Yoga Residency in Punta Cana for the holidays

I have never been one to love the traditional holiday season (Christmas/New Years). For me it had become more of an obligation, an expected time to overspend, overeat, and spend time doing things with others that usually took the “happy” out of Happy Holidays. Last year was particularly hard, because I was going to be alone, for the first time in almost a decade. My kids were going away with their dad, and my relationship of 9 years had come to an end.I saw an opportunity to teach in the Dominican Republic during that time and thought “WOW, that would be amazing”. Yira, the owner of Ananada Yoga International was looking for someone to come stay with her and do a residency during the busy tourist season in December and January, teaching yoga at private residences and some of the luxury resorts she partners with in the DR. Travel has always been on my bucket list, and Punta Cana has some of the most beautiful beaches in the world so I decided to throw my hat in the ring not expecting anything to become of it. I was surprised when Yira reached out to virtually interview me almost immediately. Her and I hit it off right from the start, and before I knew it, I was planning a trip to Punta Cana in a few short weeks.

I had some reservations about the trip at first. The DR has a reputation of being a little “unsafe”, especially for single blonde American tourists. Accommodations were part of the residency package, but meant that I would be staying in Yira’s home, with her family, for the holidays which I wasn’t sure how that would go. Then there was the pay…which was not really a great compensation given the services provided. But I decided to look at it as an opportunity to travel, learn about another culture, teach yoga internationally to clients from all over the world, and create a holiday season that was completely original from years past.

I arrived a few days before I had to start teaching in order to become familiar with the area and the family I would be staying with. I haven’t spoken Spanish since my college years, and communication upon my arrival reminded me that I needed to make Dulingo a daily practice if I wanted to be understood with the locals. Yira picked me up at the airport and I knew immediately that her and I would be great friends. She is a Native of the DR, has the business sense of an American, and has European standards ( her husband is French). I was pleasantly surprised by how safe and westernized Punta Cana was. Each “community” has a guard/ gated entry that is very strict. Her home was located in a modest community for the area but was a very large, 3 level condo with a rooftop patio. The first day, she drove me around to the communities I would be working in, so that I could start to get my bearings. I was shocked at the huge, spralling mansions that seemed to be the “norm” in every community we visited. I was excited to get started, and when we went to the beach that first day, I knew I was going to have a great holiday.

The day before “work” started my rental car was delivered. Let’s just say, the DR does have some “shady” things for sure and the car/driving situation is one of them. My car had a piece of paper taped on the back as its license plate. Yira said her husband would take me driving to get used to the car, which ran on natural gas. I had never heard of this, and when we went to gas station, I was a bit terrified when I saw the huge propane tank in the trunk, and how while pumping, everyone gets out of car and stands 10 feet away. Pierre, Yira’s husband, assured me it was safe and so I decided I needed to just go with it. Then came the driving…There are virtually no signal lights ( and if there are, they are often ignored) and driving is really “at your own risk”. Roundabouts are the standard there, and its a good thing that I am from NY & LA, otherwise, I am not sure I could have handled the aggressive and reckless drivers in the DR, but Yira and Pierre both said with my skills, I would be fine…not sure if that was a compliment, but I decided to take it as one:)

My days consisted of teaching 1-3 clients in the morning, then 1-2 in the late afternoon/early evening. All of the yoga sessions, with the exception of 2 luxury resorts I taught at, were booked and taught for private clients in a residential setting. This gave me every afternoon to enjoy the beaches and spend some time working on some personal struggles I was dealing with. Most clients were visiting from other countries and it was incredible to meet and work with so many different people. Some of my clients included Venezuela Diplomats, a French designer, a professional football player from Canada, Surgeons from France, venture capitalists from NY, Writer from Brazil, and the family of the golf course designers for all the best courses in the world. Everyone was so gracious and I truly enjoyed each and every session I led, and even though my compensation was below average, the tips I received were generous and made it more financially rewarding than I had expected.

Christmas was approaching, and Yira’s family had a tradition of going to the Hilton All Inclusive for the holiday. Her brother in law is the GM, and he extended the family rate so that I could go and spend the holiday with them, while having a little space of my own. The grounds there were great and they made the holiday very festive. Christmas Eve was a beach buffet with fire dancers, vocal performers and dancing. I stayed with the family for a good portion of the evening, but I did retreat back to my room early. I couldn’t help but feel sad missing my kids this year, and what used to be “my family tradition”. The next morning, I got up early, went to breakfast alone, and spent the day at the beach & pool pretty much alone. It was hard, but I knew that I needed to accept that change is inevitable and be grateful of the opportunity before me. The day after Christmas, I returned to my regular teaching schedule, and felt back in the groove for the rest of the week.

