SYF wouldn’t thrive without the expanded community that has come together around it! We were blessed with the participation of some outstanding photographers at SYF2016 and the yoga photos they took are absolutely spectacular! Kudos, ALL and Namaste.
The 2016 Sedona Yoga Festival has gone down in the history books as the most yoga photos shot and shown on our website… We are well aware of over 1111 photos, but we are sure there are more! Below you can peruse the myriad of photos taken by the absolutely AUMazing photographers that SYF2016 Photographer Liaison, Jeness May (Click here to see her Facebook Page)
Be on the lookout! Please tag with #SedonaYogaFestival, #SedonaYoga. Soon we will be able to scoop those Sedona yoga photos up to show you as well! This is gonna be fun! Like a scavenger hunt… only different. Way different.
Whether you were there or not, these photos of yoga in the beautiful landscape and wonderful venues of SYF2016 are sure to delight! This consciousness evolution conference is nearing it’s fifth birthday! Marc & Heather have alluded to some pretty special experiences planned and to date Team SYF has been on point to blow your mind at SYF2017. Check out the SYF Yoga Blog if you want to see more of what has and what will be happening in years to come.
For now, sit back… relax. Perhaps a little Nadi Shodana… then click away and see what everyone has been talking about!
The Sedona Yoga Festival Experience – consciousness evolving. Together.
Sedona Yoga Photo Gallery at SYF2016
Did that whet your appetite? As we said… SYF2017, you do not want to miss it! Cruise the website and see what is in the making… Start Here.
Team SYF, on the ground in Sedona, reporting. The weather is perfect, the surroundings spectacular, the details in place. We await you to complete the experience!
This message is chock full o’ details so relax and get ready to picture yourself in Sedona! At ease, filled with shakti, and most of all… connected.
Registration opens at 3pm Thursday and will be open until 10pm. On Friday and Saturday registration is from 6:30am-9:30pm, and on Sunday from 6:30am – 4:30pm. Make registration your first stop! You do not need to print your ticket, simply state your name and show ID when you check in.
Registration is located in the Tequa Ballroom of the Hilton Sedona Resort at Bell Rock. The Ballroom is a separate building “downhill” a bit from the main building, and at the end of the parking lot (bear right) that you enter from. Overflow parking is at the Collective Sedona, closer to the roundabout than the Hilton.
Tequa Ballroom is our Heart Center of SYF2016, filled with vendors, a classroom area and ChocolaTree Organic Eateries conscious cafe. Chocolatree serves organic, non-GMO, soy-free, gluten-free, processed sugar-free deliciousness to keep you fueled throughout the weekend. We have created a “Where to Eat” guide in the program and on the website, as well, for your convenience. Most of the Village of Oak Creek (our neighborhood for the weekend) is walkable. (Sedona restaurants close early so plan accordingly).
And… it is a new moon! Sedona/VOC is an international dark sky town. Please bring a flashlight, a headlamp, or keep your phone charged because you will need something to light the way when the sun is not up. Which… is perfect for stargazing!!! Join us Thursday night on the deck at the Collective Sedona (right next door) where Sedona Stargazing will point us to celestial objects. Jupiter is in the sky!
6am classes: If you arrive late and are unable to check-in at registration prior to a 6am class please simply print your ticket and be sure that your name is on the list for that class – our Angels are instructed to let you in without a wristband in this case. In all other cases you will need your wristband – which we will give you at registration along with a few other things to get into classes, workshops, and events.
Not preregistered for a class or its showing as full on our schedule? Arrive at the class early and join the “rush line”. If all preregistered attendees have not arrived by 5 minutes into class time, the rush line will be let in. So, turn that over and what do you get? Be on time! Please also be mindful not to stay after and chat in the classroom as there are only 15 minutes between most classes. And please refrain from wearing scents, many people are sensitive.
Driving in Sedona can be a bit tricky – what with no streetlights and the roundabouts. For roundabouts, you wait for an opportunity to enter them, and once you’re in you have the right of way so keep going! Be very mindful of other drivers as not everyone gets this simple formula… Getting here and around.
