Who we are 

 

Sandra Maurer

"Terra Firma creates a space where women can safely explore the connection between their mental and physical health, and build their own capacity for trusting the safe and solid ground beneath their feet, wherever they go."

 

Sandra is a Registered, Experienced Yoga Teacher with Yoga Alliance (E-RYT) through the Yoga Life Institute in Pennsylvania, Certified Birth Doula (Birth Arts International), BA in Art Therapy (Arcadia University), Trauma-Informed Yoga Trained through Center for Yoga and Trauma Recovery and Firefly Yoga International.  She has over 10 years teaching experience as a yoga instructor, and has worked for many years in mental health as a social worker and yoga teacher for the Emily Program.  She has additional training in Yoga for Anxiety & Depression (Yoga Center of Minneapolis) and Prenatal Yoga (Dhyana Yoga).

Her focus as a Trauma Support Specialist is on helping women feel empowered in their relationships with their bodies and honoring the connection between our mental and physiological health.

Sandra is committed to creating an inclusive and supportive space where women can deeply and authentically connect with the messages and wisdom of their bodies—a space free from competition, comparison, or emphasis on external measures of success or progress. Whether in recovery from an eating disorder, dealing with grief, loss, or stress, or recuperating from a traumatic event, our bodies are integral to our psychological and emotional healing.

Sandra is a mother of 3 children, one set of twins and lives with them and her husband near a big spruce tree in St. Paul, MN.  She believes that laughter, sleep, and water can solve most daily problems and is not afraid to use her New Jersey background to get real and honest with people.  She loves hiking and fireplaces and reading long books. 

Sandra says "I gave up long ago trying to make people "well" by my personal definition.  I learned as a doula that holding space for people is one of the most valuable gifts you can give them and that requires being present and willing to make mistakes. It also requires balance within and without. I hope I can continue to hold space for others for the rest of my life as they create their own paths of hope, transformation, and healing. "

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Angela Zaun Ollswang

"Our intention is to hold space for people to be with themselves in the moment. I see Terra Firma as a place free from “shoulds”—a place of choices and agency where women, trans-women and femmes are empowered and supported."

Angela is a certified facilitator of  Trauma Center Trauma Sensitive Yoga , also known as TCTSY.  TCTSY is an adjunctive clinical treatment for Complex Trauma & PTSD that was developed through the Trauma Center at Justice Resource Institute in Brookline, MA by Bessel van der Kolk, David Emerson & Jennifer Turner.  Angela is a Registered Yoga Teacher through Yoga Alliance and has completed an additional certification in Restorative Yoga. She enjoys teaching gentle, flowing sequences, providing accessible meditation lessons and often utilizes guided relaxation & imagery in her non-clinical offerings. Additionally,  Angela is  a Level II Reiki Practitioner through Devanadi School of Yoga & Wellness, and has completed an Herbalist Apprenticeship with Jessica Belden, Herbalist and owner of The Medicine Tree in Minneapolis.    

Angela believes that the intensity of life is part of what makes it beautiful, and that our capacity for joy is deepened by embracing the caverns that sorrow has carved into our hearts. She is committed to holding space for others to do the transformative work of embodied healing, in whatever way is most useful to them, and at a pace that they choose. She knows that each individual is an expert of their own experience, and hopes to empower her students by honoring their truth in each passing moment. 

As a fairly crunchy, tree-hugging mama of two girls, Angela tries to allow for her own humanity and humor to be present in her interactions. She knows that life is too short to be serious all the dang time. So don’t be surprised if you see her munching Doritos or hear her slip up and use a curse word. Her hope is that if she's authentic and honest, others will feel as though they can be as well. 

Angela's vision for Terra Firma is to create a safe, equitable place where women from all walks of life can be supported, seen, heard, honored and believed. 

Angela says, " I acknowledge that the work is never truly done, and I don’t pretend to have all of the answers. I will make mistakes, but believe that true failure only happens when you stop being open to feedback and learning new things, or refuse to take appropriate action. I hope you’ll join me on the mat some time! I’m sure there is much we could learn from each other. "


Photos: Anna Campbell of 1515AC photography