Hi, I want to personally welcome you to SherYoga Therapy and introduce myself with a bit of my background and history; where I come from and how I got here. It has been a long journey indeed.
My own study of yoga and yoga therapy began a number of years ago while searching for ways to relieve my own chronic pain and by eventually finding yoga I absolutely found the means to recover my own health and regain my life.
But let's back up a little bit.
From a very early age I suffered from an abdominal condition that resulted in almost daily debilitating pain. Over the course of about 20 years I had in excess of 20 abdominal surgeries.
Over and over and over they attempted to alleviate the pain and eradicate the problems caused by the condition. I know, I can't hardly believe it myself, but there it is and I did.
We trust that the answers we're given by our doctors are the ones that are best for us and that they will "fix" us. Don’t we? That is obviously not always true.
I was looking for someone to fix me, take a magic pill or the use of another magic scalpel by yet another magical doctor that would absolutely and forever take my pain away. Didn't work. Crap! What now?! I was utterly defeated and resigned to live the rest of days in pain.
This was my private hell shared only with family and close friends. My public face looked very different; a happy mask worn for the masses ( aided I’m sure by the pain killers I lived on…Yikes! just remembering gives me shivers) I had a career back then in the securities industry as first a floor trader at the Alberta Stock Exchange and then finally as an Investigator & Market Manipulation Specialist for the Alberta Securities Commission. I loved it but the stress furthered my pain and ultimately I left this career when the pain became unavoidably unmanageable.
I’m not really sure what changed or when it actually did, but one day I found myself in a yoga studio registering for a session of beginner Hatha Yoga classes. From the very 2nd class I attended I knew that I would never be the same. There were moments of NO PAIN within that class ( if you are also in constant pain you know how big that is). These moments grew in length and after a time I found that when I practiced yoga the pain was all but gone and it didn’t return right away after anymore either. Whew! 22 abdominal surgeries and what I needed was YOGA?! You're kidding right?! really? REALLY!
I didn’t know why the pain wasn’t there and I really didn’t care, I was just over the top grateful for the reprieve.
It was through this very first session of classes that I was introduced to David McAmmond, a senior yoga teacher of teachers and yoga therapist (although we didn’t use that term back then). Now I wanted to know. I began assisting and apprenticing in classes to learn and absorb all I could. I was quite literally David’s shadow (and other teachers as well). My previously pained existence was diminished and I attended classes almost daily and often 2 in one day. I couldn’t get enough.
That was 21 years ago.
I certified under the guided tutelage of Margot Kitchen & Rob Walker at the Yoga Studio South in Calgary and continued my own practice and study with many amazing and beloved teachers from different Yoga traditions. One such teacher (Pundit, Sanskrit Scholar, Artist and acclaimed Author), Norman Sjoman helped me to deepen my understanding of Yoga and what it truly is. If ever you have opportunity to attend classes and or lectures with Norman Sjoman do not hesitate, take it!
Norman then introduced me to another of his students, a yoga teacher from Amsterdam named Gert van Leeuwen that had founded his own method of yoga therapy and in 2003 Norman and I organized a workshop to bring Gert here to teach the Calgary yoga community his method, Critical Alignment Yoga Therapy. (CAT)
I was hooked!
Through CAT I found another entrance to those still in accessible layers and levels left behind from the years of pain. That deeper layer that had remained untouched was no longer hidden and my work began yet again.
May of 2010 marked the 7th year of CAT workshops and teacher trainings with Gert van Leeuwen to an international following.
In 2006 I was one the first few yoga teachers granted certification as a Critical Alignment Yoga Therapist.
My yoga teaching, no matter the class, has been influenced and colored by these teachings and for this I am forever grateful to Norman, to David and to Gert.
This is just a little peek into where I come from and what I bring with me to my teaching.
Like most of us I also have a shopping list of injuries and ailments that comes with simply living life. Every class I have taken from each and every teacher, from the students in every class I’ve ever taught and from my own journey’s from pain to surgery x 22 to wellness I have learned something.
Through all of this I developed a detailed and very specific style of teaching that I hope all practitioners; experienced and beginner can learn from. I truly love sharing yoga.
