What Not to Miss at the SYF Conscious Expo 2022

What Not to Miss at the SYF Conscious Expo 2022

The Conscious Expo is a signature SYF feature that showcases some of the best local and national mindful businesses, offering attendees an opportunity to shop small right from the comfort of the festival. 

According to Deborah Williams, local teacher and longtime SYF work exchange Angel and attendee, the Conscious Expo is one thing that really sets SYF apart. Unlike other large yoga festivals that tend to focus on international sponsors and larger chains, at the SYF Expo, “there’s a lot of local people, so you get a taste of the community,” she says. “It’s not just things that are transplanted here for the festival. You can really get a feel for what is rising from the land.” 

Local vendors are joined by regional purveyors and national mainstays. Here are just seven of our vendors who we hope you’ll visit at the event. Take a piece of SYF home with you to commemorate this transformational experience. Read on until the end for a surprise treat. 

Mandalas: Sacred & Spiritual Art

As a renowned teacher and fourth generation artist, Paul Heussenstamm has been sharing his unique gift of helping people discover their Soul through his paintings and Art As A Spiritual Path workshops worldwide.  Paul has created over 2000 unique and spiritual paintings while passionately sharing his artistic capacity to explore and create Sacred Art from many traditions such as buddhism, Hinduism and Christianity.  Paul gladly accepts commissions and offers the finest quality Giclee prints on canvas that he creates in his studio.

Pi Yoga Pants

Started by Larissa Miller after a trip to Southeast Asia, the mission of Pi Yoga Pants is to 1) Empower Women and Men of all shapes, sizes, race and religion to feel comfortable and confident on and off their yoga mat; and 2) Save the Sea Turtles! Pi Yoga Pants proudly donates 10% of net profits back to sea turtle conservation.

Mel Rowes Designs

Ethically-sourced handmade gemstone home decor and jewelry made lovingly by Melissa Rowe, based in Temecula, California. Featuring one-of-a-kind rings, skull art, pendants, coasters, sun-catchers, and more.


Unique, inspiring, eco-innovative fashion that encourages you to wear clothing that reflects an outer-expression of your inner-state. Yoganastix believes that aligning with your values and being conscious of how you show up in the world is empowering. Apparel lines are made with sustainable, eco-friendly, and recycled fabrics, with integrity and love in the USA.

Essential Elixirs

Natural skincare products made with the natural healing properties of essential oils. Each elixir is handmade and in small batches to ensure potency, quality, and positive vibes. Also offers home care products and product bundles.  

The Ritual

High-vibrational rituals for healing, self care, and living a spiritually-aligned life. Offering guidance and products for ceremonial rituals to enhance the process of connection to self and the collective consciousness.

Yoga Rocks

Yoga Rocks direct body weight into the pointer fingers and thumbs, allowing us to lighten in the heels of the hands where we almost always put pressure. Made from 100% silicone, Yoga Rocks attach to your yoga mat of choice to activate the muscles of the hands. Active hands encourage active forearms leading to optimal wrist stability and consistent strengthening.

Join us June 2–5 for the summer’s premiere transformational event! Save some money for the Conscious Expo and use code NIFTY50 for $50 your ticket. Enter on Eventbrite to redeem — good only through April 30, 2022.

3 Tools for Easing Life with Trauma – Today

3 Tools for Easing Life with Trauma – Today

Photo by Miguel Guzman at the 2018 Sedona Yoga Festival’s “Yoga for PTSD Training”

By Erin Byron

To large or small degrees, each of us lives with some form of trauma. In the past week, I’ve heard people identify trauma from common (though painful) life events such as parenting sleepless children, euthanizing a pet, or the illness of a loved one. 

It is traumatic to go through a shock or profound loss in life. Are there ways to lessen the impacts or prepare ourselves? Research on PTSD and trauma say YES! 

It is noteworthy that, while there may be a clinical difference between PTSD and trauma, the ways to ease their impact are the same. At the SYF Yoga for PTSD Training, numerous voices offer countless strategies, and the science behind them, to support you and your loved ones in healing trauma.

While we wait for March 14-17 to arrive, pick one of the following 3 ideas and start doing it today and let us know what happens when we see you at SYF2019. Betcha there’s a difference!

