We are very pleased the Studio is now open for classes and workshops. Please register for all in-person classes. For now, enrolment is limited to 9 participants with online advanced bookings only, www.estheryoga.com/classes. Sorry, we cannot accept drop-ins or provide refunds or credit. Masks are required.
Beginning Wednesday, September 22, the province requires that we see proof of double vaccination from anyone entering the Studio. You can download a PDF of your vaccination record here: https://covid19.ontariohealth.ca. We will provide updates about the QR codes as they become available.
We will continue to offer a range of online classes, workshops, and Teacher Training on Zoom. And we hope you use and enjoy our pre-recorded Home Practice audios and videos.
Please check this space for updates or send us an email if you have questions. Take good care and we look forward to welcoming you back to the Studio.
Esther Myers Yoga Studio offers yoga workshops in Toronto. Each workshop is unique and allows you to focus on a specific theme. Please register in advance.
Toronto Workshops at Esther Myers Yoga Studio
Friday, October 22, with Peter Blackaby
1:00pm-3:00pm ET, $45
It is entirely understandable that when we feel unwell, we want to fix the thing we perceive is wrong. If we are teachers, it is also true that we feel the need to address the symptoms students bring to the class. These symptoms might be sore backs, sore knees, a variety of arthritic conditions or it might be anxieties, depression or just generally feeling out of sorts.
In this workshop, I am going to suggest that regardless of symptoms our approach to teaching remains the same. We need to understand how best to lose tension, how to map our movements more compliantly and how to differentiate proprioceptive input from nociceptive input. If we take these considerations seriously, over time we will gradually find ourselves moving with greater ease and feeling more comfortable in ourselves.
Painting: 3 people by Waleria Matelska
Peter Blackaby is a yoga teacher and osteopath based in Brighton, UK, and the author of the book, Intelligent Yoga…
Saturday, October 23, with Della Croteau, 1:00pm-3:00pm ET, $40
We have a complex system of joints which allow our bodies to function well. In this workshop, we will look at all the major types of joints – the round ones, the gliders, the hinges – how they work, and how they support our movement. We will apply this knowledge to our practice of the yoga postures. Everyone welcome.
Sunday, October 24, with Ana Bodnar, 11:00am-12:15pm ET, $25
In this workshop we will celebrate and honour the Divine Mother, a being that appears in many spiritual traditions. The Divine Mother represents the true power of love, compassion and protection. In yoga and Buddhism, the Divine Mother appears in the forms of Kali, Durga and Kwan Yin among others. We will learn various chants and meditations to bring the presence of the Divine Mother more deeply into our lives. No prior knowledge of chanting is required.
Painting: 9 muses by Emily Balivet
Sunday, October 24, with Donna Oliver, 2:00pm-4:00pm, $40
at the Studio
The “Hun” are three spiritual “Guides” each of which reside in three areas of our bodies, Head, Heart, and Physical Centre.
We will explore several movements to quiet the mind, calm the heart, and centre and ground the physical body. This will “blend” and harmonize the “Three Spirits” into one integrated whole, returning us to our original state of being – healthy, happy and in the moment.
Saturday, October 30, with Julia Juhas, 7:00pm-8:30pm ET, $35
Welcome fall and rejuvenate your yoga practice with some “spooky” live music. Relax, go deep and soak up the soothing sounds of an acoustic guitar and a singer’s voice as you ground, breathe and elongate the spine. Take your time, move gently and, heck, why not hum or sing along if you wish? Any song requests, please email Julia directly at email@example.com by Wednesday October 27th and she will do her best to accommodate.
Sunday, October 31, with Mar Jean Olson, 3:30pm-5:00pm, $30
at the Studio
Practise beneficial exercises for strength, flexibility, movement awareness, injury prevention and rehabilitation.
Fridays, November 5 and December 3, with Gerry Trentham, 1:00pm-3:00pm ET: $70/2 weeks, $40/day
Open up your capacity for the spoken word. This workshop will help you find the breath support for your voice and translate that into how and what you wish to speak. Everyone faces situations when they feel silenced and have difficulty voicing their perspective. Discover some new tools to support you in those moments when it is vital to find your voice.
Image: Soundscape by Nick Cave
With 20 years as faculty of the internationally acclaimed National Voice Intensive and six years with Denise Fujiwara in their new frontier of training, Butoh/Voice, Gerry Trentham now is a co-founder and faculty of the Moving Voice Institute…
Saturday, November 6, with Shelly Faber, 1:00pm-2:00pm ET, $20
This introductory workshop in Hands and Ears Reflexology will describe the modality and how it affects the body. There will be careful instructions on how to work on one’s ears and hands or someone else’s. Reflexology addresses physical tension and is known to help alleviate mental stress and calm and settle the breathing.
