I recently had the misfortune of experiencing a severe allergic reaction. My skin erupted in all-over itching and burning, aggravated by all elements – heat, water, wind, and touch. Within a few days, my entire existence became intolerably irritated.
Up until that moment, my skin had been a guardian angel – a shield from external assaults, and a safe-keeper of my internal vitals. This time, however, the skin was being attacked from the inside, not the outside, and quite understandably, it reacted dramatically.
Once the reaction had downgraded from a potential life-threat of windpipe closure to just miserably uncomfortable, I knew all I could do was wait for my body to complete its stages of allergic response. I then reflected on Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra 1.30: “These are the obstacles that bring disturbance to the mind: disease, lack of effort, loss of interest, inapplication, attraction to things physical, false perceptions, lack of concentration, inability to maintain any achievements gained.” (Translation: Kofi Busia 1998)Read More
Stephanie Paz is currently a teacher at Sacred Sounds Yoga in Manhattan. She received her 200 hour Yoga certification in June of 2014 at Sacred Sounds Yoga and she recieved her Unnata® Aerial Yoga certification in February of 2015. Stephanie is also a practicing visual artist. You can read more about her as well as see her teaching schedule at www.stephaniepaz.com
Firstly, I must tell you how significant and life changing this style of yoga has been for me and others I am close with. Michelle’s class was the first group yoga class I’d ever gone to, back in 2009. Prior to that, I did yoga along with videos to help my chronic low back pain. The asanas in the silks, along with the chanting, meditation and pranayama Michelle integrated into this class changed everything for me. It healed me in so many ways. Without the physical release from pain I would not have been able to open my heart, soul, and mind in the ways I have. Unnata has been a true blessing in my life.
An Open Letter to Unnata Aerial Yoga Teachers:
Thank you so much for having chosen Unnata® Yoga for your Aerial Yoga teacher training. We’re sincerely honored to have you as part of our community of dedicated professional aerial yoga teachers.
If you’re reading this, it’s likely been a year since your last renewal (or initial teacher training with membership included), and we’re now inviting you to renew your membership and license to the Unnata Aerial Yoga community for another year.
When you renew your Unnata membership, your participation helps the entire Unnata community grow and prosper. And for yourself, you’ll have access to the continuing support, education, and benefits available to our members such as the Unnata Yoga teachers’ Facebook group (with over 200 passionate and generous Unnata teacher members!), access to continuing educational videos and classes, and importantly, use of the Unnata brand name and logo in order to distinguish yourself from other generic aerial yoga teachers or techniques.
Depending on your renewal level you may also receive a listing on the Teacher Locator section of the Unnata website, and be able to run your own non-Unnata teacher training programs. Studio owners who renew at the studio level may bundle all of their Unnata teachers’ memberships in one package.
The Road Ahead
We’re continuing to expand the support system we’ve created for graduates of Unnata Aerial Yoga teacher training programs, and we’d love for you to continue to contribute to, and benefit from that effort.
In addition to curating the Facebook group just for Unnata Yoga teachers, and promoting you and your classes through the aerialyoga.com website, we’re adding translations of the website into different languages, creating more advanced and continuing education training courses, and on-line Unnata Aerial Yoga classes.
Importantly, we’re also pursuing and obtaining trademark protection for the Unnata Yoga name in several countries besides the US (including Spain, Japan, Russia, Greece, as well as China, Brazil, Canada, and several EU countries), in order to help the global public understand the special difference that is Unnata Yoga.
Our goal is to serve you and all Unnata Yoga teachers as best as possible, so please let us know how your classes have been going, and if there is anything that can be done for you, or if you have any questions or suggestions. Your feedback is invaluable.
Here again is the link to renew your membership:
Thank you again for being a proud member of the Unnata community, and for your continued participation, passion, and support.
Founder, Unnata Yoga.
Here Michelle gives a brief explanation how Unnata Aerial Yoga differs from many other aerial yoga techniques through a demonstration of Forearmstand.
