Helen is an Attorney Living with Stress

Helen’s Challenges

I am an attorney, teacher and mother and grandmother, and life is stressful.  I was looking for ways to reduce my stress level.  I want both my body and mind to be more flexible, particularly as I age.

What Helen Tried

I had been to yoga classes before and did enjoy them, but nothing seemed to shift in my daily life.  I was looking for more.   

What Worked

What I love most about the Custom Calm yoga practice is kindness and its consistency.  Every posture helps to release my spine from tension without causing pain or discomfort.   Each Custom Calm teacher is trained to support the student’s individual progress and recognize the student’s needs.  The basic postures are simple and effective; the philosophy that frames the sessions is equally so.

Ellen is a devoted practitioner and gifted teacher of the postures and spiritual principles.  She continually deepens her own practice and understanding through intensive training periods and retreats.  With her own students she inspires because what she teaches is so well grounded in her life.

Practicing for the last five years, I have become more flexible and less brittle in the storms of my life, more tranquil with my children, more patient with my associates.  I take better care of myself, give more easily, relax more quickly, and remember more often to keep my head in line with my heart.

What you can learn from Helen’s Experiences

You do not need to wait until life gets out of control to make changes.  There are practices that can be done to help get more enjoyment out of relationships.  The Custom Calm practices helped Helen on much more than the physical level and are easy to integrate into daily living.

*Last name has been left off for anonymity.

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Judy Feels Overwhelmed with Life

Judy’s Challenges

I was feeling very lost and could not put my finger on what was wrong. I work in a high pressure job, where others depend on me. I am a wife and mother and my children have grown up and have moved on with their lives.

What Judy Tried

I  did not do anything specific but try to calm down and relax, which was not effective.   I had no idea where to turn.

What Worked

A friend suggested coming to a Custom Calm class. It was the best thing I have done for myself.  When I go to yoga, I feel like I can handle anything life tosses my way.  Sometimes I go off the yoga wagon but always there is a driving force to find my place again.

When I practice at home it gives me a sense of serenity and calmness.  I must convince my mind that I need to practice every.  The instructor lets me go at my own pace and I am very comfortable.

I now find myself doing little yoga things, standing in line in yoga, breathing when I feel myself getting anxious and simple yoga pose after standing too often at work.  I love yoga and gave up other activities to join this class.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart and my back also!!!

What you can learn from Judy’s Expereinces

The practices are very powerful and relieve physical and emotional stress and pain.  The Custom Calm techniques are so practical that they can be practiced anywhere at any time.  The entire experience supports a happier, healing more peaceful life..


*Last name has been left off for anonymity.

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Time Magazine: The Science of Meditation

Concrete research has proven that meditation has powerful benefits.  Back in August 4,2003, the cover of Time magazine shows a woman meditating with a caption that says:

New Age mumbo jumbo?  Not for millions of Americans who meditate for health and well-being.

The article studied Students, Federal Trade Commission Attorneys and Prisoners as part of the study and findings were significant.   

Many cannot fathom how something as non -evasive as meditation, can improve anxiety, spiritual connection, coronary disease, cancer, focus and more.  There is an abundance of scientific proof available on the power of meditation.  

Check out the following:

M.I.T studies showed over time, the neurons in the brain will adapt themselves to direct activity in the frontal, concentration-oriented area of the brain.  In other words, you learn to be totally aware of the moment, increasing concentration and focus.  Kamikaze pilots are trained to have this level of awareness.

Meditation is here to stay and will change your life.  Why not give it a try?

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Sarah is a Senior looking to Strengthen and Improve Balance

Sarah’s Challenges

While I am a cancer survivor, I had no particular stress or pain, but I am growing older and need the strength building and flexibility that the practices provide on a regular basis.

What Worked

Custom Calm yoga has been a transforming experience for me.  When I first tried it, after my first lesson, I thought that the whole thing was easy but didn't make any difference.  Boy, was I wrong!  It is a physically easy practice, but the benefits are immense.

As a result of regular attendance at classes, I am stronger, have better balance, and am more flexible.  I feel more confident that I will maintain my mobility and ability to get around easily when I practice.  In addition, I've learned some stress reducing and relaxation techniques from the practice.

Now when I'm stressed, achy or just tired, I practice a few yoga moves and always feel much better.  However, I continue to need the regular guidance and diversity of classes.

