At Sacred Machine we teach challenging, creative, intelligent yoga and movement to people who want to thoroughly understand what they are doing, why they are doing it, and how they can leverage that movement for change.
We use creative and unexpected sequencing and a combination of various movement methods in order to create full immersion in the practice. By allowing ourselves to be fully present and engaged while moving our bodies, we are able to clear psychic and physical stressors and blocks. By focusing on nuance, we start to understand the tiny habits and patterns that not only make up our current experience, but have influenced us in the past. By integrating the intellectual, the physical, and the spiritual; we can then use that incorporated knowledge to create holistic shifts- on the mat, in our spiritual practices, and throughout our entire lives.
I originally came to yoga as a cross-training method to support and enhance my dancing but very quickly found that the benefits of the practice move far beyond the physical.
I am most passionate about utilizing the practice of yoga to help others discover a sense of awareness, freedom, and joy in their bodies. My classes invite curiosity and encourage individual choice making, and my goal as a teacher is that you leave the practice feeling invigorated and more at ease than you started.
I completed my 200 hour certification at the Yandara Yoga Institute in Baja California in 2016 and have been teaching in Boston and New York City for the last five years. I’m currently in the process of completing my 500 hour certification through Down Under School of Yoga in Cambridge, MA.
When I am not teaching or practicing yoga you can find me dancing with little house dance, reading a book in the park, or spending time with foster dogs from the Animal Refuge League. I’m so grateful to be part of this growing community at Sacred Machine! Looking forward to seeing you on the mat!
Emily Sullivan’s dual-careers as a yoga teacher and a massage therapist began with her training in ballet. While Emily was growing up on Cape Cod, her ballet teacher taught her how to express herself through movement. She excelled, and she was performing with Boston Ballet’s dance corps before graduating from high school. In college, she was inspired by the Buddhist principle of right livelihood. Emily first enrolled in a massage therapy program after teaching English in Africa and Europe. Her new career combined her earlier inclination toward physical movement with a deeper aspiration to help others.
Emily studied bodywork with Tom Karis and meditation with Lama Konchok Sonam before opening her private massage therapy practice in 2010. Further studies in Thai Yoga Massage with Kam Thye Chow set the stage for a dedicated yoga practice. Being drawn to Astanga and Vinyasa Flow, Emily trained with Mimi Loureiro. As a result, Emily introduced yoga poses and short sequences to her clients as self care. To make yoga accessible for all her clients, she became certified by Renee LeVerrier to teach yoga to people living with Parkinsons and other mobility disorders. She is currently completing her 300-hour program at Down Under School of Yoga.
Emily lives in East Somerville with her young daughter. They balance their busy lives with regular escapes to the beach.
As a lifelong learner, yoga became a natural part of my journey. Developing a steady practice in 2019, yoga was a needed balance to a rigorous professional life. I found the mind, body, breath connection life changing and my passion is now to share this powerful work with others. I have studied with Murielle & Mae Corwin of Sundara Yoga in Brunswick, Maine, where I completed my 200-hour teacher certification, and with Margo Rosingana, where I received her restorative yoga training certification.
I offer a strong yet accessible teaching style that allows you to savor savasana all the more. With a focus on alignment and breath, my classes are designed for all levels of practitioners to benefit from their yoga journey. I believe a yoga practice is not about hitting a perfect posture but rather a self-study of embodiment, mindfulness, and connection breath.
When I am not teaching yoga or studying anatomy, my second passion is living aboard my boat Runway and exploring the Maine coast. In Maine's winter months I look forward to snow and the quiet it brings.
Isabel Ball (she/her), is a contemporary dance artist currently based out of Portland, Maine. She grew up in the Chicagoland area where she studied dance at the Chicago Academy for the Arts. Graduating with an honorary dance award she then moved forward to complete her BFA in Contemporary Dance Performance with a minor in Psychology at the Boston Conservatory at Berklee. Isabel studied Gaga and Batsheva repertoire while training with Addo Platform in Vancouver, BC and Cascais, Portugal. During the pandemic Isabel worked with Addo to premier a virtual international dance festival titled Our Stories. In 2020 she joined little house dance company under the direction of co-artistic directors Heather Stewart and Riley Watts. Since moving to Portland this year to work closely with little house dance, she has performed at the Maine Mechanics Hall as well as at the State of Play dance festival in San Francisco. Isabel continues to develop her interests in improvisation, choreography, collaboration, teaching, and dance on film work.
I’ve always loved to create and process through movement. A childhood of ballet classes and afternoons creating dances in my basement led me to Bates College, where I majored in Dance and Women’s Studies under the legendary Marcy Plavin. Post college I lived a lifelong dream: both leading my own modern dance company in Brooklyn and Cambridge; as well as dancing for and learning from many incredible artists. Yoga had always been a complementary practice to my dancing, and as time progressed, it became a more prominent aspect of my movement ritual.
In 2012 I was compelled to become certified as a 200 hour teacher with O2 Yoga in Cambridge, MA, under the watchful eye of the brilliant Mimi Loureiro. I further expanded my knowledge of alternative methods by receiving my certifications in Integrative Wellness and Life Coaching, Yin Yoga, Yoga Nidra, and Reiki II. In early 2021 I completed my 500 hour Yoga teacher certification through Arcana School of Yoga with the inspiring Jennie Joan Ferrare.
