Ginseng Yoga was my first yoga studio to attend and I am grateful for the many wonderful experiences created here. I feel honored to be teaching at this amazing studio that has had such an impact on my life. I look forward to sharing yoga with you and leading you into a blissful state where you feel bliss: perfect happiness.
To my teachers with lights that shine so brightly I can see and feel them when I close my eyes.
I promise to offer what I authentically am today and each day moving forward to grow, as we all grow, with many blessings.
Emily began casually practicing yoga in 2001, but chronic pain and injury brought her back in 2012 eager for a more sustainable practice. She has a 200 hour yoga alliance certification and a 100 hour yoga therapy certification with Deep Yoga. Her practice reflects the deep union of body, breath and mind that allowed her body to recover, while compassion and a mindful connection with the body are emphasized in class.
Emily studied Deep Yoga, has drawn inspiration from many of the teachers at Ginseng Yoga, and continues to study and learn from the teachings of Ayurveda. deep bow of infinite gratitude, respect, admiration, devotion, and LOVE to all of her teachers begins and ends every practice. Without her teachers, she would be lost.
Hannah Bader is an 8+ year certified Experienced Registered Yoga Teacher. She owns and operates Yoga Baja, an oceanfront Yoga Studio in Northern Baja California Mexico. Hannah draws upon her many years of experience as a dancer, gymnast, and Yogi to create fun and inspiring classes. She loves to make her students laugh, and to help them get the most from their yoga practice. Hannah has received much additional training during her teaching career, from Restorative Yoga and Meditation to Pranayama, and loves to share these powerful practices with her students. Hannah believes that we are always refining, growing, and evolving in our practice on and off the mat.
Heather has taught dance and movement in San Diego and Internationally since 1999. She is Director of Urban Tribal Dance Company and has traveled the world teaching and performing. Her dance background has led her to explore many other forms of movement for their therapeutic effects and after years of studying Pilates, including a teacher training in mat Pilates, she found her home in yoga. Heather is inspired by a variety of yoga disciplines including, Ashtanga, Vinyasa and Forrest Yoga. She has completed Infinite Yoga’s 200 hour teacher training with Dana Rae Paré and is a certified yoga teacher with Yoga Alliance. Heather’s teaching style combines a strong focus on breath, alignment and core strength with fluid, energizing asana sequences, inspired by her years as a dancer. Learn more about Heather at www.heatherstants.com.
A student of yoga since 2001, Jano’s study of hatha yoga, meditation, yoga philosophy and pranayama led him to become a Bikram certified teacher since 2003. Jano has been based and teaches extensively throughout the San Diego area. He has also traveled, studied and taught in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Orange County and New York. Jano comes from a strong spiritual upbringing and it is translated in his teaching. He owes oceans of gratitude to his best friend and first yoga teacher Kristyan Stjerne, Master teachers Bikram and Rajashree Choudhury, Sri Dharma Mittra and Vinnie Marino for his vinyasa flow and musical style. Most of all Jano would not be where he is without the love and support of his beautiful wife Lorraine and his son Azlan.
Jason Cull, B.A., E-R.Y.T., C.P.T., has been practicing and teaching Yoga since 2000. He has been specifically trained and certified to teach with the Yoga Wall with Bryan Legere, a certified Iyengar Instructor and founder of the Great Yoga Wall. He has also done extensive training and mentoring with Rachel Krentzman RPT, E-RYT. He offers private instruction as well as specialized Yoga Wall classes, workshops and teacher trainings. His emphasis is on spinal health and Yoga Therapy and has healed his own injuries through the use of the Yoga Wall. He offers detailed instruction mixed with extensive personal experience. Please contact him if you are interested in private instruction, workshops and teacher trainings.
Jean is a 9 year, late stage colon cancer survivor. An advocate for cancer research, symposium leader at cancer conferences and is also training teachers to work with patients and survivors. Her passion is to offer healing to mind and heart, in a safe and sacred environment. She has her advanced certifications in yoga with over 1,500 hours of teaching and yoga work developing a Yoga CD she gives away. She is working on the Spanish version of the Yoga CD, due out later this winter 2012.
Current Faculty member in Exercise Science and Wellness, Grossmont College and Southwestern College
Developed “YOGA” curriculum in both departments, and it is doing GREAT at both campuses!
I have been part of the fitness and yoga staffs at the Golden Door and Rancho la Puerta since 1991.
My teacher training originally was done through Yoga Works in Santa Monica, and has continued through the weekly visiting instructors at the “Door” and the “Ranch” through the present time.