In 2006 I began building my own yoga studio in my home with a dream to teach therapeutic yoga classes from a dedicated therapy studio. So, I completely gutted my basement and built what I and you would need to facilitate this. I designed the space with therapy in mind, with heated floors, a fireplace, and a paint color that embraced; not unlike my home. All of my guests are, I hope, made to feel welcome and safe.
In February 2007 SherYoga Therapy Studio officially opened and was the first and only yoga studio anywhere dedicated to Critical Alignment therapeutic yoga classes outside Amsterdam.
Once again welcome to SherYoga.
Sherryn Rault began and organized the Annual series of Critical Alignment Yoga Therapy workshops in Calgary with Dutch International Yoga Teacher and author Gert van Leeuwen for 7 years and teaches Critical Alignment Yoga Therapy Registered classes at her SherYoga Therapy Studio in the SE community of Acadia in Calgary, AB.
She teaches CAT Therapeutic workshops at various venues throughout western Canada to students of all levels and teachers alike.
If you are a Yoga Studio interested in hosting a Critical Alignment Yoga Therapy workshop with Sherryn please contact her directly at 403-816-1502 or firstname.lastname@example.org. She travels with all required props in tow in her yogabus.
Sherryn is a Professional Member of the Int'l Association of Yoga Therapists, an Associate Member of the Iyengar Yoga Association of Canada and a member of the Yoga Association of Alberta.
Certified Yoga Instructor- Yoga Studio South, Calgary, AB
Certified Yoga Therapist - Bharata Yoga Institute of Amsterdam in Critical Alignment Yoga Therapy
Sherryn is the sole proprietor of SherYoga Therapy and Critical Alignment Inc.
Critical Alignment Inc is a wholly owned subsidiary of SherYoga Therapy (all rights reserved and governed under the laws of Alberta) .
"Time stands still best in moments that look suspiciously like ordinary life"
"I have found Critical Alignment Yoga to be the one therapy that consistently offers me freedom from back pain, increased mobility and a return to an active life.
Sherryn's compassionate approach together with her in-depth knowledge of each individual student's situation is second to none. The small class size and flexible options help create an environment conducive to healing and well being."
Rob O. in Calgary
"It is without hesitation that I write this testimonial regarding the Critical Alignment Yoga classes I have been attending for the past year .... I was suffering from a broad based disc bulge which was causing me agonizing pain and loss of mobility. I was told I needed a full disc replacement. I also was suffering from tennis elbow in both arms and my overall well being was not good.
After receiving the news from the surgeon I realised that my condition was quite serious.
I was only 34 years old I needed to make every effort to try and resolve the condition without surgery since this approach was very invasive and once completed it could not be reversed but I was in chronic pain and could not perform normal mechanical function...
I began attending Sherryn's classes with an open mind and signed up for a full session of 7 weeks. In the beginning it was not easy but I am thankful that with some determination and the support of Sherryn and the other fabulous students I continued. I can say without any doubt what so ever my body has been restored to the same mechanical condition as when I was 25 years of age.
My background is in physical therapy and orthopaedics and I can say professionally as well as personally Critical Alignment Yoga works! The ability to access the core, release muscle tension, over all stress and build the important stabilising muscles in ways which does not compromise a person with an injury is absolutely amazing.
I am living proof of how good this therapy really is and I would only be too happy to pass on my positive experience to anyone who is in chronic physical pain and would like to improve their condition, their sleep and their health overall."
Liam E. in Australia
Chiropractic; Certified in Active Release Techniques
Power Health Chinook, Calgary, Alberta
"Sherryn is a true treasure of experience, knowledge and passion. Sherryn has a true understanding of what chronic pain is and how it affects people’s lives. Critical Alignment Yoga Therapy is a great tool for achieving not only pain relief but better health. I highly recommend anyone interested in improving their health to Sherryn."
Several years ago now, my body quite suddenly 'seized up' rendering me twisted and in severe pain from head to toe. After months of increasingly specialized but ultimately unsuccessful physio treatments my doctor suggested a new, more rigorous style of physiotherapy which had demonstrated excellent results in a number of difficult cases. After a few months my new physio suggested I contact Sherryn Rault to begin Critical Alignment Yoga Therapy as a complement to her treatments.
