Courage & Curiosity
Sharon’s reverent love of the body infuses her teaching. She artfully combines the healing awareness of yoga therapy with the restorative alignment of the BackMitra and the exploration of tensegrity all within the enlivening practice of a flow-style (vinyasa) Hatha yoga. Through Sharon’s innovative teachings of experiential anatomy, students discover their reverence of the body as a gateway to deep inquiry.
Foundation of Study
Breathwave has been a keystone in my personal healing journey. Studying alongside Robin Clements in ceremonial circles, we embrace the sacred medicine of breath. This approach to conscious connected breathing teaches us how to ride the waves of E-motion and integrate the unresolved conditioned past. In essence, the process is about learning to trust the body, to listen, feel and express the landscape of inner life; honing our skill to regulate the nervous system and stay present. Inspired by Indigenous teachings, participants integrate their experience by sharing and bearing witness to each other in circle, acknowledging the inter-relationship of everything and the unseen world. This breath practice honours the earth, nurtures wholeness and awakens love.
Vijnana yoga is a significant foundation in my practice and my teaching. Developed by Orit Sen-Gupta, this lineage is based on 7 principles and approaches practice from within. By learning to relax the body and root, quiet the mind and set intention, stay present with breath and connect, we enable our energy to flow and our perception to expand. Steeped in an 800 hour intensive training with Gioa Irwin, my practice awakened to a new level of connection and subtlety. While stabilizing the body through a strong asana practice, this training refined sensitivity through pranayama, harmonized the fascial network through the tensegrity repair series and deepened powers of observation through meditation.
My transformational training with Leila Stuart began in 2004. A pioneer in developing experiential anatomy, Leila’s approach skilfully fosters the mind-body connection through assimilating intellectual understanding and interoception, a felt sense from within. This comprehensive program explores yoga therapy through the lens of the Kosha Model, a multi-dimensional perspective from the Vedic scriptures 2500 years ago. After 6 years of in-depth study, I assisted Leila in teaching her 800 hour certification program for yoga therapists. Further yoga therapy studies include intensives with Kamini Desai and Meditation in Motion with Chandrakant; these teachings based on the Amrit Yoga method have deeply influenced my approach to yoga.
Yoga Nidra is the meditative heart of yoga. Trainings with both Swami Janankanda and John Vosler have provided a comprehensive understanding of this ancient practice and a capacity to facilitate the unwinding process of deep relaxation. Through various techniques, we delve into breath and the body, intention and awareness, to cultivate connection between the body and mind, heart and soul. Yoga Nidra is fertile ground for our return to wholeness. A panacea for modern life, this profound practice helps us regulate the nervous system, generate inner resonance, and access deeper dimensions of self. My unique program assimilates current neuroscience, the function of the brain and states of consciousness, with the art of refining our inner sensing to attune to subtle levels of awareness.
I was catapulted into a traumatic grief journey when my daughter tragically died in the opioid crisis of 2016. Tormented by regret and guilt, sorrow and shame, I had to deeply re-examine my life. Grief is a messy and painful reality and reveals everything yet unresolved. Co-facilitating grief rituals in community with the support of beloved and skilled friends helped me honour my process. As Francis Weller counsels, if we do not keep grief in front of us, working with it consciously and sharing it with others, its gravity will drag us back into our history and down into the darkness of deep depression. Francis has become one of my most cherished teachers and I continue to study with him, learning how to honour my grief and allow my experience to ripen me. Nourishing a reverence for life and surrendering to this sacred mystery, I am learning to embrace my journey wholeheartedly.
An approach to practice based on the brilliant work of Brigitte Longueville, restorative alignment incorporates the BackMitra as a tool to reduce spinal tensions, increase spinal mobility and optimize spinal health. Synthesizing vinyasa and restorative work, this practice liberates the body, vitalizes the breath and induces a deep state of tranquility. Over the past ten years, I have had the great joy of collaborating with Brigitte to facilitate annual retreats in Mexico. Assimilating yoga therapy, experiential anatomy, vinyasa and restorative alignment, our retreats are an exquisite experience of attuning within, delighting in group connection, and embracing the natural beauty and culture of Oaxaca.
Ontogony with Dr. Carlos de Léon
A multi-faceted inquiry into the true nature of self, Ontogony offers an extraordinary distillation of teachings from psychology, shamanism, tantra and Taoism. This one year intensive study into the therapeutic group process of Body-Mind Reconnection included fundamental teachings on transpersonal psychology, an examination of human neurosis and the need for psychological work, the investigation and practice of Jungian dreamwork, and body reading based on Reichian characterology.
Connection & Reverence
When we approach practice with reverence new worlds of wonder awaken. Resting in gravity to remember the earth, we locate ourselves in the Universe and water the seeds of gratitude. Rooting to the earth, we arise into the levity of breath, opening our willingness to embrace our sacred lives, our beautiful bodies, and our ephemeral existence in form. Growing strong through practice, we cultivate the courage to face ourselves and embark on the healing journey of integration.