I have been particularly influenced by Swami Veda Bharati and the faculty of the Himalayan Institute from Rishikesh, India. I have also been influenced in my teaching by Dinah Cascolan, who is a GREAT Iyengar yoga instructor in San Diego, and Matias Flury, who is an Ashtanga teacher who taught in San Diego several years ago. Phyllis Pilgrim at Rancho la Puerta has shown me how to live my yoga “off the mat”. I love to combine concepts from both Iyengar Yoga and Astanga Yoga, and I have LOVED every John Friend Anusara workshop that I have attended. I am inspired to teach yoga because it provides a timeless tool, a practice, that gives each person a daily reminder of who they want to be, and HOW they want to be, both “on” and “off” the mat.
Julie Quinn is also the owner of Quinntessentials, Organic Essential Oil Products and is a certified Herbalist, Aromatherapist, and Reiki Energy Healer. www.QuinntessentialsProducts.com
Laura Dasi began practicing yoga in 1999 after having spent more than 20 years as a classical ballet and modern dancer. She was drawn to the flowing style of Vinyasa yoga not only for it’s physical benefits but also for the mental, emotional and spiritual freedom she felt after each class. With her vast knowledge of body mechanics and alignment principals from her years of dance training, Laura felt inspired to become a yoga instructor. In 2002 she completed a 200-hour teacher training course and began incorporating her love of both dance and yoga into her teaching style. Laura strives to make each of her classes a rhythmic, moving meditation allowing her students to develop flexibility, strength and grace as well as allowing them to find greater self-awareness and acceptance. Laura believes that yoga affects all aspects of one’s life and that with continued practice you will be able to relieve physical tension, mental anxiety and emotional stress, leading to true happiness within yourself.
Laxmi De Leo
Laxmi has studied with many amazing teachers from around the Country such as, Swami Sitaramanada from Sivananda Ashram, David Life and Sharon Gannon from Jivamukti Yoga, Ana Forrest, Duncan Wong, Shiva Rea, Seane Corne, and attended a teacher training with Tim Miller in 2003.In 2004, Laxmi travelled to India to absorb herself more fully into Yoga practice. It was there that she deepened her Meditation practice at the OSHO Commune, in Pune. She came into another level of self realization through these practices. Travelling out of this Country and to the Source was an uplifting and liberating experience for Laxmi. These Meditations helped her to be more peaceful and to break down the conditioning that perpetuates the suffering of Westerners. Laxmi is happy to share those teachings with all others.Laxmi derives great joy from her own Vinyasa practice and hopes to convey that to her students. She is a compassionate and lighthearted teacher, whose classes are fun, dynamic, and challenging. She focuses on breath and alignment to maintain a safe environment, where she and her students can reach higher levels of self awareness. Her roots in Hatha yoga help her to create a balanced sequence of postures, easily modified to fit all levels of practitioners. Her classes are designed to relieve tension, create strength and flexibility, and encourage an overall state of bliss.
She has extensive training in both Eastern and Western modalities of body work including Prenatal/Postnatal, Circulatory/Swedish, Ayurvedic, Zen-Touch, Hawaiian Lomi Lomi, Deep Tissue, and Sports Massage. She is extremely gifted in helping people heal chronic as well as acute pain such as sciatica, SI Joint pain (low back), shoulder girdle pain and more.
Melissa McKinstry is a life-long learner. She taught English literature and writing for 25 years, sharing the passions and poetry of the human condition with her high school students. She is also the loving mother of two beautiful children, one of whom is a severely-handicapped, medically fragile child who requires 24-hour care. In an effort to better care for herself to better care for her son and family, she found yoga at Ginseng in the South Park neighborhood where she lives. She began a daily practice at the studio that led to a desire to learn more about the ancient science of yoga as it helped her to rejuvenate.
Grateful for the steadiness and comfort she found in her practice, she invoked a line from one of her favorite poems by Rumi, the 13th century Persian Sufi: “Let the beauty we love be what we do.” The line inspired her to engage in the Deep Yoga Mastery of Life Teacher Training so that she could learn more. She has experienced yoga as a pathway to wholeness and resiliency. In addition to her 200-hour credential, she also holds a 30-hour certification from Warriors for Healing, and she has participated in an 8-week Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction course.
She is honored to share this steadiness and comfort, this beauty, with others at Ginseng and with families at the Ronald McDonald House whose children are in-patients at Children’s Hospital.
Najah Abdus-Salaam, Licensed Acupuncturist and Certified Massage Therapist began her journey of helping and healing people five years ago. She graduated with her BS in Marketing and Advertising from Kean University in New Jersey where she was raised. After working for a few years in the hustle and bustle of New York City at a worldwide outdoor advertising agency, she began to become more and more disconnected from the world that she worked daily in, and began to submerge herself in the dense yoga culture in the New York (Kula Yoga Project) and New Jersey area (Satsang Yoga and Balance Yoga). Most of the classes at both of these studios were Asthanga inspired, vinyasa flow. But it wasn’t until 2010 when her practice deepened tremendously, when she moved to San Diego to attend Pacific College of Oriental Medicine, and found Ginseng Yoga and began practicing Bheemashakti Yoga under Jonathan Patriarca in 2010, and her yoga practice – that had once plateaued – began to deepen again.
