Laura Matthews is a Certified Clinical Herbalist specializing in women’s health, pediatric care and cancer. A Licensed Massage Therapist, Teacher of Maya Abdominal Massage and Certified Iyengar Yoga Teacher, Laura’s approach towards optimal health is holistic and integrative, by combining plants, healing touch and correct posture. Born and raised in colorful Colorado, Laura graduated from Fort Lewis College (2002) in Durango, with a degree in Psychology. During this time, Laura studied as an apprentice to herbalists’ and naturopathic physicians and began practicing as an herbalist in the community.
After years of working with plants and in herbal apothecaries, Laura went on to attend the Southwest School of Botanical Medicine (2004) (www.swsbm.com), in Bisbee, Arizona; taught by the legendary Michael Moore. Laura is currently studying the Herbal Medicine for Women program, taught by Aviva Romm (www.avivaromm.com), which certifies graduates as a Women’s Herbal Medicine Educator. Laura attended the Massage Therapy Institute of Colorado (2003) (www.mtic.edu) and has studied with Dr. Rosita Arvigo on the Maya Abdominal Massage (MAM) techniques (www.arvigotherapy.com).
Laura is a Certified MAM Self-Care Massage Teacher (2006) and offers workshops regularly around the country. From the age of 16 years old, Laura began studying Iyengar yoga. In 2007 Laura travelled to Pune, India to study at the Ramamani Iyengar Memorial Yoga Institute (www.bksiyengar.com). She lived there for over two months and attended classes taught by B.K.S Iyengar, Sri Prashant and Smt. Geeta Iyengar. Laura became certified as an Introductory Level 2 teacher in 2010. The Iyengar family embody ancient wisdom and their work has healed millions of people the world over.
Laura’s regular yoga classes and workshops can be found at The Iyengar Yoga Center of Denver (www.iyengaryogacenter.com) and Belly Bliss (www.bellybliss.org). Laura has traveled around the world to live, study, learn and teach the natural lifestyle of ancient healers.
Joan Fessenden: B.Sc. Human Nutrition, Certified Clinical Herbalist
Joan earned her Master Herbalist Certification with Integrative Earth Medicine Herbal Medicine
(http://integrativeearthmedicine.com )where she studied with Brigette Mars and Luke Terry as well as many other gifted Herbalists. She also worked with several herbalists and a naturopath while living in New Zealand for 2 years.
Always drawn to nature and curious about the healing and nourishing properties of plants Joan grew up in Wyoming where she spent summers working her Grandmother’s kitchen garden and gathering berries and mushrooms in the surrounding fields and forests. She went on to gain a Bachelor’s degree in Human Nutrition and Biochemistry from the University of Utah. Shortly after graduation she moved to South Africa where she and her husband raised 2 children. While living in Africa Joan worked as a fitness and nutrition instructor. When she returned to the U.S. and settled in Denver she worked for Natural Grocers for 8 years where she realized that the products that most interested her were plant based. This led to her pursuit of formal Herbal training.
She considers herself a lifelong learner and is intrigued by the union of tradition and modern science. Plant medicine is great for that. We have the traditions of ancient healers and wise women who understood the importance of a holistic approach to healing and health. Increasingly we see science “rediscovering” much of what our grandmothers taught us; backing up that traditional knowledge with impressive data and refining our ability to use the medicine in the plants.
Joan has a special interest in the area of adaptogen herbs and immune system support. She believes that supporting and optimizing our natural defenses with good food, stress management, movement and herbs is the best way to meet the challenges of our rapidly changing modern world.