Co-op: An association of persons who voluntarily cooperate for their mutual, social, economic and cultural benefit.
The new Embody Health and Wellness Studio is a co-op of sorts, welcoming in three additional businesses, owned by local women — all committed to sharing their practices and supporting others in their proactive self-care. The women present unique classes, special events and workshops to create a more well-rounded schedule and offerings, further serving the needs of our clientele. We all share the same vision of EMPOWERMENT in nutrition, fitness, self-care and lifestyle.
I feel honored to join forces with them and continue the ripple effect of health and wellness in our community. I highly encourage you to experience the wealth of information, knowledge, experience and passion these women bring to our area!
Niagara Power Yoga
MEGAN SACKMAN: ONE YOGA
If you know me, you know I tend to lean towards the Type A personality…and by lean, I mean lean at a full 90-degree angle measured exactly with a protractor and drawn in with a sharp #2 pencil. Yes. Type A. And with that I tend to be drawn towards more high intensity fitness — running, P90X, intervals, etc.
But just like I tell my clients and class participants, your body tends to need what your mind fights the most. And for me, its a slow flow yoga. I was RESISTANT! Could my mind and body remain still?
But through the beautiful guidance of One Yoga/Megan Sackman, I am recognizing that the body and mind don’t have to remain still. It is not about QUIETING the mind, Megan says, more about SORTING the thoughts of the mind in that moment. Ahh…that made sense. And for us Type A personalities, took off a lot of pressure over the need to do yoga “perfectly.”
Megan’s cuing, encouragement, demeanor and approach to yoga make it accessible, enjoyable and rewarding.
Megan’s yoga practice began in 2003 in Burlington, VT shortly after moving to the area after college. She quickly noticed that the practice of yoga had many benefits both physically and mentally. Those benefits of yoga were fully realized after going through the traumatic birth of her second child. It was yoga that helped pull Megan through the depression and physical pain from the birth. The stillness of yoga allowed Megan to drastically reduce the amount of anxiety and worry in her life. In 2014, Megan’s yoga journey led her to begin exploring the possibilities of sharing the gift of yoga with others. She completed her 200 hour teacher training at the Himalayan Institute in Buffalo.
Megan enjoys the outdoors through gardening, hiking, skiing, and snowshoeing. Her practice and instruction reflect her love of nature. She strongly believes that yoga can lead to social change. It is her goal to help others find compassion within their own self, which in turn leads to compassion for others and the earth. Megan has practiced Ashtanga, Vinyasa and Hatha styles of yoga. Her teaching is influenced by the flow of Vinyasa and the deeply rooted traditions of Hatha.
PAM DEKARZ: NIAGARA POWER YOGA
When you first meet Pam Dekarz you instantly get a sense of her personality… Fiery, passionate and genuine. She brings this to her practice and inspires her students on their mats, which transcends into everyday life. She will make you laugh, push out of that comfort zone and engage your body and mind in new ways.
So excited to have Pam of Niagara Power Yoga bring her Power Yoga classes to Embody Health and Wellness Studio. Stand in your power, Lewiston!!!
At the end of her yoga teacher training, Pam received a document outlining a description of her as seen through the eyes of fellow trainees. It says:
“Pam, you are thoughtful and whole-hearted. You are dedicated to your practice and improving it and yourself. You are a great listener, witty, direct, and observant. You are very kind and mindful of other peoples feelings. You are devoted, resilient and fiercely loyal…all of these make you a great friend and a great teacher. You have initiative, passion and drive and I admire all of these qualities in you. You have all the tools you need to be successful at anything you want to do. You are supportive, strong and hilariously funny. You were one of the first people I talked to and your personality and kindness made me feel comfortable in the group. Your inner strength has great resonance. Your smile inspires me. You are so easy to be around, this group wouldn’t be the same without you. You are really helpful when we are working on poses and always seem to be able to bring things back to basics. To me you are a total rock star. You are – badass.”
In Pam’s own words:
“So I first went to yoga when a friend basically dragged me there. I had heard of yoga, but didn’t really know what it was or what to expect. It was an Intro to Vinyasa Yoga course and I ended up loving it…and moved right into an Intro to Ashtanga course — THAT is when I had my “aha” moment — right at the end of that course. The teacher and another individual were great inspiration to me.
From there, I discovered Power Yoga and Baron Baptiste – which is also based on Ashtanga. I attended a handful of mind-blowing immersions with him, and a few years later decided it was time for me to teach. I took a training in 2011 which enabled me to begin teaching…and then in 2014, I enrolled into the 200 hour teacher training at breathe yoga in Rochester. After completing that in January 2015, I dove right into their 300 hour teacher training. So I am now officially a 500 hr Registered Yoga Teacher through the Yoga Alliance.
500 hours of teacher training certainly changed my life and enabled me to take my seat and stand in my power as a teacher – and as a more polished version of myself. Even if you never want to be a yoga teacher, I highly recommend taking a yoga teacher training – specifically the one at breathe. You will dig down to depths you never thought you had within you. Teacher training – way better than therapy.
