Maya is the current Vice President of Cross-Cultural Advancement for Yoga Alliance, cofounder of the Black Yoga Teachers Alliance, creator of the Yoga Retreat for Women of Color™ and an Emeritus Trustee of Kripalu. As a yoga consultant and educator, Maya served as a member of the Data Safety Monitoring Board for a National Institute of Health (NIH) Study from 2010–2015 and coauthored Back to Health: Yoga vs. Physical Therapy for Minorities with Chronic Low Back Pain, a NIH-funded study conducted by Boston Medical Center and published in the Annals of Internal Medicine. Her background of yoga practice and study at the Lakulish School in India and founding of the Santosha School of Yoga in Warwick, RI has garnered her recognition as one of America’s most distinguished black yogis. “As an African American Jew, she has felt exclusion keenly, which inspired her ‘unity within diversity’ view of yoga.”
Ali Cramer is the Director of the Ayurveda Program at Laughing Lotus NY and the author of the brand new book Modern Ayurveda-A Practical Guide for Applying Ancient Wisdom into Modern Life, published by Althea Press. Ali teaches workshops, retreats and trainings on yoga and Ayurveda both nationally and internationally. Her goal is to make the practices of Ayurveda simple, practical and accessible for everyone. As Ali puts it “Ayurveda and Yoga go hand in hand. All of my flows are based around the pitta, vata, or kapha seasons, and you'll experience an intuitive mix of yoga, Ayurveda and the chakra system to balance out the imbalances of daily life.”
Marisol Ramos Cummings
Marisol Ramos Cummings a lifelong fitness enthusiast first began practicing yoga to compliment her Marathon training and soon discovered the Mind Body Spirit benefits of yoga’s reach and was inspired to bring it’s many benefits to diverse communities of color and Spanish speakers. She is presently teaching at the Center for Family Justice in Bridgeport, CT to a Women’s Support Groups who have been effected by incarceration and homicide. Sharing yoga in diverse communities as a self care and healing practice toward wellness is at the forefront of her teaching. Marisol is a Certified Kripalu Yoga Teacher. Marisol is fluent in English and Spanish and happy to deliver a Bilingual Class or in either language.
Nicole Diaz is a Connecticut-based yoga teacher who facilitates opportunities for people to connect to themselves and the great outdoors through yoga, meditation and guided hikes. With a background in social work, she is passionate about making yoga + hiking accessible to all because she believes both are powerful tools to build a stronger mind, body, and spirit of resilience to meet life’s challenges. Nicole is a RYT-200 Vasu Organic Spa + Yoga Studio bilingual Latinx instructor who strives to create playful, restorative vinyasa sequences that are inclusive of all bodies and abilities.
Meredith is a Boston-based certified Bikram, Vinyasa and Yoga Sculpt Instructor who has been teaching for more than a decade. Meredith is the owner and designer of Hotdrop Apparel, a men's hot yoga clothing company, and the creator of the Shape Up Program, a 12-week diet and exercise program. Meredith is best known for her Hot Hatha Sculpt class that beautifully fuses together the power practices of Vinyasa and Bikram yoga, making her classes appealing to yogis and athletes alike. Prepare to get fired up!
Kenny Frisby is an internationally celebrated, Nashville based, Laughing Lotus NYC Yoga teacher and training facilitator. He travels the world leading master classes, workshops and retreats. Kenny’s caring and intelligent teaching style makes yoga relatable, fun, and transformative for all levels of modern-day Yogis. Each of Kenny's class offerings are a thoughtful mix of movement, spiritual nourishment, good music, and great vibes.
Jessica combines her personal and professional experiences in the mental health field with her yoga practice to create trauma informed classes. She teaches in mental health hospitals, addiction/detox programs, and prisons throughout Connecticut. Jessica is especially proud to teach police officers throughout the state in yoga, mindfulness, breath work, and other centering and stress mitigation techniques.
Kiley Holliday is a yoga teacher, wellness counselor, and certified Tea Master based in New York City. The practice of yoga, in her view, is a means to heal the body and focus the mind in order to maintain a relative state of equanimity. Born in Los Angeles, she spent her early years training as a competitive figure skater before moving east to attend college at New York University. After several years characterized by extreme bouts of sitting in the library, she turned to yoga to regain the strength and mobility she’d had as a young athlete. In 2007, she left graduate school to become a yoga teacher and hasn’t looked back.
