What Access–Centered Means

Access–Centered Movement combines trauma-informed language , a Disability Justice framework (a movement founded and led by queer, disabled People of Color), and my lived experience as a person with disabilities. The term, “Access-Centered,” was given to me by a Disability Justice activist to title my yoga classes and means that accessibility is a focal element and not a state of being.   Because access is a constant process, shifting and transforming in each space and with each individual, describing something generally as “accessible” seems inherently flawed as universal accessibility is a goal that is rarely (if ever) achieved. The term is also being used because, in the Bay Area, it has become popular for abled teachers to claim that a movement class is for “all bodies” or “accessible” without doing the work necessary to be available for people with disabilities. Access-Centered is radical, substantial, intersectional, and based in Disability Justice. It prioritizes access for all bodyminds, offers cultural humility when needs are not met, and provide concrete steps to take to repair harm if it is caused. In my yoga classes, I center accessibility through physical space, variations offered, language, and intersectionality and attempt to value all bodyminds and difference of movement without hierarchy.