Do this first one anytime, anywhere to prevent or shift this…

1. Adapt your breath. 

Notice I did not say, “Take a deep breath.” While a 5-count-in, 5-count-out is an adaptation away from shallow breathing, it is not the only option. 

Instead, you can see what happens if you move only the abdomen instead of only the chest. Maybe you could sound the exhale or inhale with an ujjayi breath. I sometimes breathe out a merry “Ahhhhhh”, beginning on a high note and ending low. 

There are infinite combinations of breathwork. Throughout the day, simply change how you are breathing and notice what happens.

The next idea arises from a yoga for PTSD study. Yoga is continually proven to help reduce traumatic symptoms. What I love about this study is the awareness and self-reliance.

2. Listen to your body and make your own choices in yoga class. 

A study by Bessel van der Kolk, Laura Stone, and other researchers (2014) showed that when yoga students were invited to have curiosity about their bodily sensations and make their own choices about how long to stay in a pose, their PTSD improved. 

In fact, by the end of the study, 52% of the yoga participants no longer met the diagnostic criteria for PTSD! The yoga and their self-reliant practice had a dramatic improvement on their quality of life.

The final tool is simple. It is gentle, takes very little time, and can bring huge benefits to the mind, nervous system, and body.

“That’s me, at the Yoga for PTSD Training at the 2018 Sedona Yoga Festival.” Photo by Miguel Guzman

3.  Use firm pressure to rub in foot lotion before bed. 

That’s it?! Yes, it could change your life. Do this for 5 days and wait for revelations. (Bonus points for using sesame or coconut oil with a few drops of an appealing essential oil. I like orange and rosemary oils with a soupcon of ginger.)

Whichever of these 3 options you choose, I hope you have fun applying the new tool. Once it feels secure or habitual, begin to apply the next tool. You can return to this list or inspire yourself with other ideas.

For a wealth of ideas, research, and direct experience with effective practice, please join me and my friends and colleagues March 14 – 17 at the Sedona Yoga Festival, Yoga for PTSD Training. I can’t wait to learn, teach, and commune with you!


  • Bessel A. van der Kolk, MD; Laura Stone, MA; Jennifer West, PhD; Alison Rhodes, MWS Med; David Emerson, MA; Michale Suvak, PhD; and Joseph Spinazzola, PhD. Yoga as an Adjunctive Treatment for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder: A Randomized Controlled Trial in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry. 2014; 75(6): e559-65.

About the Author: Erin Byron



Erin’s Master of Arts research studied the benefits of Yoga practices in coping with Post-Traumatic Stress Syndrome and the literary review of the study equipped her for helping people with a range of physical and mental health concerns.

Erin is grateful for the opportunity to support others on their personal growth paths.

SYF Newsletter – August 2016

SYF Newsletter – August 2016

[addtoany] Photo: Alan Alcid

Hi Marc,

Now is the pivotal time… we have been looking back, as we consider your feedback and pore over the 1000+ photographs of SYF2016… are we really at the point half way between last year’s festival and next year’s festival? And, looking forward we are super excited to share some awesome news with you in the SYF Newsletter! Below you can begin to visualize your experience, perhaps reminisce or plan for the future… if you buy your all-access pass by August 31st you will get the best price before it goes up the next day... Regardless, we are doing it together, as we always do… And next year, full expansion into our trifecta of neighboring, walk-able venues… And now we’re proud to introduce our newest venue partner and festival supporter: The Collective Sedona! Read on for this and more for a look back and a look forward. We hope to see you in Sedona in March if not sooner, in fact, we’re planning on it~


Team SYF

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The COLLECTIVE Sedona is the best venue EVER for SYF!

We are so excited to announce that The Collective Sedona, adjacent to partner venue the Hilton Sedona Resort at Bell Rock, is hosting the Sedona Yoga Festival 2017! The Collective Sedona is the newest lifestyle and cultural venue in Sedona featuring shops, art and culture galleries, wineries, breweries, and dining experiences that celebrate modern Sedona and honor its rich heritage. Nestled in Sedona’s red rock formations, the 13,500-square foot indoor-outdoor entertainment plaza is home to award-winning chefs, artists, fine jewelry, cultural collectibles, gifts, spa treatments, and events…it’s collection of “hot spots” has something for everyone. Just like SYF! Its a match made in heaven. Click here to see why you should include the Collective Sedona as part of any Sedona adventure…

Experience SYF2016 Again!

