in the morning was used as a jumping off point for the lessons we would learn later that day.  For example, one morning we used straps to stretch our hamstrings, and then later that afternoon practiced with straps, and reviewed best practices for how to use them properly and safely.  Another morning, we learned a breathing technique called Nadi Shodhana Pranayama or “alternative nostril breathing”. That afternoon we learned about other breathing techniques you can include in your classes to warm up your students.

The yoga itself was really nice and turned out to be one of my favorite parts of the training and of each day. (Surprising, I know.) I loved going there and waking up with a class by Jack or Ellen.


One of my personal breakthroughs in YTT was with crow pose. When learning about this pose it was suggested to place 4 blocks in front of your nose as a safety net. I didn’t realize until I did this that part of my issue with crow was completely mental. Having the 4 blocks in front of me calmed fears of falling on my face, and gave me the confidence to learn fully forward. As a result, I held the longest crow I’ve ever held.

Lynn Koves Yoga - Crow Pose

Another afternoon, Jack debunked for us handstands, forearms stands, headstands, and shoulder stands. Learning forearm stand ended up being on the the best ways for me to improve my handstands, as it allows me greater stability, while feeling what it's like to have everything from my hips up properly stacked to keep me inverted. 

The day we learned inversions we spent mostly sitting against the wall to use it as support.

The day we learned inversions we spent mostly sitting against the wall to use it as support.

For me and a few others one of our favorite activities was getting into groups of two one afternoon, taking pictures of each other doing 10 different poses, then matching up our photos against the pictures of B.K.S. Iyengar in Light On Yoga to see the differences in form. During this exercise it was when I fully realized that sometimes I bend at the back instead of bending at the waist.

As Jack once said, “It’s the little things.”  This phrase stuck with me, and became more and more apparent to me as true as we learned about the benefits of proper alignment.

We also had the great opportunity to learn from guest teachers about other styles of yoga, including Yin, Nidra, Restorative, and pre-natal.

During the pre-natal lesson we did with Kristen Boyle, we tied blankets around our waists with straps and practiced yoga that way to feel what it would feel like to do poses with a huge bump. 

In this lesson we discussed modifications for pregnant women, some poses that are probably best to stay away from, and the whole notion that yoga teachers are not doctors – and shouldn’t be treated as them either when it comes to people’s abilities if they are experiencing complications or are worried about them.


The last week of training, we did A LOT of yoga in order to practice our final projects.  And on the last two days, we did a total of 5 1-hour classes in order to participate in each team’s final project. It was a bit strenuous, but also a great experience and so fun to see each person rock their part.

Have any questions about my experience? Please leave any questions in the comments below. 



My Yoga Teacher Training Journey: Part 2


This post is dedicated to the concepts we learned and put into practice regarding TEACHING yoga.

To set the stage for the rest of this series, here’s how the Kindness Yoga training program I did was structured on a day-to-day basis.

Training was Monday through Friday, 9:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m for 4 weeks. My day-to-day teachers were Jack Cuneo and Ellen Kaye!

Each day consisted of a mix of activities balanced with movement (yoga), listening, teaching each other, working alone, working together in groups, and coming together as a class for group discussions. More specifically, a lot of our days looked like:

 Yoga /  5 minute break / lesson / 15 minute break / lesson / lunch from 1:30 to 2:15 p.m. / lesson / 15 minute break / lesson


Alright, now about the TEACHING.

Learning to teach yoga was my number one goal for the program so I’ve focused on that aspect first. (it might come as a surprise that it’s not everyone’s top goal or reason for doing YTT)

All in all, throughout the training Jack and Ellen gave us a lot of tools “for our toolbox” to pull from related to creating a 60-minute sequence, teaching it, and facilitating an experience that appeals to all types of students.  

On Day 1, we learned what a Sun Salutation is and how to teach one. Sun Salutations (Surya Namaskar A and B) are a series of poses that have been passed down from the grandfathers of yoga, and are “the foundation of vinyasa yoga”.

