Owner, Teacher, Yogi, Lead Trainer ERYT-200, RCYT, YACEP
Lead Young Yokes RCYT Trainer LCSW, MEd, ERYT-200, RCYT
Combining a love for crazy kid giggles with the grounded zen of yoga, and Young Yokes was born. Then the next step was easy... bring kids yoga to the community we love and thrive in.
Young Yokes was created to support the growing need of combining yoga with children. As parents who found their mats later in life, Suzanne & Jessica know how important it is to expose their children and the children around them to the empowering practice of yoga. Can you imagine how yoga could have supported you while growing up? Young Yokes can.
The benefits of yoga for youth range from increased focus, decreased anxiety, a greater sense of self, and the list goes on and on. As parents, educators, counselors, adult yogi's, and people who just simply love to work with children, Young Yokes works hard to provide a foundation of success for children, and yoga is big key to their success.
Yoga is a gift that truly keeps giving for generations.
Suzanne moved to Denver in 2002 where she soon found yoga! After a bit of a hiatus off her mat after the birth of her two children she completed her 200 hr. yoga teacher training with Jessica as the her guide. Through the teacher training Suzanne watched with joy as her son and daughter embraced the practice and soon were begging her to teach them more. In addition to obtaining her adult yoga certification, Suzanne also completed a training specifically for kids yoga. It was through these experiences that the Young Yokes concept was born. The gift of yoga has changed Suzanne's life and her families and she knows that kids of all ages will benefit from every aspects of play, breath, movement, mindfulness and respecting the body for all it has to offer. Family and community mean everything to Suzanne and she feels so fortunate to have such support from both!
Suzanne has worked with kids of all ages and abilities. In addition to the kids summer camps and classes, Suzanne currently teaches yoga for the kids Autism Respite program at the YMCA. Yoga therapy brings so much joy to kids who otherwise don't consistently have the opportunity to experience this form of movement. Education has always been the cornerstone of her professional life and teaching educators how to incorporate yoga and mindfulness in to their classroom is another element of Young Yokes that is very exciting!
Partnering with Jessica was really a no brainier, and Suzanne feels incredibly grateful that Jessica said yes! :) Jessica is a true yoga expert and moreover, LOVES children, serving her community, is a wonderful friend and all around exceptional person!
Jessica Kos Birney - E-RYT, RCYT, YACEP
Jessica found yoga while attending college at Illinois State University and it was the first time that the idea of self love really started to settle in. Yoga provided her a platform to really feel the impacts of life on her body, mind and spirit and it was due to that platform that the choices in her life led to this amazing moment.
A move to San Diego introduced her to an amazing life partner, Marcus who embraced her dreams as his own. A move to Denver solidified her love for a state that she never knew and opened an opportunity to start over in the health & wellness industry that meant so much to her. It was here in Denver, that she finally took the leap into yoga fully, receiving her 200 hour yoga teacher training certificate from CorePower Yoga in 2005. Then followed a decade of leading hundreds of yoga classes, workshops and teacher trainings along with an engagement, a marriage and finally the birth of her two beautiful beloved children. The youngest of a generation, Jessica never really had any exposure to children until her own and then a whole new world opened.
"I've always felt young at heart... and it was until my first baby that I knew that to be true. There is a great joy in play... and I simply want more of it."
And that is why when Suzanne approached with the idea to revolutionize their lives through Young Yokes, she jumped on board. "I've always been a bit of a risk taker and I'd like to inspire my children to follow their dreams. The practice of yoga has always taught me to lead by example and inspire others by living my most extraordinary life."
Jessica is most excited about working with youth in middle and high school. "It's these ages that the stress and tension can be super great. I struggled so much with acceptance of self. My health struggled. It was a challenging time and I know that yoga would have supported me in leading a healthy life and making healthier choices. In truly embracing my personal power" Don't be surprised if the next time you see her she's got a baby on her hip as her 2nd leaped into this world on 2/29/16. .
Jessica Gershwin - LCSW, MEd, ERYT-200, RCYT Lead Young Yokes RCYT Teacher
Jessica Gershwin first began practicing yoga while she was in high school as a way to cross-train for long-distance running. In 2008, she moved to New York City where she taught ESL at an elementary school in East Harlem. During this time, she started an after-school yoga program for students and teachers and realized that offering yoga was her true passion. She received her 200-hour registered yoga teacher certificate from Sonic Yoga (NYC) in 2009 and her children's yoga teacher certificate from Little Flower Yoga (NYC) in 2011. Jessica has also completed trainings through the Lineage Project, Street Yoga, BabyOm, and Jason Ray Brown's Yoga Anatomy for Movement Professionals. In addition to teaching yoga, Jessica is a licensed clinical social worker. She currently serves as a Bilingual Child and Family Therapist at the Denver Children's Advocacy Center, where she provides trauma therapy and offers yoga groups for children, teens, and caregivers. Jessica has taught yoga to children and youth in diverse settings, including public, private, and alternative schools, shelters, community centers, and outpatient mental health clinics. Jessica strives to fill her yoga classes with joy, authenticity, and open heart so that each individual - child, teen, or adult - can experience a sense of unconditional belonging, empowerment, and self-discovery. For more information, visit www.jessicagershwin.com.