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  • Sarah Bodnar

There's actually only 2 birds!

Get to know one of them, Sarah,

Three Birds co-owner and co-lead instructor of our 200 hr yoga teacher training

People always ask us "who's the third bird?" and I try to respond with a witty answer but really it's just these two ole' birds, Christina and me. The studio name has meaning for each of us and when we first discussed what we would name our business the only option for me was Three Birds but I appeased my partner and went through the process of entertaining a gamut of options.

Sarah and her mom
Me and my mom

To me, when I think about Three Birds I am reminded of the lyrics to Bob Marley's song "Three Little Birds". The first line is "Don't worry about a thing cause every little things gonna be alright". Growing up I was a really anxious kid and well, I guess not much has changed except now I have better tools to manage it. As I look back all I can think is, my poor mother! I couldn't sleep at night, I came home "sick" from school all the time, I clinged to my mom like a magnet. She took it all in stride and had a way of easing my nerves. The “nervies” as I called them. One thing she did to help me get through the school day was to write little notes on a napkin and put them in my lunch bag. I remember one particular note that said "Every little thing’s gonna be alright". It made me laugh and gave me a mantra at the time to keep going.

When my mom passed away about ten years ago I already had a yoga practice and was teaching but what started as a practice for a nice yoga butt quickly turned into a practice of healing, crying, self discovery and yes, a way to calm my nervies. My yoga practice helped me process my loss and heartache and it also gave me the tools to quiet my mind, sit with my pain and ultimately find a little more peace.

Ribbon cutting at our South Orange studio
Ribbon cutting at Three Birds Yoga Studio,

Since that time, Christina and I opened two vibrant yoga studios. I completed over 500 hrs of yoga training, fell in love with yin yoga, studied functional yoga and yoga nidra, taught many classes in many styles, to an array of folk but, probably the most rewarding thing I've done, is lead multiple yoga trainings with my partner in crime Christina. My favorite thing about leading the training isn’t necessarily the weekends we share together, the topics we study or the enlightening conversations. The most rewarding thing is seeing my students' transformation, supporting them after training and seeing where this path takes them next.

We have hired multiple 3B teacher training grads, one of which told me during her teacher training interview that she was just doing it for herself and hated speaking in public. She now teaches 3 weekly classes at 3B and has this magnetic energy that draws her students to her. Another grad has taken to playing the harmonium and sits at the front of the room with poise and confidence. He’s evening leading a retreat at the end of the month!

Sarah leading our 200hr teacher training
Me leading our 200hr teacher training

Teaching was never on my radar. I managed a Starbucks, worked in the visual department at Toys "R" Us and planned large scale events for a real estate company. But it's possible that teaching is in my genes. My mom was a teacher and my sister is a teacher too, so maybe it was the natural progression of things. I like to think that my mom has been with me on this whole path like a bird sitting on my shoulder. Hmmm maybe it has been three birds all along 🐦🐦🐦.

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