The photos are here! The outstanding photographers that showed up to capture the spirit of Sedona Yoga Festival are all featured in this album, and we’re excited to share it with you! Discover SYF through their lens and experience the magic (again!) Can you find a picture of yourself? Feel free to create galleries of your own and share them on our social media… Curate and share your point of view! Check them out here…

Latest from the blog: 5 Reasons Sedona Will Rock Your Asana…

Sedona, Arizona… The undisputed spiritual mecca of the American Southwest, red rock canyons, spires to inspire, the water element of Oak Creek Canyon, and of course, the ENERGY. No matter your beliefs or background, Sedona is sure to make you feel something. And it has been known since time immemorial to support … Read More
photo by Alan Alcid

Introducing the SYF2017 Heart Center Conscious Expo Vendors

We simply cannot wait – but we must! – until it’s time to share all the details of what is coming together for SYF2017 (keep an eye out for next months newsletter and on social media for presenter and program announcements and more). For now, here’s a sneak peek at just a few of the amazing vendors who will be helping to generate the pulse as you stroll down Vendor Way through the Heart Center of Sedona Yoga Festival! Check them out!

Prices increase on September 1st. Invest in your All-Access pass now for the best price!

If you haven’t reserved your space yet, know that our Namaste pricing ends August 31st! Now is the time to save on your All-Access festival pass. Wake up in one of the most powerful places on the planet from March 9-12, 2017Choose from a festival All Access Pass or the integrated Yoga for PTSD training for yoga teachers. Day passes also available now. BOOK NOW! 

“Low on the yoga diva quotient. Easygoing and genuine community. Braced to feel self conscious and instead felt welcome and integral.” – Tess
Remember~ Now is the best time to book your flight deals for March 2017 and book your lodging at our host property the Hilton Sedona Resort and Spa. With these and your All Access Pass in place all you need to do is dream – until you wake up in Sedona.

Thank You to Our SYF2017 Sponsors! 

Presenting Sponsor




Oak Creek

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Yoga Rocks the Park Returns to Phoenix & Tempe this Fall!

Our team at the Sedona Yoga Festival is so excited to announce the 5th Season of Yoga Rocks the Park! Join us in Phoenix and Tempe to support the growing Arizona yoga community!  Be sure to say “hi” to us at our SYF Booth!  See you there!

Yoga Rocks the Park – Phoenix Celebrates their 5th Season with Complimentary Tickets for all 5 Yoga Festivals.  Kick off for the 5th year of “Yoga Rocks the Park – Phoenix” on October 16th, 2016 at Steele Indian School Park in Phoenix, AZ.

Yoga Rocks the Park is honored this season in partnering with Namaste AZ (a local, community based magazine bringing like-minded and health conscious Arizonian’s together and founded by Sumit Banerjee of Sumit’s Yoga Studios).  Namaste AZ also hosts the local “Namaste AZ Yoga Festival” held this year in September. Yoga Rocks the Park is excited to partner with Namaste AZ since they share the vision of bringing the yoga community together by “Creating Conscious Community” through yoga, music, and meditation. Southwest Institute of Healing Arts continues yoag-rocks-the-park-2to be a National Sponsor for Yoga Rocks the Park and sponsors two of the festivals – Sunday October 23rd and November 6th at Tempe City Center in Tempe, AZ.

Although the festivals continue to be held on Sundays this year the times of the ‘yoga practice’ have changed from 1:00 PM to 10:00 AM.  Registration and the Wellness Vendor Village will open at 9:00 AM offering many “aumazing” local vendors for your shopping pleasure before practice. Also, so that the entire family can participate in the festival, Camp YRP for the little yogis aged 3-10 opens at 9:30 AM and closes 30 minutes after completion of the yoga practice (approximately 11:30 AM).  From 9:20–9:50 AM instructors from AcroBody, the first acro yoga studio in the United States, will be leading warm-ups including partner stretching and basic acro yoga before the regular practice. Following the AcroBody warm-up the regular yoga practice which features local leading yoga teachers and musicians starts at 10:00 AM and closes with a Gong Bath Meditation.  The festivals close at 12:00 PM.  Yoga Rocks the Park is supported through your generous donations and we greatly thank you

For more information please go to www.yogarocksthepark.com.

What happens at Sedona Yoga Festival? What can you expect?