We do hope you will join us at the general plenary sessions every day – AMPLIFY sessions are our one opportunity to gather together in a single space and set a shared intention. We have amazing speakers lined up for these and will have Q&A. We are having our first gathering at the Opening Ceremony on Thursday, and will meet both Friday and Saturday mornings in the main ballroom. Sunday morning we are so blessed that World Peace Initiative will lead us in a meditation for world peace, something they do all over the world – Sedona is their first World Peace Meditation in the US! We will all have plenty of opportnities to Release, Gather and Integrate throughout the weekend, learn meditation practices, and juice up our vibe. With Sedona’s charged vortex energy we have the opportunity to AMPLIFY some big waves of peace and healing to the world on Sunday morning! Be there!
If you are wanting to gain CEs for NCBTMB or Yoga Alliance you can visit Sedona Wellness at registration and they will assist you with the process. Yoga Alliance also has a booth and are eager to answer any questions you may have about their CEUs or anything else!
We have added a couple of post-conference opportunities on Monday so be sure to check them out! The Yoga for PTSD pre-conference is already underway and we are so honored that yoga teachers from all over the country have come to learn from the outstanding faculty we have assembled! There’s still time to sign up for Tymi Howard’s Yin Immersion on Thursday and Stephanie Spence’s Secrets of Social Media Thursday at noon.
Which reminds me! Follow us on social media! We will have plenty of cool prizes from our sponsors, partners, and vendors to give away throughout the weekend for playing with us on instagram, twitter, and facebook. (Yes, we have heard of snapchat, no we don’t know how to use it yet!).
We already told you how great the weather is – blue skies, clean air, warm sun, birds chirping – but you do need to know it cools down significantly at night in the desert. So while you may be down to shorts and a tanktop during the day with hat and sunglasses on, you will want layers for before the sun comes up and after it goes down! And drink lots of water! We are in an arid climate and at elevation, this is important.
Recommended to bring:
- hiking shoes, hat, sunscreen, water bottle, cushion, any props you love (a strap in particular is something we won’t have very many of). We will be using Three Minute Eggs throughout the conference, those cool yoga props that work as a block and a bolster and have nice curves… Bring your yoga mat but don’t worry, we will have some travel mats for sale and a limited number to rent if you are unable to bring yours/don’t have one. Bring a notebook or journal and an open mind.
A few more details that may be of interest:
- We have a Kids Yoga program all weekend long! Can be drop-in or half day passes, or weekend passes. This is a family affair.
- The Conscious Expo is free and open to the public so tell your friends to come on by and do some shopping and maybe stay for an evening kirtan (single tickets are available).
- Wasa crackers (have you not had them? Their catchphrase is perfect: Surprisingly Satisfying!) will be offering us some yummy options at morning and midday break times every day. They are non-GMO and Marc and I have been eating them for years. Super yummy and good in a million different ways. So be sure to stop by and say “hi” to Tanya while you snack.
- Robert Sturman has just agreed to do a yoga photo shoot on Sunday morning at daybreak! We are so grateful for his support of our trauma-sensitive yoga programs and this fundraiser event. And you are sure to be super-shaktified by then. Limited space available. Book now!
With performances by Lamonte Tales Goode, Vo Vera of the Sacred G’s, White Lotus Bellydance, Joanna Mack, AcroBody and more we have a fun-filled weekend planned for you above and beyond the sessions you choose. We are so grateful you trust in us to usher in a transformation of sorts, and we thank you for being willing to explore your own self and to show up in the world from a place of cultivated ease.
We will see you shining soon.
In service & joy,
Heather & Marc Titus and the SYF Team
Still have QUESTIONS?
Contact us at email@example.com
PS – We have a FAQ page 🙂 Here’s one:
How do I find the schedule that I created?
Navigate to the schedule page of the SYF website, there is a login option at the upper left. You can either view the check marks next to the classes or you can click on your profile icon and select “my Sched”
LoveYourBrain yoga has been the single most positive experience that I’ve had during my recovery. I’ve been through over nine concussions and never found something that I could do to make myself feel better besides waiting it out and weathering the concussion storm.
Each year over 2.5 million people sustain a traumatic brain injury—from concussions to severe trauma—in the United States. Traumatic brain injury (TBI) often leads to physical weakness, balance problems, isolation, and depression that compromise quality of life. This is why we at the LoveYourBrain Foundation have launched a program to support TBI survivors and their caregivers to participate in gentle yoga and meditation classes tailored to their needs. Check out our website and resources.
