The most important life lesson for me is to remember to stay in the moment.
Hi ! I am Jeffrey Shoaf, based in Charlotte, NC, and I would like to share my story of how I came into the field of healing arts.This all began back in 2002. Coming from a background as an athlete in my teens and twenties, and then a career in residential building construction and old house restoration, suffice to say I've always been "in my body". After after 20 years in a very physically demanding vocation, I began to get treatments of massage and discovered yoga for healthy maintenance and self care. My experience with the healing benefits of both of these modalites resonated fully and immediately in my body/mind/spirit. I found myself immediately taking multiple yoga classes per week, getting regular and varied types of massage therapy, and immersing into self education in both fields, essentially reading everything I could get my hands on, taking workshops, and establishing a personal yoga practice at home. In the winter of 2003, I transitioned completely out of my construction career, and enrolled in massage therapy training. Simultaneously, I intensified my yoga practice and began working with other teachers. I received my first yoga teacher training in 2005, as I began to offer classes at a Kripalu affiliated studio. With the strong anatomy background required for massage therapy certification, I found the knowledge extremely helpful as I led yoga students into their bodies, into their poses, into experience. I completed my 200hr. training from a Kripalu trained teacher in 2009, and continued on toward my 500hr. yoga therapeutics centered training with Marlysa Sullivan, Yoganand Michael Carroll, and other advanced teachers in 2013. Meanwhile, during those years, my interest in anatomy continued. I attended my first cadaver dissection ( Yes, I really did) in 2006, working alongside other massage therapists at St. Louis University Medical School. The initial shock and terror over what I had actually signed myself up for folded into sheer curiosity and keen interest as I saw the human body in it's true and unadorned but magical, miraculous form. This informed both my massage therapy practice as well as my yoga instruction. I have continued to take trainings in both massage and yoga throughout my 14 year career in both fields, culminating with a 40 hr. training in 2015 with Tom Myers, Todd Garcia ( The Lab for Anatomical Enlightenment), and Elizabeth Larkam in a weeklong " Fascial Dissection for Movement Based Therapists". These cadavers were not "fixed" as Gil Hedley describes, but were instead unembalmed, meaning that aside the fact their hearts no longer beat, and their diaphragms no longer moved to create breath, under the skin they were much like you and I; tissues supple, fluid, and moved passively and easily into full range of motion. I am certain I learned more in one week than I have in my entire life about the human form. In December on 2016, I received my certification from the International Association of Yoga Therapists to practice in the field of Yoga Therapy. I currently have an office and studio in downtown Charlotte, where I practice myofascial release, deep tissue massage, and see clients privately for Yoga Therapy, and also teach Mediation, Yin Yoga, and a Yoga Therapeutics at different studios and wellness centers around town. I also teach two programs around the East Coast through the Center for Integrative Yoga Studies, on breath, fascia, anatomy, yoga, and body awareness. Additionally, I am an approved provider for Continuing Education through the National Certification Board of Therapeutic Massage and Bodyworkers, teaching fascial anatomy, myofascial release, and movement awareness for massage students. You can learn more about my by visiting my website at jbshoaf113.wix.com/jeffreyshoaf.