What happens at Sedona Yoga Festival? What can you expect?

Photo: Alan Alcid Yogi’s Vo Vera & LaMonte Goode Inverted in the Vortex

What can you expect at SYF2017…?

Photo: Alan Alcid Yogini Taylor Kurz

Photo: Alan Alcid Yogini Taylor Kurz

Well, the conference and festival itself evolves each year so there’s lots we will be unfolding in late September about the Who, What, When,and Where of it all. But the WHY remains steady. We create and nurture this platform and the relationships built within and around it for the purpose of uplifting and expanding human consciousness and providing Sedona transformations with a focus on yoga and meditation.
SYF is accessible to all, and there is truly an access point for the newest beginner as well as in depth networking, studying, practice, and continuing education opportunities for the professional.  We believe this intermingling leads to authentic and powerful interactions.
Photo: Alan Alcid Taylor Kurz @ Bell Rock Vortex... Flying.

Photo: Alan Alcid Taylor Kurz @ Bell Rock Vortex… Flying.

Have a look at the SYF2016 pages to get a taste of what’s to come in March 2017. We hope you will join us in Sedona, where the magic happens…
March 2016 Sedona Yoga Festival overview
March 2016 Presenters
March 2016 Schedule
March 2016 Yoga for PTSD training
March 2016 pre/post conference overview
If you’re curious how we’ve evolved over the years, there’s a complete archive menu over on the “About Us” page.
Stay curious, friend.



SYF2017 Festival Promo Postcard2  SYF2017 Festival Promo Postcard




5 Reasons Sedona Yoga Festival Will Rock Your Asana

5 Reasons Sedona Yoga Festival Will Rock Your Asana

UPDATED: 8/26/16 – wow!  we have gotten HUGE response from this post!  Thank you SO MUCH!!!  Over the last few days, this article has received 1000’s of views from all over the world… We are so grateful to be seen as one of the top yoga festivals in the world.  Please, leave a comment… like, tweet, share.  SYF is here for you… are you ready to continue your evolution?

one of the top yoga festivals in the worldSedona, Arizona… The undisputed spiritual mecca of the American Southwest, red rock canyons, spires to inspire, the water element of Oak Creek Canyon, and of course, the ENERGY.  No matter your beliefs or background, Sedona is sure to make you feel something.  And it has been known since time immemorial to support human transformation.  Indigenous tribes frequented the area for ceremony and gathering, yet lived in the distant canyons.  It is palpable.

People have been coming here, to this small enclave in Northern Arizona for decades now to enjoy its intrinsic stillness and beauty.  Some are called, others hear about the healing and transformational energies, regardless those who find themselves here have an experience.  Transformational. Growth. Expansion. Letting Go. Manifesting Dreams. Creating New Habits & Experiences… And more are possible!  These are just some reasons SFY is ranked as one of the top yoga festivals in the world!

We have seen now 1000’s in attendance at the SYF, a consciousness  evolution conference, bearing witness to the extraordinary experiences attendees are having.  It never ceases to amaze me the ear to ear grins on everyone’s faces, as they move gracefully between classes, or the light in someone’s eyes as they tell me about talking to their favorite teacher for the first time, and best of all, when someone shares that they mark their current evolution as beginning at SYF.  I have heard product designers stories of getting their big break while networking in our heart center vendor villages and teachers who connected with a new tribe… Really, anything is possible here.  All that’s needed is you.  

sedona home of one of the top yoga festivals in the world

Coffee Pot Rock • Sedona • AZ • Home of one of the top Yoga Festivals in the World.