Always accompanied by an inspiring playlist, Kiley’s classes emphasize functional alignment and conscious muscular engagement within the framework of an innovative vinyasa sequence. She strives to honestly assess the strengths and limitations of her students and offers instruction designed to help practitioners maximize their potential both on and off the mat. Kiley is certified E-RYT 500 by Yoga Alliance, and has studied under Dana Flynn, Ana Forrest, and Tiffany Cruikshank, as well as numerous other talented teachers in Los Angeles and NYC. She teaches hot power yoga, acrobatic vinyasa flow, yoga for athletes, and therapeutic movement both privately and at her home studio, Pure Yoga, in addition to leading retreats and workshops around the world. She has been featured in numerous publications, including Shape, the Fashion Spot, the New York Times, and Yoga Bodies Real People, Real Stories, & the Power of Transformation, written by Lauren Lipton with photography by Jaimie Baird. Kiley’s writing has appeared in Yoga Journal.
Kiley is proudly sponsored by KiraGrace yoga apparel.
Heather Rems Korwin has been teaching yoga in New England for nearly 20 years. Her passion for yoga comes from her personal experiences with the practice and how it has help her change the way she lives her life (for the better!). She believes yoga offers all of us the opportunity to experience our best selves and the responsibility to share that with the world. Heather currently resides in the Northwest Corner of Connecticut with her family, including 3 dogs, and is the owner of Sanctuary Power Yoga.
An avid lover of movement, exploration, and adventure, Caitlin receives much of the inspiration for her yoga classes from her own life and experiences. With a deep reverence for and expansive relation to nature, her classes display a great respect for the nature within each individual and the organic ebbs and flows of life. To learn more about Caitlin’s offerings, and practice with her in your own home, head to www.caitlinlassyyoga.com.
LeoRising is an elemental entity that brings confidence, clarity, and cosmic comedy to the forefront of yoga & wellness culture. Heralded internationally as a cosmic personality & divine muse to celebrated clients in the fields of tech, business, film, television and Broadway theater, LeoRising’s awareness of how to support the physical body, expand and focus the mind, and amplify positive energies positions him as leader of #TheRoarriorTribe, a committed international group of truth seekers & conscious creatives. LeoRising Yoga is in service to all peoples through remote healing or in person, based in New York City & airborne upon request! @LeoRisingYoga
Nicole began practicing yoga as a way to calm the anxieties of living with severe food allergies. She found it helped focus her attention and clear her mind. Through her classes she seeks to create a calm space where she encourages her students, through breath, to deepen their mind, body and soul connection. Nicole aspires to use her teaching to help students find balance and practice self-acceptance. Most of all, she hopes to remind her students to take a moment to slow down and breathe. Nicole is an RYT 200, a graduate of the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, a Certified Medicinal Aromatherapist, Shaman and a practicing Holistic Health Coach.
For at least a decade, Suzanne has worked with veterans who suffer with PTS. This work led her to study and learn the practical aspects of what benefits Veterans in a yoga program receive. Her experiences along the way have taught her that teachers require additional training tailored to the specific needs of Veterans. In 2009, she was designated a Wells Fargo Second Half Champion for her work with Veterans.
Suzanne has studied extensively with Beryl Bender Birch at The Hard and The Soft Yoga Institute and also with Patty Townsend in the Embodyoga Teacher Training programs at Yoga Center Amherst. She is now on faculty at both schools where she teaches in both teacher training programs, and is the Director at Mindful Yoga Center and its teacher trainings. At the Himalayan Institute, Suzanne completed the yearlong Living Tantra program and the Sage Program taught by Pandit Rajmani Tigunait.
Suzanne co-authored a book, the Mindful Yoga Therapy Practice Guide. She also produced two CDs—Yoga Nidra by Suzanne Manafort and “Breathe In Breathe Out”, a group of short breathing practices designed for Veterans with PTS.
Suzanne is on the Board of Directors of the Give Back Yoga Foundation.
Michele Matthews has been a yoga instructor since 2013. In 2011, Michele had an experience with yoga that resonated so deeply, she knew she wanted to share this healing experience with others. At a time when her body had physical difficulties she learned, first hand, yoga is for everyone. Her passion became bringing yoga to people of varying physical abilities. She specializes in teaching adaptive yoga and honors a trauma informed setting. Michele is a RYT200 and holds Reiki certification.
Karla is a passionate, Latina entrepreneur and movement expert who is highly respected for her innovative approach to fitness and life. Karla holds many certifications and specializations within the fitness, police and business fields which make her approach to wellness completely unique. She is the Owner and Master Trainer of Sudor Taino® Group Fitness in West Hartford, Connecticut where she humbly serves her tribe. Her spirit, mind, body approach contributes to her authentic style, making her a master at combining exercise genres to create an experience that inspires people individually, motivates them collectively and moves them culturally. She is a well sought after Presenter, the Producer of the Divinely Fit Summit and Author of the book Divinely Fit. Karla, BBA, MPP, is a Spiritual Leader, Mother, Wife, Retired Hartford Police Sergeant and CT State Training Officer.
