Meet Leigh Ferrara: Movement Specialist
Hey there, I’m Dijon, creator of Souls of San Francisco. I’m back for the third collab between Broke Ass Stuart and Souls of San Francisco. This is where we take time to get to know the locals that make our community so epic.
This time we’re featuring Leigh Ferrara. She’s been in SF over 10 years and after getting into yoga in search of her own healing, now she masterfully leads people towards better health at YogaTree and on her retreats. She’s created a unique blend of yoga and energy work that opens the bodies energy centers so that it can heal itself.
Leigh and I did a full 68 min podcast which you can check out HERE. Below are highlights from our conversation.
Thanks for being here to help preserve San Francisco’s history. Enjoy.
“I moved out here from Boston in 2002 because I had this epiphany that life could be different. There were all these people carving their own path, doing lots of healing work for themselves and other people.”
“Had you visited before you moved?”
“I visited a friend in Berkeley and I had this experience in the East Bay where people eat differently and live differently and make choices about what they want to do with their lives. I was like ‘Oh, there’s free will out here…and people take agency over their lives’. It was really inspiring and very different than my perspective living back east where it seemed like there were a few definitive paths and none of them seemed to fit.”
“Because of my upbringing I was in trauma therapy from 2005. In order to really cleanse our traumas from our system there has to be a rewiring of our bodies physiology so we know we’e safe. And then we can have the ability of interacting with people the way we want to instead of constantly reacting to outside stimuli. You have to be still enough to develop a relationship with your body so you can listen to the signals. People are moving so quickly and filling their lives as much as possible because it’s gotten so difficult to stay still and be connected to ourselves. These mindfulness practices, movement practices help us relearn and be in relationship with our bodies. It’s just like a marriage.”
“There’s a lot of struggle going on, people are struggling connecting to their own bodies, connecting to themselves. There’s so much stimulation for people. San Francisco has changed as a city. One challenge I see now is my job feels harder. I’ve really felt the suffering of the city. You can feel that people are struggling. It’s like ‘what do you do with too much money’?”
“Without the ocean, I feel fairly disconnected spiritually. It’s a place, even within a hustling and bustling city, where I’m able to connect on a deeper level to spirituality. I cry at the ocean all the time. I feel like I’m insignificant and very much held.”
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“What’s one of your favorite things about yourself?”
“That I’m very loving.”
“If I really really knew you I would know that you’re…”
“Fragile…and sensitive. I project a ‘I’ve got all of this together’ mentality. It’s a harder the shell softer the center type of thing.”
“What does the next year hold for you?”
“I got evicted in February from my home, my sanctuary, and it was harder than I thought it was going to be. My home was the one anchor that allowed me to take risks in so many ways so I had to get way more flexible and continue to take risks even if I didn’t have a single idea of what would happen. I have a dream to open an integrated community healing center but it’s not quite the time for me right now. I feel like I’m on the precipice of a lot of really exciting things and I don’t really know what any of them are.”