Build your home yoga practice with these easy videos

Do you want the transformative power of yoga in your life?

Do you struggle to find time to practice at home?

Maybe you get on the mat and just have no idea what to do?

Perhaps you’re just bored with your normal asana routine and want to mix things up?

I created the Body Positive Yoga Home Practice Kit just for you.

SEE WHAT’S INSIDE & BUY NOW

Manifest: a fall retreat with Rosie Molinary & Body Positive Yoga

Are you ready to identify and embrace your soul’s deepest intention?

Do you long for the time and space to pay attention to what matters most to you and what you most need?

Would you like to gently but thoughtfully create a plan to manifest the life of your choosing?

Do you want to intentionally pay attention to your body so that you can manifest a feeling of wellbeing and wholeheartedness?

Then our invitation to manifest is for you.

Click here for details and to grab tickets

Let the world know you’re body positive (grab a t-shirt)

Make a statement. Be visible. Spread the body-positive love. Support Body Positive Yoga’s mission to bring accessible yoga to all.

Thank you :)Body Positive Yoga has an amazing online community, and it’s about time I got to actually meet y’all!

This summer and fall, and on into 2016, I am planning a road trip around the U.S. and Canada to teach, hang out, and spread body positive, accessible yoga to everyone who can stand me!

I’m launching a t-shirt campaign to fund my travel.

Proceeds from t-shirt sales will go to fund travel costs for my fall workshops in Auburn, Toronto and Chicago, as well as a 2016 road trip! Plus, you get a badass shirt to decorate that gorgeous body of yours!

There are four designs to choose from:

Click on the links above to see color and sizing information. Shirts will ship directly to you and should arrive around June 12.

Thank you so much for all the support! I can’t wait to see y’all sporting these awesome shirts!

Ragen Chastain on being a fat athlete, IRONMAN training, and using the body you have today

Ragen Chastain - Ragen is pictured in a dance pose against a white backdrop. She is caucasian, fat, with long dark wavy hair and a determined look on her face. She balances on her right foot, while she stretches her left foot high, up near her head, and holds it with her left hand. Her right hand is gracefully reaching up and away from her toward the right.In today’s video interview, I’m pleased to introduce you to Ragen Chastain! Ragen has been a huge inspiration to me for years and her activism work around size acceptance and fat discrimination are so impactful and absolutely necessary.

Ragen is a trained researcher, three-time National Champion dancer and marathoner who writes and speaks full-time about self-esteem, body image, and health. Ragen is the author of the blog DancesWithFat and the book Fat: The Owner’s Manual, and her writing has been published in forums including the Huffington Post, Calgary Herald, Jezebel.com and The Frisky.com. She has been a guest on programs including Fox News, Alberta Primetime, HuffPost Live, NPR, BBC, and NBC News, and has been featured as an expert in media including The Associated Press, Bloomberg Businessweek, FITNESS, and the Chicago Tribune. She is the editor of the multi-volume anthology The Politics of Size – Perspectives from the Fat Acceptance Movement, due out for Praeger in 2015.

In this interview, I talked with Ragen about being a fat athlete, IRONMAN training, using the body you have today, and much more. Check it out:

Connect with Ragen

You can find Ragen around the internet at the following places:

Dances With Fat – Ragen’s excellent blog, full of resources on size acceptance, fat activism, and Health At Every Size. You can also support Ragen’s activism and become a contributing member to her blog.

IronFat – where you can follow Ragen’s IRONMAN training

The Fit Fatties Forum and Fit Fatties Facebook page – where anyone, of any size can discuss fitness from a weight-neutral, Health at Every Size perspective

Buy Ragen’s book and dance DVDs

Join the Dances With Fat newsletter list

Facebook | Twitter

I hope you were inspired by this interview! If you have any questions for Ragen, stick ’em in the comments below.

Body Positive Yoga Interview series

If folks are doing work around yoga, body image, or radical self-acceptance, I want to talk to them! If there’s someone you’d like for me to interview, let me know in the comments – who would you like to hear from? What should I ask them?

Rachel Estapa on Health at Every Size®, learning to listen to yourself, and having fun in the process

In today’s video interview, I’m pleased to introduce you to Rachel Estapa!

Rachel Estapa

Rachel Estapa, founder of More To Love, is a certified coach, writer and social entrepreneur who focuses on creating an accepting community for plus size women to explore health and wellness. Through writing, private coaching, online group-coaching programs and on-site workshops, she educates plus size women on how to redefine what positive body image and health can be, enabling them to lead happier, healthier and more empowered lives.