  1. SYF was created to support you in your transformation!
    Marc and Heather stillness
    You see, I had been practicing for over a decade when I moved to Sedona, AZ to deepen my practice and become a yoga teacher.  To make a long story short, I Love YOGA (it has saved me from myself over and over) and I Love Sedona.  Yoga in Sedona is an absolutely mind-blowing combination.  Since we both know just how important it is to be held and nurtured during these breakthroughs, Heather and I decided to hold a vision for SYF to be a safe place for sharing, where someone like me could come and be exposed to something very powerful AND be sheltered in a womb of safety, security, compassion and serenity.  Our fifth annual Sedona Yoga Festival a consciousness evolution conference is next March and all feedback has shown this event is a place where anyone can come and have an experience of Yoga… Young, Old, Weak, Strong, Firm, Infirm, Stable, Unstable, Happy, Sad…  There is something for everyone regardless of being a beginner or advanced student and Heather always says, “you can go all weekend without doing a lick of asana…” There is nothing to fear here.  It’s safe.
  2. It’s what we share… Authentic Yoga from Authentic Yogis.
    Every year, we are asked numerous times by the 100’s of applicants who apply to share an offering with you at SYF, “what do you need me to teach…?”  Our reply has always been… “Whatever LIGHTS you up… whatever has inspired you the most… whatever your PASSION is.”  And that is what you will receive at SYF, a teacher’s deepest experience, something that has transformed their lives for the better. Something, whose profound effect on themselves has been distilled into a workshop or class.  This is authenticity at it’s finest (imho), and that’s what you are getting at SYF.


    Past SYF Presenters

  3. Master Teachers, too!
    Every year, SYF’s Vanguard Master Teachers are chosen with you in mind.  These teachers all have decades of practice, experience and teaching under their belts and they are here just for YOU!  (some don’t do many yoga festivals and you may only be able to see them here…) Imagine that.  When I began my practice, Yoga Festivals weren’t happening yet, save for the Yoga Journal Conferences, and all these master teachers I was reading about seemed so FAR AWAY… Out of reach, for me, the mere mortal practicing to Inhale with Steve Ross on TV.  It wasn’t until many years later that I began to interact with these living links to the ancient masters and I realized just how special it was to share a live class, or even better a conversation with a Master Teacher!


    Past SYF Presenters

  4. Intimate setting…
    You will be able to bump into Master Teacher Mark Whitwell in the halls of our Event Venue (he’s really tall!…)  Or share an intimate meditation with Steve Ross, of Maha Yoga in a classroom that holds 30.  Ask Rama Vernon what it was like showing Mr. Iyengar around shortly after his arrival to the United States.  You see, SYF is held in a single event venue and we will all be together on this AUMazing journey… Whether you get to hang out after class or sit with someone for tea or go for a hike on the Red Rocks, it will all be rooted at the Collective Sedona & Hilton Resort Sedona Bell Rock in the southern outskirts of Sedona.  Indoors or out, you will find somewhere special to just be!
  5. Sedona: Destination Transformation

    Prayer Wheel by Dexx

    Prayer Wheel by Dexx

    Sedona has been nurturing transformation since time immemorial; Native American tribes came to this valley for ceremony long before anyone else showed up! The energy of the land here is very conducive to support you through whatever transformation is on your horizon.  Our team and Angel Support staff are also dedicated to fostering an environment that supports you in your experience of transformation; along with myself and Heather, we have created an experience for you… check out our new yoga retreat center, Aumbase Sedona.

  6. Bonus – Optional integrated 20-hour training for Yoga teachers “Traumatic Stress: Resiliency and Healing with Yoga” is designed to provide teachers with the skills to share yoga with First Responders, Veterans, trauma survivors, PTSD and TBI sufferers and many more. This 20 hour track is integrated into the SYF experience with full access to the conference outside of the intensive held on Thursday all day, and on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday mornings, allowing plenty of time for integration and reflection be it on the land or in other classes and workshops, among all festival attendees. (a first amongst yoga festivals, we aim to assist in transformations and providing these trainings insure we are creating a positive impact in peoples lives who suffer from oft-debilitating effects of PTSD and other stress-related mental illness or those who choose to serve this population.  It is our way of creating a positive impact in the world with the SYF platform. Click here to see last years training.

You are going to have the most amazing, auspicious, synchronistic, wholistic, healing, fun AND transformative experience at SYF.  One that, like many before you, will likely not be your last, nor something you ever forget.  Past SYF Attendees all made the choice to come the first time and now we see them every year!  The experience was just too powerful not to return and now better than 80% come back year after year.  Whether yoga festivals are your thing or not, consider Sedona as your next Yoga Destination by attending the Sedona Yoga Festival or check out the other cool things the team behind this consciousness evolution conference is up to.  All things Yoga in Sedona.

They now know just how powerful the experience is, how supported they are and how much better their lives become after … and you will too!

Come and get your asana rocked!  Sedona style…

See you at SYF,

SYF Founder & Executive Producer.

PS.  Consider joining us next year… Click here.

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