• Giving Feels Good:

    A partnership with Africa Yoga Project

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    Why Africa Yoga Project

    My husband and I live in upstate New York with our six children and dog Bodhi.


    Helping others has always been my true joy.


    I passionately believe in Africa Yoga Project’s (AYP) approach of sharing yoga’s spiritual, physical, practical and replicable ways to empower generations of young people.


    I believe AYP's mission to elevate individuals and empower communities will create a ripple effect throughout Africa and the world.


    Because of this I'm committed to raising $10,000 to directly support the work being done in Kenya through AYP.


    At Lifeyum, I work to share yoga, mindfulness, and integrative life planning and nutrition (body, mind and soul) with people everywhere, especially our youth.


    This project is a reflection of the deepest intentions of my heart for people everywhere of all walks of life.


    I hope you'll join me. Every little bit counts.

  • Educate. Empower. Elevate.

    Be a part of the movement - How your donation helps


    clean drinking water for 5 of our free outreach classes


    one sign language interpreter to empower 20 deaf children through yoga


    20 yoga mats for one of our free outreach classes


    one yoga class and one free lunch for 30 female prisoners


    funds a month salary of one Africa Yoga Project teacher to empower others through yoga


    sponsors 4 Kenyan youth in a comprehensive and transformational week-long yoga teacher training

  • Donate Now

    Your contribution of any amount makes a difference!

  • AYP Benefit Events

    Feel good, do good

    Second Annual Yaksha Yoga & Wellness Retreat Weekend

    August 4-6, 2017 Stratton Mountain Resort, Vermont

    Settle, stretch, and unwind from your travels. Soften your gaze and your mind with this sequence of relaxing poses designed to release any lingering stress from your week. A perfect precursor to the healing gong bath!


    Explore what lights you up with poses that enhance creativity, calm, and joy. Steadiness, ease and curiosity are the guideposts. Includes guided visualization as well as a culminating luxurious relaxation into your true nature. Assisted by Mary Hawkins.


    Delighted to contribute my $350 stipend to AYP!

    Yaksha: Aug 26-28, 2016

    Stratton Mountain Resort, Vermont

    Calling all nature spirits!

    I taught an essentials workshop on relaxing into your greatness in the midst of a luminous line-up: Coby Kozlowski, Jennilee Toner, Meg Allen, Justin Wolfer, John Smrtic, and Katie Collins.


    Stratton Mountain is the site of Wanderlust Festival, one of my absolute favorites. Great yoga for everybody regardless of experience, green mountains, happy+friendly people, delicious local food, live+awesome music...a sweet weekend.

    Rise Yoga & Movement Arts Center

    Sat, June 11, 10-11:30 am with Camacha Wolfer, Saratoga Springs

    From Rise founder Justin Wolfer: "A moving presentation and practice from Lisa and Camacha for the Africa Yoga Project! This organization embodies yoga in action. Opening bodies and minds and creating opportunities to serve others across the world!"


    So grateful to Justin, Cammy, and their soulfully supportive Rise community. All proceeds from this special class go to Africa Yoga Project.

    Robert Sturman, artist/photografia

    May 25, 6:30-8:30 pm, Greenwich CT Lululemon Athletica

    The subject of two New York Times articles, Robert Sturman’s art captures the timeless grace and embodied mindfulness of asana. Robert shared his visual documentary of the Africa Yoga Project to a wonderful group of yogis at lululemon athletica in downtown Greenwich (Connecticut).


    Africa Yoga Project mentor and fellow ambassador Aimee Elsner led an invigorating practice on moving through change with power and ease. I guided a relaxing savasana, and we were thrilled to raise more than $700 for AYP!

    Spring Into Health Cooking Workshop

    April 25, 6-9 pm, Rexford NY

    A delicious evening and wonderful company cooking with real, beautiful food. Anouk and Danielle invited me to present a mini-Lifeyum session where we practiced breathing and relaxing exercises, chair yoga, power poses, and topped it with a little Desire Mapping.


    Afterward, we went into Anouk's gorgeous kitchen to prepare a gourmet feast with local and seasonal spring vegetables.


    Spring Into Health donated $190 to my Africa Yoga Project campaign. So grateful!

