Upcoming Winter Events at the AYC

We have a few great events coming up this month and next.

First of all, this Friday, January 24th: Chinese New Year Celebration: Year of the Wood Horse


Come celebrate the Chinese New Year!! Presented by Golden Tiger Wellness and The Aurora Yoga Center. Always a great event with great food, entertainment, and prizes for attendees. Introduction to the Chinese New Year, Chinese Astrology, the upcoming Horse year, and more!! $30 price includes dinner, info, prizes, and fun. Drinks not included. RSVP ASAP: 630-346-5106. All people born in the Horse Year receive $10.00 off the price of admission! Yeeeehaw! 


Brian Lay of Golden Tiger Wellness – teaches Chinese Astrology at the AYC as well as practices massage therapy.  



Free Yoga Class for all levels of students on Thursday, February 6th, from 12:30-2:00p.m.

This free yoga class will be taught by the AYC Teacher Training Program Students with Jeff Manning’s supervision.

This is an opportunity for the Teacher Training Students to practice for their teacher training assessment test.

Please RSVP to this event or call: 630-730-1029 so that we have an idea of how many students to expect. You do not need to bring anything, just come in comfortable clothing.



Special Valentine’s Day Gong Meditation for your Heart.

Balancing, Healing, Calming, Connecting.

Discover a new level of meditation & experience healing on the cellular level. Since we are made up of a lot of water, the vibrations of the gong travel through your body, thoughts are quieted, and a deep meditation is reached.

Friday – February 14th

One Session: 6:30-7:30p.m.  $10 per person

Chocolate will be served!

RSVP: 630-730-1029 or stop by the studio to sign up





Aurora Yoga Center – You’ve come a long way baby!

The Aurora Yoga Center’s humble beginnings were in our basement.  Upon moving back to Aurora, after living several years on the West Coast, Jeff was anxious to get some yoga classes started.  This was January 2006, he was teaching in a couple of area gyms and not satisfied with the studio spaces and lack of yoga props and a rope wall.   The prop collection begins!   Since Jeff’s yoga teachings are alignment based, props are very important.  For example: if you can’t reach the floor, you bring the floor to you – put your hands on blocks or chairs in order to keep your spine in alignment.


Pictured above are students at the rope wall in our basement studio.  Notice all the hand-dyed Yoga Bones shirts all the students are wearing!   So great!  These dedicated students followed Jeff to the current yoga studio on Terry Ave.



(Students relaxing with help from the rope wall at the new studio, July 2009.)


Jeff found the perfect location for a studio, walking distance from home was a great perk too.  514 Terry Avenue is a one story, brown, brick building we rent from John McEnroe – no, not the high-tempered tennis player you are thinking of – but, the kind, local realtor whose Remax office is right next door to the studio.  John may have been skeptical of yoga at first, but his love of exercise and curiosity got the better of him – he’s been  walking over for class a couple of times per week for years now.  

It was so great to have a much bigger studio and a public space with a parking lot.   Not to mention, Lisa and the kids didn’t have to worry about their noise level at home anymore!  The Aurora Yoga Center opened up July 1, 2009.   However, the inaugural class was actually a workshop the last weekend in June 2009, taught by one of Jeff’s mentors: Gabriel Halpern of Chicago’s Yoga Circle.

Image(students in savanana during 1st workshop)



Gabriel has returned several times to teach inspiring workshops at the AYC.

In the basement, yoga classes were simply called ‘yoga class’ with Jeff Manning.  However, when the studio moved to it’s current location, it was named the Aurora Yoga Center.  This name pays homage to the Moscow Yoga Center where Jeff and Lisa first began their yoga training with Jeri Hudak while living in Moscow, Idaho.  Jeri is an amazing teacher who has traveled from Idaho to Illinois a couple of times to teach weekend long workshops at the Aurora Yoga Center.

Image (Moscow Yoga Center)


(Jeri teaching a workshop at the AYC)

From it’s humble beginnings in the basement 8 years ago, the Aurora Yoga Center has grown and served more students.  The current location at 514 Terry Ave, in Aurora, IL has been going strong for 55 months! – let’s hope that many more students make yoga a part of their lives and can reap the benefits of a regular practice at the AYC.

Peace & Love, 

Jeff & Lisa

AYC’s Featured Student January 2014: Bob Reynolds

Our first yoga student interview! – What a kind and great man, Bob Reynolds, a student at the Aurora Yoga Center who is a real person and regular guy…. not an overly bendy, 20 year old.  

Here is our interview with Bob, Enjoy,

Peace & Love, Lisa & Jeff


Bob Reynolds has been a student of Jeff Manning’s at the Aurora Yoga Center for over four years.   He began taking yoga at the AYC after it was recommended by his doctor, orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Jamil Jacobs-El of Dryer Medical Group in Aurora. 

Bob was experiencing pain in his hips, lower back, & knees.   His hips were his main concern and Dr. Jacobs-El recommended that Bob try working with Jeff at the AYC before doing any injections into his hips or less desirable yet, hip replacement surgery.

Coming to yoga has really helped to open up Bob’s hips, knees, hamstrings, & lower back.  Bob says, “The thing I think of is every time I leave here, I feel more comfortable, more open, less tight.   The relaxation is nice too.”

He describes how the four years of coming to yoga class has also made a difference in his posture, especially at work.  Bob remembers Jeff’s cues throughout the day and makes adjustments where necessary to his posture both standing and sitting.

 Image (Bob’s Triangle pose)

Bob describes feeling comfortable coming to yoga class:  “Jeff is patient with everyone’s different level or ability.  Jeff is able to adapt to me, what I can’t do that younger or more open people can.  That is what I really respect about him.”  

Bob Reynolds is a 59 year old accountant who also works part time as a sports writer for the Beacon News.  He has been involved in Aurora Boys Baseball’s Little League program for many years.  Bob is one of many, ‘regular’ yet, extraordinary people who practice at the AYC.

 Image (Bob’s Downward Facing Dog pose)

“There’s no measuring up here.  Just be yourself and do what you can at your own level.” – Bob Reynolds

Image(props make poses more accessible)


A place to start the new year…. with your toes!

Happy 2014!   Welcome to Aurora Yoga Center’s new blog!   We are hoping to share helpful & healthful information, stories about AYC students & teachers, photos, videos.  All in an effort to bring awareness and inspiration for a healthier life style.  We all have things we like and don’t like about ourselves… it’s easy to get caught in a negative cycle of wishing we were not so out of shape, not so heavy, not so stiff and sore, etc.   

You can start by focusing less on weight and fitness and more on how you feel.  Your weight will fluctuate with the seasons and other factors – but what can you do to feel better, less achey, when you move around.

Here’s a tip for starting 2014 on the right foot:  spread your toes!  That’s it.  20 times a day, preferably with your shoes off… spread those piggies apart.  Spread toes and hold open for 5 seconds.

Please join us for class at the Aurora Yoga Center.  All are welcome! – we come in all shapes, sizes, & ages.  The studio is fully stocked with mats and props, you just have to bring yourself in comfortable clothing & preferably on an empty stomach. 


Hope to see you soon at the AYC!

Peace & Love, 

Lisa & Jeff Manning