"The Mandorla begins the healing of the split. The overlap generally is very tiny at first, only a sliver of a new moon, but it is a beginning. As time passes, the greater the overlap, the greater and more complete the healing. The Mandorla binds together that which was torn apart and made unwhole-unholy. It is considered the most profound religious experience one can have in life."
- Robert Johnson
BA, RMT, C-IAYT, CYA-YT, E-RYT500, YACEP
Yoga Therapist * Registered Massage Therapist * Somatic Therapist
Founder of Embodiment Yoga™ & the Mandorla Yoga Institute
“Through the power of movement and touch, you can reclaim a piece of yourself that was lost. I believe that you can move beyond where you currently find yourself. I hold this picture for you while we work together and advocate for your best story.”
As the founder and creator of Embodiment Yoga Therapy™, I draw from my personal experience with trauma and my over 21 years of teaching yoga. I have traveled as far as Thailand to find the modalities that made my heart sing and integrate Massage Therapy (RMT 2200hrs), Mindfulness-Based Somatic Therapy™, Thai Yoga Massage, and Embodiment Yoga Therapy™ into my sessions. I hold a special place in my heart for neurodivergent individuals and endeavor to create a safe space for you, where you feel welcome and honoured for your strengths. I am passionate about inspiring and supporting you in reclamation, transformation, and resilience, and bringing incredible humans together. By leading with vulnerability and honesty from a place of fierce love, I help people return to their bodies.
Called to the feminine side of yoga, my heart for facilitating ease and finding flow inspired my studies in meditation, philosophy, Adaptive Yoga, Anusara, Vinyasa Flow (Viniyoga inspired), Yoga Therapy, and Thai Massage. After the birth of my daughter in 2016, it became very clear that what it was that I was sharing was Embodiment Yoga™ . . . the pathway home, a practice of reclamation of your body, your voice, your story, and your path. I continue to follow this thread of Embodiment and continue to study Mindfulness Based Somatic Therapy™ with my teacher, Ratha Chek, and honor my teachers who have supported me over the years. Michiji (Michelle Cormack) for supporting me in finding my joy and beginning the process of tapping into my body, Karen Heaven for opening the doors of Tantra for me and helping me to discover playfulness and ease, Robin Rothenburg for introducing me to Viniyoga and the deeper wisdom of yoga philosophy, Lucille Palancher and Remco for sharing your wisdom in the art of Thai Yoga Massage, and the many other teachers who have inspired this path of embracing my body with kindness.
ABOUT MANDORLA YOGA INSTITUTE
Mandorla is the space of resiliency where we find healing, reclamation, and transformation.
The Mandorla is an ancient symbol, known as the vesica piscis or vessel of the fish. Formed when two sacred circles overlap, it is the almond-shaped space between that represents the perfect communion of two opposite energies; male/female, matter/spirit, self/other. Hence, the Italian word, 'Mandorla' means almond. In Hinduism, the Mandorla represents the feminine yoni, the symbol of Shakti, and is the gateway to fulfilling one's spiritual path.
A Registered School since 2007, Mandorla Yoga Institute is accredited as a 1,000-hour Registered Yoga Therapy School with the Canadian Yoga Alliance and a 150-hour Thai Yoga Massage School with the NHPC. We are registered to provide YACEP and continuing education credits for Yoga Alliance Registered teachers. Mandorla Yoga Institute was originally based in Southern Ontario and is now located in Calgary, Alberta, Canada within view of the Rocky Mountains.
In the spirit of reconciliation, we acknowledge that Mandorla Yoga Institute originates from Sarnia, Ontario on the ancestral land of the Chippewa, Odawa, and Potawatomi peoples, referred to collectively as the Anishinaabeg, which is part of treaty 29. We further acknowledge that Mandorla Yoga Institute now exists and operates on the traditional territories of the Blackfoot Confederacy (Siksika, Kainai, Piikani), the Tsuut’ina, the Îyâxe Nakoda Nations, the Métis Nation (Region 3), and all people who make their homes in the Treaty 7 region of Southern Alberta.
OUR TEACHING PHILOSOPHY
SLOW . . . GRACIOUS . . . EMBODIED LEARNING . . .
In a world that is sped up, where it is difficult to catch your breath, we have created a curriculum that intentionally invites you to slow down. We are a neurodivergent-led school, with the majority of our teachers, Stefani included, being neurodivergent themselves. We believe that your learning experience with us should be an embodied experience that affirms how your mind works and what your body needs. We endeavor to listen and adapt our programs for the best learning experience for each individual student. Learning options are low-sensory, flexible, and allow for a sense of autonomy and self-directed learning within your program because choice and self-determination are cornerstones for truly trauma-respectful learning to occur. Our programs are offered in a modular format that includes both online and in-person options so that you can shape your studies to fit within your very real-life experience. We want your experience with us to be something that you enjoy and cherish. We trust that when the timing is supportive for you that we will be here to support you in your next steps. We are gracious with you as you navigate your program because we are gracious with ourselves. Our program schedules are structured in a manner that allows for spaciousness. This ensures that when we show up for you, we are in the best of places and ready to share what is in our hearts. We are also dedicated to consistency. When we give our word, we want you to know that that means something and we ask this of our students as well. This is the fabric that creates a community of trust that allows for the fullest experience of embodiment which occurs within the embodied community.