Birthwork and Yoga
Hello and welcome to my site. Thank you for your interest in the work I do.
I'm a birth and postpartum doula and Yoga teacher. I teach yoga all levels of Yoga asana, including prenatal and postpartum yoga, Yin. I am also a continued student, practitioner and teacher of meditation, mantra, Yoga history and philosophy -- all rooted in Yoga as a soteriological practice. I have over 10 years of teaching experience and training and my practice continues to evolve and deepen. You can see my Yoga page to sign up for classes with me. As a birth and postpartum doula, I work to help each client envision and experience the kind of birth they deserve, helping to inform, prepare and support them throughout their pregnancy journey into empowerment as a parent. It is with great humility and passion that I approach both, teaching Yoga and being a doula.
Yoga Teacher Leonora began teaching Yoga in 2010. She's taught for Barefoot Movement, the Yoga studio she is part owner of, corporate entities, not-for-profit organizations, schools, Yoga studios and for private clients, both in person and virtually. The foundation of all of Leonora's teachings stems from her belief that Yoga is a practice that can be used to help uncover the self while providing balance to one's physical, mental and emotional health and well-being. Her teaching influences come from an array of somatic healing modalities and other holistic practices: through Yoga asana, bodywork, acupuncture, martial arts, dance. Her teachers continue to teach her the ways of nature's grace in movement mechanics, anatomy, breath, art, history, philosophy, culture, social activism, compassion, healing touch, and above all respect for the practices one immerses in and the wisdom gifted to us within these practices. As an indigenous person of color, this value of respect is of tantamount importance. Also, as a previous academic within the post-secondary education institution in California, Leonora marries this Yogic instruction to its historical, cultural, philosophical history and roots. Email me if you'd like to find out more about how you can learn Yoga from me.
Leonora's desire to become a doula unfolded out of teaching prenatal yoga. Helping students throughout each stage of their pregnancy to prepare for labor and the birth of their child created this desire to continue to serve them through labor preparation, labor itself and the postpartum stage on into parenthood. Being a doula is an act of service, service to the individual moving through one of the most life-changing transitions one can experience, becoming a parent, and it is with great reverence and appreciation that Leonora fulfills this service. Leonora was trained within the Roots of Labor Birth Collective in 2018.
Dedication & Business Namesake
My business name, Daughter of Samoa, comes from the title of a book published in San Francisco in 1889, written by an ancestor of mine, Lauli'i Willis titled The Story of Lauli'i a Daughter of Samoa. In it she writes "I have been requested to give to the world a sketch of my life, including a description of my tropical native land, together with the domestic customs, habits, amusements and legends of the far-away country of Samoa. In doing so I have a two-fold object: One is to make other lands better acquainted with my people, and the other is, by means of the sale of this book (the profits of which are to be religiously devoted to said purpose), to practically aid in redeeming, as far as possible, the lands of which my people have been deprived, and, if possible, to restore to them the soil upon which they were born, and which, by hereditary descent and long occupancy, is theirs by right." I'm honored to follow in the tradition she set in sharing Samoan culture and through writing. She inspires me to the righteous call of indigenous lands being returned to indigenous people. She's also witty, charming and a force to be reckoned with -- all traits I aspire to.
THE STORY OF LAULI'I A DAUGHTER OF SAMOA