March 2021 Newslette


Dear All,

I would like to offer my deepest appreciation and gratitude not only to our outstanding YTA board for its efforts but also to you, dear yogis and yoginis, for the loyal support necessary to uphold the continuation of the YTA workshops during this “pandemonium.”

Our practice of yoga has been, and is continuing to be, a proven tactic to rebuild resiliency, refuel our sense of purpose, and give us refuge while we reconnect with the light and life force needed to power the journey out of the darkness—to reboot!

These workshops offer each one of us the opportunity to enrich and to rebalance our lives and the lives with whom we are connected—family, friends, and community. Our practice puts us in a position, through this collaboration, to make a positive impact to counteract the difficulties of these times and to make a difference.

Our practice and the solidarity gained from conscious awareness and the yogic teachings give us the power and strength to help heal our world, to engender hope, to voice positivity, and to take action to connect with others in order to create a better and brighter future. Along this track, March begins Daylight Saving Time, which gives us longer daylight, and Spring brings delightfully brighter times.

With this in mind, don’t forget YTA’s monthly opportunity to regenerate our practice and our own personhood. The three-hour workshops, 1:30-4:30 pm, on the second Saturday of each month, could bring us “just what the doctor and the weatherman ordered”!

Yours In Yoga,
Paula (Renuka) Heitzner

2021 Workshops

Saturday, March 13
1:30–4:30 p.m.

via Zoom

Moving into Stillness: 
An Afternoon of 
Meditation and Yoga

with Hunt Parr

In this three-hour master class, we will focus on how our yoga practices can help us explore two concepts incredibly important in Buddhism, mindfulness and compassion. We will begin with a discussion defining what these two concepts really mean and how meditation and asana can be the perfect vehicle for exploring them. You will receive direct lineage mindfulness meditation instruction in the technique called “shamatha,” or calm abiding, and a few practice periods with lots of time for questions and discussion. 

We will then move into a vinyasa yoga practice in the OM Yoga tradition, embodying these same ideas. Hunt will weave the dharma teachings into the fabric of the asana practice itself, along with creative transitions, precise attention to the details, and maybe an attempt at humor or two. The class will embody what Hunt considers a true “all levels” practice and demonstrate how we can change or shift our asana practice, day to day, student to student.

We will finish the afternoon with a restorative yoga session as a reminder that one way to embody compassion is taking time to rest. You can expect to leave the workshop feeling integrated and clear, with a sense of how to apply mindfulness and compassion to your own yoga and/or teaching practice.

Note: A recording will be made available to registrants for a limited time following the workshop. 

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The Zoom meeting link will be sent in your registration confirmation upon receipt of payment.

Please ensure you have it before the workshop—check your junk/spam folder!

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Hunt Parr, E-RYT 500, has been teaching yoga and meditation for over a decade and has been featured in Yoga International, Yoga Journal, and Lion's Roar magazine. He has directed and taught in both 200- and 300-hour yoga teacher programs around the country and is often sought as a mentor and teacher's teacher. He has taught corporate yoga for companies such as Buzzfeed and A&E television network, has a busy private practice in New York City, and is on the faculty at New York University's Global Spiritual Life Department. He also serves as a teaching assistant to Cyndi Lee, founder of OM Yoga, and travels around the country leading workshops and trainings.

Register Now


April 10
Yoga and Bodymind Ballwork for Osteoarthritis
with Ellen Saltonstall
In this workshop we’ll talk about each of the joints that are commonly affected by arthritis and how to create a sequence of yoga and Bodymind Ballwork practice that is safe and effective. Read more and purchase props here.

May 8
Kung Fu Yoga
with Nina Crist
Discover the parallels between nature-inspired asana and Kung Fu postures. From eagle mudra to crane asana, learn how intricately nature has inspired the evolution of movement around the world. Uncover the uncanny similarities between Hindu mudras and Shaolin salutations, each designed to invite strength and instill peace throughout human history.

