Class Series


In-Person! BACK CARE BEGINNERS SERIES with Edna Gruvman

Fridays, 4-5:30pm
Series: October 1, 8, 15, 22, 29
$95 for New Students using the code BRANDNEW
$115 for Returning Students
Sign up today! 

This series will cover the basic skills you need to participate in the Back Care and Back Care Basics classes. With other new beginners to Back Care Classes at Samamkaya Yoga Back Care & Scoliosis Collective, instructor Edna Gruvman will teach you many of the basic actions, find your alignment and learn prop adjustments appropriate for your scoliosis, herniated disk(s), kyphosis, lordosis, spondylolisthesis, lumbar or neck pain… or any other back problem. Learning these skills through a series will help you make a commitment to your yoga practice and help you integrate smoothly into the Back Care classes.

Edna deBeer Gruvman, MS, BC-DMT, began studying yoga in the late 90s as she transitioned away from a career as a modern dancer. She worked as a Dance/Movement Therapist, specializing in helping children with Autism use the power of movement to help facilitate communication and interpersonal interaction. She began her exploration of yoga at Yoga Zone and continued her studies with Adam Dobbs. Edna received her 200 hr training at Yoga Polarity of Long Island where she was first introduced to Iyengar Yoga. She went on to study Iyengar Yoga with Jeff Logan and Ann McDermott where she was able to deepen and develop her understanding of alignment. Edna’s interest in movement flow and body mechanics later brought her to study with Lorraine Aguilar, where she received her 300 hr training and first began her journey in recognizing and working with her own scoliosis. This discovery led her to Samamkaya, where she studied with Elise Browning Miller, and the many other talented teachers at the studio, broadening her understanding of scoliosis and furthering her desire to help others deepen their own understanding of their practice. In her spare time, Edna can be found tending to her hummingbird garden or working with a number of nonprofit organizations to better her own community and the world beyond.


Anatomy of Scoliosis with Deborah Wolk


Wednesdays, 4-5pm October 6, 13, November 3
4:30-5:30pm November 11
Entire Course (four sessions): $70
One Class: $25

These 1-hour online classes are for teachers. Experienced students who have already been studying Yoga for Scoliosis at Samamkaya for some time are also invited to join.

The classes will focus mainly on anatomy and physiology of scoliosis with some suggestions for yoga poses and sequencing at the end. The sessions will not focus on personal practice nor will we be able to look in-depth at individual patterns of students as we have done in Adjustments, Modifications, and Verbal Instructions classes.

Please have some knowledge of Iyengar style yoga (props, sanskrit pose names, etc.) and some basic anatomy background.

Classes will include anatomy drawings, text, lecture, and discussion.

*Classes can be bought as a recording separately or as a series. Recordings will be available for 10 weeks after the series ends. All students taking the class live will automatically receive a link to the recording a day or two after the scheduled session.

Anatomy of Scoliosis IV:  Summer 2021
October 6: the sagittal curves
October 13:  the structure of vertebrae and discs
November 3: thoracic and sacrum/tail–relationships to adjoining structures
November 11 *Different Time*: lumbar and cervical — flexibility and relationships to stable areas


The Standing Poses in “Light on Yoga” from a Back Care Perspective with Eve Holbrook

Online Series for experienced practitioners

Mondays, 8:30-9:45am ET
October 11, 18, 25, November 1, 8, 15, 22, 29, December 6, 13
Full 10 class series: $200
5 class package: $125

In this 10-week series, we will explore all of the standing poses in Light on Yoga progressively, with modifications for back issues. The poses will be approached in the order in which they are presented in the book, which will give us an opportunity to better understand the intelligence behind the sequencing and how one asana builds upon another. This series is appropriate for experienced practitioners with at least 6 month’s experience. Because this series is progressive and each class builds on the class before, it is highly recommended that you sign up for the entire series. However, a 5 class option is also available. No drop-ins or single classes for this series. Recordings of sessions will be available for participants who attend to review.

Eve Holbrook, C-IAYT. Initially drawn to yoga in 1994 for relief from back pain following a childhood horseback riding injury, Eve has grown to view it as an exploration of life and what it is to be a human being. In 2005, Eve completed the two-year teacher-training program at the Iyengar Institute of New York, where she now teaches, and is a certified Iyengar teacher at the Junior Intermediate two level. Since 2006, she has made five extended trips to Pune, India to study and assist in the medical classes at the Ramamani Iyengar Memorial Institute. Her beloved teachers include the late Mary Dunn, Kevin Gardiner, James Murphy, and Lara Warren. Eve is a graduate of Northwestern University and The British American Drama Academy. You can learn more about Eve at




Next Series: October 17, 24, 31, November 7, $95. Sign up today!

