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Kripalu’s 24th Annual Yoga Teachers Conference

Tools for the Radiant Teacher:
Igniting Ojas and Tejas for Vitality and Wisdom

October 6–9


For yoga teachers from all traditions, Ayurvedic practitioners, and Ayurvedic Health Counselors.

Tuesday, October 6

Opening session
7:30–9:00 pm
Micah Mortali, Vandita Kate Marchesiello, and the Doonya dancers

We launch the conference with a joyous celebration that opens your heart and gets your prana flowing! The Doonya dancers perform traditional Indian dance and then teach us a few moves, helping us land in our bodies, get grounded, and enter a space of learning, connection, and self-care.

Wednesday, October 7

Morning Yoga
6:30–7:45 am

Morning workshops [choose one]
9:00–11:30 am

Ashaya Yoga and Ayurveda to Free the Neck and Shoulders [WED-AM-01]
Todd Norian
Joyful living is your birthright. But when the shoulders and neck are misaligned, you experience the opposite: pain. Through the application of the precise alignment essentials of Ashaya Yoga®, in combination with the Five Great Elements, you learn how to heal and prevent common aches and pains. We work with specific dysfunctions, including rotator cuff tears, biceps tendonitis, tightness, bulging discs, and more. Take home tools, exercises, detailed handouts, and the knowledge to free yourself and others of shoulder and neck pain.

Yin Yoga and Meditation to Align with Autumn [WED-AM-02]
Brahmani Liebman and Jashoda Edmunds
Yin Yoga is a perfect complement to an active lifestyle, and its meditative stillness is conducive for unfolding and transformation. This contemplative workshop invites deep inquiry as you experience how these practices can impact your mental and emotional states. We explore

  • How Yin Yoga helps to create a container for a profound meditation experience, while nourishing the meridian system, connective tissues, bones, and joints
  • The principles of Yin Yoga for heightening prana, or chi
  • Passive holdings of specific postures that align the body, mind, and heart with the rhythms of autumn.

The Compassionate Hand: Tools for Skillful Assisting [WED-AM-04]
Michelle Dalbec
When you assist with skill and clarity, you invite your students and clients into a deeper awareness and understanding of their practice, while creating an environment of support and healing. Kripalu School of Yoga teacher trainer Michelle Dalbec guides you in using anatomy and lines of energy as maps for establishing stable, safe alignment. You learn concrete tools for empowering your students to find greater freedom and ease in their yoga practice.

Wednesday, October 7

Afternoon workshops [choose one]
1:30–4:00 pm

Cultivating Ojas Through Earth and Water Elements [WED-PM-01]
Jennifer Reis
Earth and water are the building blocks of ojas—your body’s internal energy reserves. Strengthening these elements in your body and mind helps give you radiant skin and eyes, a healthy reproductive system, steadfast immunity, robust digestion, clarity of mind, and a fruitful spiritual life. We begin by getting grounded in the earth element to develop potency, strength, calm, and trust within your being. We then flow with the water element, tuning into our natural healing state as we find our fluid grace. Our elemental practice of asana, pranayama, mudra, affirmation, self-care bodywork, yoga nidra, and reflection is designed to stoke your ojas, fostering increased vibrancy and inner spark.

Activating Sound to Awaken Ojas and Tejas [WED-PM-03]
Jurian Hughes
Explore the potency of sound to stoke tejas, our inner radiance and courage, and build ojas, our vigor and vitality. In this workshop, we look at how adding sound to a yoga practice can amplify our experience of sensation and of ourselves, and expand our sphere of awareness. We also explore how mantra and affirmations can rewire the brain, replacing old habits of self-judgment and defeat with new, self-empowering ones, affecting the way we respond to the world and the way the world responds to us. Come learn how simple it is to integrate sound into your practice, and to offer this wonderful tool to your students as well.

