Trauma Yoga Training

June 2-5, 2022
Sedona, AZ

June 2-5, 2022

Thursday, June 2 (All day)

Friday, Saturday, and Sunday (8am-12pm)

Trauma Yoga Training

A 20-hour introductory certification. Designed to provide yoga teachers with the skills to share yoga with first responders, veterans, trauma survivors, those affected by PTSD and Traumatic Stress, as well as caregivers and service providers.

Utilizing this event as platform to serve, we’ve been offering some form of trauma-informed yoga training at SYF since the beginning. We have trained hundreds of yoga teachers and brought awareness to the devastating effects of Post Traumatic Stress in our communities across the country. We’ve called this program all sorts of things from Yoga for Veterans and Yoga for First Responders to Yoga for PTSD, with one simple aim: Provide the tools to alleviate the effects of trauma.  A trauma-sensitive yoga training takes into account the specific aspects of traditional yoga practices that ameliorate the effects of trauma and stress on the human nervous system. Yoga is and has always been a healing balm to soothe the injured human nervous system, ergo a Yoga for PTSD training, a trauma-sensitive yoga training, trauma-informed yoga training… Call it what you will, we know what outcomes have emerged from this training.  We know that by training hundreds we have impacted thousands.

This year we are grateful to welcome “Retreat to Spirit” to lead this training with Amina Naru and Kwasi Boaitey joining SYF for the first time, and Pamela Stokes Eggleston back for her third time on faculty at the SYF Yoga for PTSD training.

Retreat to Spirit: Trauma Conscious Yoga Training

Retreat to Spirit: Trauma Enforced Training Participants Are Are Eligible to Receive 20 CEU Hours Through Yoga Alliance.

Modern studio spaces and yoga practices can trigger those who have experienced trauma in their lives.   While the Western lens of yoga focuses on performance, is asana based and promotes the yoga industrial complex, our approach to trauma conscious yoga is steeped in cultural sensitivity, compassion, and knowledge of the nervous system and brain as they relate to trauma. It is important for anyone who is offering yogic practices as a teacher and/or business to be conscious of the entire spectrum of trauma to create a space for reduction of harm and re-traumatization, balanced with creating a space for healing and transformation.

This Retreat to Spirit:Trauma Conscious Yoga Training is distinct from other trauma trainings in that it is taught and led by two African American women and one African American man, all who are yoga teachers with various traumatic experiences – incarceration, gender based, racialized, PTSD, sexual trauma, historic and intergenerational trauma – that they lean on to inform their contemplative practices and inform the foundation of knowledge they draw from to instruct teachers and other practitioners.  In addition to this expansion of the definition of trauma, the Retreat to Spirit trauma training covers material related to veterans groups, incarcerated populations and other groups normally thought of in the context of trauma training.

We will also cover trauma through the lens of social justice; how it affects the body, nervous system, brain, and spirit; toxic masculinity and femininity, patriarchy, and colonialism; self care and community care; and seva in community.  These are important considerations as we navigate the transitions in the world since the coronavirus pandemic (economic, social, racial) and the severe disruption and dislocation that we have experienced collectively.   This collective dislocation is a significant shared traumatic experience that we as teachers and a yoga community must be mindful of and in service to alleviating.

The Retreat to Spirit: Trauma Conscious Yoga Training will use Hatha, Restorative, Pranayama, and Meditation techniques to help students excavate and discover a deeper understanding of self in relation to the Yamas and Niyamas.  This experiential training will provide the framework for an embodied practice that can be taught in a wide range of  traumatized communities, an essential toolkit for yoga teachers. It is intended for all people willing to learn how to reduce harm, to compassionately confront their own samskaras that have inadvertently created harm, and broaden their awareness and definition of trauma (individually and collectively).  It will prepare you as a teacher to be more responsive to the needs of a broader audience, expand your toolkit of types and techniques to address trauma,  and heal yourself in the process.   We are excited to be a part of the Sedona Yoga Festival and look forward to having you.