New Years is a BIG thing in the DR. I hadn’t really decided what I would do, and was waiting to see if Yira would have plans that might include me. Unfortunately her husband received word that he would have to leave for Africa on January 1 for a professional project, so she and her husband were not doing anything and wanted to have private time. I understood and asked what would be something I could do. She said everyone goes to Playa Blanca (the beach club) and they stay up all night to see the first sunrise of the new year. I hadn’t pulled an all nighter in years, but I figured I would do my best to party like the locals. The “club” opened at 12:30pm…it was packed and there were live bands and dj’s all night long. I have to admit that it was a bit scary going to a club, in the DR, on New Years, alone, and I don’t speak the native language but I am so glad I did. After a few Tequila shots, I got my groove on, dancing my a** off, by myself. I have never in my life done that and it was so liberating. At the bar, several people introduced themselves to me and I spent the rest of the evening (well technically morning) talking with local people. The sunrise was nothing short of spectacular and I was so glad I didn’t fall asleep. The next day was pretty rough, between the tequila and no sleep, I spent the first day of 2023 in a zombie like state stuffing my face with Dominios Pizza.

Throughout the 7 weeks Yira and I spent a lot of time together. She was gracious enough to take me to see the “local” area and allow me the true Dominican experience. She and I also took a day and drove to the capital, Santo Domingo, where I got to see the history of the country and do a little shopping. The very last night, Yira treated me to the VIP experience at Coco Bongo. Let’s just say it was a blast! If you have never been, I think everyone should experience this entertainment complex once in their life. Before departing, Yira gave me beautiful jewelry made from a precious stone that is only found in the Dominican Republic. I wear them everyday, as a reminder of the amazing experience I had and the lifelong friend I have made.

I initially went to Punta Cana as a holiday getaway that could be justified because I was working.However, the experience gave me more than I ever could have imagined. I met and connected with people from all over the world, I learned how to be alone, and be ok, I learned about other cultures, about different relationships people can have, how lucky I am to have so many opportunities as an American, I learned about how yoga is viewed & practiced in other cultures, I got the opportunity to teach internationally, and I found my new Dominican Sister, Yira.

I know I will go back someday, and look forward to it, but until then, I cherish the memories & connections I made, and will remember that sometimes even good times can come from diffu

B.Boundless: Yoga, Meditation, Breath & Being

As an aging dancer, I started taking yoga at my gym 15 years ago as a way to workout and keep my flexibility.I initially only took “power yoga” because I was at the gym to workout & break a sweat. After closing my dance studio, I moved to NYC and took a studio manager role with YogaWorks. We offered a lot of different styles of yoga and had some fantastic educators and wellness coaches at YogaWorks in Brooklyn. That is where I started to learn more about the origin of yoga, Ayurveda, & holistic medicine. I was skeptical, and thought it was all a little “WOO WOO,” but there was something about these folks that drew me in. They had this way of being, I didn’t understand it, but I wanted to know more. That fall I entered a marketing contest for Pukka Tea at YogaWorks, Brooklyn Heights where I was the manager. My “Tea, Truffles and Tadasana” won the campaign contest, and I was awarded a week long retreat vacation in Costa Rica. The Retreat was in January of 2019, and that experience opened my eyes to a whole new way of practicing yoga. The retreat itself was not “deep” in a profound way, but the experience itself, coupled with exploring new, unfamiliar lands had me hooked and awakened something in me. When I returned to the USA, I was planning on moving to Los Angeles, and the timing could not have been more aligned. California, the land of gurus, hippies, and free spirits, it was the perfect place for me to explore yoga in a new way. I started attending Beach Yoga, because, duh, it’s the beach! I also started going to a very small yoga studio near my apartment in DTLA, and unlike the gym, where I was always trying to “fit in”, this little yoga studio in the basement level of a building in DTLA felt like I belonged. Then…covid