Rather than focus on a weight-loss centered approach to wellbeing, Rachel’s approach to body positive behaviors is grounded in principals of self-acceptance and Health At Every Size®. Through her dedicated programs, she helps women learn how to apply body-accepting practices to their daily lives.

In this interview, I talked with Rachel about Health at Every Size®, learning to listen to yourself, having fun with the process, and much more. Check it out:

More To Love Class

More To Love Class

Rachel’s MTLClass is a month-long online course to teach women like you how to love their body and make health and happiness work for your unique life. MTLClass women value personal growth and desire freedom from negative body image.

Students of the More To Love Class receive daily easy-to-follow activities comprised of exercises and assignments designed to teach an aspect of body confidence. Each student shares their work in a private and secure online social network, and receives encouragement and feedback from peers and from the instructor, Rachel Estapa. Rachel is a trained, certified, and fully accredited life coach whose writing and work on body acceptance has been featured in print and online publications worldwide.

Enrollment closes on Sunday, April 11, so don’t wait! Register here.

Connect with Rachel

You can find Rachel around the internet at the following places:

More To Love with Rachel | MTL Facebook Community | Twitter | Instagram

You should also check out Rachel’s article at The Huffington Post, I am happier, heavier.

I hope you were inspired by this interview! If you have any questions for Rachel, stick ’em in the comments below.

All photos by M. Davidson-Schapiro Photography.

Body Positive Yoga Interview series

If folks are doing work around yoga, body image, or radical self-acceptance, I want to talk to them! If there’s someone you’d like for me to interview, let me know in the comments – who would you like to hear from? What should I ask them?

Rosie Molinary on radical self-acceptance, living your purpose & the myth of effortless perfection

In today’s video interview, I’m pleased to introduce you to Rosie Molinary!

A photo of Rosie Molinary. In the picture, 3/4 of Rosie's face is in the picture, and she is grinning at the camera. Rosie is a Latina woman with curly, dark hair and brown eyes. She's wearing a blue, v-neck top.Rosie is an author, speaker, and teacher. She works with women to empower them to embrace their authentic selves so they can live their passion and purpose and give their gifts to the world. Rosie is the author of two books, Beautiful You: A Daily Guide to Radical Self-Acceptance and Hijas Americanas: Beauty, Body Image, and Growing Up LatinaIn addition to writing, she teaches body image at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, offers workshops and retreats for women, and speaks on self-acceptance, body image, media literacy, the Latina experience, and social justice around the country.

In this interview, I talked with Rosie about radical self-acceptance, living on purpose, the myth of “effortless perfection”, and much more. Check it out:

Beautiful You: A Daily Guide To Radical Self-AcceptanceRosie’s books

I highly recommend both Rosie’s books if you’re interested in digging into the topics of self-acceptance and practical self-care.

Passion. Purpose. Peace Retreat

Rosie is throwing an amazing retreat in Davidson, NC, May 29-30! Here’s the scoop on thePassion. Purpose. Peace Retreat: At this one and a half-day retreat, we’ll spend our time together filtering out the excess noise while identifying and embracing what is most true for you in how to live authentically and create the life you want.

We will forge a deeper self-awareness, practice greater self-acceptance, and examine your self-care in a way that empowers you to be your greatest ally.  

We will discover what you want your legacy to be and how to live in a way that aligns with whom and how you most want to be in the world while allowing you to creatively express your passion and purpose in a personally crafted mission statement and manifesto.  

You will be guided in creating an action plan that guides your wants and needs at a pace and in a way that is just right for your life. 

Ultimately, you will leave Passion. Purpose. Peace invigorated, focused, and clear with a sense of confidence in what you uniquely offer the world and a vision for how to live on purpose in an authentic, whole-hearted way.

Get more details & register now!

Connect with Rosie

You can find Rosie around the internet at the following places:

RosieMolinary.com | Facebook | Twitter

I hope you were inspired by this interview! If you have any questions for Rosie, stick ’em in the comments below.

Body Positive Yoga Interview series

If folks are doing work around yoga, body image, or radical self-acceptance, I want to talk to them! If there’s someone you’d like for me to interview, let me know in the comments – who would you like to hear from? What should I ask them?

Dana Sturtevant on trying different (not harder), body trust, and why you shouldn’t go on another diet

In today’s video interview, I’m pleased to introduce you to Dana Sturtevant!