Pia is the owner of Wabi-Sabi Yoga and Wellness Center based out of Windsor, CT. Wabi-Sabi is a Japanese philosophy often described as appreciating the beauty in imperfection. Her belief is that yoga is truly for everyone and she is very passionate about bringing yoga to special populations. Pia’s background in nursing and personal training gives her a unique perspective when creating classes to enhance upper body mobility, functional movement, and therapeutic remedies for chronic back pain and common symptoms associated with arthritis.
Deb is a deeply intuitive and compassionate Iyengar style yogi and certified Reiki Master in the Usui tradition. Her decades of study, practice and instruction follows a corporate career as a Chemical Engineer. As a licensed clinical nutritionist with an emphasis on Herbal Medicine, Deb is committed to providing each of her students with tools that will enable them to find more peace, health, and a better understanding of themselves. She even custom-blends herbal wellness teas for clients and serves these before yoga class. Deb has a deep understanding of using holistic health practices for grief and mental health and credits her yoga practice with helping her to keep her heart open and living a healthy, connected life. Come and be restored!!
A daily practitioner of Ashtanga, Randolph Osgood excels in small groups and caters to the individual. If you are fortunate enough to be one of his students, you will learn the Ashtanga practice with an emphasis on the foundations to the practice—Breath, Asana and Dristi. Recovering from addiction and committed to a large family Randy brings the “stuff” of real life to his heartfelt and soulful teaching. He has trained with Manju Jois, trained by Valerie Schneiderman. His most significant influences include Peter Marchand, Nykki Poole, Ramaswami Srivatsa, Stan Woodman (The Yoga Shala). Randy keeps it real!
Michael Riley, USAF Veteran and resident of Bloomfield, CT, is a certified Mindful Yoga Therapy for Veterans teacher, 200-Hour Embodyoga, 500-Hour Kripalu Yoga Certified. Mike has also completed 150 Hours of Mindful Yoga Therapy for Veterans with Adaptive practices. He has enjoyed teaching in his community with a vision to be on the leading edge of exploring the benefits of integrating yoga in the lives of Veterans and others specially those suffering from trauma and PTSD.
Bonni-Lynne Sandler is a compassionate, dedicated and kind teacher who has worked in the Health and Wellness field for many years. She holds a BS Health Sci, MS Education and is a C-IAYT, E-RYT500, CRYT, YAECP, RYS, IAYT Member School, Reiki Master Teacher, Trauma Sensitive Therapist, Hypnotherapist, Thai Bodywork / Myofascial Release Therapist, and Licensed Special Education/Health Teacher. After a debilitating injury, she found Eastern Medicine, healed and fell in love with Holistic Methods. With passion, she presents workshops on Healing Trauma through the Mind and Body, Addiction Sensitivity, Relapse Prevention, Teen Empowerment and the importance of integrating Coping Skills into the Public School Curriculum. With gratitude, she has a beautiful, thriving yoga therapy & wellness studio in Western MA offering yoga therapy, holistic services, teacher training programs, reiki certifications and yoga therapy courses.
Jampa Mackenzie Stewart
Jampa Mackenzie Stewart, L.Ac., MSOM is an acupuncturist, Medical Qigong therapist, Senior Healing Tao Instructor and Senior Chi Nei Tsang Instructor, certified by the Universal Healing Tao, and is the co-founder of Healing Tao USA. He has taught meditation, Tai Chi and Qigong throughout the Western hemisphere, including teaching Medical Qigong at both Southwest Acupuncture College (SWAC) in Santa Fe and the Academy of Oriental Medicine in Austin, Texas (AOMA). Jampa served as editor and contributing writer for Healing Tao Books from 1989-1995, and collaborated with Master Mantak Chia on several books, including Awaken Healing Light of the Tao (1993) and The Inner Structure of Tai Chi (1996). His own books include The Life of Gampopa and The Life of Longchenpa. He has also written over 50 published magazine articles for national magazines. Currently he serves as President of Valley Spirit Wellness Center in Western Connecticut, where he teaches and holds his clinical practice.
As an APRN, Nursing Professor and Co-founder of VASU Yoga studio, Natalie utilizes her knowledge of human anatomy and passion for teaching in her class design + the perpetual inspiration from the world around her. Natalie believes that yoga is the sacred space where we can learn self-compassion, kindness, + understanding. Her style consists of a soulful mix of asana, pranayama, meditation, + self-reflection.