Yoga Taught By A Badass Gender Studies Grad? Yes, Please!

ETL Yoga
I don’t know about you, but I love Instagram (and Twitter, but that’s a whole different thing), because I’ve met some hilarious, inspiring, and brilliant feminists online. My latest connection is with Elisabeth T. Lilja, a yoga instructor in Salt Lake City. Elisabeth is hosting a glamping retreat in Moab, Utah, and spots are filling up quickly. I reached out to her to ask some questions about the event, and I received incredibly nuanced responses in return.
 Want evidence of how cool she is? Here you go:

“I have a Bachelor of Science in Gender Studies in addition to Sociology. I have done quite a bit of thinking regarding the privilege around the New-Age-Yoga movement. It is problematic on many levels: access, the whiteness in the industry…I could go on.  On the other hand, yoga has had a profound effect on my life. It is something I love to share, but I don’t want to stick my head in the sand when it comes to the reality of the popular practice.”

Still not sold on signing up for a retreat or class? Here are some of the questions I wanted answered before going further:

SLC Feminist: Is this event inclusive of trans* folks?

Elisabeth T. Lilja: Of course!!! My retreats are inclusive of every person! No matter their gender, sex, or sexual preference. Hate is NOT tolerated!
SLC Feminist: Are all skill levels welcome?

ETL: Yes.  I thoroughly enjoy working with all levels of practitioners. I am an Alignment based Vinyasa teacher, foundation is very important to me. If you are new to yoga a retreat is a great way to dive into your practice. However, I do recommend trying a few classes and establishing a practice before you attend. In my experience it is a better overall retreat for the practitioner.  If you are an intermediate or even advanced practitioner you will still be challenge and walk away with new knowledge in your pocket!

Woman doing yoga

Elisabeth posts beautiful photos like this on her Instagram @etlyoga

SLC Feminist: Are there accommodations for people with disabilities?
ETL: Moab Under Canvas has facilities that are ADA compliant. So the actual facility is set up for people who are differently abled. Now, the reality is that yoga (and I could write a dissertation on this) is very able-bodied privileged.  I am very much aware of the physical practices downfall. In addition to that of participating in a retreat. I however, welcome differently abled body people attending the retreat. It is a retreat attendees’ decision if the retreat is something that is right for them. My retreats are focused on hiking, yoga and meditation. They are very active retreats, in addition to being energetically and physically demanding. The reality is this retreat can be challenging for people of all abilities. This is something every person who signs up and chooses to participate should be aware of.
SLC Feminist: Do you have events locally that are a bit less cost prohibitive?
ETL: I teach public classes in addition to Foundation Workshops. I am looking at the possibility of local weekend retreats that will be significantly less as well as offering a scholarship for future Glamping Retreats. This is my first year leading Glamping Retreats.

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