Hi. My name is Crystal, and I love yoga.

I teach yoga because I believe it to be the most effective technique for cultivating wellness in a stress-filled modern life. Though we may try to live healthy and vital lives, the fast pace of an urban, globalized and internet-driven world can cause severe wear and tear on the body, mind and heart. My mission is to measurably impact the wellness outcomes for communities of color, women, vulnerable and invisible populations through yoga, mindfulness, retreats, and constructive wellness counseling. The resources you explore with me will provide tools that invigorate your body, cultivate serenity in your heart, and transform your mind into an ally.

My yoga journey began 19 years ago after college at Stanford University, where I received my B.A. in African and African-American Studies. I was working as an elementary school teacher for Oakland Unified School District and as a dancer in San Francisco-based Robert Moses’ Kin. I was drawn to yoga classes that blended the overtly physical and flowing Ashtanga tradition with the precise, alignment-based yoga practice taught by B.K.S. Iyengar. After a long day with children, the rhythmic linking of breath with movement had the effect of quieting my over-stimulated mind. As a result, I began to dance with more fluidity and less pain. I felt more lucid and peaceful. I observed myself and “my stuff” with more clarity, and began to unearth with compassion many of my own obstacles on the path to wellness. Yoga was an integral component in my self-care ritual during the completion of my Master of Fine Arts in Acting at The American Conservatory of Theater in San Francisco. By then, yoga had become a true soul mate.

In Milwaukee, WI, where I grew up, there were few studios at the time with classes that made yoga accessible to every one. After many unsuccessful attempts to help my mother find a yoga class that was right for her, I decided to deepen my personal practice and figure out what it might take to teach my mom and other friends and family whose experience in yoga classes were not supportive to their needs. I did so by enrolling in my first yoga teacher training in 2007.

I am registered with Yoga Alliance at the E-RYT-500 level, with a specialty RCYT for children’s yoga. I lead Yoga Alliance certified yoga teacher trainings, facilitate professional development workshops, and speak nationally about the impact of yoga and mindfulness on the health and wellbeing of children, adolescents and adults. I also teach public classes in New York City and curate transformative wellness retreats which explore my own mindful vinyasa practice, my curiosity about anatomy, and my passion for intelligent sequences that sow vigor and softness in body, and a more peaceful mind through mindfulness meditation.

Aiming to build and strengthen community through a deeper understanding of our individual, complex human selves, I teach to the who is in the room, making all my programs accessible, relevant, inclusive and adaptive to the physical, emotional and social needs of a full spectrum of populations.

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