Throughout training there were many instances where we independently created our own sequences, and taught them to each other in small groups. For example, we learned and then put into practice these teaching concepts: 

·      Classes have 5 stages:  Centering, warming the body, pathway to the peak, exploring the body, and cooling the body

·      It’s important to pick your "peak" pose, and create a class that works the body in ways that lead up to the peak pose

·      We learned that there is an order of operation in order to keep bodies aligned and balanced, including: setting the foundation, contracting muscles, internal and external rotation of the arms and legs, and energetic expansion away from the body

·      There are lots of categories of poses to choose from to incorporate into your class: standing, sitting, core strengthening, twisting, arm balances, backbends and inversions

·      We learned that are several “strategies” for creating sequences and building up the intensity of a class: hold-to-flow, stair step, and progressive

·      We learned about assisting people into poses; why you would assist people, when you shouldn’t, and how to assist properly so that you don’t hurt yourself in the process

In the Kindness program they also focused a lot on communication for getting people into shapes, and also refining the language we are using to be more affective. Here are some of the formulas and best practices we learned for communication:

·      A formula for cueing is:  Inhale or exhale >> verb >> body part >> direction >> pose name (in English and/or Sanskrit) . Ex. Inhale, step your right foot back, lunge pose

·      It’s best to cue from the ground up. Tell people where to move their feet first, then legs, hips, side bodies, arms, and head.

·      We also constantly worked on being better at the 3-step approach to cueing people.  SHAPE IT. Start with cues that get them into the right shape. WORK IT. Provide cues that help your students gain stability and strengthen the right muscles. REFINE IT. Give cues that escalate the pose to be more challenging or require paying attention to small subtleties in order to get optimal alignment.

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·      Ellen and Jack re-enforced using verbs that inspire action, and aren’t passive. One of the bad habits that I (and others) had to curtail was adding “ing” to action verbs. For example, it’s better to say, “raise your arms high” than “raising your arms high”.  It’s more direct and ignites action when you drop the –ing.

·      Perhaps most importantly, be conscious of everything you’re saying, eliminate filler language (um’s, extra and’s, etc.) and observe your students to see where you can be more clear.

We also learned about theme-ing, or adding in stories and personal touches to classes. Although Jack and Ellen let us know that it’s not ‘must’ for a teacher, theming can change the entire experience for a person. For better or for worse. And that great themes balance both personal touches, and universal concepts that all types of people can relate to. 

To put this into practice, we picked out a couple of themes that burn in our hearts and matter to us, then wrote them down and discussed in groups how those themes could tie in while also maintaining the aspect of relating to anyone. 

For our final project for the program, we got into groups of 3 and together created a 60 minute sequence that we co-taught together the last day of training.  For me, this was a really great exercise because I walked away from training with a 60-minute sequence that I created, and know how to teach. 

In a nutshell, we learned A TON about how to create a progressive and balanced yoga sequence, about affective teacher communication, and some best practices for providing a great experience for your students.

Have any questions about my experience? Please leave any questions in the comments below.


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My Yoga Teacher Training Journey: Part 1

My Yoga Teacher Training Journey: Part 1 

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If you are considering yoga teacher training, or are curious about the value it can bring to your life, this blog series is for you.  

In February of 2017 I fulfilled my goal and dream of completing a 200-hour yoga teacher training program.

As a way to document my experience and help anyone considering Yoga Teacher Training (whether the goal is to teach or not), this 6-part blog series is designed to help prospective YTT students get an idea of the sorts of information and lessons one could expect to learn in a Yoga Alliance certified yoga teacher training program.

In this blog series I will be sharing about my experience in themes. Truth be told, every day we did a little bit of everything. So for those interested in one aspect or another, the content has been broken up into the following 5 themes:

·      STUDY ~ BECOMING A PROFICIENT TEACHER I’ll review the things we learned related to: crafting a 60-minute yoga class, communicating yoga poses, and about how we put everything into practice by teaching each other.