June 12
Practice to Empower Personal Possibilities
with Paula Heitzner
"Practice makes perfect" has been an early childhood maxim taught to assure future possible success in the adult world. Yoga philosophy teaches us that there is no perfection! Paula will offer a different filter allowing us to evaluate and empower our efforts by sharing the maxim that evolved for her over her 50 years of yoga practice: "A purposeful practice perfects." Purchase Paula's book!


Unless otherwise stated, workshops are $45 members / $65 nonmembers in advance ($55 / $75 at the door). Preregistration is highly recommended in order to guarantee a space in the workshop. Cancellation within 24 hours of a workshop may result in forfeiture of the registration fee.

From the February Workshop
with Judith Rose


Moving into Stillness

My Journey with Yoga and Buddhism

by Hunt Parr

Let what comes come, let what goes go, find out what remains. 

Ramana Maharshi

This quote embodies so much of what practice means to me. For as long as I can remember, I have lived a life of movement and contemplation. I started professional dance training at a young age and got swept up in the joys of learning to use my body to express emotion, the pure athletics of big, dynamic movement, and the precision and care that classical ballet demands. I discovered I had a natural talent, and I left my small town in Alaska to attend a prestigious arts boarding school in Southern California. It’s there at the age of 16, I discovered yoga. My modern dance teacher would use it as a warm-up for her classes. It may be hard to believe but, initially, I didn’t enjoy yoga. However, something was compelling about the practice and I decided right there, I wanted to learn more and stuck with it. 

I moved to New York City to attend the Tisch School of the Arts at NYU and, much like boarding school, yoga was a part of my daily training. I saw how much it helped me navigate the rigors of the professional dancing world, both mentally and physically. My teacher at Tisch offered me a spot in her first-ever yoga teacher training, and I accepted. It took me on a journey I could have never imagined.

I spent a decade dancing, performing, and teaching yoga. I taught anyone who would let me, in the tiniest studios in Brooklyn, to the biggest mega gyms of Manhattan. At one point, I had over 20 classes and clients a week, ranging from big-name celebrity students to a yoga therapy client in her 80s with advanced dementia. In 2012, I took my 500-hour yoga teacher training with esteemed teacher and yoga pioneer Cyndi Lee, and shortly after began assisting her. We’ve had an incredible journey of teaching yoga all over the USA, and filming for Yoga InternationalYoga Journal, and Lion’s Roar Magazine.

In recent years, I’ve niched down into being a private practice specialist and yoga teacher trainer. I see between 10 to 15 private clients a week in NYC and have taught and directed both 200- and 300-hour yoga teacher trainings. I also coach and mentor young teachers on how to create a viable business as a yoga professional that is in line with their values.

I’m a certified meditation teacher and have spent a decade studying intensively inside the Tibetan Buddhist tradition. I’ve taken refuge vows, attended over 20 retreats, and Buddhist philosophy informs every aspect of how I teach yoga and interact with the world.

For more information about Hunt’s offerings, visit

Yoga Q & A

Is Yoga Beneficial for Students with Hip Replacements?

My answer is “yes”! But the student may need to make the mental and emotional changes that provoked the physical need to replace the joint.

Focus on the habits, patterns, and mindsets of our physical approach to our practice is vital. Autonomy is vital—we have to recognize and own our attitudes, as to how we physically performed before and what our part was in the abuse of the joint that lead to the replacement—usually our misplaced enthusiasm fueled by misleading energy and vigorous will. 

Our gift from this experience will lead us into the focused relearning of how all our joints work in the body and how to intelligently and appropriately harness our muscular strength to the needs of the joint, hopefully safely empowering our practice.

This section is dedicated to answering your questions about yoga—as a student or as a teacher. Questions? Comments? Send them to or go to our Facebook page to share your thoughts!

Paula Heitzner, ERYT500, is a master yoga teacher. She has taught yoga for over 50 years and has trained many others in the time-honored principles, practices, and philosophy of yoga. The “teacher of teachers,” as she is called by her students, can be found at her studio, the Nyack Yoga Center, in its new location at the American Legion Hall. 

Learn more about Paula at

We are thrilled to announce that Paula's new book is available on Amazon. Yoga and You for a Year: From the Beginning to the End uses the Zodiac as a guide to  the poses best suited for your astrological sign and provides direction and discipline to empower you. Get Paula's refreshing perspective on this ancient art.

