Most people imagine headstands and twisted poses when they hear the word yoga. Yoga however, is much more than that. Becoming flexible and strong are things that yoga provides, but when you are facing the fear of a potentially terminal diagnosis, it is yoga’s ability to calm your mind that gets you through. Taking charge of your thinking, learning gratefulness, changing your diet according to your current condition, and breathing in specific ways that alleviate symptoms, are all part of yoga.

Ten years ago, I attended my eldest daughter’s junior high school graduation in a wheelchair. My autoimmune condition had gotten so bad that I couldn’t drive or take care of my children, and many times had to crawl on the floor to make it down the hall to my bedroom. After three years of learning and practicing gentle yoga, I attended my youngest daughter’s graduation at the same school....only this time I walked proudly and even energetically up the school’s staircase.

Fast forward to July of 2016. Just as my private yoga therapy business was taking off, I was diagnosed with a second chronic illness---stage III colon cancer. During the months of treatment that followed, I  once again delved deep into my yoga practice. One year after surgery, I was back on my feet with no metastasis.

The health of people with chronic illnesses waxes and wanes for all different reasons. But I believe that, in both recovery cases, my dedication to yoga had everything to do with my own return to a functional person. 

My own yoga journey began in 2007 with a private yoga therapy session, in which I was unable to do more than lay flat on a yoga mat and just breathe. After experiencing unexpected improvements in my health when I practiced yoga, my curiosity about “how yoga works” lead me to enroll in a 200-hour teacher training program. Because I am empiricist at heart (holding degrees in psychobiology and science teaching), I was fascinated by how such simple yoga movements and subtle breath work could heal the body as well as the mind. I went on to become a 500-hr registered yoga teacher, as well as studied yoga therapy for three and a half years through Loyola Marymount University’s Yoga Therapy Rx Program. After completing my yoga therapy practicum with International Association of Yoga Therapy (IAYT) President Amy Wheeler, and logging hundreds of hours with individual clients, I became a certified yoga therapist (C-IAYT). In group classes as well as private sessions, I teach a combination of gentle, “Iyengar-inspired” Hatha yoga and yoga in the Krishnamacharya tradition, with an emphasis on proper alignment, movement coordinated with breath.

I am now the owner of Pause for a Pose Yoga Therapy, so named because I strongly believe that simply pausing and noticing how you are doing, and becoming aware of what patterns (physical or mental) might have led you to where you are now, can help bring immense positive changes to your health and wellbeing. My degrees in psychobiology and special education allow me to work with clients ranging from an 80-year-old student with a hip replacement to a 5-year-old with ADD. I have special expertise in treating people with fibromyalgia and/or chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS/ME/SEID) as well as helping people through the initial phases of cancer diagnosis. In group classes as well as private sessions, I teach a combination of gentle, “Iyengar-inspired” Hatha yoga and yoga in the Krishnamacharya tradition, with an emphasis on proper alignment and movement coordinated with breath.

When I am not teaching yoga, I am an assistant teacher at a local elementary school, working four mornings a week with kindergarten through 6th graders on their language arts skills and running the school newspaper. I am also a mother of two lovely adult daughters  (who I miss terribly!) and the owner of a small “yoga therapy dog” who you may meet during a private session.  When I have more than a free moment, I work in my garden, spend time writing, or (more often than not) peruse the latest yoga therapy books and journals that explain the “science” behind yoga, or rather how the Western medicine world believes yoga might help heal.

Although there are still days when I battle some of the symptoms of chronic illness, I can say that illness no longer defines my fact it enhances it, allowing me to help others in the same or similar circumstances.

I invite you to explore the benefits of yoga with me, and allow me to help you live with unpredictable wellness!

Cheers and Namaste,

Simone Palmieri

Yoga Therapist, C-IAYT

Yoga Instructor, E-RYT 500

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About Pause for a Pose--Simone’s Story

Welcome to

Pause for a Pose Yoga Therapy




Sacramento, CA


Helping you live with unpredictable wellness