Trauma-Informed Yoga in Portland, OR

Trauma-Informed Yoga in Portland, Oregon with Open Awareness Yoga. Join Quinn in a yoga class that respects the needs of people coping with, healing, and growing beyond trauma.

What is Trauma-informed Yoga?

Trauma-informed yoga is a type of yoga that is designed to be sensitive to the needs of people who have experienced trauma. Classes typically focus on gentle movements, breath work, and relaxation. The goal is to help people feel more comfortable in and have more ownership of their bodies, to reduce stress and anxiety, and to share space with others in a low-pressure group environment.

Private sessions and introduction

It’s okay to drop in to class for your first visit and simply say hello at the door. It’s also nice to know who plans to attend and give you an opportunity to introduce yourself and share why you’re coming to yoga. If this is your first time or if you have questions, please send me a note at We can exchange emails or schedule a phone call. I’d love to learn more about you and see how I may be able to help you in your practice. 

trauma-informed yoga

What does a class look like?

A trauma-informed yoga class can look just like other gentle style yoga classes, but is taught in way that respects a student’s unique needs due to what may have happened to them in their lives.

A trauma-informed yoga teacher is trained to be mindful of these needs and to understand how trauma and traumatic stress might be triggered. They are particular in their choice of language and postures. They use clear personal and group boundaries. They aim to ensure the student has full permission to practice in a way that feels right for themself; it isn’t about pleasing the teacher. 

While no one can guarantee another person has any particular feelings, a trauma-informed yoga class has, at its core, the intention to be as safe a space as possible for everyone in the room. It’s the teacher’s job to watch, guide, and take care of the folks in class. 

In addition to the way a trauma-informed yoga class is taught, there are practices and techniques that are introduced that help balance the nervous system, calm the mind, and decrease reactive, fight/flight physiological states. These techniques are not new. Many of them are those that have been practiced by yogis for thousands of years and are still effective in establishing an ever more graceful life for practitioners today. 

Scope of Practice

Attending a trauma-informed yoga class can be a beneficial and even transformative experience for people; however, a trauma-informed yoga class is not a replacement for receiving therapy from a licensed mental health care professional. Practicing yoga compliments the work you will do in therapy, and can help strengthen internal resources you’ll use in your healing journey.

Related yoga classes and practices

Yin Yoga

Yin yoga is mostly done while seated or lying down, and it focuses on the body’s connective tissues rather than muscles. We relax the muscles as we sink deeply into the poses. You’ll hold positions for a long time in yin, and you’re likely to feel stretching sensations throughout your body. Click here to learn more about Yin Yoga Classes.

Restorative Yoga

In a restorative yoga posture, your body will be held in place with yoga props or household alternatives. You’ll generally relax into each pose for 5-10 minutes and breathe gently. We can perform the full range of postures in a restorative style, including back bends, twists, forward folds, side bends, and inversions.

Yoga Nidra

Yoga Nidra is a multi-step guided relaxation and meditation performed while lying on the back. The goal of the exercise is to have your whole brain become conscious while your body relaxes completely. It’s similar to sleep, but with a little bit of awareness and is a powerful practice for healing, intention setting, and stress reduction.