Member Events 


YTA members (individuals and studios) are invited to include their events here. Send details to by the 15th of the month to be included in the following month’s newsletter. Member events are also posted in YTA's online directorythe source for information about yoga teachers, studios, and yoga teacher trainings throughout the Hudson Valley. To be included, individual and studio members may send their information to

Online Yoga and Meditation Offerings

Devi Ma Yoga
Prenatal, Sun & Wed; Mom’s Hour, Wed; & New Mom, Thurs; & more; Online Yin and Prenatal trainings; by donation

Elisha Simpson (Crossover Yoga Project)
Trauma-informed yoga & meditation, Tues & Thurs, 7 pm; Fri, 8 am; $15/class, $70/6 classes for YTA members only; trauma-conscious yoga teacher training; Mar 9-Apr 13, Tues, 7-9, Individual $395, Supporter $450, Warrior $525

Gina Callender
Yin/Restorative, Mon, 7-8 pm; Wed, Hatha yoga level 1, 5:30--6:30 pm, $10/class

Iyengar Yoga Scarsdale
Asana, restorative, & pranayama via Zoom, 5 days/week; see website for different levels, $15 

PranaMoon Yoga at the Hat Factory
Zoom, Mon-Sun, Bhakti pass, $10/class

Ray Crist, Jaguar Path
The Medicine Wheel: Shaman’s Apprenticeship Level 1, Apr 7-June 22, 6-8 pm, Zoom or enjoy recordings at your convenience, $1000

Sacred Spirit Yoga & Healing Arts Center 
All-levels, with Chris Glover, Tues & Sat, 9:30-11 am, $15/class 

Shamani Yoga with Betsy Ceva and Charlene Bradin

Online classes, $9, with 48-hour replay link 

Wainwright House 
Yoga & movement classes, $10 members; $15 nonmembers; meditation classes, $5 

Willow Tree Yoga
All-level, Kundalini, stretch, & vinyasa, in person & Zoom, $16/class. New: Yoga Gifts Online, yoga-themed gifts and teaching tools; gifts can be picked up or possibly delivered to avoid shipping & taxes. Visit for more info 

Final Thoughts


Don’t Prioritise Your Looks My Friend

by Donna Ashworth

Don’t prioritise your looks my friend, they won’t last the journey.

Your sense of humour though, will only get better.

Your intuition will grow and expand like a majestic cloak of wisdom.

Your ability to choose your battles, will be fine-tuned to perfection.

Your capacity for stillness, for living in the moment, will blossom.

And your desire to live each and every moment will transcend all other wants.

Your instinct for knowing what (and who) is worth your time, will grow and flourish like ivy on a castle wall. 

Don’t prioritise your looks my friend, they will change forevermore, 

that pursuit is one of much sadness and disappointment. 

Prioritise the uniqueness that make you you, and the invisible magnet that draws in other like-minded souls to dance in your orbit.

These are the things which will only get better.

Yoga Teachers Association was created in 1979  by a small group of pioneering yoga teachers who saw the need for affordable and continuing education. Today, YTA continues as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit dedicated to expanding learning opportunities for teachers and committed students in the Hudson Valley. We offer monthly workshops presented by the leading yoga teachers of our time for the benefit of the community. All are invited. Membership dues and additional contributions are deductible to the extent allowable by law.

 for individual membership
$75 for studio membership

 members / $65 nonmembers in advance
($55 and $75 at the door)

Board of Directors

Audrey Brooks

Vice President 
Lorraine Burton

Steven Cownie

Susan Edwards Colson

Board Member-at-Large
Paula Heitzner, ERYT

Program Coordinator
Robin Laufer, MS Ed, RYT 500

Special Events
Gina Callender, E-RYT 200, RYT 500, CEP 

Terry Fiore Lavery, RYT

Newsletter Design & Layout
Lisa Sloane, MA, ERYT


Copyright © 2021 Yoga Teachers Association. All rights reserved.

Yoga Teachers Association • 21-39 Croton Lake Road • Katonah, NY 10536 • USA