Radiance Sutra Flow: Tapping into the Power of Desire [WED-PM-04]
Coby Kozlowski
Desire is the evolutionary impulse that calls us to move, to act, to love, to grow, and to expand. Through myths, meditations, and movement, we explore how desire can fuel our inner spark and radiance. In this uplifting workshop, Kripalu Yoga teacher trainer and life coach Coby Kozlowksi invites you to

  • Practice dynamic vinyasa flows
  • Examine contemporary perspectives on time-honored yoga philosophy
  • Glean insight from the Radiance Sutras
  • Explore your desires to create a roadmap for inspired living
  • Tap into the inherent wisdom of the body to inform your life, so you can savor each moment as it arises with newfound confidence and an open heart.

Wednesday, October 7

YES TALK: Yoga, Education, and Service
4:30–5:45 pm

Forecasting the Future of Yoga, with Andrew Tanner
Where is the yoga industry going? Who will your future students be? Learn about industry trends, their strategic implications for yoga teachers and studio owners, and the role of the Yoga Alliance in the yoga landscape of the future.

Wednesday, October 7

Evening Events
7:30–9:00 pm

Kirtan with Girish
Girish, an accomplished musician, former monk, and spirited wordsmith, links lyrics and rhythm in blissful musical experiences. He sings traditional Sanskrit mantras with a modern, funky twist. Accompanied by his band, Girish invites you to participate by singing along, call-and-response chanting, and dancing. Let your radiance glow in the devotional fire of movement and music!

The Yogi’s Kitchen
Cat Pacini and Erin Casperson

A balanced approach to eating supports a balanced mind, body, spirit, and yoga practice. Come learn how to make a selection of Ayurvedic dishes, including kitchari, ghee, simple soups, and a nourishing ojas drink. Don’t have a kitchen? Cat and Erin have a solution, as well as tips for taking these meals on the go. Fun and informative for both the culinary expert and the complete novice!

Thursday, October 8

Morning Yoga
6:30–7:45 am

Morning workshops [choose one]
9:00–11:30 am

An Ojas-Boosting Self-Care Experience [THU-AM-01]
Larissa Hall Carlson
Give yourself the gift of self-care! Dive into a juicy, full-body practice designed to boost ojas and balance the ether and air elements of vata dosha. With the Dean of the Kripalu School of Ayurveda as your guide, take a rejuvenating journey that includes

  • Nourishing asana practice and soothing pranayama
  • Abhyanga (herbal oil massage) with organic oil from Banyan Botanicals
  • Deep relaxation with yoga nidra
  • Insightful Ayurvedic self-care tips.

You emerge from this experience refreshed, relaxed, and glowing. Please wear clothes that expose your arms and most of your legs for abhyanga (herbal oil massage).

Strength from Nourishment: Using Yoga to Ease Chronic Pain [THU-AM-02]
Marlysa Sullivan
Many chronic musculoskeletal conditions, such as low-back and neck pain, arise from habitual movement patterns that result in certain muscles becoming chronically tight while others “shut down.” These habits impact the nervous system, altering body awareness and diminishing our ability to use our muscles optimally. The concepts of ojas and tejas guide this practice and discussion of yoga as a technique for activating the parasympathetic nervous system, fostering a deep state of nourishment. From that place, we can begin to release held patterns and enhance our capacity to engage, stabilize, and move our bodies in ways that facilitate healing and transformation.

Pranayama, Kriya, and Asana to Activate the Core [THU-AM-04]
Stephen Masullo
Explore pranayamas and kriyas to stabilize and strengthen the core, and support you in advanced asanas. Discover how the practices of Uddiyana Bandha, Agni Sara, Kapalabhati, and Kumbhaka can

  • Awaken prana and agni to ignite inner strength
  • Enhance body awareness and focus
  • Create lightness in advanced asana and arm balances.