All are welcome, however if you are pregnant or have an uncontrolled medical issue such as cancer or hypertension, please sit this one out unless you have a partner you’d like to practise on, or a general interest in Reflexology.
We will sit on a mat on the floor or on a couch or a chair (a chair without arms is preferable). Please have a pillow or blanket and a hand mirror close by, make sure you are warm and comfortable and have some water to drink.
Shelly Faber’s career as a Body worker, goes back over 40 years…
Sunday, November 7, with Monica Voss, 10:30am-3:00pm ET
$60 suggested donation/full day, included in your unlimited at the Studio
morning only, 10:30am-12:30pm ET; afternoon only, 1:30pm-3:00pm ET
Take a day to celebrate breath, relaxation, asana and natural movement as fall’s colour descends, the sun shines low and winter begins to whisper. Let’s appreciate this time of transition together, drop inside, reflect and stretch. Everyone welcome.
Saturday, November 13, with John Campbell, 1:00pm-3:00pm ET, $30
Yoga Nidra is a meditation practice that dates back to the time of the Upanishads. Today, yoga nidra is widely used both as meditation and as a therapeutic tool for PTSD, other psychological trauma and distress. Yoga nidra is experiential and produces a state of deep relaxation, similar to sleep, in which we remain aware. From this place, we experience, notice and welcome the comings and goings of different aspects and layers of the self such as physical sensations, feelings, emotions, thoughts and beliefs. In yoga nidra, we are given the opportunity to feel past all these fluctuations and rest in the unchanging, peaceful, welcoming ground of our being.
John Campbell has been practising yoga at Esther Myers Yoga Studio for over 35 years and is a graduate of the EMYS Teacher Training Programme.
Sunday, November 14, with Maria Meindl, 11:00am-1:00pm ET, $40
Often, we move as if the spine ended at chin-level, but looking at a skeleton from the side reveals something it is easy to forget. The top of the spine is at a level with the jaw-hinge and ears! This workshop will look at how the face, scalp, jaw and eyes can speak to the top of the spine and vice versa, leading to freer breathing, easier turning, and an overall feeling of length.
Feldenkrais® and Awareness Through Movement® are registered service marks of the Feldenkrais Guild® of North America.
Maria Meindl became fascinated by the simplicity and power of The Feldenkrais Method in the early 1980s.
Sunday, November 14, with Julia Juhas, 2:00pm-4:00pm ET, $40
Although the days are shorter and the nights are colder, we can continue to Rise Up, nurture and renew the light and warmth within. Let’s invigorate the spine as we gently explore and weave together the breath with the movements within Sun Salutation. We’ll take our time basking in the different asanas that create this vitalizing sequence.This series is not about how many rounds we do – rather how we move mindfully from one asana to the next.
Sunday, November 21, with Monica Voss, 2:00pm-4:30pm ET, $50
Practising yoga at home can be a refuge and a way of reconnecting to ourselves. In this workshop we will design themes for home practice, explore sequences of yoga postures, the rationale behind them and our personal responses to them. We will discuss the challenges and the joys of our time alone with yoga. Teachers and interested students of yoga are welcome to attend.
Sunday, November 21, with Donna Oliver, 2:00pm-4:00pm, $40
at the Studio
A popular workshop to loosen the spine, strengthen the legs and lungs, and get the Qi (vital energy) moving!
Saturday, November 27, with Lauren Anastasi, 3:30pm-5:00pm ET, $30
Using breath practice, body awareness and yoga we will explore ways to find rest when we are not able to sleep. Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) will be referenced in its approach to insomnia. We will explore restorative yoga and yoga nidra as practices that can be done in bed or in preparation for sleep.
Image: The Sleeping Woman from prehistoric Malta (3000 BC)
Lauren Anastasi has been teaching yoga and meditation for almost 20 years. She has an undergraduate degree in Psychology from York University and has a keen interest in the relationship between mind and body…
Sunday, November 28, with Kathy Felkai, 11:00am-12:30pm, $30
at the Studio
An interactive workshop for students living with chronic pain and for yoga teachers who would like to learn to guide their students toward management and recovery. We will explore gentle yoga postures and breathing exercises to help relieve pain, improve mobility, reduce anxiety, lift mood and rediscover the joy of movement.
