Stephanie Harding

I am trained, and teach, in the Viniyoga style.

  • Emphasis on the breath – linking breath to movement; using the breath to support and enhance movement, to energize, to de-stress, to refresh.
  • Repetition of two or three poses, setting up a gentle rhythm, which warms up the muscles and joints and makes it safer to subsequently hold poses for several breaths
  • Adaptations of poses for each individual practitioner – getting the pose into the person, not the person into the pose!

How I got here…

In 1991, I was living in Manhattan (NYC) and jogged around the Central Park reservoir for exercise. When I became pregnant that fall, I had to stop jogging but still wanted to do something to keep fit. A friend suggested I try yoga, so I found a studio nearby that offered classes for people with physical limitations. I was hooked immediately. The stretches felt wonderful, and I always left class feeling calm and relaxed.

Stephanie with Gary Kraftsow, Director of the American Viniyoga Institute, at Stephanie's graduation from Yoga Therapy Training, April 18, 2013

Stephanie with Gary Kraftsow, Director of the American Viniyoga Institute, at Stephanie’s graduation from Yoga Therapy Training, April 18, 2013

After practicing yoga for a number of years, I decided I wanted to make yoga a more integral part of my life. I began investigating various schools of yoga, finally settling on Gary and Mirka Kraftsow’s American Viniyoga Institute (AVI), from which I graduated with a 500-hour certification in June 2006. In June, 2008, I completed a 9-month course in anatomy for yoga in Leslie Kaminoff’s Advanced Studies program at the Breathing Project in Manhattan. In April, 2013, I completed an additional 500-hour certification in Yoga Therapy with AVI and now offer private yoga therapy sessions and special classes for specific conditions in addition to my regular classes.

I am registered as E-RYT500 (experienced 500-hour yoga teacher) with the Yoga Alliance and am certified as a yoga therapist by the International Association of Yoga Therapists. In addition to my local teaching schedule and private yoga therapy practice, I continue to assist Gary at some of his conference and workshop appearances and teacher trainings, and have been administering and teaching classes at Aetna Insurance Company in Hartford, CT as part of a yoga for stress reduction program designed by Gary and implemented by Aetna. I am also a member of the AVI administrative staff.

About the name “Rippowam”

The Rippowam Tribe occupied the area that is now northeastern Westchester County in New York and northwest Fairfield County in Connecticut, the area in which I, until recently, lived, and will soon resume teaching.