Cheri Dostal Ryba
Cheri Dostal Ryba
Cheri Dostal Ryba has devoted over two decades to embodied inquiry & transformation as a movement educator, personal fitness trainer, dancer, C-IAYT yoga therapist, mother of two, and author. Cheri's approach weaves cyclical wisdom from nature with trauma & nervous system informed somatic practices, and whole person pelvic care. Cheri served as a founding co-director and lead faculty of the accredited C-IAYT yoga therapist training program, AlcheMe Yoga Therapy, for 7 years and mentors yoga professionals in personal embodiment and career growth. She has spoken at SYTAR twice to serve the growing field of yoga therapy and supports women globally 1:1 and with online programs. Cheri published her first book, Pelvic Yoga Therapy for the Whole Woman: A Professional Guide. She plans to continue writing & making life a moving ritual.
Vital Roots - Including the Pelvis in Yoga Therapy
Saturday 10:30 - 12:30
Pelvic floor conditions are highly correlated with one of the most prevalent causes of disability and doctor visits worldwide - low back pain. Specific symptoms like prolapse, incontinence, and pelvic pain impact millions of adults, mostly women. Yet societally the pelvis swings between direct objectification and abuse or remains shrouded in shame and avoidance. Could the pelvis be a missing link for many people’s therapeutic benefit?
Join Vital Roots to discover integrative, anatomically based, and titrated strategies toward whole person pelvic health that emphasize yoga therapy’s salutogenic approach. Instead of narrowly focusing on the treatment of specific pelvic floor symptoms, in this workshop we’ll welcome and embody the vitality of our base of support, the creative and intimate hub at our center.
For this presentation, imagery and cues will focus on bony landmarks, metaphorical imagery and self-touch. Options will be given for all practices so participants can self-select based on their intentions and personal comfort. Please bring any props you desire for sitting and laying the floor, and a mat for standing postures if possible.
● Examine landmark studies linking pelvic floor dysfunction with low back pain, emotional stressors, and mental health comorbidities
● Discuss scope of practice, trauma informed considerations, and best practices for including and normalizing pelvic awareness
● Explore practices for movement integration and breath excursion, postural cues, embodied consent and communication, pelvic awareness and relaxation
● Share felt sense insights from the practice with colleagues, making space for varied experiences, building compassionate inquiry and interviewing skills
Dynamic Polyvagal Play
Sunday 2:30 - 4:00
Every interaction with our students is a transmission of co-regulation - the human, heart to heart task of being with each other and creating rapport. Our embodiment and capacity as the teacher or therapist set the tone, like a tuning fork for our client.
Join us Sunday afternoon to better understand your nervous system and social patterns as wise and adaptive through dynamic polyvagal applications. Hone your instincts and expand your kinesthetic, vocal, and social toolbox. The blended autonomic state of Play invites us to grow comfortable with experimentation and expression, to trust the spectrum of possibility that exists between goal-oriented effort and open-ended being. In the space created by curiosity, we can learn to hold deeper compassionate space for our client’s process of healing inquiry.
Explore a range of playful and poignant somatic practices solo, with a partner, and as a group to tap into a deeper well of unconditional presence and brave connection. For practices where touch is suggested, participants can take the role of active witness, experiment with self-touch variations, or participate in making contact. Bring a journal and pen, and any props you need to be comfortable sitting, laying, and moving about the space.
For folks with a keen interest in pelvic and sexual health, or trauma-informed care, consider attending Saturday’s presentation, Vital Roots as ‘Part 1,’ in addition to this offering on Sunday as ‘Part 2’ to explore a systemic, whole person framework that further supports pelvic vitality and wholeness.
● Define what is PLAY and discuss personal and cultural barriers to playing
● Establish collective agreements for our container to invoke freedom to play
● Clarify the 3 primary ANS states according to polyvagal theory, and 2 blended states - creating a dynamic representation of our window of freedom
● Shift from a hierarchical, threat-based framework for the autonomic nervous system to acknowledgment and welcoming the wisdom of all states
● Take autonomic state education beyond physiological theory into mapping your felt sense awareness, storytelling, and practical applications for teaching
● Examine the social nervous system’s range of responses, identify patterns, and make space for new preferences or skills to emerge
● Enjoy varied activities, collaboration, and key practices to embody the spirit of yoga as consciousness, liberation and bliss