M - Th 9 am - 4 pm, Fr 10 am - 1:30 pm Sat/Sun CLOSED


6840 S. Macadam Ave. Portland, OR 97219


Teacher Training

Our 2023-24 Program

Join Julie, Beth, Laila, and Hope for our Teacher Training program in the Gudmestad Method. We offer this training every other year, so that we can provide Continuing Education opportunities in the alternate years.

Our method emphasizes proper form and alignment, balancing strength and flexibility, building endurance, and developing self-awareness through precise movement, posture, and breath. With this as the foundation for practice, we believe students are primed to experience yogic philosophy; safe, accessible practice allows for integration of new sensations and clears pathways for new ideas.

In developing a program to train teachers, we start with these long-held beliefs. We will impart a solid anatomical knowledge base to inform trainees’ ability to craft intelligent sequences. Our approach to Technique, Training, and Practice is to demonstrate that knowledge, strength, and consistency are key to a lifelong practice of yoga. For Professional Essentials, trainees will be steeped in our methodology of precision and repetition, so that they have the skills and confidence to lead a safe practice.

Finally, it is our intent to weave the threads of yogic philosophy throughout the program, using the experience of the physical practice as analogy for the deeper yogic journey. Our approach to Yoga Humanities will be to explore foundational concepts presented in the yoga sutras, and allow the practice to reinforce the ancient wisdom.

Our program has been over 30 years in the making. We are excited and honored to further the teachings of yoga in our community.

Information Sessions

Join us for an information session on our upcoming 200-hour teacher training program. We’ll cover program details, give a little preview of what you can expect, and reserve plenty of time for Q&A. Sign up at the bottom of the page.

Wednesday, July 12          6:00 – 7:30 pm

We are excited to offer discounts on our Teacher Training and Anatomy Awareness in Asana Week at the informational session. Register at the session and receive:

$100 off the Teacher Training early-bird price
$50 off the Anatomy Week price
$250 off Teacher Training & Anatomy Week combined
(Payment in full is not required at the session)

Our Team

The Paxson Yoga Center team of lead teachers has worked together for decades, sharing knowledge and experience in yoga and other healing arts. We believe our team is uniquely qualified to deliver a complete program of anatomy, methodology, professionalism, and philosophy.

Beth Paxson

Beth Paxson, LMT, E-RYT 500 is the owner of Paxson Yoga Center. Beth is a licensed massage therapist with a focus in Western structure and Eastern movement arts. A committed athlete, Beth has studied Iyengar yoga with Julie Gudmestad since the late 1990s, learning how to integrate yoga into her athletic training program. Her massage training and a love of anatomy shine through in her teaching. Beth blends her athletic and artistic backgrounds with her knowledge of anatomy, kinesiology and bodywork, helping her students to develop and integrate keen body awareness into their daily lives and activities.

Julie Gudmestad, PT, E-RYT 500, IAYT Certified Yoga Therapist has devoted her career of 40+ years to helping people ease pain and live their best lives through the integration of physical therapy and yoga. She founded and directed Gudmestad Yoga, making yoga classes and individual therapy sessions available to people of all ages and abilities. It is Julie’s belief that the ability to slow down and stay present is an important aspect of healing, and that yoga encourages a mindful state that can heal people emotionally and spiritually, as well as physically.

Hope Fyfield

Hope Fyfield, PT, E-RYT 500 took her first yoga class ever from Julie in 1979, and was immediately inspired and intrigued. She began working toward a physical therapy degree not long after, and worked at a skilled nursing facility for years. This has made her good with fragile, aging populations. Hope has been teaching yoga since 1988, with Julie’s gentle but firm encouragement. Other teachers that have inspired and instructed Hope include John Schumacher and Judith Lasater. Hope especially enjoys and appreciates the way yoga balances apparent opposites, simultaneously providing playful seriousness, radiant grounding and a calm joy.

Laila Deardorff

Laila Deardorff, MSPT, E-RYT 500, CIYT believes that Iyengar yoga, with its roots in alignment, coupled with yoga’s emphasis on breath work and relaxation, truly allows the body, mind, and soul to transform. Her Physical Therapy training becomes evident in her teaching, and as a bonus, students learn more about their anatomy. Laila has been teaching yoga since 2002. Wanting to learn more, she became a Certified Iyengar Instructor in 2014. With a teaching style that is relaxed and supportive, Laila merges her knowledge of anatomy, physiology, and biomechanics with specific yoga poses, creating an effective atmosphere for change and healing.

Guest Instructor

Dean Sluyter

Award-winning author Dean Sluyter (pronounced “slighter”) has taught natural approaches to meditation and awakening since 1970. His highly acclaimed books include the Amazon #1 stress-management bestsellers Fear Less and Natural Meditation. Dean gives talks, workshops, and retreats throughout the United States and beyond, from Ivy League colleges to maximum-security prisons. His media appearances have included National Public Radio, The New York Times, Coast to Coast AM, The Dr. Oz Show, and O, The Oprah Magazine.

A grateful student of Eastern and Western sages in several traditions, Dean has completed numerous pilgrimages and retreats in India, Tibet, Nepal, and the West. He is known for conveying authentic teachings in forms that are relaxed, accessible, and down-to-earth.

In addition to writing and teaching, Dean narrates audiobooks, co-hosts The Filmosophers movie podcast, sings with the Threshold Choir, and happily zips through the streets of Santa Monica on his Vespa. Dean lived in New Jersey for 33 years, where he developed classroom meditation programs at The Pingry School and worked with inmates at Northern State Prison and Mountainview Youth Correctional Facility. He is now on the faculty of the West Coast Writers Conferences and is married to documentary filmmaker Yaffa Lerea.

Scheduled Meeting Times

We will meet one weekend per month and every Monday evening from September to April. Video content on yoga anatomy and humanities will be assigned throughout the program.


5:00pm – 8:00pm


9:00am – 4:00pm


9:00am – 3:00pm


6:00pm – 8:00pm

Weekend dates and schedule exceptions are below:

Session 1:  Feet & Foundations
September 8 – 10

Session 2:  Nonharming Knees
October 13 – 15

Session 3:  Hips – Let’s Get Real
November 10 – 12

Session 4:  Upper Legs & Lower Back – Let’s Meet In the Middle
December 9 – 10 (Saturday & Sunday only)
No meeting Monday, December 25

Session 5:  Abs & Twists – Wring It Out
No meeting Monday, January 1
January 12 – 14

Session 6:  Arms & Shoulders – Fire It Up
February 9 – 11

Session 7:  Head & Neck – Peace of Mind
March 2  (1:00 – 4:00pm Natural Meditation with Dean Sluyter)
March 8 – 10
No meeting Monday, March 25

Session 8:  Practicum – The Greater Good
Mondays 6:00 – 8:30pm for Practicum
April 12 – 14
April 26 for Graduation


For full Program Details click here. For the Calendar click here.

To download the application click here.

For FAQs click here.