\Ann Arbor Yoga and Meditation - COMMENTS FROM OTHERS


The challenges of our modern life make all of us have feelings of fear, anxiety, and insecurity. Our minds can be trained, however, to deal with these pressures, and make us more resilient. In the Personalized Advanced In-Depth Studies taught by Ema Stefanova, we learn to control the mind and learn to find the bliss that is available to those who master the science of Yoga and Meditation. And when I say Yoga I mean Yoga that is taught and practiced by the traditional Yogis of India, not the Americanized version we find all around us today. In Ema's classes we do learn and practice postures and stretches some of which are found in typical Yoga classes, however, all these are done with greater precision, and to prepare the body for higher forms of meditation and yogic experience. This is what Yoga is all about. Ann Arbor is very fortunate to have this uniquely traditional teacher in their midst.

Rob A., Yoga Teacher RYT500, AAYM School Graduate

To Whom It May Concern:

My experiences of yoga, yoga therapy and meditations have been breathtaking. Being aware of yoga and meditation in general, I was aware of the benefits, but experiencing them is another story.

I started my yoga therapy with Ema Stefanova about a couple of months ago. I had been to Bikram yoga and other fitness type hatha yoga that is so rampant here. After only two sessions and regular daily practice I feel I am a new person. The stress reduction, pleasure of performing different tasks and daily activities was apparent as I enjoyed doing each with more zest and enthusiasm.

The practices also helped my health condition. The yogic way of life and overall health improvement is something I admire and relish in my learning.

Overall, I encourage anyone and everyone to adopt "Satyananda Yoga" lifestyle.

V. S., Business Executive, Canton, MI

Ema's Yoga Nidra has changed me, not in a way that I can put my finger on. The change is from within. I have learned a new technique for total relaxation! I have NEVER even tried any type of meditation before taking this Yoga Nidra class, so this was something completely new to me. I know that mastery of this meditation may take years, but I feel this initial class has been a terrific introduction. I would highly recommend this course to everyone, as I have already began to reap the benefits. I am confident others would enjoy it as well!!

K.H. (Pfizer Corporation Meditation Class student)
Yoga Meditation Therapy Comments

It was and incredible experience – to learn deep yogic relaxation (Yoga Nidra) from Ema – it allowed me to quiet my mind for the first time in a long time. Very helpful to experience pain and then pleasure as guided in the practice – something I have not imagined doing before. I feel happy – Wow! This is a new adventure – a part of my life I need desperately to feel whole.

C.P., Private Yoga Therapy Client working through grief, anxiety and some depression

Ema, I think about you often and remembering that I could have never gotten through my divorce without you. Thank you.

K.C., Private Meditation Student


A couple weeks ago I told my mother I'm in your program. I told them because of the news article my dad sent me. A little while after that my mom called with a stiff neck and sore hips to ask if I could help her. Over the phone I talked her through some gentle stretches to practice. Last night I called my dad and he said my mother was on the floor practicing yoga. I had to laugh! [Debbie elderly parents were against yoga initially since deeply religious, but that has changed.]

Debbie F., Yoga Teacher RYT500, AAYM School Graduate

UM Medical Studentsí Comments

Ema, I enjoyed learning meditation with you. Medical School can often be very stressful, so it was nice to learn techniques to help. I also enjoyed learning about the difference between yoga you teach versus commercial yoga brands. After our conversation, I am definitely more interested in learning about specific practices for specific diseases and overall health in general with a focus on both the body and the mind. I will definitely use the meditation skills as a break each night to reset. I see how this system of yoga can be beneficial to everyone! Kylie S., Fall 2014 University of Michigan Medical School Student Yoga Therapy Visit with Ema

Ema, your energy is amazing! It is wonderful to see someone such as yourself practicing with such genuineness and positivity. I am happy to know that you find it rewarding because it appears to be of great value to others. Lynette, W., Fall 2014 University of Michigan Medical School Student Yoga Therapy Visit with Ema

I found this session very informative. I have suffered from asthma attacks before, so I was interested to hear how yoga therapy could help. I will definitely keep this in mind as a physician, because I now understand how classical yoga can help any patient to live a healthy life. Overall this was a very interesting and informative session. Thank you for meeting with us. Michael K., 2014 University of Michigan Medical School Student Yoga Therapy Visit with Ema

Retreat Comments

I learned many things from you, Ema. I was deeply moved by several aspects of the practice. The relaxed concentration practice was new to me, and it was almost overwhelmingly moving in its simplicity and in the powerful response it evoked in my heart. I know I will continue this. Calling forth negative and positive emotions when I was most open resulted in a flow of feelings and realizations which I know will have lasting impact on my life. Thank you for a weekend which promoted my growth and healing.

Hope G., Bloomington, Indiana

My meditation experience with you today was more intense than ever before. I did not feel my body hurt. It was more as if there was no boundary between my body and the atmosphere. I also realized how big of a distraction food can be, and I am glad that I started the retreat with the cleansing. I am thankful that you took the time to show me. I hope I can take some of the quietness I found here to my daily life. Anonymous

Retreat Feedback

This August 14 to 16 retreat with Ema at the Vivekananda Retreat Center and Lake Michigan was a precious break from my daily routine and was beyond my expectations. To my delight the retreat provided me with the opportunity to reflect on my life and the world with an attitude of acceptance. It reminded me of the importance of simplicity in life, which I had long forgotten.

I have been busy studying and surviving putting myself through grad school in the last couple of years. Although I still consider myself to be one of the lucky people in the world, in Ema's yoga meditation retreat, I realized I have been losing something important in my life. For example, I have not kept a healthy diet for some time. Sometimes I would skip breakfast, sometimes lunch, and I compensated for that with snacks. Sometimes I would overeat. This may seem pretty simple, but the simplest things are usually important. During the retreat, I relearned to eat regularly and healthily, which I have continued doing at home now, after the retreat.

Eating healthily is part of Ema's health promoting yoga meditation lifestyle I felt during the retreat. The residential retreat was helpful in other ways as well. Since just fresh out of school, things have gradually become complicated for me. At times I would feel insecure or anxious, so I would catch myself doing things that I did not mean to do. For instance, at times in fear of losing a friend, I would forget to allow each one of us space; or I would not want people to think that I was weird, so I would try to make myself part of a group or join conversations I had no genuine interest in, etc. Taking part in Ema's yoga meditation retreat gave me perspective, and observing how Ema (my teacher) and other more experienced practitioners of this lifestyle interacted, I remembered the times when I was younger, and lived a more simple unburdened life.

Overall, having attended Ema's yoga meditation retreat, I gained a broader view of yoga. Although I am still a beginner, I now understand yoga to be a complete way of living and doing things, enabling union and harmony with the world.

I enjoyed working on perfecting asana, pranayama, mudra, bandha, my meditation deep relaxation techniques, and the yogic way of living. Swimming in Lake Michigan felt great, too. I thought that maybe nature is where everything goes back to in the end.

Sue Z.



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