Myofasciae, Prana, and the Bandhas ( merging anatomy and spirit)
a 20-hour immersion with Jeffrey Shoaf, E-RYT-500, C-IAYT, LMBT, YACEP
Friday, February 9th – Sunday, February 11th
Friday 5:30-9:00
Sat. 8:30-6:00

“You see….., I believe in shapes. I believe everything good has a shape. Shapes are the way in which we know who we are and where we are in our universe. Show me the shapes and forms a person gives to her or his life, and I will tell you whether she/he is a master or victim of that life”.

( paraphrased from Stanley Keleman’s quote from Gail Goodwin’s “Glass People”.)

Our bodies, minds, and spirits, born of our DNA, life experiences, and individual karmas perpetually shape our form. As the Hatha Yoga Pradipika reminds us; these are not separate entities but function as one system, communicating consistently and synchronistically. While American Architect Louis Sullivan stated form follows function, in context of what it means to be human, function inevitably and necessarily is governed by and becomes a product of form.

The fascia ( connective tissue, myofascaie, or neuromyofascial web) is the substance that ultimately creates our form, both seen and unseen. Like the Koshas, these many-layered sheathes are all independent and yet interdependent matrices, ones which nourish and support all of our body’s systems. Its network interconnects and maintains the shape we’ve come to know, the material that is home to our entire essence. To understand this vital network is to practice with the foundation of body movement; a knowledge of this foundation deepens our practice and our ability to work with others’ forms.

The objectives of this 20-hour module will be to:

  1. explore the anatomy, physiology, and function of connective tissue( fascia) as a way of understanding how its health is integral to the function of our other “life” systems, including, but not limited to, our physical, emotional, energetic, and “communicative” self.
  2. apply this knowledge experientially in our own yoga practice using asana, kriyas, pranayams, and bandhas to sense the pervasive nature of this flexible armor that creates the shape we’ve come to know, while continuing to sculpt who we are to become.
  3. provide for us as teachers, therapists, and bodyworkers new ways of body-reading; coming to better understand and support our work with both students and clients.

Friday Night “Systems Intertwined”: A look at the evolution of the human form, from the time we first stood up into the age of technology.

  • Centering/ Introductions/ course overview
  • A exploration of the major body systems supported by the myofascial system.
  • A primer about the the essential qualities of connective tissue and fascia
  • Q&A
  • A “connective practice” to explore movement for fascial fitness.

Saturday: Q&A + Centering and Practice

  • Fascial anatomy as it relates to the respiratory diaphragm, the ribs, spine, and shoulder girdle.
  • Breath and the pelvic floor fascia
  • The role of the heart/pericardium in relation to the respiratory diaphragm.
  • Pranayama and the Bandhas: Dirgha, Ujjayi, Kapalabhati / mulabhanda, uddiyanabandha, jalandhara bandha.
  • Discusssion of pranayams and engaging the bandhas
  • How Emotions shape the fascial network
  • sympathetic/parasympathetic tuning
  • body-reading basics for fascial distortion/ terminology and experiential practice

Sunday: Q&A + Centering and Practice

  • Bandhas and Kumbhaks: How breath retention affects fascia
  • Neurofascia and the Chakras
  • Fascial loading tecniques for effective release of patterns/adhesions
  • Body reading for fascial distortion ( partner work)
  • Assessing the breath’s role in fascial distortion
  • Q&A
  • Evaluations/Certificates
  • Closing
Price: $350 until January 11, $400 after

Jeffrey Shoaf

Yoga Instructor, Yoga Educator, Certified Yoga Therapist, Licensed Massage Therapist

Jeff has been an avid practitioner of yoga since his first class at Main Street Yoga in Illinois in August of 2002. His trainings from the Pranakriya School of Yoga Healing Arts include 200 hour Yoga Teacher Training, 500 Therapeutic Yoga Teacher Certification. His teachers and mentors are Yoganand Michael Carroll from the Pranakriya Yoga School of Healing Arts, Marlysa Sullivan, of the Center for Integrative Yoga Studies, and also includes extensive early influence from the work of Gary Kraftsow and Eric Schiffman. Additionally, he has practiced ayurveda therapies under the direction and assistance of Dr. Ashlesha Raut, a board certified physician of Ayurveda.

Jeffrey is also a licensed massage therapist, practicing integrative bodywork, with a focus on myofascial release and neuromuscular therapy. He works with clients and students individually, integrating both bodywork and yoga therapy techniques to improve, integrate, and unite the body/mind connection. As of June, 2015, Jeffrey has relocated to his home state of North Carolina, where he teaches yoga classes, and practices bodywork and yoga therapy in Charlotte and trains yoga teachers and yoga therapists around the USA. To learn more, visit his website at: