Hi! My name is Emily Pearl Alfano, founder of Red Barn Wellness. After almost two decades, I have returned to the Berkshires of western Massachusetts, to create this very special place for health, healing and growth.
In 2010, I left my 8-year career (and comfort zone) as an Environmental Scientist, gave away all of my possessions, ended a long-term relationship, and embarked on a solo-journey to the other side of the world. Crazy, right?! Well, for such a blessed soul I had noticed I spent an awful lot of my life suffering. I knew there had to be something more to this existence, I knew I needed to heal, and I wanted to uncover the truth...
I spent the next 3 years traveling and studying with master teachers of yoga and Buddhism. I approached it all with the mind of a scientist, determined to uncover what works best for health of mind and body. Making my body the experiment, I dove into nutrition, meditation, yoga and the subtlety of the energetic world. I lived in ashrams in India and spent 3-months in the jungles of Thailand studying the science of yoga at the Pyramid Yoga Centre. I acknowledged my gifts of sensitivity and nurtured my intuition. I studied many healing arts and eventually became a Shamballa and Reiki Master.
My quest for knowledge led me to the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, the World's Largest Nutrition School, where I graduated in December of 2012. In 2013, I began my yoga therapy studies with the Wisdom Method School of Yoga, while concurrently creating Red Barn Wellness. I am now have my 700-hr Yoga Therapy Certification, in addition to my 500-hr Chakra Yoga Certification and 200-Hr It's Yoga- Ashtanga Yoga Certification.
Through my many trainings, retreats, and travel experiences I've learned how food, meditation and yoga can make a huge difference in ones health- mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual. I am honored to teach the tools I've learned, and to bring fantastic teachers here to Red Barn, to help us all feel better, age gracefully, and shine brightly!
Elizabeth has practiced yoga, meditation, recovery spirituality and other disciplines for 25 years, and has been a massage therapist and transition coach for over 10 years. She was amazed and inspired by how her own neck and shoulder injuries healed more quickly with regular yoga and bodywork, but she also loves how grounded emotionally and spiritually she feels after a session.
She has taught gentle, beginner & restorative yoga classes in many studios as well as private individual and group sessions. She received additional certification in Jnana Yoga, the yoga of self-inquiry, to further facilitate the integration of body, mind, and spirit for students and clients.
Elizabeth works gently with beginning and physically limited students, and also with people facing life transitions, and with the addictive mind and body. She loves to share how yoga (and bodywork) is one of the best ways to build a strong physical foundation for the mind to more quietly focus and for the spirit to move more freely.
Asana practice with self-inquiry (Jnana Yoga) principles creates a space for anyone to honor and hold whatever life presents to us as a challenge or a joy, with more ease and grace.
Hi! My name is Katherine (but most people call me Kado) and I feel so privileged to be a part of Red Barn Wellness, a place that promotes healing and community. Like Emily, I moved away from the Berkshires and the NW Corner for awhile before coming to my senses and moving back!
I’ve spent that last six years exploring the world of health and fitness as a certified personal trainer and teacher in New York City, and in 2014 decided to get my license in massage therapy from the Swedish Institute of Health Sciences. I love combining the subtly powerful and restorative aspects of movement and body work with the physically and mentally challenging elements of training and athletics.
I’ve come to realize that by creating space for both “working in” and “working out” in my habits of self-care, I increase my capacity to handle life’s tougher, scarier moments with resilience and courage. And sometimes I just cry or yell or sigh or write and that works too.
My favorite ways to work out are: riding my bike, hiking, climbing trees, swinging kettlebells around, stringing together bodyweight “flows” (think fitness choreography!), playing ice hockey.
My favorite ways to work in are: Qigong, receiving acupuncture, practicing Shiatsu, singing, writing, gardening, reading.
Celeste J. Ross, MA, GCFP, CSP, HHC
Celeste weaves her knowledge of the Feldenkrais® Movement Method, Nutrition, CranioSacral and Integrative Health with self-care practices to provide a unique approach in companioning others along their healing journey and in finding their optimal state of health. She works with infants and elders and everyone one in between. Whatever the issue, she brings her curiosity and acceptance to meet each individual where they’re at in their journey and creates an innovative way to cultivate greater well-being, ease of movement and more vitality in their lives. Among many other integrative health certifications, Celeste holds a Master’s Degree in Health Arts and Sciences.
Mikayla grew up in Stockbridge not 10 minutes away from Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health where she currently works full time in the Healing Arts Department and received her 200hr Kripalu yoga teacher certification. She was introduced to Kripalu yoga during a high school alternative physical education course in which Kripalu was studying the effects of yoga on students’ academic performance and personal lifestyle. She has now been practicing yoga for 8 years and continues to use the practice to further spiritual and physical growth.
Mikayla lived in northern Thailand for 6 months while traveling, studying Buddhist meditation and Usui reiki. She then went on to travel India for one month and stayed in the Anand Prakash ashram in Rishikesh studying with the ashrams teachers to further her physical practice. Mikayla is now a reiki master and continues to learn about other forms of energy healing in the hopes that she can eventually tie them in with her teaching.
Mikayla holds a bachelor degree of science in Kinesiology from University of Massachusetts Amherst, giving her in depth knowledge of the body in regards to anatomy and physiology. She enjoys teaching “from the inside out” with subtle body and anatomy cues to ensure proper and safe alignment. Mikayla encourages students to find what works and feels best as they know their bodies better than anyone else. She loves teaching gentle and nourishing classes that aid in bringing the mind back into stillness, ease, and comfort despite the hectic world we live in. She feels that self-care is of the utmost importance and she provides an opportunity to play and explore with postures to create space and foster growth in the mind body.
Hello, my name is Zoey Wagner. I was around 10-years-old when I took my first yoga class, and continued the practice on through high school. In my college years my practice dwindled as running and weight lifting took its place. In College I changed my major semester after semester, alternating between art, nutrition, and physical therapy. I knew I wanted to do something that would give back to others but none of these areas of study felt right within me.
In the summer of 2015 I suffered a back injury that forced me to give up running and weight lifting for months, which thankfully lead me back to yoga. Yoga helped tremendously with the pain (both physical and mental) I went through as I healed. Becoming a yoga teacher was something I’d thought about in the past but I knew then that it was something I wanted to take on. In the spring of 2016 I went to Kripalu Center for Yoga and obtained my 200 hour yoga teacher training. Since then I’ve taken on private yoga clients and spent some time this past summer working at a yoga studio in New Hampshire. I taught five days a week to men going through a drug and alcohol addiction recovery program. The experience was truly inspiring. Being able to see the positive impact my work had on others was deeply rewarding and I am thankful for my time there.
My approach to yoga is centered around making the experience all about you. It’s your practice, no one else’s and no one else knows what feels good in your body better then you. I implement this by guiding relaxation, matching breath with movement and creating body awareness, empowering each individual to feel in control of their practice. I’m beyond grateful to now be here at Red Barn Wellness, I so look forward to meeting some new people and growing together!