Kevin Pearce Anjali Mudra
We are working to partner with yoga studios across the US to offer our program. Sabra, one of the amazing TBI survivors that we have met through our program in Burlington, Vermont, shared how she came to LYB Yoga and why it has resonated with her so deeply.
I signed up for LYB yoga by accident. This happy accident was the beginning of a part of my life that I truly cherish. I was so overjoyed to hear that I could attend six weeks of yoga classes with people that understood my injury. I desperately wanted to feel better and was excited to try this new option. Over my 12-year struggle with concussion, I had yet to be presented with an active recovery option. Most people tell you what you can’t do and LYB told me that I could do something and it was tailor made for me and my recovery!
While nursing myself back from concussions, trying new things or even revisiting activities has seemed impossible or painful. The normal arch of a day can cause immense amount of pain in the form of headaches, nausea, dizziness, whatever symptom of the day my brain decided to trigger. That pain instills a fear of trying new things. So, I was nervous and wondered how would yoga make me feel better? I reassured myself that a yoga studio was one of the only places in public that was guaranteed to be quiet, serene, non-judgment—simply put, a really safe space. I thought if the class wasn’t going well, I could just lay on my yoga mat in the middle of the studio and at least be around people for an hour. Knowing of how accepting yoga is, I felt better and unrolled my yoga mat; ready to try.
After the first class, I physically felt the same. For me, moving for an hour and feeling the same is absolutely huge! I could do this and not feel worse or slide backwards in any way! My spirits were lifted! After two classes, feeling the same stretched into a breakthrough. I forgot for an hour that I had a concussion and all the pain and anxiety melted away. Forgetting the injury and the pain is like peaking around the corner at feeling normal, and LYB yoga was the sole reason I turned that corner of my last concussion. I also felt—for the first time in two and a half months—no headaches and completely pain-free. These classes have become the reset button for my body and my pain levels. It’s absolutely incredible!
Our program meets TBI survivors where they are so that they can draw upon yoga’s myriad physical, emotional, and social benefits to support their healing. To make this a reality, we are conducting teacher training workshops to train yoga teachers how to effectively adapt yoga and meditation for the TBI community. We provide a curriculum that incorporates TBIfocused yoga and meditation best practices, class themes to foster resilience and compassion, and group discussion to build community. We are so grateful to be able to share our training as part of the Sedona Yoga Festival.
The LoveYourBrain Foundation is a social profit organization that aims to improve the quality of life for people affected by TBI. Our message—LoveYourBrain—embodies our positive approach to brain injury prevention, recovery, and health. Learn more about us and our yoga program here.
LoveYourBrain makes me smile. Just the thought of those three little words. It’s involuntary. I have to smile. I finally get to love my brain during a concussion. It’s possibility, positivity, caring, and feeling more normal.
LoveYourBrain Foundation will be part of the faculty for the Pre-Conference Training at SYF2016!
It was one year ago today… give or take a day or two, but distinctly an anniversary of sorts. The days, weeks and months leading up to this day, one year ago today were characterized by anxiety, tension, depression, insomnia, severe physical pain, and a host of other distinctly stress-related symptomology. To be around me, as others were… family members, business partners & relationships, as well as members of my small-town community (when I had the energy to leave my “safe” home)… even complete strangers, must have been terrifying and surreal. To them, Marc was no longer in the building… To them, something dark, scary and powerful had taken him over… To them, wondering when he was going to completely lose it.
Shortly before I decided that there was a problem and my solutions weren’t working, I encountered a person outside my parents condo who questioned why I was smoking outside his building. I was wearing a hoodie… it was dark… my wife was standing 10 feet away and saw the whole thing… Something deep inside me took over and I shot forth a stream of defensive/offensive words, my body trembled as I “puffed up” and took several purposeful steps towards him… I saw the look of fear in his eyes… I heard Heather’s voice… Something brought me back and I walked away…
Two days later on Dec 26, 2014, I admitted myself into an in-patient treatment center specializing in PTSD and Trauma. I had already been misdiagnosed as bi-polar II, several months earlier by a Psychiatrist who admitted knowing nothing about trauma-related mental health, nor PTSD… even when I broke down in her office in the midst of a flashback! She meant well, though, and sent me on my way with two types of Xanax and an anti-seizure drug with such severe potential side-effects as to be life-threatening if mis-taken. I was a wreck… Here is a post I wrote before things got really bad… Click here.
