Finding a Wilder Flow with Rocky Lavoie
Rachelle “Rocky” Lavoie has been transplanted like a pacific northwest pine from Portland, Oregon, to SLC and back over the years, returning to our neck of the woods only this last spring. Lavoie is a holistic healer in every sense of the term, bringing multimodal and transformative yoga, sound bath and sensory traditions into her expressive mind, soul and body work. WildFlow is the core of Lavoie’s offerings, a local small business finding ways to keep doing the work during particularly trying times. “Blessed to have a backyard, I held socially distanced outdoor yoga, sound bath and cacao ceremonies during this summer and early fall. I’ve adapted offerings to both virtual and small in-person circles,” she says. Lavoie speaks to the soul of her practice and her vision of how healing can happen with an abundance of passion. “Sometimes we encounter adversaries like physical or mental resistance. I believe that we deserve to be our healthiest, realest, most authentic selves on all levels of this human experience,” she says.
“Death and grief are part of the human experience, but our culture seems to be grief-illiterate and death-phobic.”
WildFlow’s mission is all about deep integration and reconnection with our most native human truths. “Nature has rhythms and seasons; so do we,” she says, speaking to the dynamics that underpin that mission. Nature’s tempestuous tendencies have merely deepened Lavoie’s devotion to the work, including her experiences as a death doula and reiki practitioner. “Death and grief are part of the human experience, but our culture seems to be grief-illiterate and death-phobic,” she says. Lavoie received certification through H.E.L.D. (Help from an End of Life Doula) in how to support individuals and their families in death. “It really opened my eyes to the need for that in our culture. I also offer Usui reiki energy work. This type of energy work invites the client into deep relaxation and anxiety relief that ultimately gives their body and mind a break to come back into balance,” says Lavoie.
WildFlow emerged organically, Lavoie says. “It started shortly after challenging myself to learn guitar and sing in public back in 2012. I started with mantras and songs at the end of my yoga classes. I remind students that the sound is as [real time] and intuitively moving as their bodies are.” During her classes, Lavoie’s WildFlow students are awash in an array of sensory experiences that tap into the somatic mysteries of the human form and its connected capacity for wellness. “The feedback from students is that they felt shifts in their mental and physical well-being, even after our sessions into the rest of their week,” says Lavoie. “I’ve helped clients on their healing journeys through physical things like realigning their spine with scoliosis, post-surgery rehabilitation and helping peak-performing athletes with balance and recovery. Many have shared that these practices helped alleviate their symptoms of anxiety and depression.”
“Self-care and thoughtful integration of our bodies and minds will be critical now more than ever.”
Although WildFlow’s programming has had to shift with the times, it continues to expand and deepen while maintaining core concepts that Lavoie attests have been key to her and her students’ process. “We typically practice in a circle (or a sphere if practitioners are also attending virtually) in the spirit of community and togetherness,” she says. The newest “Crystal Class” series provides courses based on student’s goals for calming, enlivening or specific exploration. “Students can expect chill and grounding experiences or an energizing, strengthening experience, as in the Pyrite Power class,” she says. WildFlow will also be offering free bi-monthly classes called “Sapphire Society” with unique themes each night. “Whether it’s breathing exercises for stress-relief, how to make cacao or a musical showcase, it’s a fun time to gather in cyber space or safely in person,” says Lavoie.
Beyond the present and precious moments for Lavoie and her students, there’s a bright near future for WildFlow. Remaining spiritually unhampered by the limitations of this year, Lavoie has her creative and intuitive eye on the next steps. “Once hybrid online classes get rolling, I’d love to offer workshops and eventually a 200-hour yoga teacher training,” she says. “When we are able to gather safely in the community once again, I’d love to offer music, yoga and art events with my mover and shaker friends throughout SLC. There may even be more recorded offerings like on-demand yoga classes, music, podcasts and radio shows,” she says. In a frosty season of the (ostensibly) last stretch of a grueling pandemic, grounding and rejuvenating spaces like WildFlow can craft a warm shelter in the cold of this winter. Self-care and thoughtful integration of our bodies and minds will be critical now more than ever. Perhaps Lavoie and her tuneful, moving and attentive options can help sustain sanity and stability as we await the greatest thaw of a lifetime.
Learn and explore more of Rocky Lavoie’s WildFlow mind & body wellness programming at thewildflow.com.