Shanti Revolution

Oct 31, 2018
Photo by: Jack Reynolds

Individuals come to yoga from many places, figuratively, and for many things: calm, energy, mindfulness, strength, flexibility, healing. Jodie Emma (her first and middle name), now the owner of Shanti Revolution in Little Egg Harbor, says yoga transformed her entire life, and gave her a distinct purpose. “I always wanted to help people, but I wasn’t sure how to do it,” she noted. “Yoga is that outlet for me to help others.”

A few years ago, Emma, from Tuckerton, “was living a life that was really destructive,” she explained. She moved in with her brother, Jesse, who reminded her of worth and her talents – and also suggested she try yoga.

Not long after, she got really sick, and “the only thing that gave me relief,” she said, “was a 20-minute yoga video. I did it again, and then again.” Emma was supposed to go away to a treatment center, but instead, she stayed in the area, and continued to do yoga. “It saved my life,” she stated.

Emma is drawn to bhakti yoga, the yoga of devotion, of union with a personal god, and she takes what she finds on the mat into her life off the mat. “Yoga has made me more aware of myself, and of honoring myself and others. It’s taught me self-discipline,” helped to boost her self-confidence and ability to focus, removed anxiety and depression, and spurred her to act in the service of others.

“At first my body was weak; I wasn’t feeling well,” Emma recalled of her first experience with the practice. But yoga was accessible. “Everyone can do it,” and each person takes from yoga what he or she needs, she pointed out. “Yoga has nothing to do with the perfect pose.”

Emma worked for a brick paving company while taking yoga classes – many of them with Loren Russo, with whom she felt comfortable, and by whom she was inspired – and then pursued yoga teacher training. After earning her certification, she started to get jobs as a yoga teacher. She was instructing in various locations, and a number of her students suggested she open her own studio. She gave it some thought.

“I set an intention at a moon gathering,” said Emma, “and within two weeks, I found a space,” along Great Bay Boulevard in Little Egg Harbor.

She imagines Shanti Revolution as a healing studio, with drum circles and crystal bowls, potlucks and kids’ classes, all accessible and affordable for the community at large. In her classes, she noted, she’s adaptable and able “to meet everyone’s needs.”

“Everyone is welcome, and we all encourage each other.

“I just want people to come together, to feel good, to feel happy, and to heal. Come join us, and share your talents.”

The current class schedule is as follows: All Level at 11:15 a.m. on Mondays; Gentle Flow at 4:30 p.m., and Gentle Restore at 7 p.m., on Tuesdays; Intro to Ashtanga at 7 a.m., and All Level at 7 p.m., on Wednesdays; Guided Meditation at 7 p.m. on Fridays; and a donation-based Gentle Flow class at 8 a.m. on Saturdays. For now, Emma teaches all yoga classes, and Dustin McLaughlin guides the meditation.

Class descriptions are available at facebook.com/shantirevolution.

The drop-in class price is $13, a five-class card is $60, and a 10-class card is $110. All new students’ first class is free.

Shanti Revolution also has a few special events on the calendar for next month. On Nov. 5, at 7 p.m., the studio will host a “Crystal Bowl Sound Healing with Cacao” ceremony, led by Beth Connelly. “The people who experience the effects of the bowls describe it as a deep physical and mental relaxation, sensations of floating and well-being,” notes a flyer for the studio. The event costs $13 to attend.

From 7 to 9 p.m. on Nov. 19, join a drum circle at Shanti Revolution. “Drum circles are an effective tool for health and wellness and a breath of fresh air in our fragmented, stressed out world,” the studio explains. Suggested donation is $5.

And, on Nov. 28, the studio will hold a vegetarian potluck from 12:30 to 4:30 p.m.

Shanti Revolution is located at 249 Great Bay Blvd., Unit 3.

For more information, call 609-384-3813 or visit facebook.com/shantirevolution. —J.K.-H.

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