Dana Sturtevant - she is white with blond, short hair. In this picture she is kneeling in front of a wall of green leaves. She is wearing a sleeveless shirt and jeans, and is smiling at the camera. She's petting a very cute black and white French bulldog.Dana Sturtevant is a registered dietitian, a nutrition therapist, and co-founder of Be Nourished. She works with clients on healing their relationship with food, developing sustainable health practices, and is also a yoga teacher. Dana blogs about mindfulness, yoga, Intuitive Eating, Health at Every Size®, and the Slow Food Movement. Her private practice, Be Nourished, in Portland, OR.  For more information, visit www.benourished.org.

In this interview, I talked with Dana about trying different (not harder), body trust, why you shouldn’t go on another diet, and much more. Check it out:

Body Trust™ Resources

Connect with Dana

You can find Dana & Be Nourished around the internet at the following places:

Be Nourished | Facebook | Twitter

I hope you were inspired by this interview! If you have any questions for Dana, stick ’em in the comments below.

Body Positive Yoga Interview series

If folks are doing work around yoga, body image, or radical self-acceptance, I want to talk to them! If there’s someone you’d like for me to interview, let me know in the comments – who would you like to hear from? What should I ask them?

September 2015: Body Positive Yoga Summer Camp at Heartstone Lodge

This event is SOLD OUT!

I created a waiting list. If you’d like to be notified if someone cancels last minute, please fill out this form. If you’d like to be notified of other retreats, make sure you sign up for the newsletter (in the sidebar).

MeJoin me for 4 days and 3 nights of yoga, swimming, nature, and all the rejuvenation the Virginia mountains have to offer!

After the first Body Positive Yoga Summer Camp sold out in less than a week, I knew I had to book another retreat for 2015! I am so thrilled to announce this wonderful event: Body Positive Yoga Summer Camp at Heartstone Lodge.

Body Positive Yoga Summer Camp at Heartstone Lodge

Come expecting a 4-day, 3-night weekend retreat packed with yoga, joyful exploration of nature, my favorite swimming holes, camaraderie, relaxation, rejuvenation, laughter, body-positive discussion, and self-care at the beautiful Heartstone Lodge and South River Highlands country retreat, in the heart of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains.

All experience levels are welcome, including complete beginners to yoga. All bodies – especially YOUR body – will be celebrated and accommodated.

Body Positive Yoga Summer Camp
at Heartstone Lodge

September 17-20, 2015
Lexington, Virginia

This event is for you if…

  • You want to feel wonderful and free in your unique, imperfect, powerful body for a whole weekend
  • You want to be around likeminded, body positive folks who will accept you without judgment
  • You want to practice yoga, but can’t find a teacher that knows how to accommodate your unique body
  • You’ve tried yoga before but were frustrated or had a bad experience
  • You want to stretch or strengthen your yoga practice with a teacher who knows non-conforming bodies and can help you find your own unique way to practice
  • You want an entire weekend packed with body positive conversation, joyful movement, and laughter
  • You want to have time away from the distractions and stress of everyday life – either alone or with your friends to rest, relax, and rejuvenate
  • You want the ultimate summer camp experience
  • You want to meet your new BFFs in the Virginia mountains this summer

yoga4

I’ve put a ton of dreaming and planning into making this the best retreat possible, and it just won’t be the same without YOU. Please join me in September for Body Positive Yoga Summer Camp at Heartstone Lodge!

 

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What’s included?

  • 12 delicious, healthy, locally-sourced meals (dietary restrictions are easily accommodated)
  • 7 Body Positive Yoga classes led by Amber
  • 2 Campfire Chats – facilitated discussions on topics like radical self-acceptance, Health At Every Size, and practical self-care
  • Summer fun on-site or nearby – you can participate in everything, or just relax in the gorgeous surroundings.

On Friday and Saturday, we will organize groups to travel off-site to adventure nearby, or you can choose to stay at the beautiful Heartstone Lodge and take advantage of all the site has to offer.

Daytime activities could include nature walks, quiet contemplation in the meditation gardens, labyrinth, or mountaintop meadow, swimming at my favorite local swimming holes, hiking, exploring, shopping in nearby Lexington, adventuring in Rockbridge county, visiting Virginia Safari Park or Natural Bridge, and lots more! It’s up to you!

Meet your camp counselor - Dana aka Nolatrees

I am super excited to announce that Dana Falsetti AKA nolatrees is going to be your official camp counselor at the Body Positive Yoga retreat this September! During the retreat, Dana will be my yogi sidekick – assisting in classes, helping facilitate our Fire Pit Chats about self acceptance & self care, and generally being around to encourage y’all as official summer camp hype man! You can check out Dana on Instagram and my video interview with her here.

Ticket Price

$349 (plus accommodations)

The $349 ticket price includes tuition and all meals. You’ll book your own lodging accommodations through South River Highlands. Scroll down for a sneak peek of the accommodations.