I have personally lived, and fervently believe in, the healing power of creatively sequenced movement. In times of joy and delight, the connection it creates between the intellectual and the emotional allow me to fully live in the present, and inspire innovation throughout all areas of my life. During my debilitating struggles with post-partum depression and anxiety, I explored release via expressive movement. I found solace and the capacity for self-compassion in those moments between breaths. I am a strong advocate of the power of mind-body integration, and the truly transformative powers that it holds.
Yoga, to me, began as a physical challenge. As an athlete, I enjoyed the rewards of putting my body into pretty shapes and getting a different style of “workout” as I followed along with pre-recorded classes on DVDs taught by Rodney Yee. It wasn’t until many years later, after attending my first in-studio class, complete with meditation, pranayama and kirtan, that I realized how impactful a yoga practice could be far beneath the physical body. Yoga transitioned from being a part of my daily life to being my lifestyle. I received my 200 hour certification through Yandara Yoga Studio in Baja, Mexico in 2010 and am currently on the verge of becoming a 500 hour RYT through Arcana School of Yoga in Portland, Maine. I offer alignment focused, theme based classes with a natural progression and include vinyasa, yin, pranayama, meditation, and yoga nidra. My intention is to make this practice of yoga accessible for all bodies and minds with an understanding that the work continues even off the mat.
Samantha started practicing yoga in 2011, when she attended a free ski conditioning yoga class at a small Lulu Lemon storefront in Park City, Utah. She had just moved there from Cape Cod to be a ski bum and thought it would be a great way to get in shape and meet some people to hit the slopes with. The space was packed and it was very intimidating, but the cumulative energy for good health, wellness, and ski season that filled the room showed her that this was more than an exercise class - it was an opportunity to be part of a community. This experience quickly developed into a routine practice that led Samantha on a profound journey of personal growth and building lifelong relationships.
Samantha brought her practice to Maine in 2015 and is now a 500hr certified Yoga Guide and Practitioner. She completed her 200hr training with Shiva Shakti School of Yoga in Union, Maine in 2017, and completed her 300hr training with Arcana School of Yoga in Portland, Maine in 2021, earning specific certifications in Yin Yoga, Yoga Nidra, Yoga for Trauma, and Reiki I & II. Over the years she has taught weekly classes in dispensaries, and pop-up events with Maine Ganja Yoga, that have shaped her niche in specialized offerings centered around the synergy of spirituality and cannabis.
Samantha’s teaching style is slow paced and meditative, focusing on deep breathing and ultimate relaxation. Her goal is for students to leave class in a euphoric state of mind. She looks forward to meeting you on the mat and is excited to share the sweet bliss of slow flow yoga at Sacred Machine with you.
For more than ten years, yoga and expressive movement have brought me joy, strength, peace, and whole-body healing. I am so excited to share my passion for mindful movement here at Sacred Machine! I am a certified Kripalu yoga teacher, JourneyDance facilitator, and Reiki I practitioner. In my classes, I encourage students to explore movements and poses that naturally come to them, express themselves through their physical bodies, and exercise their intuitive muscles by honoring their bodies' needs and desires. This, along with breathing exercises (pranayama), physical postures (asana), and evocative visualizations, ultimately help students cultivate mind-body awareness, self-compassion, and a deeper understanding of all parts of ourselves - physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual.
I have practiced a variety of yoga styles, including Kripalu, Vinyasa, Katonah, Bikram, Restorative, Yin, and Yoga Nidra. My teaching style draws on a diversity of traditions while staying grounded in Kripalu Yoga, from which I received my 200-hour teacher training. Kripalu yoga is a hatha style of yoga that emphasizes pranayama and links breath with movement to facilitate self-observation without judgment. My yoga classes also reflect elements of JourneyDance: a conscious dance form that involves intuitive movement, guided imagery, voice affirmations, and evocative music to foster self-love and empowerment.
I value both the ancient origins of yoga in the Indian subcontinent, and the diversity of yogic philosophies and cosmologies that have developed and transformed over thousands of years. I studied Hinduism and Buddhism in college as well as traveled through Sri Lanka and India for 8 months. This experience deepened my understanding of yoga, my personal practice, and my facilitation of embodied movement.
When I'm not practicing yoga, you can find me surfing, snowboarding, biking, or hanging out with my dog Gertie. I am so excited to share with you the joy and healing that comes through moving our bodies!
Alyx began her yoga journey alongside training as a professional dancer in Boston, MA - using yoga not only as a strengthening practice, but also as a retreat from performative movement and a space in which to focus on self care and awareness. During 2020, while in lockdown, she received her 200 hour training from Down Under School of Yoga after deciding that she wanted to deepen her knowledge of yoga and share the joy that she found within the practice with others.
She sees teaching and personal practice as a constantly evolving and growing symbiosis, and is always looking for ways to connect with people and self through yoga. As a massive nerd, she is always exploring new body pathways and anatomical information, which then trickle their way into her classes.
Alyx has recently moved from NYC, and is greatly enjoying soaking in the salt, fresh air, and sunshine here in Portland. She is also working as a dance artist, teacher, and choreographer for the local company, little house dance, and is a dedicated cat mom.