Thursday, October 8

Afternoon workshops [choose one]
1:30–4:00 pm

Restorative Yoga to Preserve Ojas [THU-PM-01]
Sudha Carolyn Lundeen
We all experience fatigue—it’s a natural response to exertion or stress. But, for too many of us, ongoing fatigue—as a result of chronic tension, lack of sleep, and/or overwork—can affect our life in negative and pervasive ways. A regular yoga routine designed to build ojas can keep us healthy and balanced. This workshop with longtime Kripalu faculty member and Ayurvedic consultant Sudha Carolyn Lundeen combines lecture and an experiential approach, as we look at ojas-preserving practices, including restorative yoga and pranayama. Take home tools for reclaiming your vitality and strength and building your stress-hardiness.

Thai Massage and Ayurveda for Teachers [THU-PM-02]
Kimberly Larson and Terrel Broussard
The ancient art of Thai massage blends energy work, physical manipulation, and metta (loving-kindness). It’s sometimes described as “having yoga done to you.” The sciences of Thai massage, yoga, and Ayurveda are intrinsically linked on many levels—in particular, they share an ability to lead us to vibrant health by nourishing and increasing our vital energy. Join Kim and Terrel Broussard—co-owners of Lakshmi’s Garden, an Ayurvedic retreat center—for this delightful, hands-on workshop.

Ojas, Tejas, and Tapas: The Foundation and Pinnacle of Yoga [THU-PM-04]
Yoganand Michael Carroll
Tapas, the primary transformational technique of yoga, is practiced by cultivating ojas and tejas. If ojas and tejas are strong and skillfully employed, tapas can bring profound transformation to the seeker. If they are not balanced, even the strongest of yoga practices becomes a house of cards that can collapse in the winds of prana. In this workshop with the Dean of the Kripalu School of Yoga, we examine the yogic models of foundation and pinnacle, from the Vedic fire altar to the 14th-century concept of the nadis, and learn how Ayurvedic teachings can strengthen the deeper yoga practices.

Thursday, October 8

YES TALK: Yoga, Education, and Service
4:30–5:45 pm

Yoga Research: Past, Present, and Future, with Sat Bir S. Khalsa, PhD
Harvard researcher Sat Bir S. Khalsa offers an overview of yoga research in this insightful lecture, as well as highlights of groundbreaking studies conducted by the Kripalu Institute for Extraordinary Living.

Thursday, October 8

Sangha Session
7:30–9:00 pm

Keynote with John Douillard: How Contemporary Science Supports Ancient Wisdom
The subtlest aspects of Ayurveda might in fact be the most powerful—and, increasingly, their efficacy is being confirmed by contemporary research. Join John Douillard, a Kripalu School of Ayurveda faculty member and director of the LifeSpa Ayurvedic Health Center in Boulder, Colorado, for an illuminating look at the ways Ayurveda can address modern ills, including

  • How emotionally charged food can cause disease
  • How abhyanga (herbal oil massage) can help treat addiction
  • How a sattvic lifestyle can heal 90 percent of the cells in your body and lengthen your telomeres (sections of DNA at the end of chromosomes).

From an Ayurvedic perspective, we are, at our core, healthy, whole, and happy by nature. Come learn how these ancient practices can uncover your vibrant wellness.

Friday, October 9

Morning Yoga
6:30–7:45 am

Closing Session
9:00–11:30 am


Terrel Broussard has 20 years of experience working with others in the field of health. His passion for personal growth and exploring cultures outside of the United States keeps his professional practice evolving. Terrel has traveled extensively in Thailand to train in Thai massage and has also traveled in India, exploring the vast offerings of Ayurveda. He and his partner, Kimberly Larson, co-own Lakshmi’s Garden, an Ayurvedic retreat center in western Massachusetts. Terrel has been affiliated with Kripalu since 1997, where he has served as a volunteer, yoga instructor, and Healing Arts therapist.

Larissa Hall Carlson, E-RYT 500, Dean of the Kripalu School of Ayurveda, guides retreats, directs trainings, and provides Ayurvedic consultations throughout the country. Each summer, she teaches yoga to reduce performance anxiety for the elite musicians of Tanglewood Music Center. She has taught courses for students at the Boston Conservatory, Juilliard School, Harvard, and Princeton. Larissa is the creator of three CDs, Meditative Yoga Flow, Ayurvedic Pranayama, and Pitta-Pacifying Yoga.

