Yoga & Yoga Therapy
Have you always wanted to try yoga, but are apprehensive? Or maybe you’ve tried and weren’t comfortable with it? A longtime teacher and practitioner, Karen has introduced many people – all ages, sizes and abilities – to the benefits of a regular yoga practice. She is passionate about teaching timeless yoga principles and techniques and sharing relevant ancient wisdom to contemporary life.
Yoga helps you sleep better. It helps relieve stress and anxiety. It improves your balance, strength, and endurance. It cultivates an awareness of your body’s abilities that you can carry over into other sports and into all aspects of your life. Why would you hold yourself back from easy access to all these benefits? Let go of the sense that you have to be good at yoga to do yoga. You just have to breathe.
Discover a doorway into the path of yoga that works just for you. Move, breathe, stretch, sweat, relax, and experience the deep calming, focusing and healing effects of yoga.
What to look for in a Yoga Teacher
No matter what the subject, a good teacher can bring out the best in you. This is especially so when it comes to yoga, where the guru-shishya (teacher-student) relationship plays a vital role. For many thousands of years, yoga was transmitted from teacher to student on a one-to-one basis.
First, choose a style that suits you. Although there are many styles of yoga, the differences are usually about emphasis, such as focusing on strict alignment of the body, coordination of breath and movement, holding the postures, or the flow from one posture to another. More important than any style is the student-teacher relationship.
Assessing the abilities of a prospective yoga teacher isn’t always easy since yoga instructors are not required to be certified, though many now are. Don't be afraid to ask questions! Look for someone who has been practicing regularly for at least 3 years and who they trained with. Yoga training takes a lot of time and effort.
The continued growth and popularity of yoga in the United States has increased the need for well-trained and qualified yoga teachers assuring a safe learning environment for the practicing public. The Yoga Alliance is a group of senior yoga teachers who have answered this need by creating standards that set forth minimum, voluntary training parameters for teachers and teacher training schools. Teachers who meet these standards have a well-rounded background in the breadth and depth of yoga.
The Yoga Alliance maintains an international Yoga Teachers' Registry as well as registers yoga schools whose teacher training programs (200 hours and 500 hours training courses) meet their standards. To find a registered yoga teacher near you, try www.yogaalliance.org.
"A photographer gets people to pose for him.
A yoga instructor gets people to pose for themselves."
– Terri Guillemets
What Is Yoga Therapy?
Yoga therapy adapts the practice of yoga to the needs of individuals dealing with specific health issues—including injuries, illnesses, and temporary/chronic health conditions. Adapting Yoga to You.
Yoga therapy uses specific postures, breathing techniques, deep relaxation, and meditation, adapting the practice of yoga to the unique needs of each individual. It benefits people of all ages, body types, and physical conditions, as well as those who have never tried yoga before.
Founded on ancient healing wisdom combined with new scientific and medical understanding, yoga therapy empowers practitioners to manage physical conditions, reduce symptoms, and address specific health concerns—including injuries, illnesses, and temporary or chronic health conditions.
Used effectively, yoga therapy aids the healing process, restores balance, and improves quality of life for anyone and everyone.
Karen Pierce, Yoga Therapist
Karen was introduced to meditation and yoga as a teen and has continued to deepen her practice over nearly 3 decades. That dedication has helped bring a sense of peace and balance while living in a world that seems to be spinning out of control.
Karen has been teaching in the fitness industry since 1990 and holds many certifications including her 500 e-RYT through Yoga Alliance and is a Registered Yoga School, is a certified Yoga Ed instructor, a Professional Yoga Therapist, and a member of the International Association of Yoga Therapists. She is dedicated to bringing the practice of therapeutic yoga to all populations in a safe format that is rooted in exercise science. Her style is based on being safe and includes many modifications and adaptations. You will learn when to push, when to surrender and when to rest. Her approach focuses on falling in love with yoga and her students love her challenging, ever-changing classes and her upbeat, relaxing style. Karen is also the author of Yoga Bear: Yoga for Youngsters - a children's book published by Northword Press (2004) and Co-Contributor to Yoga in America (2009).
Karen teaches group classes, works privately with clients who need uniquely designed plans for specific conditions, and leads Yoga Teacher Training.
As a Yoga Therapist & Educator, Karen works one-on-one with individuals honoring ancient yoga techniques while combining modern wisdom to identify imbalances and empower the person to progress toward improved health and well-being. Through in-depth postural assessment, testing of specific joint range of motion and muscle strength, observing breathing patterns and taking into account the person's Ayurvedic constitution, a customized treatment plan is devised. Yoga therapy's greatest goal is to guide each person in his/her own deeper awareness, greater understanding, and movement to facilitate healing and wellness. She has worked with clients who have many different health conditions including cancer, joint injuries, hip & knee replacements, back & neck injuries, scoliosis, amputees, depression, anxiety, PTSD, Lyme's disease, skin disorders, fibromyalgia, pre- and post-pregnancy, children, ADD/ADHD, etc.
A life-long student of yoga, she has been blessed to have learned from many world renowned yogi masters. Her style is based on her extensive teaching experience and her studying with multiple lineages, teachers and styles of yoga. Karen takes what is most helpful and meaningful from a vast array of different sources and styles... but her heart belongs to the teachings of Krishnamacharya and her dedication to her mentors who have kept these teaching authentic & alive. They are gifted teachers and she is fortunate to have the experience of the true spirit of yoga and the essence of how it was taught over 100 years ago by Krishnamacharya who was a true pioneer in his ability to translate ancient teachings and make them relevant in a modern context. He inspired thousands of practitioners worldwide and today his teachings are very popular through his many students including his son TKV Desikachar (Viniyoga), BKS Iyengar (Iyengar), Pattabhi Jois (Ashtanga), and Srivatsa Ramaswami (Vinyasa Krama).