Who am I as a teacher? I teach from a point of power – classes challenge students to dig deep to find a power that they never thought existed – but are surprised to discover is there. If I see struggle, I stop the class and break it down into parts everyone can understand — so that even the experienced student learns something. I like to push people … to show them that their limit is much further than they believe it is. BUT I like to teach with a sense of humor, sass, sarcasm – not taking anything too seriously b/c it is only yoga after all. In life, I am always joking around…making people laugh is something I love to do b/c there is way to much bullshit in life to be serious all the time.
People carry way too much on their backs. In general – in life, I tend to think that nothing is a big deal. Big deals to me are when loved ones are sick, someone’s heart is hurting. I always keep in mind that no matter what is happening at any given moment – in the end, none of it matters. What matters is your family, loved ones, your dog and that you were a good person. (notice how I did not say cat)
Oh…and from that you can probably guess that I don’t like rules. Or following rules. Or anyone telling me what to do. I’m the happiest when I’m doing my own thing in my own time. Which leads me to my most favorite quote of all time b/c I do truly believe that unless the laws of physics say it is not possible…that nothing is impossible. The very best thing that someone can do to motivate me is to tell me that I can’t do something. Because I will find a way to do it.”
“Impossible is just a big word thrown around by small men who find it easier to live in the world they’ve been given than to explore the power they have to change it. Impossible is not a fact. It’s an opinion. Impossible is not a declaration. It’s a dare. Impossible is potential. Impossible is temporary. Impossible is nothing.” – Muhammad Ali
ERIN DEVATIER: BUTI YOGA
I walked into my first Buti Yoga class at the amazing Tree of Life Yoga Studio in January 2015 — intimidated as heck. Not quite sure what I was about to experience and WAY out of my comfort zone.
From the moment, I met the instructor Erin DeVantier, I felt more at ease. She is filled with a vibrant energy that instantly makes you smile. And then the music came on (so fun!) and we began — within the first five minutes, I remember thinking, “I am hooked. I want in.”
And I have been going regularly since. It has been a game-changer for me.
Erin’s class is really hard to put into words. Physically, I lovingly refer to at as the “P90X of yoga”…it is challenging for muscular strength and stamina. Love it! Awakening muscles in all areas of the body for sure! It has been amazing for my core — my weakest area after having the boys and dealing with a large separation in my abdominal wall.
But the impact goes beyond the body…it transcends into your confidence, body awareness and connection, intuition, balance and energy. Yes. Yes. And YES!
I am thrilled to welcome Erin’s business, passion and talents to the studio to be enjoyed by others.
More about Erin’s experiences and BUTI transformation:
“I have always had a love of all things fitness and nutrition. I was a complete information junkie looking for anything to better myself on all levels. However, I always struggled with how to incorporate it all. I didn’t have time to do that many workouts. I really didn’t like to eat meat, etc, etc. Nothing felt “right” to me. Having a strong natural intuition since a young age, I couldn’t do something I didn’t feel aligned to without feeling a major “ick factor.” I would do it because it was “right”, but it never felt right to my core. I wasn’t trusting what my body needed on any level.
Fast forward to Fall 2012 just a couple months after having my second son. I was having terrible pain in my right hip, and really just felt awful all around. I was exhausted and having really bad stomach pains and bloating. Despite working out like crazy and eating clean, I just didn’t feel like myself. It was at this time that I did a Google search for yoga, sensing I needed something different and FINALLY listening to what my body was telling me. That is when I found Buti Yoga. I did an online workout just thinking it looked fun.
That workout seriously rocked my entire world! Cardio, toning and stretching all in one workout! The music was amazing, and as I laid there in final savasana, I realized I had no idea what just happened to me, but I needed more of it. Through Buti Yoga, I learned to trust myself, feel safe in my own body and save time by combining my exercise and yoga practice.
It wasn’t until a few months later that I felt the long-term benefits of Buti and realized it so much more than a workout. In my body, my hip was better, I had lost weight and I got my abs back. In mind, I no longer had to think about my workouts. Just hit my mat, sweat it out and get on with my day. On an energetic level, Buti targets your lower chakras or energy centers. This leads to feeling safe and beautiful in your own skin, trusting yourself, feeling your own power and connecting to other women in a completely non-competitive way where you just see the raw beauty in others. The awesome part is that Buti works energetically even if you don’t realize it as you go. By continuously cleansing and moving the energy through your chakras, your whole life will change. I am proof of that!
Buti Yoga combines yoga asanas, cardio, body resistance training and the Spiral Sturcture Technique to move your body in a beautiful, feminine and primal way to kick-ass music while creating long, lean muscles. This is quite literally the only practice I have done since Fall 2012 and I have no desire to look back.
I became certified in Toronto in May 2014 and have been teaching classes, workshops, personal coaching, and special events the past 2 years. I love using my intuition to read the students energy on any particular day and tailoring each class to what they need. No workout is the same, nor is the playlist so it never gets boring. I feel like a DJ when planning each classes music!
From Buti I have found my love in leading other women to listen to their own intuition, connect with each other and heal from the inside out. My mission is to create a safe space for women to come home to themselves and realize that everything they have ever needed to know is not outside of them, but within. And it really can be that easy.”