Najah attended many intensives, workshops, retreats and the Bheemashakti Level One Authorization Yoga Teacher training in the summer, 2014 to become a certified Bheemashakti Teacher. She is excited to share the knowledge of Bheemashakti with her students, and watch their transformation.
— D.T. Suzuki
Nothing helps to uncover, welcome, and embrace one’s inherently divine nature better than practicing yoga and meditation on a regular basis. Yoga, a meditation in motion, not only opens the body, but also the mind, eyes, and heart. Nancine was born in New York and raised in Atlanta. She began her exploration of yoga and self over a decade ago while traveling in Southeast Asia and studying vipassana meditation. She is a graduate of Tulane University in New Orleans with a B.A. in Mass Communication and earned a high school teaching credential through National University in San Diego. Her background includes more than 200 hours of yoga teacher training with 2 Anusara immersions at the La Jolla Yoga Center. She completed vinyasa teacher training in the spring of 2010 and is a registered instructor through Yoga Alliance. She has taught a variety of yoga classes in San Diego for the past 4 years and high school English for the past 16. Other areas of study that make their way into Nancine’s classes include dance, Pilates, and martial arts. Her goal is to eventually free students from their perceived need for teachers; all answers lie within.
Nathan Briner has been working in the fields of pain and sports therapy for nearly 20 years. He owns the TrueBalance Biomechanics and Sports Therapy clinic in San Diego, California where he teaches weekly posture therapy, yoga and Pilates classes. He also leads classes and workshops on posture and pain at the prestigious Rancho La Puerta fitness spa in Tecate, Mexico. His clinic and classes support people from all walks of life and each interaction with student or client is built from the ground up for each individual’s unique needs.
Why do you teach yoga?
To Empower, to ignite the spark of life between stillness and wellness. As my practice has evolved I am impassioned to nourish and strengthen the mind and body. It has been my honor to be a guide for others in this incredible journey.
Who inspires you and why?
I awake to the inspiration of a new day. Each soul I meet is homage to the pulse of love, everyday. I am grateful and constantly amazed by this gift, in you, in us, in me. We are all mirrors of one another. Finding the beauty, the effervescent life in every breath, is my sanctity.
What are your core values?
The Sacredness of Life. Living with gratitude and appreciation for the earth and all creatures. Empathy. Being present and available with love and encouragement. To embody all and live blissfully conscious.
What are your qualifications?
My journey began with a Bachelor’s in Education and then advanced into Environmental Education. My desire to share wisdom and inspire others was further cultivated in my initial yoga and nutritional studies almost 20 years ago and led to my training in Power Vinyasa where I earned my 200 hour RYT. There my practice was focused on stilling the mind and strengthening the body. I was further certified in Thai Yoga Therapy and Therapeutic Touch. My travels abroad, including living and teaching yoga in Costa Rica and Rebirth Meditation in Bali, opened my being to a deeper yoga practice. Within this fruition, my mind and body found the connection to the sacred practices of ancient yoga. After relocating to California, I aspired for more dimension to my teaching, and decided to expand my training to include Kundalini Vinyasa Fusion, where I obtained an additional 200 hour RYT laying a foundation in, Hatha, Sound/Gong Healing, and Deep Meditation.
Rachel Dragonfly believes that Yoga can be a healing and transformational practice. She began her own journey into Yoga after many years of trauma, illness and chronic pain. She found that practicing yoga asana, pranayama, and meditation allowed her the opportunity to slow down, draw her attention inward, and find healing in her physical, emotional, and mental body.
Rachel teaches in the Deep Yoga style incorporating mantra, pranayama and meditation practices. She offers a safe space for students to move inward and find healing through moving meditation. She also teaches AcroYoga; a blend of Acrobatics, Yoga, and healing touch through Thai Massage and Therapeutic Flying.
Alongside her Yoga trainings, Rachel received a degree as a Holistic Health Practitioner and CMT from the International Professional School of Bodywork in San Diego, California. She specializes in Jin Shin Acutouch and Reiki. Rachel is also a certified Moon Mother, offering a safe space for women to find healing for trauma as a result of childbirth, illness, or abuse. She offers Womb Healings and Womb Blessings as a way for women to reconnect with the Divine Feminine and with their own sexual center (physically, emotionally, and spiritually).