·      PRACTICE ~ HOW MUCH TIME WE SPENT ON THE MAT Everyday we practiced. Most mornings we started with an hour or 90 minutes, and worked on individual poses and sequences throughout the day depending on the scheduled activities. We also learned from other Kindness Yoga teachers about Yin, Nidra, Restorative, and pre-natal yoga styles.

·      LEARN ~ ALL THE TOPICS WE COVERED We were given a lot of other context into topics related to yoga. We learned about anatomy, the impact of injuries, breathing techniques, meditation, yogic philosophies, the history of yoga, and much more.

·      GROW ~ THE LESSONS I LEARNED From what I’ve both heard and experienced, YTT can be a transformational experience. In this post I’ll share what life lessons I learned from training that I feel transcend past yoga into life off the mat.

·      TEACH ~ THE BUSINESS OF YOGA What I learned about the business of yoga, what you need to get work as a teacher, and how to find teaching jobs. I will also offer a couple of tips based on my own experience in the Denver yoga community over the last few years.

Before diving into the content of the program, here are a couple of things to keep in mind about the posts:

·      200 hours is a lot of time! This blog series is a mere summary of how my 200-hour YTT program at Kindness Yoga was structured, and about the broad topics we learned about and put into practice during the 4-week intensive.

·      Kindness Yoga in Denver, CO was where I chose to do my training.  After much research, I chose them based on their reputation in the community, the fact that they teach Vinyasa style yoga (the style I wanted to learn), and because I heard from other teachers that Kindness’ YTT program would give me the tools and knowledge to become a teacher shortly after program completion. As a full disclaimer, Kindness offered me a scholarship (discount) to blog about my experience on That said, all opinions in this blog series are authentically my own.

·      While exploring YTT programs I quickly learned that YTT curriculums differ from one program to the next.  And no program, from my research, shares their entire agenda online. So you really have to make an effort to talk with people about their experiences and with the program managers in order to get an idea about the details and nuances of each program. I was surprised to learn that some programs make the ‘learning to teach’ part ancillary and focus more on yoga history, philosophy, and about the individual poses. Depending on your goal(s) for training, the details you find out could affect which program you invest your time and money in. Definitely do your own research and weigh your options.

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·      Something that cannot be understated in the whole experience is the people. While this blog series documents my experience, and my experience only… my classmates and teachers shaped everything about the program and the feel of each day. I am grateful to each and everyone one of them for their friendships and the lessons they taught me. They inspired me by the strength they exuded in the face of challenges and uncertainties, the vulnerability they let go of to learn something new, and their perseverance in a program that is appropriately entitled an “intensive”. 

If you have any questions or thoughts, please drop them in the comments below!

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FitLo Passport Class: RiNo Yoga Social with Unlimited Yoga

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We excited to announce that Unlimited Yoga in collaboration with RiNo Yoga Social will be featured on FitLo Denver's Passport program on October 26th at 5:30 p.m.

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Join us for a 60-minute vinyasa flow class in one of the coolest spots to practice yoga in Denver: RiNo Yoga Social, a shared yoga space where independent teachers can create their own classes and build a business. Every yoga class is innovational, inspirited and created by the yoga teacher's desire to share their journey. 

The October 26th Passport class will be co-taught by RiNo Yoga Instructor, Aly Ballow, and founder of Unlimited Yoga, Lynn Koves. 

The cost: FREE to FitLo Passport members, and $10 for non-FitLo members. 

So what is FitLo, you might ask? 

FitLo Denver, founded by Tricia Olson, is the lowdown on where to get fit in Denver, complete with gym and yoga studio reviews, an ever changing calendar of events, and most recently - the FitLo Passport program.  FitLo is all about sharing the authentic experience of the local Denver fitness and yoga community to help people find their home fitness studio or gym.

FitLo's Passport program takes members on a tour of the best gyms, yoga studios, and fitness events around town to assist in the process. For $30 for 3 months, or $52.80 for 6 months, Passport offers members VIP access to two guaranteed classes per month, a buddy pass, plus other discounts to local fitness events.  