Lodging prices vary from $45/night for a single bed in the shared dorm to $188/night for a gorgeous private cabin. Many cabins have room for 3 or more people. Bring your friends and save money!

Primitive camping is also available – if you’re interested in that option, inquire when you make your reservation!

 

 

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Retreat Schedule

This is YOUR summer camp retreat and you can participate as little or as much as you’d like! Even if you take part in every planned activity, you’ll still have plenty of time to rest, read, draw, paint, craft, swim in the river, go on a meditative walk through nature, explore the beautiful grounds, take a nap, laze about in a hammock under the trees, or just sit by the fire pit and chat with new friends.

Note: mealtimes are planned around yoga classes so you don’t end up practicing on a full tummy, but light snacks and water will be available all day, if you need something to hold you over!

Thursday, September 17
3:00-6:00pm – Register and settle in
6:00-7:00pm – Dinner
7:00-8:00pm – Introductions, Camp Orientation
8:00-9:30pm – Grounding, gentle yoga class & guided relaxation with Amber

Friday, September 18

6:45-8:00am – Challenging, powerful yoga class with Amber
8:30-9:45am – Energizing, strengthening yoga class with Amber
9:45-10:30am – Breakfast
10:30-5:30pm – On-site relaxation or off-site fun of your choice
1:00-2:00pm – Lunch for those who don’t go off-site
6:00-7:30pm – Gentle, restorative yoga class with Amber
7:30-8:45pm – Dinner
7:00-8:30pm – Fire Pit Chat: Radical Self-Acceptance

Saturday, September 19

8:30-9:45am – Energizing, strengthening yoga class with Amber
9:45-10:30am – Breakfast
10:30-5:30pm – On-site relaxation or off-site fun of your choice
1:00-2:00pm – Lunch for those who don’t go off-site
6:00-7:30pm – Gentle, restorative yoga class with Amber
7:30-8:45pm – Dinner
7:00-8:30pm – Fire Pit Chat: Practical Self-Care

Sunday, September 20
8:30-9:45am – Energizing, strengthening yoga class with Amber
9:45-10:30am – Breakfast
10:30-11:00am – Closing circle & goodbyes

What do I need to bring?

Body Positive Yoga Summer Camp is a low-pressure, judgment free weekend of self-care. Think comfortable and casual when you’re packing! Bring with you:

  • Your yoga mat, any yoga props you have
  • Comfortable clothing that doesn’t restrict movement (for yoga, hiking, lounging)
  • Comfortable walking shoes
  • Your bathing suit and a beach towel if you’d like to swim in the river (I also definitely recommend water shoes or old tennis shoes you don’t mind getting wet and muddy!)
  • Whatever you like for relaxation time: a book, a craft, a sketchbook or journal, or nothing at all!
  • Bug repellant (just in case), sunscreen, sunglasses or sun hat
  • Favorite snacks if you like
  • An open mind, a friendly smile, and your awesome self

 

About Heartstone Lodge & South River Highlands

The retreat and nature preserve is located above the confluence of the Maury and South Rivers on 250 acres of forests, meadows and hayfields. From our hilltops you will have a 360 degree, seven county view of the Alleghenies, the Blue Ridge and the interesting cone shaped mountains of Buena Vista. The view stretches on forever.

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Authentic, rustic log cabins from the Shenandoah Valley date from 1775 to early 1900’s. The fireplaces are of stone or hand made bricks. Each cabin has an array of porches, decks, loft hideaways, queen sized beds, modern kitchens and baths. All have heat and air conditioning. Each cabin is wonderfully unique.

Deer, wild turkey, over 100 species of birds and much other wildlife inhabits this nature preserve. The natural world is just outside your window. Hike on the network of internal trails or stroll along the Maury River’s Chessie Trail on the old canal path to Lexington, history, art, restaurants and shopping.

Our mission is to encourage you to experience a slower, quieter, more connected time with nature, away from the hectic pace of the modern day world.

Getting there

View a map of the location. If you are traveling by plane, the easiest route is to fly into the Roanoke-Blacksburg Regional Airport, which is a 45 minute drive from the retreat. Other options for getting to Heartstone Lodge:

  • Fly into the Albemarle Regional Airport in Charlottesville, Va., which is 1 hour and 20 minutes drive from Heartstone Lodge.
  • Fly into the Richmond International Airport, which is 2 hours and 20 minutes drive from Heartstone Lodge.

If enough folks are flying into Roanoke, I’m happy to organize a shuttle from the airport, and you can split transportation costs. Please note your travel plans on your registration form!

