Maria Sanchez Herrera is originally from Lima, Peru. For over 20 years she has been helping people empower themselves through befriending their bodies and living their lives with compassion. She teaches yoga, mindfulness, and breathing techniques to women who are survivors of trauma.
Maria is a Kripalu certified yoga instructor with over 200 intensive hours of instruction. Maria is a certified LifeForce Practitioner, which is a yoga practice designed to alleviate depression and anxiety. She has completed an 8-week mindfulness-based stress reduction training. Maria has also taken a Trauma Sensitive training with the Boston Trauma Center. She has also completed a 200-hour Kundalini teacher training.
Maria also teaches South American cooking workshops that nourish the mind, body and soul. She is passionate about reestablishing the connection between food and health as a tool to empower others. Growing up with a strong relationship with food, cooking, and community, Maria sees how people can achieve self-sufficiency through growing and cooking their own food. Her students learn that eating healthy does not have to be expensive or complicated, and that it can be both fun and delicious. She believes that a healthy and rich diet is the most powerful medicine and that it can cure almost any ailment. For Maria, cooking is another way she shows her love. She shared that love with Portland as the owner of Inca Roots restaurant for several years and now shares it with the Greater Portland community through cooking classes with Spiral Arts, Cancer Community Center, Biddeford Adult Education, Cultivating Community, MacAuley Residence, Skillins Greenhouses and The Portland Food Coop.
Maria lives in Portland, Maine with her two daughters. She travels to Peru every year and teaches trauma sensitive yoga in San Martin de Porres, Lima, Peru, where she grew up. She is a cofounder of Friends of Nuestras Raices, an after-school art program for at-risk children and youth.