For what seemed like eternity, I was locked in my 26th floor apartment in DTLA. I went through a very difficult and depressing 2 years. My kids went to stay with their dad, my father was diagnosed with terminal cancer, and with my boyfriend forced to travel 90% of the time now, my relationship of 8 years was slipping away.I had been doing a lot of online studying and when our lease was up in DTLA, we moved to Santa Monica. Living by the water does something to you internally. I felt my life was somehow restored, even though nothing really changed except my address. I began to practice yoga regularly and started incorporating Breathwork into my daily routine ( thanks to ClassPass, otherwise would have never known about it). Much like yoga, Breathwork, shifted something for me internally. I was lighter, more calm, and could learn to feel my emotions and release childhood and past trauma without having to recall/open up the old wounds. My personal life, along with the distance of my family became increasingly difficult. A dear friend came to stay with me during a particularly difficult time. She offered to do some energy work on me, and I agreed. That experience was both enlightening and terrifying. She was able to help me feel better, but she also brought to light some deep wounds that I had buried for decades. She also invited me to join a group on zoom for a 40 Kundalini Heart Opening Challenge. I had never done this type of yoga, and to be honest, the first time I tried it, I did not understand the concept or process, and it seemed “too much” spiritually for me. But I’m no quitter, so I stuck to it, and after the 3rd day, I knew I wanted to learn to teach this style of yoga as well. I completed the 40 Day Challenge and continued to practice it daily because of the positive mental, emotional and spiritual shifts. It was around this time that I decided that I wanted to teach yoga as much, if not more, than dance. Dance has always been my first love, my passion, but as life changes, so have I, and the positive benefits I have gained from these practices compel me to share these other movement modalities.

Beach Yoga Classes became a regular thing for me once I moved to Santa Monica. I connected with the owners of Beach Yoga SoCal and inquired about opportunities. The owners are from NJ and I’m a New Yorker, so we hit it off naturally.They were delighted to offer me to be part of their team. Once my “dance season” of judging concluded, I began teaching Beach Yoga. I knew that I wanted to continue to expand my knowledge and registered for a Trauma Informed Yoga Training in Panama. In working with my life coach/therapist, along with these practices of Kundalini & Breathwork, I knew I had some past trauma that I have been working through and felt that this program could not only help me work with special populations, but may also help me on a personal level. My trip to Panama easily makes my top 5 most amazing adventures. I learned so much about myself, other women, and world perspectives. I have since began coursework to obtain certifications in Meditation, Reiki, and Kundalini.I am fascinated by all that I am learning, so much of which is so simple, yet so powerful. Awareness. Bringing conscious, focused, awareness can transform your life. As I continue to learn and grow as an individual, it’s now time for me to start sharing my knowledge, experience and gifts as an experienced teacher to others.

Everyday, I head to Santa Monica Beach for “work”. I am still in disbelief that this is my “office”. Beach Yoga is a very unique practice, not only because of the instability of the sand under your feet, but the natural elements that you are surrounded by during your practice. It is almost a spiritual experience, uniting your breath, being and the elements. I am looking forward to teaching beach yoga and expand it’s reach, not just to locals, but tourists, visitors, children and groups. I also plan to work with private clients who want to refine and expand their yoga practice along with exploring ways to keep evolving to their true potential. This fall I will begin hosting retreats that will allow me to share all of my experiences and passions with women looking for community, connection & clarity. As I start to build a library of yoga, I plan to publish short flows on youtube, until my app is ready to launch in the fall. I am excited to begin this new branch of my movement business and feel grateful for all that has come my way. It is through failures, trauma, and tragedy that we really learn our greatest lessons, and yoga, meditation and Breathwork can allow anyone to turn Trauma into a Triumphant Transformation.


The Sugar Tour, launching in January, is a day long dance event & ambassador search for dancers 6-12 years old. Along with Sugar Strut Dancewear founder, Emma Feehely, I am producing this national event, giving mini & junior dancers an experience like no other. The day’s schedule includes a master class with a working professional dancer, and a strut & stretch class, which gives dancers the tools and confidence to take their talent to the next level. These workshops are led by national competitive dance judges, dance educators, and those who have worked at one of the biggest dance agencies in Hollywood. The event also includes a professional photo shoot for participants featuring Sugar Strut Dancewear. Every participant will get new headshots and a swag bag filled with tons of dance related goodies. The event concludes with a Pink Carpet Finale! Parents also have the unique opportunity to attend “MOMager” seminar led by our Sam Shen, our Sugar Queen Cha Cha’s awesome “mom manager”.

We are looking for host studios in…





Las Vegas

Kansas City

Northeast Region

Want to be a Club Sugar Girl?

Dance Teacher Retreat In Los Angeles

I have missed connecting and sharing with other dance educators and studio owners! This pandemic has hit the performing arts industry hard, and even though things are starting to resume, large conventions & teacher summits are not likely to happen anytime soon. I am excited to offer this intimate opportunity to those looking to grow professionally & personally with other like minded professionals so that this summer can be a summer to remember (in a good way!)