One final note

Body Positive Yoga Summer CampIf you’ve never been to a yoga retreat, it might seem intimidating, but I’m working extra hard to make sure this retreat is a safe, judgment-free, fun space for everyone! All bodies will be celebrated and acommodated, and you’ll be sharing space with other likeminded folks who are interested in self-acceptance, self care, yoga, nature, and body positivity. 

If you’re at all concerned that this retreat might not be right for you, or if you need special accommodations, don’t hesitate to contact me with questions.

This retreat is a chance for you to get away from it all, connect with your best self, and celebrate your unique body and soul with an intimate group of fellow body-positive allies. Meet your new BFFs this summer in the Virginia mountains!

Don’t miss out, I can’t wait to see you there!

-Amber

Join me and Dianne Bondy for a #yogaforall Twitter chat

Click here to view an archive for this Twitter chat.

Amber Karnes & Dianne BondyYoga teachers: Have you ever had a student in a larger body show up to your class, and didn’t know how to offer modifications for their body?

Yoga students: What do you wish your teachers knew about teaching yoga to your unique body?

Join me and fellow big-bodied yoga teacher Dianne Bondy, plus dozens of other yoga teachers and students for a Twitter Chat about making yoga classes more inclusive for all.

Let’s bring together our knowledge and experience to create a toolbox of resources to help make yoga classes more accessible. During the Twitter chat, we’ll discuss empowering language, avoiding triggers, and making the yoga classroom a safer, more welcoming environment for all. No yogi left behind!

When & Where

The chat will be held at 8pm Eastern (New York) time on Sunday, March 29. Join us at the hashtag #yogaforall on Twitter or use a free app like Tweetdeck to easily track the conversation at the hashtag.

 

Register here for the Twitter chat and get entered in a prize drawing – we will be giving away one spot in our highly anticipated, 5-week online yoga teacher training Yoga For All – Creating body positive yoga classes for all shapes, sizes, and abilities.

When you register, we’ll also send you a reminder about the Twitter chat the day before!

We hope you can join us! Please spread the word!

About the Yoga For All Teacher Training

Yoga for All Teacher Training with Dianne Bondy and Amber Karnes

Yoga For All – Creating Body Positive Yoga Classes for All Shapes, Sizes, and Abilities

Yoga students, are you in a larger body and find yourself frustrated in a class? Want your teacher to understand what’s going on in your body and offer modifications like the ones in this video? Or maybe you’re a teacher and just don’t know what to do with your larger students.

I’m excited to announce that I’m teaming up with Dianne Bondy to offer a 5-week online teacher training called Yoga For All – Creating Body Positive Yoga Classes for All Shapes, Sizes, and Abilities.

This course will teach concepts about empowering larger students, giving students agency to take back their yoga, and practical modifications for everything from sun salutations to savasana.

It’s eligible for CEUs from Yoga Alliance. Please, share with your yoga teacher or studio owner. Click here to save your spot and be the first to know when the Yoga For All Teacher Training launches.

Virgie Tovar on eradicating diet culture, the joy of moving your body, and Babecamp 2015

In today’s video interview, I’m pleased to introduce you to Virgie Tovar!

An image of Virgie Tovar. She is brown-skinned, fat, with long dark hair and short bangs. She lounges on a chair in a lush garden, with her head propped up on her elbow. She is wearing large sunglasses, bright pink jacket, burgundy skirt, and pearls. She's holding a champagne glass filled with what looks to be a mimosa. She looks fabulous.Virgie Tovar, MA is an author, activist and one of the nation’s leading experts and lecturers on fat discrimination and body image. She is the editor of Hot & Heavy: Fierce Fat Girls on Life, Love and Fashion (Seal Press, November 2012) and the mind behind #LoseHateNotWeight. She holds a Master’s degree in Human Sexuality with a focus on the intersections of body size, race and gender.

Virgie is a huge inspiration to me with her activism (not to mention her amazing fashion sense), and her book is a for real game changer.

In this interview, I talked with Virgie about eradicating diet culture, the joy of moving your body, her Babecamp 2015, and much more. Check it out:

Connect with Virgie

You can find Virgie around the internet at the following places:

Virgie Tovar.com | Instagram | Facebook | Twitter

I hope you were inspired by this interview! If you have any questions for Virgie, stick ’em in the comments below.

Body Positive Yoga Interview series

If folks are doing work around yoga, body image, or radical self-acceptance, I want to talk to them! If there’s someone you’d like for me to interview, let me know in the comments – who would you like to hear from? What should I ask them?