PRYT Celebrates its First IAYT Program Graduates!

Ayano Atsumi and Stephanee Howell, Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy’s 1st IAYT Program Graduates

“I’m so pleased to announce the completion and graduation of Ayano Atsumi and Stephanee Howell from our 900 hour, IAYT-Accredited Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapist Certification Program.  They are our first two graduates from this extensive program and I’ve had the pleasure to work with both of these students in various stages of their training.  I can affirm their diligence, professionalism, and passion in their work.  I’m sure they will both be a credit to both the Yoga Therapy profession and to Phoenix Rising as they embark on their careers.  Join me in a shout out of good wishes and well done to Ayano and Stephanee.”

– Michael Lee, Founder and Dean of PRYT School of YT


“Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy training has been a continuous journey of diving deeper and deeper into myself. The safe space held by experienced faculties and supportive peers have allowed me to be open and vulnerable to fully feel and experience things happening within me. Sometimes it was very difficult and painful. Sometimes it was joyful and beautiful. Through these explorations, I have developed deeper visceral knowing of what it means to be in a process, became aware of different layers of myself and taken in each and every part of me. While I truly appreciate PRYT community and knowledge and skills I learned through the training, the biggest impact PRYT created in my life is that I found a way to reconnect with my ‘self.’ To those who are currently in training, I am confident that what is present for you right now is the perfect experience for you… please enjoy them fully! 

I currently offer yoga classes and yoga therapy sessions locally in Colorado Springs and Manitou Springs, Colorado. While I don’t specialize in a specific population, I’m hoping to work more with family members and friends of those who suffer with addiction.”

Ayano Atsumi, 2018 IAYT Program Graduate


“Ayano dove deeply into the program from the start, taking on not only the certification curriculum ut simultaneously supporting Phoenix Rising’s first Level 3 offering in Japan by helping to translate program materials into Japanese.  A beautiful personification of the essence of Phoenix Rising, she shared with her learning community how the foundational philosophical underpinnings of this work intersect with that of her Japanese culture.  She often wove the two together for all to experience, at one point leading her learning group through an origami experiential.  Omedetōgozaimasu, my friend.  I’m so pleased to see you among our first IAYT Accredited program graduates!

Bev Johnson, Yoga Therapy Program Faculty, Level 3 Course Director


I am thrilled to be completing my IAYT track with Phoenix Rising.

This work as a yoga therapist has fulfilled a passion to serve, a passion to learn the fine art of deep listening, and a passion to offer mindfulness as a way of life. 
Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy offered a robust program in innovative mind/body care. I continually apply these tools- developing my skills of trust and compassion.
Those new to the PRYT track may benefit from remembering to continually release any attachment to the outcome of therapy while still attending to the myriad details of your client’s full experience.
I work in my community as a yoga teacher and yoga therapist- working with private clients and groups. My focus is primarily on those touched by cancer and PTSD. I teach specialized classes in Mindfulness, Restorative, and Living Well with Cancer- all with a blend of Phoenix Rising and Kripalu elements.
I also work with Livestrong at the YMCA- a cancer rehab program. I am developing an evidence-based yoga program for those in treatment and beyond.
I hope to implement a similar program in my healthcare community.
Please see my website for additional info.” 

Stephanee Howell, 2018 IAYT Program Graduate

“Stephanee embraced this work with awe and creativity.  She found a way to weave it into her art-inspired services that deepened the therapeutic depth she was able to deliver.  Working primarily with her local cancer community, Stephanee uses Phoenix Rising – in both individual and group formats – to provide vital therapeutic support and relief to her clients struggling through the stress of their cancer diagnosis and onerous treatment journey.  Congratulations, Stephanee, on being among our first IAYT Accredited program graduates!  I am so pleased to have you representing us in this way and making the difference that you are.”

Bev Johnson, Yoga Therapy Program Faculty, Level 3 Course Director