  • Has your doctor told you to watch and wait?
  • Is your child braced?
  • Is your child preparing to have fusion surgery, or have they already had fusion surgery.

No matter what your child’s situation, the Yoga & Scoliosis for Teens and Tweens class will help address your child’s scoliosis, muscular tension, pain patterns as well as the psychological and social pressures that accompany treatment and therapies in adolescence.

This class is appropriate for ages 11-17. All teens welcome are welcome to this class, but as idiopathic scoliosis is commonly diagnosed in adolescence the class will generally focus on scoliosis. This 1-hour class creates an environment that is less intense than the adult classes, allows teens to relate with one another, and is sequenced for a young person’s energy level. Dahlia Galler’s positivity and experience with her own scoliosis will communicate how the love of yoga will lead to a healthier relationship to the body…at a time when this relationship is particularly difficult.


Fusions Support Group with CJ Shapiro and Martha Carter

MONTHLY on Thursdays, 4:00-5:30 pm on ZOOM:
October 28
November 18
December 23
Free or by donation
Sign Up Here!

Samamkaya Yoga is pleased to offer a support group for people with spinal fusions for scoliosis (or those considering a spinal fusion for their scoliosis). This group, led by CJ Shapiro and Martha Carter, is designed to encourage participants to safely explore the emotional toll and experiences related to their fusion in an environment with other participants who share their experience.  Whether you were a teen when your spinal was fused or an older adult or somewhere in between, discussions within this group will draw out personal reflections, identify successful ways to self-heal, and evolve to reflect the needs of the group.
Please join CJ and Martha as they seek to encourage health and healing through group interaction—free of the shame and stigma associated with scoliosis and related surgeries.

CJ Shapiro understands enduring a lifetime of scoliosis and spinal fusion surgeries. At 16, CJ wore a brace during her vulnerable adolescence creating body image and social issues. In her early twenties, CJ had her first fusion, a Harrington Rod, as her “S” curve and associated pain had progressed. She was told if she wanted to carry children, she would need the surgery. In her, late 50’s, unaware of any issues for 30 years, she was overcome with severe pain and an inability to walk. The unfused areas, upper Thoracic and lower Lumbar discs, had disintegrated from wear and tear. Reconstruction followed and CJ now has 22 screws and 2 cages from T1-S2. Yoga has truly enabled her to be pain free and active, but the emotional scars still require constant attention.
CJ majored in Social Psychology as an SSA undergraduate (Carnegie Mellon University) and then pursued a graduate degree in Social Work and Social Research (Bryn Mawr College). Since she was 16, her passion drew her to jail and prison reform in her quest to help the downtrodden and persecuted.  CJ also majored in art and continues to use her x-rays to express her sense of the fused body’s rigidity and her sense of being “caged and screwed”. Throughout her lifetime, CJ has facilitated many types of workshops and support groups and draws on her background in applied, inclusive research for problem-solving and healing.

Martha Carter 
As a therapeutic movement specialist for scoliosis and spinal fusions, Martha teaches Gentle Yoga and Scoliosis Wellness classes, workshops, and retreats for all ages and abilities in Canada, the US, and internationally. She is a certified teacher of Yoga for Scoliosis, based on the techniques developed by acclaimed Iyengar teacher, Elise Browning Miller. She has also studied (and continues to enjoy explorations in) Pilates for Scoliosis, Essential Somatics, Energy Medicine, and Trauma Release techniques, which she weaves into all her classes to help participants with pain relief while enhancing their movement potential. Martha is the founder and director of the Twisted Outreach Project for Back Care and Scoliosis (TOPS), a Canadian-based non-profit that provides a range of holistic and creative approaches to working with back care and scoliosis. (


It is strongly recommended that you pre-register for workshops and series. If you pre-register for a series, you must cancel 48 hours in advance in order to be refunded for that class series less a 20% administrative fee.

Please cancel via email ( or call 646.964.5772. Even if we receive the message later, we will go by the time stamp and refund your money if appropriate. If you are ill or there is an immediate family medical emergency, we will of course waive the fee. However, please email us as early as possible, and before the workshop begins, to waive the fee or arrange a credit.


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