Painting: Lilies and Vetch by Tom Thomson
Sunday, November 28, with Camelia Shakti, 11:00am -12:30pm ET, 4:00pm -5:30pm GMT, by donation, ($25 suggested)
Camelia Shakti had been practising yoga within Indian traditions since 1999 and upon landing in London she discovered the independent dance scene and began studying in professional level contemporary dance classes with artists whose practice was deeply rooted in somatics. She has since ventured into studying with contemporary artists from around the world and researching the history of contemporary dance. This talk will share her insights and discoveries into the intricate relationship between contemporary dance and somatic practices of the East.
Merce Cunningham relief by Robert Rauschenberg
Camelia Shakti has an MA in History and 5 years experience sharing stories of contemporary art, gardens and food tastings in London through Context Travels. Join her for an exciting exploration of how deeply enriching yoga practices have been to dancers in the past 50 years and how effective contemporary dance can be in enriching your own yoga practice.
Sunday, November 28, with Mar Jean Olson, 3:30pm-5:00pm, $30
at the Studio
Increase the range of motion in your neck, shoulders, arms and upper back with numerous and enjoyable exercises and sequences. Experience an enhanced sense of lightness and freedom.
Saturday, December 4, with Donna Oliver, 1:00pm-2:30pm ET, $30
Cold, tiredness and holiday stress can zap your energy! Learn a few simple ways to increase your vitality, lift your spirits, keep you warm and healthy, inside in a small space or outside when weather permits.
Sunday, December 5, with Paola di Paolo, 10:00am-12:00pm ET, $40
Experience Kundalini Yoga exercises, pranayama, and meditation that assist in elevating our energy and giving us needed ‘fuel’ as we face the coming of colder darker days. Winter is a perfect time to begin a practice of warming Kundalini yoga.
Paola di Paolo is certified through Esther Myers Yoga Studio and 3HO. She teaches Kundalini yoga and Hatha yoga.
Saturday, December 11, with Edward Brown, 1:00pm-3:30pm ET, $50, sliding scale available
“To hit the mark is to realize on the spot that you are a Sacred
Being without changing anything about your body or your mind.”
–old Zen saying
“Seeing things as it is,” was one of my Zen teacher Suzuki Roshi’s favorite expressions. For a while we thought, does he not know English? Soon enough we realized that he was describing the two ways we have of experiencing reality: the phenomenal (or profane) world of things and the Sacred world of oneness: it is or just this are two colloquial Zen expressions for this world where things cannot be found yet there they are). We may prepare beautiful food—then in the stomach no thing can be identified.
His teaching was to live in both these worlds, studying how to work with things and also how to trust in the reality of oneness which unfolds beyond human agency. In the world of things we may have a sense of independence or freedom, while in the world of oneness we are mutually interdependent with everything—as moment after moment arises beyond our choosing.
So, “to see things as it is,” implicitly underscores a profound well of trust in the inherent coherency of the Sacred—from time to time at least—nothing to be fixed, corrected, perfected.
For our time together we’ll aim to sit in this Great Space, do some chi gung, talk, and visit, while looking into this “seeing things as it is.”
Sunday, December 12, with Tama Soble, 10:00am-12:30pm, 1:30pm-4:00pm ET, $100
Learn how to adapt yoga poses to the precise needs of your body or those of your students by applying basic anatomical principles. Reconnect with body and breath using gentle practices that acknowledge the relationship between functional anatomy and the unique nature of each body. This workshop is open to students and teachers at all levels of experience.
Sunday, December 19, with Mar Jean Olson, 3:00pm-4:30pm, $30
at the Studio
Learn a variety of simple stretching and strengthening exercises for your fingers, hands, wrists, and forearms. Use this gentle programme anywhere for gradual relief of stiff, sore, inflamed and overworked areas.
Image: Miroslav Hucek, Mr. Makovička’s Wings
Monday, December 27 – Wednesday, December 29, with Monica Voss
10:30am-12:30pm and 1:30pm-3:00pm ET, $175/3 days, $60/day, $30/half day, included in unlimited packages, bursaries available
Ring out 2021 with an in-town at home yoga “retreat”. Lighten the body and the heart with three full or partial days of stretching, breathing, postures, meditation and relaxation, with some end-of-year visiting . Everyone is welcome!
Saturday, January 1, 2022, with Susan Young, 11:00am-1:00pm, $25
at the Studio
Bring in the New Year with a 2-hour yoga practice combining asana, breath work and meditative practice to prompt deep reflection and inspire positive intentions for the year ahead. You are welcome to bring a pen and notebook to capture any insights. Open to all levels.