yoga for kids, youth, adults and families

jessica on dinner rock, bc

Welcome to heart as home – yoga and art 

heart as home yoga and art is my evolving pop-up project that includes my work as a yoga teacher for all ages, an artist and crafter, and a blogger and writer.

I believe yoga and art is for every one, every body. I love classes to be fun, safe, and gentle, a space to connect, explore, recharge, and rest. And a place to learn, shift, and grow in mind-body-soul-spirit.

As a registered Hatha Yoga teacher, I aim to provide a yoga experience that is grounded in the body, engages the mind, and awakens the spirit-soul. My teaching approach is safe, playful, and compassionate. I approach each student with a deep respect and appreciation for their autonomy and inner wisdom. As I start to offer yoga, my intention is for my classes, workshops, and sessions to be gentle and designed for beginners – and I love to incorporate some form of creativity (e.g. art-making and/or journaling).  I have completed training in kids yoga, yoga for youth, Yoga Nidra, and a 300 hour Hatha Yoga Teacher certification. I am a self-taught artist with a love for textiles, paint, and intuitive art making practices. I love yoga, art, music, and all the things that yoga brings into my life!

(photo credit: rsmcmillan)

Here I am at Dinner Rock Provincial Park near beautiful Powell River, British Columbia – giving thanks for ocean, sun, love, and all of nature!
You can find me on FB: heart as home -yoga and art (https://www.facebook.com/HeartAsHome)

I draw from my training, education, and professional development … 

Certified Hatha Yoga Teacher (300 hour program): Ajna Yoga Centre in 2012 – A lovely training that grounded me in hatha yoga, my own body, my own practice, and my teaching style. 
Certified Yoga Teacher for Kids and Families (3 day training): Rainbow Kids Yoga in 2013 – An inspiring training that offered so many interactive ideas for kids, youth, and family yoga.
Completed Yoga Nidra Immersion (2.5 day training) : Ajna Yoga Centre in 2012  – A deep guided meditative yogic sleep – I offer one-on-one sessions or group sessions. 
Completed Street Yoga Teacher Training: Street Yoga in 2012 – A training that offered insight and support for yoga teachers to offer yoga to youth experiencing homelessness and trauma. 
Certified in Standard First Aid for Industry (OFA Level 1 Equivalent):  St. John Ambulance in 2013 
Bachelor of Arts degree (Anthropology) and Diploma (Intercultural Education and Training) – University of Victoria
Professional development: adult education, art therapy, self-directed arts/crafts studies, body-based art-making, grief and loss, suicide prevention, and more.
Fully insured yoga teacher.
Registered Yoga Teacher with the Canadian Yoga Alliance

I’ve taken some time off recently to rest but am now teaching in my community in Powell River – and grateful for each opportunity! I post my schedule, special workshops, and details on facebook- connect with me there!

Jessica Leavens, BA & CYA-RYT200
facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HeartAsHome
e:heart.as.home@gmail.com
b: http://www.artsandcraftscollective.wordpress.com

more about my yoga journey 

My yoga journey began in 2008 when I moved to  Saskatchewan. Although I had always been interested in it and I felt that ‘doing yoga’ would be good for me … I had never committed to a practice or taken many classes. I didn’t feel comfortable or connected to my body and I really felt that yoga was for people who could already do the poses, who were flexible and fit, and who liked wearing stretchy pants – not me!

But, with no furniture in my new hardwood floor apartment, a bitter winter, and a yoga video, I decided to give it a go.  No one needed to know. And it felt good. It felt right. And I began the process of moving my body, getting to know it, and eventually befriending my body (a continual deepening relationship). As I gained a bit of confidence with some basic poses, I decided to check out some yoga studios to see if I was doing it right. I found my favourite teachers and kept at it.  In certain poses, I still hear their voices in my head (not all at once! Just at different times for different things) reminding me, encouraging me, challenging me.

For me, yoga (both the physical practice and the philosophy of living) has been a way to come back to my body in a gentle, slow way. And as this trust-respect-befriend process continues, I am more and more able to enjoy movement, to play, to learn my strengths, to challenge myself a little. And yes, my yoga practice also opens up my hips, helps ease my joint pain, strengthens my arms, and helps me breathe!

My practice brings to light hidden parts of myself – both positive and shadow. It helps me come to deeper understanding of myself, my patterns, let go/integrate traumas, and integrate my mind-body-soul-spirit.  My practice is an opportunity to work things out – emotions, kinks in my body, experiences, sensations – and to get to know myself better on many different levels – what are my patterns when I experience challenge? Accomplishment? Pain?

So, I am committed to continuing this practice that helps me learn how to take care of myself.

Because I know what it is like to live in spaces disconnected from the present, disconnected from body-mind, ashamed and afraid, sometimes frozen, sometimes frenetic.  And I also know that these things are workable. I know that it is possible to live in spaces full of light, connection, integration, and joy – a lot of the time. Yoga is a path of loving-kindness, self-compassion, awareness. I wax poetic, it’s true.  This is the heart of the matter: yoga wakes us up – in body, mind, soul, and spirit.

why become a yoga teacher?

I want to share this journey with others. I love yoga and feel the awesome benefits of my practice everyday!  My practice supports my health – mind, body, soul, and spirit. The more training I take, the more  I want to share.  I am passionate about sharing yoga (and art!) with kids of all ages, youth, adults, and seniors – anyone who wants to practice with me.  Yoga is accessible – and I want to learn more about how to help people find their own yoga. I know that anyone can do yoga – let’s just meet eachother where we are at ….no flexibility, level of fitness, previous knowledge/experience or even stretchy pants needed (they are comfy though!).

If you have read the other parts of my blog, you know I am passionate about art and craft as well. Eventually, I would love to offer classes and workshops that combine yoga and art-making. For now, one step at a time: teaching, learning, growing, and being in my own practice and in community.

thanks for stopping by,

jessica 


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