If you are uninspired by your current workout routine, interested in trying new places but haven't taken the leap, or are new to the Denver area and looking to connect with new people through a healthful activity, FitLo Denver's Passport program may be for you!

Get in an awesome workout, try something new, and join a welcome community of  like-minded health conscious individuals.

FitLo Founder, Tricia Olson and the FitLo AmBADASSadors will be joining so you don’t have to go to the party alone. Of course your friends are welcome to join, too! 



Experiencing ARISE Festival in Loveland, Colorado

Experiencing ARISE Festival in Loveland, Colorado

ARISE Festival 2017

Big thank you to ARISE Festival for the awesome August weekend. It was our first ARISE, and we were sorely impressed by the organization, thought provoking content, eco-activism, yoga experiences, musicians, local vendors, food options, and more. 

Here are just a few of our favorite parts of ARISE Festival: 

- Not usually campers, we were pleasantly surprised how easy it was to pull everything we needed together for the weekend. When we didn't have all the gear, a friend loaned us her tent, and we found Outdoors Geek in Denver to rent us the rest of what we needed at an affordable price. When we arrived at Sunrise Ranch in the dark, we were so relieved to set up our tent under a light. (phewww.) 

- Waking up to beautiful Colorado scenery never gets old. Sunrise Ranch is nestled in Loveland, CO with naturally expansive views of the landscape, including a nearby lake. Walking around the campgrounds before sunrise yoga, we enjoyed our morning coffee and checking out people's camp set ups and festival gear, the Acro yoga tent, Wisdom Village, and observing other festival art we came across. 

- Sunrise yoga with headliner Shiva Rea included some free form movement for self-expression, and finished with a dance party. Not your typical yoga class, but we still got in all the pranayama (breath) we needed and even a hug with a couple of neighbors. 

- The art installations placed around the campground and festival space reminded us of pictures from Burning Man. With ARISE's mission as a leave-no-trace event, some of the art focused on sustainability and things like recycling - which we love. Our favorite > "Your small actions add up to big change. For better or worse." #Truth 

- Last but not at all least, we value and honor ARISE's focus on eco-activism, the notion of living and staying AWAKE, and conversation to better understand one another and spread ideas. On Saturday we partook in a group discussion with the Permaculture Action Network about sustainable farming and regenerative systems. And at night we attended a panel discussion about the Resistance Movement, highlighting the types of action we can take in our own communities to create positive change. (Show up. Vote with your dollars. Support the marginalized.)

We can't wait to see what next year has in store. Thank you ARISE Festival for the great time! We'll for sure be back.

This post is sponsored by ARISE Festival. However, all opinions are authentically our own. Namaste.




Yoga on the Rocks - An Iconic Colorado Yoga Experience

Yoga on the Rocks 2017

As always, Yoga on the Rocks this season did not disappoint. 

If you've never been, it's a gorgeous start to the day at one of Colorado's treasures - Red Rocks Amphitheater. The natural surroundings of Red Rocks, and the view of the Front Range from Morrison will give you a perma-smile, I guarantee it. (Tickets go on sale each Spring and sell out quickly as a heads up for next year) 

Typically a 45-minute class, Yoga on the Rocks is also known for their awesome freebies and goodies, as well as inspiration from some of Denver's best yoga instructors. This year CorePower Yoga gave away sunglasses, and participants also got bottles of Propel water, Lara Bars, Silk yogurt and Caribou Coffee samples.

The finale class for the 2017 season was co-taught by two of CorePower's finest teachers - Sara Palecki and Melissa Schacht.

With the theme of #SummerWarrior, they beautifully weaved in empowering statements about living with a warrior mindset. How the heart of a warrior is brave and courageous in the face of fear, but at the same time accepts that you can't win every battle. However, "you are more powerful than you know." 

The class was tied together with a quote by Marianne Williamson - "Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us." 

Until next year Yoga on the Rocks! (In the mean time I'll continue to hike your terrain and climb your stairs.) 

Big thank you to CorePower Yoga for tickets to the season finale of Yoga on the Rocks.