Melissa took her 1 st yoga class at Yoga Flow in the spring of 2013 following the birth of her 3 rd
child. Having been diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis at 18 months old, her range of
movement was limited. While the gentle and fluid movements agreed with her joints, the heat
and slow pace of vinyasa did not agree with HER: she found it slow, awkward and HOT! But like
she now tells newbies; “give it 5 to 7 classes: it’s more for your mind than your physical body,”
and she stuck with it. Slowly her muscles began to soften, and to “release,” and slowly her
range of motion grew greater while, her joints l grew less rigid.
It would be a 6 month explosive rheumatic flare that would eventually lead her to teacher
training. Life began to get stressful sending her immune system into overdrive and leaving her
unable to open the peanut butter jar, lift her arms to drive, or even get dressed with ease. And
leaving her doctors no choice but to prescribe her powerful drugs.
Knowing 1 st hand how much yoga calmed her fight or flight response, she began attending class
5 days a week – to strengthen her mind-body connection. Within 4 months, she returned to her
doctor with only slight inflammation in her left wrist, and without ever taking a single pill. Her
rheumatologist said, “I have no idea how you did this without any medication, but I don’t need
to see you again unless you flare.” She graduated from teacher training almost ayear later in
It is this that she wishes to share with her students: strengthening the mind-body connection.
To give others an avenue to release tension, to calm themselves, to heal themselves, and to
find their peace. Her flows will be gentle, relaxed with an emphasis on staying connected to
your breath and listening to your body.
IRWIN: MONDAYS, 9:30 AM, FRIDAYS 6:30 PM