Making the decision to get professional help undoubtedly saved my life… My entire being didn’t know what was real anymore; everything was a threat and I was constantly fighting; life itself became meaningless. Towards the end, for weeks, at some point, I would curl myself up into a ball and want to die… Let me be clear, this was not some wanton or casually flippant statement to garner sympathy, rather this was a visceral, dark, insidious desire to not be alive anymore… with imagery, how-to’s, suggestions and probabilities. I was terrified and didn’t know what to do anymore. My yoga practice that had once sustained me had fallen away, gone for over a year and a half at this point, did not make me feel any better the times I tried to go to the mat… in fact it made things worse. (quick side note: My daily asana and meditation practice sustained me for many, many months… I had peace, joy and clarity… There was balance and ease. I founded the Sedona Yoga Festival during that time… met my wife Heather, got married and together we started several businesses and built a world-class destination Yoga Festival. Somewhere in all that, I began to have less and less time available to practice, or so I thought! It didn’t take long before I was making excuses for not getting on the mat and finally those stopped. I lost touch and it didn’t take long for the world to close in…)
I came to find out that my body and mind were in an endless loop of the fight/flight/freeze response, I was living in/from the Limbic System and everything about my systems were overloaded. I no longer could look at “the moment”, let alone be in it and as I said, EVERYTHING was a threat, automatically categorized by my limbic brain as such… and from my limbic brain came my responses. Let me tell you, the Limbic System is no place to live for a long period of time… it is cold, dark, calculating and cruel… bluntly it sucks for you AND those around you!) Ironically, as I am a Yogi, I had no idea that this was actually happening… and I couldn’t hear, nor did I believe those around me.
So, you’re wondering… if he went in on December 26, then why is today an anniversary? Well, this is where it gets realzies folks… I was on the watch list for near 3 weeks at the Level 1 Physchiatric Facility I went to (that’s right! I spent 40 days in a mental hospital!!!) And for that time, even though the environment was super-cool, relaxed and ultra chill, I was still combative, anxious and depressed… my first day I had flashbacks so real I nearly passed out! Day after day, I went through the motions… going to groups, therapies, classes, meals and meetings… looking inward, digging deep. I wasn’t getting better, nor was I making any friends of my counselors, trained to “call my bullshit” at every opportunity. Near 3 weeks this continued… they must have seen it first… before me, as they pulled me off the watch list first… a day or two went by and then it happened.
I will NEVER, EVER forget the sensation as the tension left my body, the world took on a new look, the colors became more vibrant and the smiles around me were noticed. Looking around me, I wondered where I was… It was safe, secure, there were beautiful souls around me… and I was HAPPY. Deeply happy… Bliss would describe it perfectly! It turns out, that I was so severely out of balance that my entire experience was being governed by the Limbic System… 24-7 for easily a year and a half or more. (since I stopped practicing to be sure!!! note to self) It also turns out, this is not uncommon for many, many who suffer the effects of Post-Traumatic Stress.
Can you imagine?
Now, clearly I am an extreme case… and there are other extreme cases that you may run into in your endeavors to share Yoga, Meditation and Mindfulness with Trauma Survivors and those who suffer from PTSD… These people may, as I did, need professional help and a complete reset… or they just may need a guide. You will need to determine this as you go, but worry not, because you will learn from experts in the field all about Traumatic Stress, TBI(traumatic brain injury) and Healing with Yoga at the 3rd Annual SYF Gives Back Pre-Festival Intensive Training.
Here’s the good news! The ancient science of yoga IS the healing balm to manage traumatic stress, PTSD, TBI and other trauma or stress related illnesses and diseases. It IS proven effective and it DOES work… I just have to do it, consistently, steadily and with passion.
Those affected by PTSD need our help… Your help. You can be the guide… you can be a beacon of hope.
