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Meet Karen

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Karen O'Donnell Clarke, ERYT500, PYT1000

Yoga has been part of my life since my yoga first class in 1969 (I was practically a baby!) During my twenties, yoga postures, breath and relaxation techniques supported my body before and after long bicycle rides and runs, including training and running my first, and only marathon. During my two pregnancies, yoga helped me stay balanced and fit. After the loss of my father from a sudden heart attack, yoga helped me to reduce stress, anxiety and depression.

Since being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 1997, I know that the practices and philosophy of yoga have helped to keep me healthy and nearly symptom free for over a dozen years.  When I was diagnosed and treated for cancer in 2012, it was yoga that helped keep me sane.  My business, Yoga Heals Us LLC, reflects my enthusiasm that yoga heals us - on all levels of our being - body, mind, and spirit. 

A lifelong student of yoga, I have advanced certifications from Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health and Integrative Yoga Therapy (IYT) as well as Yoga of the HeartYoga for the Special Child, and Trauma Informed Yoga Therapy(TIYT).

In 2014, I embarked on a new venture, Inner Healing Yoga Therapy, which I offer at Holistic Wellness Center of Connecticut, in Waterford.  The focus of my work is yoga therapy for individuals with chronic health conditions, autoimmune diseases, cancer care, in recovery from illness, injury, surgery, etc.  Inner Healing Yoga Therapy offers tools and practices for life transitions and new beginnings. 

In addition to teaching weekly yoga classes on location throughout southeastern Connecticut since 1996, I also present workshops nationally for yoga teachers and caring professionals in adaptive yoga techniques, hosted by yoga centers and local chapters of the National Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Society. I am on faculty at the Healing Movement Yoga Teacher Training in Nesconset, New York, Mind Set Therapeutic Yoga Teacher Training and a mentor for the Integrative Yoga Therapy Internship Program.  

My approach is gentle to moderate infusing classes and sessions with humor, humility and warmth.  You are invited to go at your own pace. I am known for my clear and caring instructions, skillfully breaking postures into developmental increments using props and modifications that provide an accessible yoga experience for every body.  As my teacher Joseph LePage says, "you'll get some of what you want and some of what you need."

I have produced two audio CDs, Healing Yoga for Every Body and Gentle Yoga for Every Body, and I am featured in the video Yes! You Can Yoga for people who have MS.  Click here for information.

I am an Experienced Registered Yoga Teacher (ERYT500) and Registered Children's Yoga Teacher (RCYT) with the Yoga Alliance.  Memberships include the International Association of Yoga Therapists and Kripalu Yoga and Ayurveda Association.

I live in Mystic, CT. When I'm not doing yoga, I enjoy hiking with friends (most recently in the western national parks), learning new things and being creative.  Click here for my resume details.