The results have been miraculous. Not only have I become, for the most part, pain free, and that with no medication or other types of treatment, but I've learned to recognize when I'm beginning to tighten up again and how to head it off myself. After four years of practicing 'CAT' my physio was most impressed with how straight I've become and how freely I move. She told me "that she's noticed that her patients who've taken up 'CAT' with Sherryn make the best progress in their healing." As for me, I can't get over how each year I feel better and more able to lift, carry, bend, cook, garden, and even sleep better...
Now at 80 years of age I look forward with confidence to a future that promises at the very least maintenance of my recovery, and possibly even more improvements, as I endeavour to better integrate my 'CAT' practice into my daily routines.
Needless to say, I can't thank Sherryn enough for her patient, student centered teaching, which consistently provides incentive, inspiration, and valuable insights into the ongoing evolution of new knowledge of body awareness, and all with a generous injection of fun.
Ruth G. in Comox BC
I have been attending Critical Alignment Yoga Therapy classes with Sherryn since the fall of 2005. I first started going to class because of intense pain, discomfort and numbness in my shoulders, arms and neck due in large part to my full-time desk job and a lifetime of bad postural habits. I had tried many other therapies without any lasting relief.
Sherryn has helped me immensely. In a gentle and relaxed setting, the classes are always positive and restorative. I look forward to going each week.
I no longer feel powerless! I can now manage my muscle tension, recognize it and actually help myself by practicing some of the poses at home. I now have the tools to affect my own relief.
My chiropractor has commented that the curvature in my neck is much improved and he and my other practitioners have said,
"whatever you are doing, keep doing it."
I whole-heartedly recommend Sherryn's classes.
Theresa S. in Calgary
Once again, thank you for the great couple of months of 'Sheryoga'. I can't tell you how much better I am feeling and how much I have learned in such a short period of time.
This month has been the first time in a very long time that I have been able to shake my chronic head aches. It is such a relief to know that I can offset so much pain just by administering some of the strategies that I am learning in your class.
Even driving away today, I surprised myself by sitting up much straighter, much more comfortably, and that it came about so naturally.
What is especially great about your classes is that you 'show', not just 'tell' what an engaged core looks and feels like, etc.
All my life I have been told to 'stand up straight', 'quit slouching, 'sit up properly ', 'put your shoulders back' and what not, but I never knew what that really meant. I didn't know that all the things I am learning today require much time, practise and a consciousness of how the body is MEANT to work. Before it made no sense. Now it does.
As much as I know it will take a long time to be able to effectively carry this out, I am absolutely thrilled with where I'm at today!!! What a relief! Thank you so much, Sherryn!
Jill F. in Calgary
Oh, I feel so good. Can't believe how good I feel. Can't believe I didn't know just how bad I used to feel. Core muscles... fancy that; don't believe I've ever felt them before. So glad I found SherYoga.
Linda H. in Calgary
I have really enjoyed these classes and marvel at how challenging and yet how beneficial each and every class is.
Thank you again for your time, your devotion and your loving nature. You are an amazing teacher. Much love and many blessings,
Deborah, in Calgary
"I wished to let you know that the movement of last two vertebras during our last session has had an amazing effect on my whole body. Amazingly the dynamics of the body has changed with better pelvis stabilization and movement.
After all these years of struggling and working with various professionals, it seems I am on the right path with your work.
Working with you has benefited me so much. Calgary is lucky to have you here to benefit from your knowledge.
My foot pain and head pain are gone! My breath is very good while running.
And above all, this is sustainable as I am learning critical alignment from you. Thanks for your great work."
Hayat in Calgary
I just wanted to send a quick note to thank you again for the special back/neck treatment. I am feeling so much better after our Thursday session and I appreciate all the special care you give. The weekend was noticeably better for me and I think what you did really made a difference. Thank you so much!
Dianne in Calgary
I am so glad I am back at your classes. After all that gardening on Quadra I was in constant pain at night. Last night was a first one without pain, after your class. Also my right shoulder is healed, I can stand on my head and no problems after.
Thank you so much for the constant effort in healing us!!!
Izabela T on Quadra Island
SherYoga has really made a difference for me and I want to say thanks to you for all your guidance and support. There is a clear before and after picture
from the time I started your classes and now.
Mark in Edmonton
Thank you for all your help and understanding. I know I have made great progress and my life is better because of you.
Terry in Calgary
My whole right side would like to thank you! For the first time in over two months there is no pain; foot, knee, hip, shoulder and neck. WOW! I feel like a new person.
Sherry in Calgary