Karen is a master of progressive teaching (breaking poses down in a systematic way and teaching series classes that train students to master the actions and the inner attitude to progress in a logical and balanced way over time.) Karen works with movement sequencing (asana and somatics), breath work (pranayama), mudras, energy work, and the wisdom of Ayurveda (Indian Medicine) so that the yoga can be adapted to all levels of ability. Every session has an intention or sequencing (krama) that is unique to the group or individual and follows Krishnamacharya's principle to "teach what is inside you, not as it applies to you, to yourself, but as it applies to the other." Yoga should always be adapted to the unique needs of each individual. She feels it is her responsibility to pass on this profoundly powerful philosophy.
Karen is also known for her masterful meditations. You can listen to them here.
Traditionally yoga was taught on a one-on-one basis. Many students still find the progress that they make when working individually rewarding.
Working individually may be a good choice for you if:
You’re a beginner and you want to experience the benefits of yoga without being overwhelmed or intimidated.
You want to step to the next level in your practice.
You have injuries or health concerns. Working individually is essential when there are therapeutic concerns.
You want to work toward a specific physical goal such as increasing flexibility, balance or strength.
You want to target tight areas like hips, hamstrings, back, neck or shoulders.
You want to increase your mental focus.
You want to learn more about yourself, your behaviors/patterns, and discover your own potential.
You want to feel empowered through yoga postures and breathing.
You want to improve focus, calmness and creativity through meditation
During private yoga therapy sessions, you will learn how to work in a loving and compassionate way to restore your health on every level. A personalized program of postures, breathing exercises and relaxation techniques is specifically designed to help restore peace and balance in your life. Yoga has been thoroughly researched and found to be effective for a wide variety of health issues.
Yoga Postures: Asana
Stretch, twist and tone the muscles of the body to relieve muscle pain and improve circulation.
Lubricates joints to remove stiffness and pain.
Massages and squeezes the internal organs to improve tone and function.
Yoga Breathing: Pranayama
Increase oxygen to the blood
Calms emotions and clears mind for clear thinking.
Raise energy levels and increase vitality.
Yoga Relaxation: Meditation
We spend most of our lives looking outward to the world for peace and fulfillment. Through inner exploration, meditation awakens creativity, healing and transformation. Meditation allows us to explore our inner nature, restoring wellness in our lives.
Generate deep relaxation
The mind becomes concentrated and focused allowing you to see your patterns of behavior. When you can see the cause, the solution is obvious.
Because everyone's needs are unique, each one-on-one session is customized to your needs and to fit your lifestyle. Yoga is a complementary healing modality typically working on a private, one-on-one basis, so that a person's individual situation and context can be understood and specifically addressed.
Packages of multiple sessions are also available at a discounted rate (5% discount) and are payable upon initial assessment. Packages are typically 10-week (10 hr) programs in your home or my home studio.
Ideal for the busy professional, individual lessons work around your schedule to offer flexibility and personal attention. The focus is on you to fine tune your practice, address any health concerns, hasten your progress and/or save valuable time.
Private Yoga Sessions are a wonderful introduction for those new to yoga, students looking for individual attention with their yoga practice, or to students that are unable to attend regularly scheduled classes.
Semi-Private Sessions can be shared between 3-4 students for additional savings.
Private session in your Home .........................................................… $75 / hour
Travel Fee: $90 / hour if more than a 30 min drive
Private one-on-one session in my Home ......................................… $60 / hour
Senior rate: $50 / hour
Small Group or Yoga Party (Groups of 5 or more) ........................... $15 / person
Corporate Yoga …................................................................................. $90 / hour
Pricing is negotiated based on type of business (for profit, non-profit, school, etc.), length of class, number of classes per day/week, length of contract (discounts are available for longer term contracts).
Individual Therapeutic Yoga Lessons
Ideal for individuals with physical limitations, related disability, recovery from surgery or illness and/or students who are unable to attend regular classes due to any health challenges.
Yoga Therapy is a holistic and therapeutic application of Yoga and Ayurveda. Whether its structural alignment, movement without pain, developing strength, flexibility, relaxation, yogic breathing, relaxation techniques, or creating your own safe, home practice, sessions are tailored to meet your goals and needs. As we tap into your body’s inner wisdom, your practice will be modified and the plan will change along with your changing needs.
Your yoga journey begins with a New Client Questionnaire and an in-depth personal consultation. Sessions begin with a postural evaluation, constitutional and conditional assessment. I will evaluate your current situation, determine the source of your challenges, gain an understanding of your habits, and discuss your goals. Together we will find the appropriate yogic tools that fit your needs. This in-depth assessment usually takes about 90 min. Please fill out a Yoga Intake form.
Initial Assessment...........................................................................… $90 / hour
Online and personalized yoga classes also offered via Skype. Please email, call or text me if you are interested in this service.
Bartering is sometimes available for services I can use. Please feel free to email and ask if you have services to barter with.
Click here for Karen's Schedule.
Yoga Bear: Yoga for Youngsters
Perfect for families or groups of all ages and abilities, including children with special needs, yoga is a fun form of fitness!
Buy my book NOW
"May the inner and
outer man be one."
“If there is harmony in the house,
there is order in the nation.
If there is order in the nation,
here will be peace in the world.”
– Chinese Proverb