Michelle Dortignac and Unnata Yoga have been featured in TWO articles in this month’s edition (July/Aug 2015) of Yoga Journal magazine!
It’s so exciting to see how Aerial Yoga has grown to become a lasting and legitimate example of the many new faces of Traditional Yoga.
For almost 10 years now, Unnata Yoga has strived to remain a true Yoga class at its core — a class which incorporates the use of the silk aerial apparatus to expand and compliment the traditional floor practice.
In the FIRST article, entitled Learn to Fly with Aerial Yoga, Yoga Journal writer Karen Macklin explores the ways in which an Aerial Yoga practice such as Unnata Aerial Yoga can help practitioners “find more length in your spine and safe alignment in your poses” on the floor.
One of the most important points emphasized by our own Michelle Dortignac, is the way in which Aerial Yoga can support and inform your floor practice. “When a new student drapes over the hammock, in Down Dog, for example, gravity does the work for them,” she says. “The hammock helps with lengthening and creating internal space. Once we give students that feeling in the hammock, they’ll have the memory of what that was like, and take it with them to their floor practice.”
The SECOND article was written by Michelle Dortignac herself — especially for this edition of Yoga Journal magazine.
In The Aerial Yoga Sequence: 9 Poses to Defy Gravity, Michelle takes us through the process for warming up to, and preparing to get into the hip-opening One-Legged King Pigeon Pose.
This article also features Colorado-based Unnata Teacher (and Unnata Teacher Training leader) Raven Clemente demonstrating Michelle’s 9-step sequence for warming up to, and getting into the One-Legged King Pigeon pose.
(Photos for Yoga Journal by Joe Hancock)
Here is the fifth installment in the Unnata Yoga Mini Class video series. Each video in the series shows 10-15 minutes in real time (unedited) of what an Unnata Aerial Yoga class looks and feels like. With this mini class #5, however, we take a full class and speed it up so it takes only 15 minutes.
Michelle explains some of the logic behind how to integrate the floor with the air for a class that balances the energy body as well as exercises our physical body.
Those of us in the Unnata Aerial Yoga community are happy to see the increase in popularity of Aerial Yoga, and the increase of locations where one can practice Aerial Yoga. It should be noted, however, that this increase in popularity has also brought along an increase in suppliers of Yoga hammocks, some of whom have not done the necessary research to fully understand safe hammock installation. Hanging a Yoga hammock requires more thought and care than hanging a television/bookshelf on your wall, or of hanging a chin-up bar.
“The existence of all objects of perception and their appearance is independent of the needs of the individual perceiver. They exist without individual reference to cater for the different needs of different individuals.”
— T.K.V. Desikachar
This Yoga Sutra defines what we all intuitively know, and it may seem obvious at first. An example would be: whenever you leave your kitchen, and you are no longer looking at or thinking of your kitchen table, the table does in fact, still exist.
And yet, even though this is a seemingly obvious statement, how many times have you been surprised by your niece’s/nephew’s seemingly “sudden” growth spurt since you last saw them? Have you ever been taken aback by the choice of your ex-boyfriend’s/ex-girlfriend’s new partner? Have you ever visited an old workplace and discovered they in fact actually are doing fine without you, despite how much they relied on you to keep the place running?
Unnata Aerial Yoga is expanding more and more. Now in California, Unnata has been featured in Napa Valley Region online news blog called Windsor.
These classes are being taught by certified Unnata instructor, Amy Charnay, at Yoga Paradise, owned by Brian and Sandy Seekins.
Read the entire article here: A Fresh Outlook on Yoga
Ours is one of only 2 classes selected for all of New York!
By the way, we also highly recommend the other featured class – Nite Sweats®, at friend-of-Unnata, Bikram Lower East Side.
Thanks Yoga Journal, for recognizing us both among the thousands of Yoga classes in NYC.