What you can learn from Sarah’s Experiences

Gentle yoga practices are extremely effective. With age, comes the need to empower yourself to continue to participate in an active lifestyle. There are so many techniques you can practice, and a proactive approach will enhance your overall well-being.


*Last name has been left off for anonymity.

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Hope After Loss of a Loved One

Carol’s Challenges

The loss of my husband, both parents and other family members to cancer had repercussions that were both physical and emotional. I had continual back and neck pain and it was very difficult for me to deal with the losses emotionally.

What did Carol do to help herself?

I am grateful for what I receive from my classes with Ellen. I use the Adapted Yoga poses I learned from her in my daily life and they are very helpful in relieving my back pain brought on by travel. I am thankful that I now know how to take care of my body when it hurts. I am learning to be aware of my breathing which helps reduce my stress level. Since I began participating in classes with Ellen, my lower back feels better than ever before. My emotional and spiritual well-being has been greatly enhanced.

What can you learn from Carol's Experience?

Experiencing loss has both physical and emotional consequences. It is often easier to help ourselves emotionally first, by using techniques to relax the body, and then use practices to calm the mind. The Custom Calm techniques that Carol uses are easy for her to incorporate into her life and have improved her overall well-being tremendously.


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Leukemia Survivor Improves her Life

Jan is a Leukemia Survivor

Jan’s Challenges

I was diagnosed with leukemia in May of 2008 and not given very high odds to continue to live. After many chemo treatments, many transfusions, surgery, radiation and a stem cell transplant, I was mentally and physically exhausted. Medications that I had taken caused my muscles to be weak and my bones to be stiff. Before all of this happened to me, I considered myself to be physically fit. Now, I couldn't even touch my toes.

What Jan Tried

At that time I was still taking medication to suppress my immune system. This meant I could not be in a class, or go to public places. I called Custom Calm and began private basic yoga lessons with Ellen. During these lessons I learned moves that I could later do on my own. I was so excited because at the time I started the classes I had already been very isolated for 2 years.

What Worked for Jan

The yoga made me feel stronger and I immediately noticed that I started sleeping better at night. The practices helped me with my right shoulder stiffness. The yoga was a wonderful practice to do before preparing to center myself and pray. I love the stretches that yoga gives my war torn body. Finally, the yoga is known for strengthening the immune system and that is important to keep me alive.

I especially like the warrior pose because it brings to mind past, present and future. It gives me hope that I have come this far, focusing on the present moment, and hoping for better times in the future.

I wish I had tried yoga before I got sick. It is a wonderful way to center and calm myself down. I could have used it so much as a de-stressor before.  I definitely plan to use it to de-stress myself in the future. 🙂

The "Loving Kindness Meditation" that Ellen also taught me seemed to open the gates of tears that I had held back over the course of my treatments.

What you can learn from Jan’s Experiences

Even in very challenging circumstances, there are always practices you can do to help yourself.  Custom Calm tools for the mind are as  important to our overall well-being as tools for the body.  Jan embraced the practices and has empowered herself to live in the moment, feeling better and with hope for the future.

*Last name has been left off for anonymity

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Goldie’s Chronic Back Pain Alleviated

Goldie  is a Senior with back pain.

Goldie’s Challenges

While I was undergoing treatment for breast cancer, I also suffered from sciatica and back pain. I was diagnosed with spinal stenosis and instability in my back. Surgery was suggested. I was determined not to have surgery only as a last resort.

I was often incapacitated, unable to sit or walk for long distances. I was constantly in a great deal of pain and my life seemed to stop. This affected me both physically and emotionally.

What Goldie Tried

I constantly carried an ice pack with me. I tried acupuncture and massage. I also had spinal epidurals.

What Worked

After months and months of suffering, I started taking Custom Calm Yoga with Ellen and eventually I found that the gentle yoga, stretching and supported poses were very beneficial to my back.

I still have spinal stenosis but I can function well enough to go about daily living with a minimal amount of pain.  I know I can’t overdo.

I have learned many poses that I can do on my own, but I enjoy the classes where I have benefit of total mind-body connection and a sense of camaraderie with others. I have come a long way and I hope to stay that way and avoid surgery.  Thank you, Ellen, for all you have taught me.

What you can learn from Goldie’s Experiences

When we are looking for ways to help ourselves when facing pain, we try may avenues.  Custom Calm techniques are most appealing because they are non-evasive, empowering and cost effective.  Goldie experienced a reduction in pain and an increase in her strength as she worked with Custom Calm, which made a huge difference in her day to day living.

*Last name has been left off for anonymity

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