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Practicing yoga has been a life changing experience for Stacy and Jessica, making a significant and positive impact on each of their lives.  After receiving their initial teacher training they both knew in their heart that they wanted to offer free classes to their community. Yoga classes can be very expensive and they wanted to eliminate that barrier, creating access to the health benefits of yoga for all. 

According to Live Healthy Napa County;

  • Slightly more than half of all Napa County adults reported engaging in little or no physical activity each week.  

  • Overweight and obesity rates are a concern among all age groups, but it is particularly concerning that nearly 40% of 5th, 7th and 9th graders in Napa County are now overweight or obese.  

  • Too many Napa County residents lack health insurance, with marginalized populations particularly affected.  

  • Many individuals or families are living in poverty in Napa County; over one quarter of all residents and one third of families with children under 18 live below 200% of the federal poverty level.  

  • Mental health is an important concern among Napa County residents; the suicide rate in Napa County is above the Healthy People 2020 national objective and nearly one in five 9th and 11th graders have indicated that they’ve seriously considered attempting suicide in the past 12 months.

“The greatest wealth is health”-Virgil  

YogaNV believes that every “body” can do yoga!  Jessica has pursued hundreds of hours of additional Yoga Therapy training, a more in-depth description of a therapeutic yoga approach can be found through the International Association of Yoga Therapists. Stacy has completed additional training through Firefly Yoga International to provide specialized classes for trauma survivors and for furthering the Prison Yoga Project.  

 

The proven health benefits of a consistent yoga practice are truly endless.  

Listed below are several examples from the Yoga Alliance 

 

  • Stress relief: The practice of yoga is well-demonstrated to reduce the physical effects of stress on the body.  Cortisol is often used to measure the stress response. Yoga practice has been demonstrated to reduce the levels of cortisol.

  • Pain relief: Yoga can ease pain. Studies have shown that practicing yoga asanas (postures), meditation or a combination of the two, reduced pain for people with conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis, autoimmune diseases and hypertension as well as arthritis, back and neck pain and other chronic conditions.

  • Weight management: While most of the evidence for the effects of yoga on weight loss is anecdotal or experiential, yoga teachers, students and practitioners across the world find that yoga helps to support weight loss.  People do not have to practice the most vigorous forms of yoga to lose weight.  Yoga encourages development of a positive self-image, as more attention is paid to nutrition and the body as a whole. A study from the Journal of Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine found that regular yoga practice was associated with less age-related weight gain. The lifestyle study of 15,500 adults in their 50’s covered 10 years of participants’ weight history, physical activity, medical history and diet.

  • Cardiovascular conditioning: Even a gentle yoga practice can provide cardiovascular benefits by lowering resting heart rate, increasing endurance and improving oxygen uptake during exercise.

  • Better breathing: By changing our pattern of breathing, we can significantly affect our body’s experience of and response to stress. This may be one of the most profound lessons we can learn from our yoga practice.

  • Presence: Yoga connects us with the present moment. The more we practice, the more aware we become of our surroundings and the world around us. It opens the way to improved concentration, coordination, reaction time and memory.

  • Inner peace: The meditative effects of a consistent yoga practice help many cultivate inner peace and calm.

Stacy and Jessica have established a safe space for anyone to show up for a yoga practice with YogaNV, Inc., whether it’s their first class, it’s been awhile, they’re on a limited income, or they want to be part of the burgeoning yoga community.  YogaNV has already reached thousands of people who have been attending YogaNV classes since May of 2016. Dozens of locals have expressed to Jessica and Stacy how their yoga classes have filled a gaping hole in their life by offering a sense of belonging.

 

YogaNV has provided hundreds of free classes for our Napa Valley community since May 29, 2016.  YogaNV has reached people of all ages, genders, ethnicities and physical forms. 

 

If you have a skill that you feel we could benefit from and are interested in joining the YogaNV board, participating in a sub-committee, or contributing to our mission in some way please contact us.  Our meetings are open to the public.  Donations for helping us meet our goal of providing access to everyone are gladly accepted, your donations are tax deductible.

Below is an example of one of the many positive comments that we have received from our regular practitioners and supporters of YogaNV.

“I've had a lot of health issues and in the past exercise in a class setting has always been tough for me.  I’ve struggled with fibromyalgia and autoimmune issues and my body just doesn’t always work the way I want it to.  Further complicating issues, I’ve had surgery on both elbows and my left wrist has had 2 surgeries in the past year.  I couldn’t imagine my body contorting into some of these poses.  Fear of injuring myself and aggravating my illnesses has kept me from incorporating exercise into my life.  I decided now was the time to push through my fear.  I started with a Sunday morning class in Fuller Park.  I met both Stacy Bratlien and Jessica De Lasaux when I arrived at my first class and immediately felt I was being guided and supported by people I could trust.   I signed their waiver, explained my health challenges and listened closely to their advice.   I was immediately hooked not only by the physical effects yoga had on my body but on the spiritual calm and heartfelt appreciation I felt for and received through the class.  I went from never doing yoga to now going 4 days a week.”-Debbie Percelay