Taking place June 2–5, this year’s event will be held entirely outdoors for the first time in its 10-year history. With the immersive backdrop of Posse Grounds Park, SYF is a destination experience with full immersion into energy consciousness.
The conference brings together world-renowned international instructors and teachers alongside local leaders. Offerings have been completely reimagined for 2022, to integrate the shared experience of the past couple of years. “We’ve diversified programming not just in terms of the presenter,” says Director of Programming Reggie Hubbard, “but we’re also giving presenters and practitioners an opportunity to not just come together and be consumers of a product, but co-creators.”
The festival has been curated around the theme of Give It Up For Grace, and Reggie says that weaving in the idea of grace is integral to what he’s aiming to create. That looks like “giving space to collaborate and connect,” he says. “It looks like giving space to get in classes, of course, but also giving you the space to lay outside in the sun, to dance.” It’s not just about running from one class to the next and checking off boxes of experience. It’s about creating a feeling of expansiveness, and a space for collective experience and healing.
Attendees will find chair yoga offerings as well as high-intensity vinyasa, heart-centered meditation as well as martial-arts infused workshops, and trans-affirming yoga for Pride Month as well as science-informed workshops on pranayama. On-the-Land Excursions will offer visitors an opportunity to explore the grand vistas and landscapes that Sedona has to offer through a mindful lens, and a chance to engage with some of the most authentically Sedona experiences one can envision.
Danette Wolpert, the Executive Director of the ILLUMINATE Film Festival in Sedona, says that the landscape is certainly one major draw to SYF. “The energy of the landscape feels like someone is taking your hand and leading you through an awareness process,” she says. “There’s a sense of awe embedded here. The combination of that phenomenon and the community and the spirit — and of course the teachers and their wisdom — is what makes SYF incredibly unique and transformative.”
Visitors will also experience unique local flavor at the SYF Conscious Expo. According to Deborah Williams, local teacher and longtime SYF work exchange Angel and attendee, the Conscious Expo is one thing that really sets SYF apart. “There’s a lot of local people, so you get a taste of the community,” she says. “It’s not just things that are transplanted here for the festival. You can really get a feel for what is rising from the land.”
Other presenters and participants insist that it’s the fact that SYF really ‘walks the walk’ that makes the event so special. One example of this is the signature Yoga for PTSD Training, that has been completely reimagined for 2022. Led by the co-founders of Retreat to Spirit, this trauma-informed training is a must for all yoga instructors and those who are interested in giving back to their community — and includes the integration of social and intergenerational trauma, as well as conversations around collective healing in regards to Covid.
There’s also the inclusion of a kids’ yoga program, run by Ana Camacho Hansen, founder of Sedona Sol Joyful Kids Yoga. This donation-based program is a boon to attendees as it doubles as a kind of on-site babysitting service, making the festival more accessible to folks who may need childcare.
But it’s more than that. “It’s another example of how dedicated SYF is to the Sedona community,” says Ana, “how dedicated SYF is to the big picture of yoga. It’s a service that we give to our shared future.”
Not only is there a breadth of offerings at the event, but offerings for all practitioners, at any level. You don’t need to be an experienced yogi to enjoy SYF — but there will be plenty for you if you’re a seasoned teacher. See a complete list of presenters and schedule, learn more, and buy tickets at their website, www.sedonayogafestival.com.