The one month intensive course … should actually be called a forty day and forty night sojourn into the depths of your mind, body, and soul. Be prepared for a lot to come up, physically, psychologically, emotionally and spiritually. Toxins begin to free themselves from your cells, old ideas and habits get turned upside down, and many new and wondrous things come into view. There is a ton(!) of reading, and kind of like childbirth, it doesn’t matter what anyone tells you about it, the workload is something you cannot fathom until you are in the middle of it….all in all the outline of the course supported learning very well and I have been really pleased with how information keeps presenting itself to me from the recesses of my brain. STILL absorbing and integrating! I felt so privileged to be able to be a student of Denise’s and learn from her many years of teaching and experience, as well as to be immersed in day to day at the studio, classes, breakfast, “field trips” n’all.
Live, Laugh, Love!
For me, the [full year] YTT program provided the knowledge & credibility needed to enter different venues as an instructor. It broadened & deepened my focus of interest. It also equipped me with the tools to empower myself thus enabling me to empower others… Namaste
I went through open back surgery to relieve excruciating pain that started in the lower back and was apparently caused by a herniated disc. A large piece of disc was removed surgically (from an odd area, I was told) to relieve the pain and resolve the problem. Before surgery several visits to doctors and hospital emergency departments resulted in the prescribing of some serious painkillers (read narcotics). At the time I was quite thankful for them not knowing the damage they could do. Eventually, and with a heavy dose of painkillers, I couldn’t get out of bed and the pain was unbearable. I slept through a fog most days. When I couldn’t leave my bed for several weeks and suffering greatly the specialist was called and consulted by phone. Emergency surgery was scheduled. Not what I would have wanted or planned for but at that juncture there seemed to be no other choice. That was over two years ago and many trials and tribulations after surgery and the …painkillers to manage.
Today I wish I had found yoga many years before this happened and think that just maybe this could have been prevented or at least diminished enough to avoid the surgical procedure. I urge anyone with lower back pain of any kind to try it out and note the positive results…you have nothing to lose and everything to gain. I have been practicing yoga for 2 years now and in August 2008 found Atlas Yoga Studio in Cambridge. I found the practice to be flexible and attentive to each individuals needs and a very specialized teacher in Denise who has an incredible knowledge of the body and how it works. Her mantra is to listen to your body and if it hurts, stop doing it. Personalized and attentive (in tune) instruction is of the norm in this studio. Yoga has not only helped me with balance and flexibility but it also is an excellent muscle toner. I have come a long way with yoga practice and will continue to work with the team at Atlas to improve further and be the best I can be. I have every confidence in them and more in myself since I started this. I was told by a specialist that by practicing yoga other treatments that I have taken have been more successful and taken for shorter periods than usual because I was more flexible (as I can be), balanced and in good spiritual health and yoga has also helped me focus and concentrate again.
I attend classes twice a week and will take on any other class I can make that fits with my ability. Atlas Studios offers different locations in town and a varied schedule to fit most needs which helps a great deal in committing to the practice and “getting to class”.
Denise Davis-Gains has been my yoga teacher for many years and has impressed me so much over the years with her quality of teaching, knowledge and experience that I have recommended her to teach in my department at the University of Wilfrid Laurier. I have had many students approach me to tell me how much they have enjoyed her class and teaching style. I have also had the privilege of recommending her to the OFC (Ontario Fitness Council) where she has designed and delivered a tailored yoga course for our fitness professionals with great success.
She is a truly inspiring individual with a passion for educating and strives to enhance her learning through a continued lifelong journey that I have seen those around her benefit from. I have personally attended her courses and can attest to her leadership and teaching abilities.
She would be an asset to any faculty lucky enough to have her.
–Angela M. Walzak, MSc
The Level 1 Yoga Certification course was fantastic – it was very appropriate to the audience of fitness professionals. I think the blend of theory and practical was very balanced and helpful – I can now introduce not just physical & technical improvements into my Body Flow class immediately, but more importantly some of the MISSING items like a greater emphasis on mind/body connection which may be present in the ‘studios’ but is not so apparent in the GYM. In addition, I notice that as a result of attending this class, my wording, psychology and phrasing that I have been using in my body flow/stretch class for almost a decade has already improved.
The instructor was very knowledgeable and inspiring. This class motivated me to continue on the path of pursuing all 5 levels to eventually become fully certified. The progressive program design – i.e. making this just one weekend with follow-up activities for certification itself - is perfect for working instructors/part time instructors with full time ‘day jobs’ is also a great idea and very innovative. It makes a very large goal attainable without too much upfront commitment in terms of time and money – breaking it down into 5 courses if you want to become fully certified is great as you go little by little but end up a long way ahead.
I loved the integrated approach – spiritual motivation, physical challenge and mind/body/spirit well-being.
As a fitness pro I am pleased to see the cross-over here – yoga folks don’t understand the gym rats – and gym rats think the yoga folks are operating in a parallel universe – the more we can bridge these gaps in the our studios/gyms the better off we will all be. This course is a step in this direction. Now, if we can get those yoga students into a CARDIO class…we’ll be well on our way….
–Diana (MOH) Jonas
Thank you so much for leading us in another amazing yoga practice yesterday morning. I always love the way you lead the classes – with loving tenderness, graduallly leading us to some challengers. You skillfully personalize each class based on the needs of who are in the class. With the attentiveness and awareness on the breath and sensation of body – lead us to the magical land of yoga.
When I met you last November, I was practicing a more aggressive style of yoga. My body was aching from sciatic, sore knees and a tear ain the hamstring. When I came to your first class, I found again the yoga that I love – which makes my body and heart singing happy songs. You gave me the advice that, instead of doing deep forward bends, I should strengthen the muscles around the knees while keeping some softness to them. Following your wise advice, a few month later, all these aches were gone. When my body received the much needed break, the healing had taken place.
I love your yoga classes. You are not only so knowedagble with so much experience, you also teach with such a wide open heart. I can feel your love and your passion from every class. Thank you for the unconditional generosity and love that you have shared with me.
With love and gratitude,