Kyla Pearce, MPH, RYT, CBIS, PhD candidate has blended her expertise as a yoga teacher and researcher to develop a TBI-focused yoga curriculum that integrates gentle yoga, meditation, breathing exercises, and psychoeducation. This curriculum, now offered in yoga studios across the US and Canada, is designed based on the science underpinning resilience, and empowers people with TBI to become more active participants in their healing process.
Training: Since the inception of the LYB Yoga program in 2015, Kyla has trained over 350 yoga teachers and clinicians in how to adapt yoga and meditation for TBI, including physical, cognitive, and social modifications. Specifically, Kyla leads 16-hour trainings which are designed for yoga teachers interested in being certified to teach in our program, as well as clinicians who want to gain knowledge and skills in how to integrate gentle yoga and meditation into their clinical practice.
Teaching: Kyla draws on her direct experience teaching yoga, breathing exercises, and meditation to groups of individuals with TBI and their support people since 2014. She has been an invited faculty at several conferences related to using yoga for improving physiological and psychosocial outcomes, including at the Yoga for Traumatic Stress Conference in Sedona, AZ and the Yoga Service Conference in Rhinebeck, NH. Kyla also curates and contributes to the LoveYourBrain Foundation’s Meditation Movement, a series of TBI-focused audio-recorded meditations available for free on the LoveYourBrain Foundation’s website.
Research: As a doctoral student at Dartmouth College, Kyla also leads LoveYourBrain’s research portfolio in the application of yoga and meditation for community-based rehabilitation for TBI. She led the design and implementation of a pilot evaluation of an 8-week gentle yoga program from people affected by brain injury, which was recently published in the peer-reviewed journal, Brain Injury. She is currently the Principle Investigator of a qualitative study exploring the experiences of participants in the LoveYourBrain Yoga program. To support clinicians to integrate yoga and meditation into their clinical practice, she also conducts academic presentations (e.g., Brain Injury Rehabilitation Conference) and in-service presentations (e.g., Craig Hospital, Shepherd Center, Scripps Memorial Hospital) describing the evidence of using these practices to support TBI rehabilitation.
Our clinician-focused trainings also include:
Jackie Farrell, MS, OTR/L, RYT-200 is an occupational therapist and LoveYourBrain yoga teacher. Jackie works full time as an occupational therapist in a specialized outpatient clinic in Massachusetts with a focus on neurological rehabilitation and community re-entry. Jackie has been involved with LoveYourBrain since 2015, and has been offering the LYB ‘FUNdamentals’ series in Boston on a quarterly basis since 2016.
Clinical Experience: As an occupational therapist, Jackie has experience in working in neurological rehab throughout the continuum of care. She participates in ongoing continuing education tailored to neurological rehabilitation and the applications of yoga and meditation as a therapeutic modality.
Teaching: Jackie's goal as a teacher is to encourage her students to tune in to the way their body changes everyday, and to empower her students to feel comfortable in modifying their practice based on their current needs. She is passionate about making yoga accessible for all of her students and about sharing the evidence-based benefits of yoga for the TBI community. Jackie also contributes to the LoveYourBrain Foundation’s Meditation Movement and LoveYourBrain Tips, both available for free on the LoveYourBrain Foundation’s website.
Training: Since 2016, Jackie has offered the LYB ‘FUNdamentals’ series to over 80 individuals with a TBI and their caregivers in the Boston area. She has also assisted the LoveYourBrain Foundation’s first yoga teacher training at the nationally recognized Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health in 2017.