On March 8th-10th, 2016 at the Hilton Sedona Bell Rock Resort you will learn how mindfulness can help someone to regain control of their physiology, how yoga cleanses, conditions, energizes and aligns the energy body’s, how and what meditation’s are helpful for Trauma Survivors, and how pranayama is effective in stimulating coherence in the brain. Just a hint, as you join the world class faculty, all experts in their respective fields come together to share with you: Traumatic Stress: Resiliency and Healing with Yoga.
I am good. I consistently return to the practice… steadily apply my efforts and I do so with a passion. Yoga is the Journey out of the Darkness, and a teacher is the guide. I am blessed to have been shown the way by my teachers and I am blessed to be a part of bringing these teachers to you…
“NO ONE SHOULD HAVE TO LIVE LIKE THIS”, I screamed inside my head over and over and over again… and they don’t.
We recently chatted with Teri Undreiner who excels at Loving and encouraging people, and being an LMT , Life Recovery Consultant, Yoga Instructor, Songwriter/Singer/ Writer, Essential Oils Wellness Advocate/ Workshop Teacher, Warrior Posse Designs ( Yoga Shirts & Apparel)…
NAME: Teri Undreiner
SOCIAL MEDIA: Facebook, Twitter/Instagram: teriundreiner
Occupation: Loving and encouraging people, LMT , Life Recovery Consultant, Yoga Instructor, Songwriter/Singer/ Writer, Essential Oils Wellness Advocate/ Workshop Teacher, Warrior Posse Designs ( Yoga Shirts & Apparel)
Current Town: Phx. Az.
Where has yoga taken you?
Yoga has taken me to a deeper place within me and challenged me to live a much more conscious life than I was doing before it. It’s opened me up to reading different things that help me to get in touch with the “inner woman of the heart”. It brings me so much joy and peace and helps me live a more contented , yet adventurous life. It’s given me courage to branch out and challenge myself to do things I haven’t done before or things that fear use to stop me doing. It has connected me to so many different types of people as well. I feel that my world and my heart has become so enlarged to take in so much more of life. Yoga has taken me into other venues, and stretched me to reach out to demographics that I had no previous connection with, such as the Military and First Responders world.
What are the 4 most pivotal occasions in your career both in and outside of Yoga?
1. About 5 years ago, I was choosing between going through Yoga teacher training and Life Coaching and so I decided on a 200 YTT certified through Holy Yoga,, because I wanted to bring Yoga to the Church since most Churched people didn’t engage with yoga I wanted to show them the two were compatible. I use theme related classes that challenge not only our bodies but the way we look at things emotionally and spiritually.
2. Two years ago I began a journey into Life Coaching because I thought that including Yoga with how to help others live more productively and positively would be helpful to my career. Venturing into becoming a Yoga Instructor that included Life Coaching themes and meditations has enabled me to begin my dream of holding Workshops.
3. I began doing Essential Yoga Workshops just this year that incorporates a yoga class, essential oils, and a Nidra class with powerful affirmations to encourage people to move forward in their lives. This Workshop helps them learn how to intentionally relax and let go of those things that n o longer serve them.
4. I have also ventured into becoming trained for Trauma Sensitive Yoga and working with a Veteran and his equine therapist Horse, Bella and have began making videos of such work.
What do you never leave the house without? My phone, computer, backpack filled with books, journal, pens and food/water.
Where are your favorite places to experience? I have traveled to the Mediterranean and it is my favorite out of the country place by far. But I travel although right now to see my kids and first grand-baby, Barrett and that is my favorite of all and my daughter in Ventura Beach.
What are the first three words that come to your mind when someone says: “grounded” or “connected?” Centered. Content. Strong.
We want to know what your typical morning looks like! What does your daily practice look like?
My daily practice …First thing in the morning I make coffee and I take it outside with my Bible, and or another book I’m reading about living a conscious lifestyle. I also take my journal to write down my thoughts and then my computer as well. I like to share my most fun thought of the day first to encourage others if I can.
I either go to a yoga class or I do a 5/15 minute sequence of my own before work. I put on some emotionally moving music and use those moments to do my sequence as a dance. I use it as a worshipful practice to begin my day off in the right attitude and mindset.
What is one mantra that is like a remedy for your soul?
