Garden Street School of Yoga was founded in 2001 by Karen Sprute-Francovich as a simple and wholehearted outgrowth of her love of, and gratitude for, the practice of Yoga.
Garden Street has grown steadily, intelligently, and organically. It is now a thriving, local community of teachers and practitioners who are devoted to the highest quality yoga practice and teaching possible.
Method, Vision and Mission
The Garden Street Yoga Method:
- Incorporates both form and flow. We teach an alignment-based method, which includes held poses, core strengthening and skillful flow (vinyasa). We feel that this combined approach, of form and flow, offers a method of asana that stabilizes, strengthens and moves body, mind and heart.
- Is grounded in a practical and life affirming Yogic philosophy, which believes embodiment to be a gift and the body to be a perfect vehicle for devotion, transformation and service.
- Places an emphasis on connecting with the “good company” of other Yogins – and building and sustaining an ongoing community of practice.
“There is a light that shines beyond all things on earth, beyond us all, beyond the heavens, beyond the highest, the very highest heavens. This is the light that shines in our heart.” -Chandogya Upanishad
Garden Street Yoga aims to serve the Light of One Heart that shines in the hearts of all beings.
We know – beyond a doubt – that a good and authentic practice of Yoga “brings the Light”… in the glow of physical well being, kindness and clear seeing.
Our vision is to serve the Light of One Heart by teaching and practicing good Yoga. We aim to be willing, open and strong as teachers and practitioners and to be ever-more reliable channels of Light. We envision that by teaching and practicing good Yoga we truly serve a renaissance of individual and culture, reach wide and diverse populations, and hold with devotion a remembrance of the Light of One Heart that is the source of all renaissance and evolution.
At Garden Street we teach techniques of Yoga practice, for body, mind and heart, on as well as off the mat, that strengthen one’s capacity to live and work in alignment with grace and gravity, heaven and earth. We teach with the aim of affirming each person’s intrinsic goodness, dignity and beauty.
To accomplish this big mission, we rely upon 3 Jewels.
First Jewel – The Body as a True Teacher
We emphasize the intelligence of the body – and teach in a way that cultivates a steadier and more powerful capacity to sustain attention in the body in order to listen deeply and learn from its remarkable intelligence. We see the body as a true teacher. This first jewel is associated with Yogic path known as Kaya Sadhana.
Second Jewel – the Teachings
Garden Street’s asana – modern postural yoga – is primarily derived from the Anusara and Iyengar methods.
Our philosophical underpinning is based on enlightened duality and non-dual tantra with a life affirming view that the way to deepen into spiritual practice is to deepen into “life as it is” in our ordinary and perfectly imperfect lives and bodies.
Third Jewel – Sanctuary
Garden Street is a sanctuary for excellent Yoga, authentic practice and the “good company” of a community of practice. We put great care into the dedicated Yoga space that is Garden Street and we are steadfast in our hospitality to, and encouragement of, community of practice. In both ways we aim to cultivate a sense of “home” for the students (and for ourselves). The Garden Street sanctuary of dedicated space and good company has continued to grow brighter and more stable over the years, providing an increasingly powerful and reliable remembrance of safety, intrinsic goodness, dignity and beauty from which both students and teachers can benefit simply by walking in the door.
Garden Street Teachers live their yoga, continuing to be students, offering peer support to one another, studying on their own, seating their teachings in their practice of asana and meditation, and always refreshing and refining the way they teach. Every teacher at Garden Street is extensively trained in asana, anatomy and therapeutics and is dedicated to teaching Yoga in a way that cultivates strength, flexibility and a sustainable vibrancy of body.
They present both the practical and spiritual aspects of yoga, addressing the body, the mind and the heart of the student. As they teach, they link the spiritual aspects of yoga with a down to earth, practical teaching of how to “do” yoga in a way that will create greater brightness of mind, vibrancy of body and openness of heart.
The Garden Street Student Body is a diversity of strength, intelligence and beauty. At Garden Street we are pleased to offer Yoga in a way that dissolves the separation between lifestyles and age groups. Attorneys practice beside wild-haired 20-year-olds. 14-year-olds come to class with their grandmothers. The accessibility and intelligence of the Yoga we teach at Garden Street makes the practice available and beneficial to all.
The Weekly Classes at Garden Street cover a very broad spectrum of needs and range from absolute beginner classes, to classes for seniors, to 12 Step Recovery Yoga, to Prenatal Yoga, to Restorative Yoga, to Yoga for All Sizes, to Triathlete Yoga, to dynamic sweaty flowing practices, to gentle subtle work with the inner body, to classes in seated meditation.
We are adamant that one does not have to be strong or flexible to begin Yoga. The practice of Yoga will, over time, create strength and flexibility, integrate posture and open your heart for radiant health.
We know you’ll feel welcomed to our studio, and that you’ll have a wonderful yoga experience under the guidance of our excellent teachers.