Yoganand Michael Carroll, E-RYT 500, is Dean of the Kripalu School of Yoga. Through many years of intensive study and practice, he has gained a profound ability to distill and interpret esoteric yoga texts and techniques. He is a masterful storyteller who makes learning complex philosophical concepts fun and engaging. After studying with Kripalu Yoga masters in India and the United States, Yoganand taught at Kripalu for more than 15 years before founding the Pranakriya™ School of Yoga Healing Arts, where he leads Pranakriya Yoga teacher trainings and a variety of other programs. He is a member of the International Association of Yoga Therapists.

Erin Casperson, an Ayurvedic Health Counselor and 500-Hour Kripalu Yoga teacher, is the Academic Coordinator for the Kripalu School of Ayurveda (KSA). A passionate, heartfelt, and enthusiastic teacher, Erin loves sharing Ayurveda with others so they can get closer to the truth of who they are. A former resident Intern for KSA, she has continued her study of yoga and Ayurveda with Larissa Hall Carlson, Scott Blossom, John Douillard, Vasant Lad, and Claudia Welch. Erin, who also teaches outdoor programs at Kripalu, has many years of hiking and backpacking experience in the woods of New England and has summited all 48 4,000-foot mountains in New Hampshire.

Michelle Dalbec, E-RYT 500, is a passionate Kripalu Yoga and Yoga Tune Up® teacher who hosts yoga programs, delivers dynamic and motivational workshops, and directs Kripalu Yoga Teacher Training. She teaches with the intention to inspire authentic alignment, expression, and movement. Whether Michelle is teaching restorative yoga or vigorous vinyasa, meditation or conscious communication, she leads with an inquiry-based approach that empowers students to realize their full potential and individuality. Michelle believes that yoga is for everyone, a lifelong journey of self-discovery both on and off the mat.

Doonya Dance, founded by Priya Pandya and Kajal Mehta, offers Bollywood-style classes and instructor trainings in New York City.

John Douillard, DC, has written six books, produced numerous health DVDs and CDs, and formulated his own line of organic health-care products. He publishes a free natural health and Ayurvedic video-newsletter on his website, where he also offers more than 400 videos as well as articles on the latest natural health topics. The former director of player development for the New Jersey Nets NBA team, John currently directs the LifeSpa Ayurvedic Health Center in Boulder, Colorado, where he lives with his wife and six children.

Jashoda Edmunds, E-RYT 500, has studied yoga since 1971 and began teaching in 1987. With Brahmani Liebman, she is cocreator of Journey into Yoga teacher training and the CD Journey into Yoga: Awakening the Spirit. Jashoda is a founding member of the Kripalu Yoga Teachers Association (now the Kripalu Yoga and Ayurveda Association) and a member of the Kripalu Yoga Teacher Training faculty. She also draws on her study of Buddhism and her training as a Phoenix Rising yoga therapist, shiatsu practitioner, and craniosacral therapist.

Girish, an accomplished musician and former monk infused in spiritual practice, sings traditional Sanskrit mantras with a modern, yet deeply devotional twist. Girish has been recommended in O, the Oprah magazine, Yoga Journal, and Spirituality & Health Magazine. His latest album, Sky of the Heart, along with his five other albums, are popular in yoga studios and at music festivals worldwide. He has a book forthcoming in 2016.

Jurian Hughes, E-RYT 500, MFA, a faculty member at Kripalu, is also a yoga teacher trainer, Let Your Yoga Dance® trainer, voice coach, and theatre performer known for her passionate, playful, and inspiring teaching style. Participants in her trainings at Kripalu and throughout the country report increases in self-esteem, freedom, and joy.

