Monica Breen B.A., M.F.A., is known for her years of work in the healing arts in Detroit. Her involvement in the overlapping fields of contemplative arts, including yoga and meditation, began in 1996 with an introduction to mindbody practices through the study of ashtanga-vinyasa yoga. Her professional studies began in 2001 with a traditional, integrated yoga training. Since then she has practiced and studied with leading instructors in various philosophical schools which are primarily focused on the mind-body connection. In 2005 she completed a second formal training along-side her primary influence, Sri Dharma Mittra. She is one of only a few teachers in Michigan who has completed Dharma's rigorous training, which included specific instruction on meditation and pranayama.
Savoyard Yoga was one of Monica’s first yoga and meditation projects, a resource for residents of Detroit. Running from 2001-2012, Detroiters were welcome to the top of the historic Buhl Building to participate in authentic, healthy practices. The downtown business center eventually made a recovery; the space used for Savoyard Yoga became a premium location. With gratitude for those who made it possible for her to have built an active community, Monica changed the name to BE NICE Yoga and moved to Midtown, Detroit. BE NICE had a host of teachers, regular weekly classes in meditation and yoga, workshops, events, an RYT 200 yoga teacher training school, and volunteer outreach programs to underserved populations in Detroit.
Since closing the doors of BE NICE Yoga in 2013, Monica has maintained her small practice in the Detroit community through her private in-home sessions, group classes, and corporate yoga programs. Her work has also extended into traditional healthcare, where she has worked for two years as a yoga therapist in professional, medical settings. She is considered a “teachers teacher” for those who wish to go deeper into their studies of yoga, meditation, and contemplative practices. She teaches many workshops, leads seminars and lectures, has organized programs based on preventative care. Monica provided services to globally renowned universities, national pro-athletic teams, and countless companies and organizations in metro-Detroit.
Monica holds an MFA from Cranbrook Academy of Art which is a school that emphasizes critical theory, and this foundation is a part of her approach to yoga as a discipline of self-inquiry, as well as a method for maintaining health and healing. She is an ordained minister of the Universal Life Church. She is also a Bee Guardian, and is a certified Death Doula, someone who helps a person who is dying plan for their death, and supports the family during the process. She is a board member of FCIS of Michigan.