Two years ago I went on a 5 day Yoga Retreat in Costa Rica and it was one of the best trips I have ever taken! I loved the mix of structured workshops, free time, and optional excursions. I went alone but never felt lonely, and I was able to explore a new place on my own terms. There was no obligation to anyone except myself and that allowed me to “fill my cup” with what I needed. I want to offer a similar experience for dance teachers so they can have the tools to tackle the coming summer and fall with a renewed energy and spirit.

The Dance Teacher Retreat will be held in Los Angeles, California May 29 & 30. This is Memorial Day Weekend, however, I chose this weekend because most studios close for the holiday. This would allow teachers to travel and attend without missing work or having to get substitutes. This timing gives those that have June recitals time to highlight their new summer plans during peak times and attract new clients.

The Retreat Program will consist of 6-8 hours of classroom seminars covering everything from preschool age programs, to advanced level technique training. Theses seminars will be interactive but will NOT be learning combos to challenge your own skills ( there will be an extra opportunity outside these seminars for that!)

The other 6-8 hours will be Table Talks geared towards the business side of dance studios. Topics will include competition teams, branding & marketing, performing engagements/ opportunities for your students, building relationships (staff, students, parents, peers, etc), education and certifications, and creating revenue streams outside normal studio fees. If you do not own a studio, this information will still be helpful & useful.

In addition to the set workshops and seminars, I will offer several “excursions” for those interested in exploring parts of LA in a small group. Excursion options include: Hike to the Hollywood Sign ( GREAT photo opp, and perfect pic to hang at studio when you return), beach time in Santa Monica (rest and recharge, with option for beach yoga), and a trip to The Fashion District in DTLA ( a great place for costumes, accessories and more!).

With the pandemic still a concern for many, this event will be an extremely limited event. I am currently working with the host hotel to get a great rate and will be able to offer workshops & seminars either outdoors or indoors regardless of the restrictions that could still be in place. I will also have each participant take a covid test before we begin the retreat. All meals will be up to each participant, and I will provide many options for delivery, pre ordered meals restaurant suggestions.

If you are interested in more info, or if you are ready to register, contact me before it’s too late! I cannot wait to meet new friends and create some great memories together!

games to love this valentine’s month

On again, off again…Zoom class, in person class, social distance class, it can be hard to keep class fun, challenging and engaging for both teachers and students. I have found playing a fun game at the end of class, or giving a homework challenge can keep everyone working and growing.

Creating action boards have been a great tool to use for multiple games and allow students to select the skills on their boards. I have acro boards, flexibility boards, strength/conditioning boards, ballet boards, and turning boards (not the turn boards that teach flat footed pirouettes though…lol). Game boards include: BINGO, Tick Tack Toe, Dice Challenge, and Roll & Win.

Laminating the boards allow them to be reused and creating different level boards are great for classes with multiple levels. If you are interested in getting boards for your class, contact me asap!

Each month in 2021 I am creating a calendar challenge, January was a Back Bending Challenge. February is a Hand Balancing Challenge. Each day depicts a balance challenge for students. You can incorporate this as homework or even use it as a marketing tool for your studio by asking students to post pictures of their challenge pose and tag the studio. You can also create a #hashtag to build visibility for your studio.

New Year Brings new goals!

Let me help you achieve new goals in 2021! Whether we meet in person or virtually, I will give you the tools you need to succeed! My Movement Biomechanics Conditioning blends many different training modalities including: NeuroKinetic Therapy, PBT, TRX, AcroArts, Yoga and athletic conditioning. With over 25 years of training experience, I can help you be your best!

January Back Bending Challenge…

New day, new posture! Give it a try…

Private Acro Coaching in Los Angeles

Get safe & effective training with private coaching sessions

Your home, or at public outdoor space

Single Sessions ( up to 3 people) $150 /hr

Small Group Sessions ( 4-6people) $40 each /hr

Acrobatic Arts Certified Instructor with over 20 years of teaching experience

Progression based learning allows for each participant to work at their level

Weekday & weekend sessions available

Instructor Covid Tested every 3 weeks, Masks worn & mats social distanced

Check out some of the fun we have in the video below…


Spot free acro classes are ESSENTIAL right now! I have produced 3 workshops (Beginner/Intermediate/Advanced) for acro teachers to help create a safe & effective acro training program for the upcoming season. Using the wall, mats, yoga blocks, & towel, teachers can help dancers build the strength & flexibility to master tricks without having a spot. Based on my 25years of teaching, Acro Arts, YogaFit Kids, DancemED Pro, & TRX certifications, I am confident that these workshops can provide insight and clarity when teaching from a far. Contact me for registration information!