Click Here to Read a Recent Article On Our Blog About Trauma Informed Training

Featured Presenters

Amina Naru

Amina Naru


Amina Naru is the founder of Posh Yoga, Co-founder of Retreat to Spirit, a Usui reiki master, trauma-sensitive yoga instructor, and chair of the Race and Equity Consortium in Yoga, with a specialty in providing yoga and mindfulness programs to incarcerated youth and adults. Amina is an active member on the board of directors for the international nonprofit, Accessible Yoga Association and serves on the board of directors for Bmore Empowered INC, a nonprofit dedicated to empowering women and girls of color through mindfulness and entrepreneurship in Baltimore City, Maryland.

She is the former executive director of the national nonprofit organization, Yoga Service Council, and served three terms as secretary for the YSC Board of Directors. Amina is a contributing author to the books Best Practices for Yoga with Veterans (YSC/Omega, 2016) and Best Practices for Yoga in the Criminal Justice System (YSC/Omega, 2017). She worked as the project manager and contributor for Yoga and Resilience: Empowering Practices for Survivors of Sexual Trauma (Handspring 2020) and the Best Practices for Yoga with People in Addictions and Recovery Symposium at the Omega Institute. She also served as Executive Director of the nonprofit Empowered Community in Wilmington, DE, and is the first black woman to implement curriculum-based yoga and mindfulness programs for juvenile detention centers in the state of Delaware.

Amina has been featured in the books Yoga Revolution by Jivana Heyman, Yoga Radicals by Allie Middleton, and Restorative Yoga for Ethnic and Race-Based Stress and Trauma, by Dr. Gail Parker. She has also been featured in Yoga Journal, Yoga Therapy Today, and the J. Brown and Yoga Alliance podcasts. Amina Naru’s yoga service work is deeply informed by her studies with master teachers Johnny Gillespie of Empowered Yoga, James Fox of Prison Yoga Project, B.K. Bose of the Niroga Institute, Nikki Myers of Y12SR, and Jennifer Cohen Harper of Little Flower Yoga.

Pamela Stokes Eggleston

Pamela Stokes Eggleston


Pamela is the Founder and Director of Yoga2Sleep, Co-Founder of Retreat to Spirit, and Adjunct Professor/Yoga Therapy Clinic Supervisor at the Maryland University of Integrative Health. She is a certified yoga therapist and meditation teacher with specialized certifications in plant-based nutrition, cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia (CBT-I), and trauma-informed yoga to work with service members, veterans, their caregivers, and insomnia sufferers. Previously serving as Co-Executive Director of the Yoga Service Council, she cultivated financial resilience and strategic partnerships for the nonprofit organization. An avid yogini for over 20 years, Pamela was motivated to begin her teaching journey when she realized that yoga helped her sleep, decreased her insomnia and reduced her knee osteoarthritis pain.

Pamela has an MS in Yoga Therapy from Maryland University of Integrative Health and an MBA from University of Maryland University College. She served as President of the UMUC Alumni Association. In addition, she is a contributing editor of Best Practices for Yoga with Veterans (YSC/Omega, 2016), researcher/author of Yoga Therapy as a Complementary Modality for Female Veteran Caregivers with Traumatic Stress: A Case Study (Maryland University of Integrative Health, March 2018), and Addressing Multiple Sclerosis Symptoms: A Yoga Therapy Case Study (Maryland University of Integrative Health, June 2019).

An accomplished consultant, advisor, published author and national speaker, Pamela has worked for numerous agencies including the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the Veterans Administration, the Department of Labor, as a yoga therapy intern for Johns Hopkins Medical Center, and as an advisor on Congress-supported publications centering on substance abuse, mental health, criminal justice and military and veteran family matters. Her work and writing have been featured in Yoga Therapy Today, Gaiam, Military Spouse Magazine, Yoga Journal, Mantra Yoga and Health, Essence, the Huffington Post, and on Ellen and MSNBC.

