Transforming Lives through Yoga: Yoga teaches us to cure what need not be endured and endure what cannot be cured. – B. K. S. Iyengar
Sep 29, 2017 02:56PM
In 1989, Tracey Pagan was in a car accident that transformed her life—for worse, and then for better.
With severe spinal injuries, nerve damage and a brain injury, Pagan’s medical prognosis was discouraging, and traditional Western medicine wasn’t helping her pain. In desperation, she turned to yoga, studying and training under a number of senior Iyengar Yoga teachers, including Bobbi Goldin and Joan White.
Slowly, steadily, she made progress.
“Within a few years, under their exceptional guidance, I was able to fully recover from my injuries,” she says. “This deep healing is what moved me to share what I had experienced with others.”
Pagan began teaching yoga in 1994, transitioning to therapeutic work in 2007. As a yoga therapist, her focus is on the individual: after an initial intake session, she meets with clients one on one, developing programs to address their specific needs.
She has helped clients find relief from various health issues, including Parkinson’s disease, fractures, spinal injuries, nerve damage and traumatic brain injury, and supported clients through cancer treatment and even the end-of-life process.
Other clients ask Pagan to help them improve something they’re already good it. She’s helped elite athletes like marathoners and cyclists reach their maximum for and efficiency; shown vocalists how to deepen their connection between breath and body; and worked with professional musicians, including pianists, cellists, guitarists and even an English horn player, teaching them skills to balance their asymmetry.
All the while, Pagan has furthered her own yoga practice—par for the course for this voracious reader and lifelong learner.
“Over the years, I’ve studied with prominent teachers of various schools of yoga,” she says. “I’ve been heavily influenced by the work of the Vietnamese Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh and the contemplative Thomas Merton, and my work is deeply informed by my graduate studies in psychoanalysis—specifically Alice Miller and Bessel Van der Kolk’s work in emotional trauma held in the physical body.” She is trained and experienced in crisis intervention for victims of sexual assault, PTSD and chronic or systemic trauma.
In addition to working with clients, Pagan offers instruction to current yoga teachers looking to deepen and advance their own practices and teaching skills. She serves clients in Westchester and the surrounding counties, including New York City, in person and via FaceTime.