I made this mantra up coming from a lifestyle before Yoga that was a people pleasing lifestyle. “ I’m not who I thought I was, and I don’t know who I will be, but I am confident of this, that I am becoming who I am.” I also ask myself the question, “ How are the connections?” I do this because if the connections aren’t encouraging me to live that life of authenticity and worry free of pleasing others, then I seek to change that.
How do you channel your inner 5 year old?
I think that I live with such wonder already in my life, that I stay in that child-likeness all the time. I also play with my crazy dogs. They keep me playful. Plus having a grandchild. Nothing better than that for calling out to that child within.
Tell us one fun fact about yourself.
I got my nose pierced at this years SYF ( 2015) and my first tattoo at 62 years old a bit later. It’s the lotus because I love the story of the journey of the lotus. When the light draws up the lotus from the muddy and murky pond, the pressure of the rising against the water enables the soil on the lotus to begin to fall away and by the time it reaches the world outside of the water, that which muddied it up and held it down has been purged. That has been very fun to watch happening in my life!
What is your favorite pose to teach in your classes? And why?
I love Warrior Two straight into Exalted Warrior because it is so strong and confident. I love that it is reaching forward as well as back signifying that often life takes you back and forth and you get to learn how to steady yourself. I love going straight into Exalted Warrior because as a faith based yoga teacher, the strength I receive from God through that gives my heart such a burst of gratitude that it just is natural to go from warrior 2 straight there. I like to add on Humble Warrior right after that because it just makes sense to me in that trinity. I think I love these because they give great ideas for intentions, meditations, and themes. So, even though there are 3 here, they become as one pose for me together.
If you’re not on a yoga mat, where can we find you?
Work, writing, songwriting/ singing, walking dogs.
Meet Joy Nanda, CranioSacral Therapist, Yoga & Meditation Intstructor
We recently chatted with Joy and discovered bliss…
NAME: Joy Nanda
EMAIL: contact Joy through her website…
SOCIAL MEDIA: Twitter/Instagram Facebook: craniosedona
Occupation: CranioSacral Therapist, Yoga & Meditation Instructor
Hometown: All over upstate New York
Current Town: Sedona
Where has yoga taken you?
Yoga has taken me to a place of self-acceptance and compassion for others that trascends everyday “reality.” I feel comfortable in my own skin, and no longer feel the need to project “negatives” onto others. When I truly embraced the philosophy and teachings of yoga, all my challenges in this life, including health challenges, were put into a perspective from which healing truly began, and I am enjoying the journey wherever it takes me.
What are the 4 most pivotal occasions in your career both in and outside of Yoga?
- Leaving a Medical Scool faculty position to pursue alternative forms of healing.
- Becoming a Yoga Therapist to bring the healing power of Yoga to everyone, regardless of physical ability.
- Leaning how to use meditation techniques as therapy for stress-related condtions.
- Putting it all together to develop a holistic brain health program.
What do you never leave the house without? Water and awareness of where I’m going in this life.
Where are your favorite places to experience? The Hangover Trail here in Sedona, and the parking lot at Natural Grocers, where I almost always encounter a good friend or two.
What are the first three words that come to your mind when someone says: “grounded” or “connected?” Yogi, Muladhara, Santosha
We want to know what your typical morning looks like! What does your daily practice look like? 20 minutes of seated meditation followed by asana flow as inspirted, or a yin sequence for specific meridians as needed. Checking in with my gratitude list to close.
What is one mantra that is like a remedy for your soul? Om, Gum, Ganapataye Namaha seems to cover every situation. Asato Ma is my prayer.
How do you channel your inner 5 year old? Marveling at nature and playing with my cats.
Tell us one fun fact about yourself. I lived through the 1960s. And I remember most of it.
What is your favorite pose to teach in your classes? And why? Balancing Half Moon – most of my students never dream they can do it when they see a demo, but actually manage it quite easily. The balancing in the pose is actually the sun and moon aspects of Hatha yoga brought together perfectly in one pose, not just the aspect of balancing on one leg. The exhilaration of completing the pose, the inversion and extension of all the limbs is balanced with the moon aspect of grounding into the earth with both leg and arm, and feeling supported in a way we don’t usually access in daily life.
If you’re not on a yoga mat, where can we find you? Working with clients one-on-one in CranioSacral sessions or teaching meditation.