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About Stella

Stella ValenteIn a style all her own, Stella teaches yoga as a joyful exploration and journey to the self. As a student of yoga since 1996 she has taught over 5,000 classes, teacher trainings, workshops and retreats. Her influences come from many different styles of yoga and many great masters of Ashtanga, Iyengar and Sivandana. Her primary teachers have been Annie Carpenter, Lisa Walford, Steven Freedman and Paul Tzslious.

She encourages students to be more conscious from moment to moment, to explore their own true nature and divine inner power through a thoughtful blend of asana, pranayama, zen philosophy and humor.

Drawing from her experience as a writer, performer and stand up comic, Stella brings a playful spirit to her classes complimented by her no no-nonsense NY edge. Her open and warm personality make her classes accessible and enjoyable to all levels.

She believes in the consistency of practice and working smart. “Consistency is the key that opens doors and turns your life dramas into triumphs of human spirit and eventually into comedies!”

You can take classes with Stella at her studio in Laurel Canyon (Yoga in the Canyon), Equinox clubs in West Hollywood, West Los Angeles, Encino and Westwood, on the lot of Jim Henson movie studio, and at Yogaworks. You may have seen her on Fox News as “The Stretch Expert” and on MTV’s “Next” teaching couples yoga.

Stella is a featured teacher at LuluLemon Athletica, a Manduka ambassador, and can be seen on stage, in TV, film and commercials. She also tours with her one-woman show, “Shut Up and Dance!” a tour de force on how to dance with life before you whirl right out of here.

In Her Own Words

I grew up in Queens, NY.  No one was doing yoga there except a few baby boomers reliving their hippie daze.  In my Italian family, you had to shout to be heard.  Let’s just say it was a challenging place for finding peace by any standards.

I love to dance.  It was through dance I found yoga but I didn’t care for it. The last thing I wanted to do was slow down or take a deep breath.  I couldn’t focus long enough to listen how to do it.

It wasn’t until years later I was reintroduced to yoga and it wasn’t by own volition.  My lawyer suggested it.  He thought it may help me and my case.  I had been arrested for disorderly conduct in an appliance store. Yes, that’s right, some of us learn things the hard way. (I tell all in my show, “Shut Up and Dance!”) This embarrassing event made me realize that something needed to change and the change had to come from within.

I started a daily regimen of yoga and it changed my perspective in the most positive ways.  I learned to breathe deeply which helped me to focus and sit still long enough so I could write.  I’ve written lots of stand up comedy, articles in magazines and newspapers, a sitcom, a short film, a one hour dramedy, a book, “Yoga So You Wanna,” an account of why I began yoga and how it’s more that just about a good stretch class. I wrote and perform my one woman show, “Shut Up and Dance!”

Yoga, pranayama (breathing), writing and performing have helped me realize my true potential, my authentic self.  Om Shanti!

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