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Lauren Darnell is a Crescent City native, creator of the non-profit Yoga Power Play, co-founder of Park Yo Mat and Free To Be Power Yoga School.  Immediately drawn into the practice of yoga in 2007 to initially rehabilitate a hip injury, Lauren quickly found the benefits of a regular power yoga practice to be profoundly heart-awakening and life changing.  Since 2009, Lauren has assisted and trained with several Master teachers including world-renowned instructor Baron Baptiste and master children’s yoga instructor Jodi Komitor of Next Generation Yoga.  Drawing on her yoga experience from around the world including Hot Power Yoga London, transformational programs from the Concord Institute, and lifelong study of teaching movement that has included tennis instruction, and research at the University of Iowa involving linguistics and movement through dance, she brings a wealth of knowledge to her classes and programs.

Lauren believes that yoga is a powerful tool for play, expansion of the body, and a way to step into being powerful on and off the mat. She created Yoga Power Play (YPP) with the objective of providing yoga classes in schools around New Orleans to children ages 9-13 to increase emotional, mental, and physical strength. With an unwavering commitment to creating possibility for others and elevating her community, Lauren teaches with the intention of giving students the tools they need to listen to their bodies, challenge the known, and reach beyond their personal limitations. Through classes that utilize creative play, empowering language and themes, Lauren continues to inspire positive action, and support her students and her city in creating a powerful foundation for whole life health.