Kwasi Boaitey

Kwasi Boaitey


Kwasi Boaitey LMSW, SAP, CASAC-1, ACC, RYT-200, NSCA-CPT is a dedicated wellness professional with over 15 years of experience. Kwasi is the owner of Upperlevel Fitness Inc. where his focus is using relational modalities of mindfulness and cultural humility to facilitate open lines communication, client resilience, and stress management. Kwasi comes to this work through experiencing 87,600 consecutive hours of incarceration – 774 of which were in isolation – in the NYS Department of Corrections. Kwasi has harnessed the skill of joyful discomfort through mentorship, loss, triumph, and friendship. Students often liken Kwasi to the constant gardener as he has learned how to cultivate the human spirit in places where others would offer that the soil is not rich with nutrients and there is limited light and water for growth.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for Trauma Conscious Yoga Training 

Who is this training for? 

This training is for anyone who is teaching or interested in teaching yoga to people and communities who have experienced trauma. 

What is the content of the course? 

The content of this Training includes 5 Modules – 

Module 1: The Social Justice Lens 

Module 2: How Trauma Affects the Body and Brain 

Module 3: Toxic Femininity, Masculinity, Colonialism, Patriarchy 

Module 4: The Importance of Self-Care to Community Care 

Module 5: Applicability of Service in Community 

Upon completion, students will be able to: 

? Create compassionate, safe, and sacred spaces for those affected by trauma ? Reflect upon their own trauma and triggers in a deep, substantive way ? Consider how trauma-conscious yoga can be scaled and adapted to inform teaching, therapy, and personal practice 

? Develop meaningful partnerships within communities of service 

Can I earn continuing education credit or contact hour CEUs for this training?

Yes, this training is eligible for continuing education units (CEUs). Eligible yoga teachers will earn contact hour CEUs through Yoga Alliance. If the course instructor is a Yoga therapist, they may also offer CEUs through the International Association of Yoga Therapists. Upon completion of the course requirements, you will receive a downloadable certificate you can submit for credit. 

Will attendance be taken? 

Yes. Attendance will be taken at the beginning of each session. 

Can I miss a day and still receive CEUs and a certification of completion?

No. Due to the YACEP and IAYT guidelines students who are not present for the entire 20 contact hours will not receive or be eligible to apply for CEUs. 

Are the 3 presenters teaching the whole 20 hrs? 

The 20 hour training is designed to be taught by the three presenters collaboratively as well as individually. 

What is the amount of time between lecture, practices, and group work? You will receive this information at the training via syllabus and training guide.

SYF2016 Training Available as a Digital Conference at Yoga International

with Molly Birkhom, Rama Jyoti Vernon, Love Your Brain, Dr. Pauline Lucas, Dr. Jerry Wesch

yoga for ptsd. works… period. yoga for ptsd. works… period. yoga for ptsd. works…period. Yoga for PTSD. Works… Period.

3 Tools for Easing Life with Trauma – Today

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!

Keep calm and do some Yoga

In a world of extremes, it is high time for a mindful time-out. How Yoga & Meditation reduces stress in the body. The current state of affairs in our country is such that the population is constantly bombarded with stress-inducing stimuli, from the...

9 Insights from Living with PTSD by Marc Titus @cedarmesa

SYF Founder Marc Titus shares 9 Insights from Living with PTSD & a simple path to alleviate suffering. #9 is a game changer… But, they all can help.

Yoga for PTSD

Yoga for PTSD. A complete 20-hour certification track integrated into the SYF experience. Designed to provide you with the skills to share yoga with…

Adventure Travel – the Makings of an Aumbase Sedona Adventure

Aumbase Adventures in Sedona, AZ. Five must-have ingredients for your next adventure travel experience that are certain to awaken body, mind & Soul.

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...? 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...

5 Reasons Sedona Yoga Festival Will Rock Your Asana

Sedona, home to one the top yoga festivals in the world & undisputedly a spiritual mecca of the American Southwest, the Energy of Yoga is Everywhere here.

Love Your Brain Foundation

[addtoany] 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...

Yoga is the healing balm…

[addtoany] 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...


Sign up for our newsletter, and be the first to know exciting presenter news, ticket discount opportunities, and ways to be invovled in the Sedona Yoga Festival community! We are so glad you're here. 

Important! Check your email to confirm your email address so we can stay in touch!

Pin It on Pinterest