    Dance-inspired Workshop

    April 10 Yum Yoga with Amy and Lisa at Hot Yoga Spot, Latham NY

    Lisa and RYT/LMT/Movement Enthusiast Amy Adams led a two-hour introduction to Africa Yoga Project followed by a smooth, dance-inspired yoga exploration and relaxing guided savasana. Movement-discovering, body-stretching, and energy-cultivating opportunities with Amy’s yummy yoga flow.


    This event raised $375 for Africa Yoga Project; big thanks to our generous yogis and host The Hot Yoga Spot!

    Hilton Head Donation Class

    March 20 Hot Slow Flow with Lisa at Bikram Hot Yoga Hilton Head​

    The first day of Spring! Sunday, March 20, 4-6 pm.


    Beginning with an exclusive showing of a short film on Africa Yoga Project (AYP), I led a 75 minute groovy slow flow practice with a very relaxing guided savasana.


    BIG gratitude to Brandon and Heather and all the warriors for change in Hilton Head - such a great showing and successful fundraiser! We raised more than $600 for Africa Yoga Project!

    Journey Into Power February 27, 2016

    Hot Yoga Spot Clifton Park hosts Benefit Class​

    Thank you to all the big-hearted yogis who contributed with every muscle, especially their hearts. And to Sheryl Campbell for leading us through a heart-expanding, exhilarating Journey Into Power Baptiste practice!


    I'm filled with gratitude for being able to share the opportunity, hope and love being created in Africa through yoga!

  • A snapshot of Africa Yoga Project in action


    yoga teachers trained and employed


    yoga classes offered each week in 80 locations: the Shine Center and in prisons, schools, special need centers, HIV/AIDS support groups, deaf schools and rural villages


    Kenyans empowered each week

  • Learn more

    Give Love

    telling the story

    Robin O'Neill visited the slums of Nairobi with AYP to help build awareness and support for their mission. Music by MC Yogi.

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    The start

    Founder, paige elenson

    "I went into their neighborhoods and the informal settlements, and experienced firsthand their way of life living off $1 to $2 a day. It made me think about how I could support change in this community by offering yoga. With that thought, the idea of Africa Yoga Project was born.”

    Stretching Boundaries

    This mini-documentary follows three Kenyan yoga instructors with the AYP furthering their yoga studies in Tulum, Mexico.

  • my credo

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    Wear your support

    Feel good in this shirt knowing that you're doing good supporting Africa Yoga Project (100% of the proceeds directly benefit AYP)


    And of course you'll look good in your favorite style - tees, tank tops, or long-sleeve.

  • My path to Africa

    paved with intention to serve

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    We're wired for connection

    Fresh out of college in 1990 I had the privilege of working as a writer in the Executive Office of the President. One of best parts was a volunteer job with a tutoring program for inner city children, just a few blocks away from the White House.
    This picture with my little buddy Jason reminds me of the power of connecting with others, of knowing that you can have a positive impact just by being there.

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    Start at any age

    feel good, do good

    After a career in politics and navigating motherhood (six kiddos), yoga helped me find calm, joy, and a deeper connection to the people and ideas I'm passionate about. I've witnessed firsthand the positive effects on balance, flexibility, mindset and confidence, within my own family and in the communities where I've been honored to share yoga.

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    potential to thrive

    For 5+ years, our family has learned about life in Nairobi through the eyes of a sweet little girl and her family. They live in a tin house with a monthly income of about $80. It's hard to imagine being able to focus on school when there's not enough clean water or nourishment. Faith's name reminds us of what makes all the difference.

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    Africa to Albany

    practicing change

    Yoga Reaches Out Albany, NY, November 14 2015. I got to meet, hug, practice and dance with Irene and Margaret, two of AYP's 100+ trained teachers who embody transformation and shining your light.

  • Interested in learning more or collaborating on a benefit class or workshop?

    Yay! Send me a note using the form below

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  • About Lisa

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    Lisa C. O'Brien

    Founder, Lifeyum

    Lisa is a wellness and lifestyle coach to businesses and high impact individuals. She is also a yoga teacher, mindfulness advocate, health coach, experienced politico, wife to Daniel and mom to six nice people.

    Lisa has 25+ years experience as a thought leader and inspirational guide. Her classes, workshops, and retreats teach people how to have wildly fulfilling lives and relax into their greatness.

    Find out more at lifeyum.com.