Sat Bir S. Khalsa, PhD, has been fully engaged in basic and clinical research on the effectiveness of yoga and meditation practices in improving physical and psychological health for more than 10 years. An assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, he has conducted research on yoga for insomnia, addiction, back pain, depression, music performance anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, chronic stress, and mental health in public schools. He actively works with the International Association of Yoga Therapists to promote research on yoga therapy and teaches an elective course at Harvard Medical School in mind-body medicine.

Coby Kozlowski, MA, E-RYT, is a faculty member for the Kripalu School of Yoga. Her vibrant style as a life coach trainer; yoga, dance, and meditation educator; inspirational speaker; expressive arts therapist; and expert in transformative leadership is infused with intelligence and heartfelt humor. A leader in the revolution for inspired living and action, Coby is the founder of Karma Yoga Leadership Intensive™ and the evolutionary program Quarter-Life Calling: Creating an Extraordinary Life in Your 20s.

Brahmani Liebman, MSEd, E-RYT 500, has been studying yoga and meditation since the 1970s and has been a yoga teacher since 1988. A member of the Kripalu Yoga Teacher Training faculty, she founded the Rivertown Center for Yoga and Health in Dobbs Ferry, New York. She is cocreator, with Jashoda Edmunds, of Journey into Yoga School of Yoga & Meditation teacher trainings and the CD Journey into Yoga: Awakening the Spirit. Brahmani has additional training as a Phoenix Rising yoga therapist and Transcendental Reiki master/teacher.

Vandita Kate Marchesiello, E-RYT 500, is a teacher and faculty member at Kripalu and the recording artist on the best-selling CDs Transform, Relax, and Rejuvenate; Yoga with Vandita; and Vandita Chants. Vandita has balanced family, self-care, and a career in yoga and health for more than 40 years. She develops and delivers programs at Kripalu drawing on her experience of teaching yoga in schools, hospitals, corporations, and educational institutions, and for support groups for people with cancer, fibromyalgia, heart disease, and multiple sclerosis.

Steven Masullo is a 500-Hour Kripalu Yoga teacher, R&R Retreat faculty member, and former Kripalu School of Yoga Intern. He is also a certified Thai Yoga practitioner.

Micah Mortali, Director of the Kripalu Schools of Yoga and Ayurveda and long-time Kripalu Yoga teacher, has been leading groups in wilderness and corporate settings for more than 15 years. With a passion for sharing the empowering, life-affirming practices of yoga and Ayurveda, Micah is dedicated to the idea that there is a power and a limitless possibility within every human heart, and believes that the purpose of life is to awaken and experience that possibility. He lives in the Berkshires with his wife and children, where he enjoys getting out into the hills and breathing the clean Berkshire air.

Todd Norian, E-RYT 500, is the founder of Ashaya Yoga®, a style focused on precise biomechanical alignment. With warmth and humor, he teaches with the heartfelt intention of awakening others to their inherent potential for unlimited joy, vitality, and fulfillment. A student of yoga since 1980, Todd studied many styles of heart-centered and alignment-based yoga. He continues to study extensively with several tantric scholars, including Paul Muller-Ortega and Douglas Brooks. Todd teaches workshops and trainings internationally, and is a talented musician who has created several CDs of music for yoga.

Cat Pacini is Program Coordinator for the Kripalu School of Ayurveda, and also teaches R&R workshops and provides Ayurvedic consultations and bodywork sessions. A graduate of the Kripalu School of Ayurveda, she uses the ancient science of Ayurveda as a tool to help others tap into their own inherent power to create balance through simple lifestyle changes.

Jennifer Reis, E-RYT 500, Kripalu School of Yoga faculty and Integrative Yoga Therapy faculty member, creates sacred space for students to journey into realms of deep peace and healing. An authentic and spirited leader, Jennifer has been teaching for nearly 20 years and is the creator of Divine Sleep Yoga Nidra® and Five Element Yoga®. Her CD, Divine Sleep Yoga Nidra, is the best-selling CD in the Kripalu Shop.

Marlysa Sullivan, a yoga therapist and physical therapist, is clinic supervisor for the yoga therapy master’s degree program at the Maryland University of Integrative Health.