Sarah Clark shifted to teaching yoga full time in 2007 in New York City, mostly at OM Yoga Center (where she also completed her 200-hour training), NYU, and privately. In 2011, she relocated to San Diego, CA and continues to offer community-based yoga & meditation programs, teacher trainings, continuing education, and more.
Sarah’s classes are alignment-based and breath-centered, and draw on all 8 limbs of a Whole yoga practice for a Whole person. Her asana (yoga posture) classes are heavily influenced by her own sitting meditation practice, work as a professional contemporary dancer, a sense of humor, wrestling with the yamas (yoga’s ethical practices) and her teachers.
Sarah feels gratefully indebted to her most influential teachers, including Michael Stone (of British Columbia), and many OM Yoga greats including Cyndi Lee, Sarah Trelease, Joe Miller and Christie Clark.
Sarah loves this practice and loves the community of other practitioners also trying their best to be awake.
Shawnee Thornton Hardy
Shawnee has been a lifelong athlete with a dedication to fitness and health. She was a long distance runner for most of her life which kept her physically fit and gave her an outlet for stress. Following the birth of her daughter, she began experiencing physical symptoms such as extreme lethargy, popping bones, severe headaches, heart palpitations and many other symptoms. After months of visiting a variety of specialists, she was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, an autoimmune disease. She had also been suffering with ongoing back pain and back spasms from a work injury. Without the ability to run, she began to feel increased anxiety and depression. Along with her physical difficulties, she was going through many challenging transitions and was overwhelmed with worry, fear, anxiety and instability. During a physical therapy appointment her doctor suggested yoga. Shawnee tried a class and when she left she realized that for one hour her mind was focused and in the present moment. She became dedicated to the practice of yoga. Through her continued practice she became increasingly energetic, many of her symptoms from her autoimmune disease diminished and her back became strong and healthy. Far beyond the physical benefits she gained from her yoga practice, she began to notice a shift in her thought patterns. Through breath and moving meditation, she was able to let go of the need for control and experience life from an entirely new perspective. Being a natural teacher, having taught special education for years, she decided to become certified as a yoga instructor.
Shawnee is a 500-RYT through YogaWorks, RCYT (registered children’s yoga teacher), and ERYT-500 through Yoga Alliance and is a registered member of IAYT -International Association of Yoga Therapists . She was fortunate enough to have Rachel Krentzman, Founder of Embody Physical Therapy, as her mentor where she gained tremendous knowledge and appreciation for anatomy, focus on proper alignment and safety, and the healing benefits of yoga therapy. She completed a 100-hour Happy Back certification and a total of 300 hours mentorship training with Rachel Krentzman with an emphasis on spinal health and using yoga as a tool to relieve back , neck and shoulder pain. She has completed 120 hours of Purna Yoga Therapy trainings with Master Teacher Aadil Pakhivala. She is currently certified in the application of Purna Yoga Therapeutics for Asthma and Bronchitis, Diabetes, Digestive Issues (Acid Reflux/GERD, IBS and Crohn’s Disease), High Blood Pressure and Low Blood Pressure, Sleep Problems, Stroke & Epilepsy, Thyroid issues, Autoimmune Conditions, Neck, Knee, Low Back and Sacrolilliac Pain and Problems, Shouders, Upper Back and Wrist issues, Headaches, Alzheimer’s, Eye Problems and Adrenals and Fatigue. She studied Relax & Renew Restorative Yoga with Judith Hanson Lasater and is in the process of completing her certification. She is also certified in Chair Yoga. Shawnee will be forever grateful for finding yoga and aims to help others realize the immense benefits of joy, love, peace, freedom, mindfulness, empowerment and healing that yoga can offer.
Troy began practicing yoga in his late teens an alternative to traditional exercise routines. From the very first practice, it was apparent that this was for life. After several years of improper practice and intense focus on the physical body, Troy developed several injuries that would force him to reassess his relationship with the ancient science. It wasn’t until finding Bheemashakti Yoga that he began to experience and understand the deeper, subtler aspects of the practice that would eventually heal him. Ultimately it was this process of healing that inspired Troy to take on teaching. After using Bheemashakti Yoga to transform his body, Troy began intense focus on the Ashtanga and Rocket Vinyasa Yoga Methods. His experience with these systems has allowed him to develop a unique perspective on the practice of Yoga Asana.
In his own words:
“Your mind is a mirror. Yoga is Windex. There’s more to polishing the mirror than physical postures, but it’s a start.
“Transform the body. Transform the breath. Transform the mind, ” is my teaching philosophy. It is also my own personal practice. I believe the only limitations that exist are the ones the mind creates, but is too dull to recognize as illusion. Physical yoga practice is a great way to experience the actual truth: You are strong, You are flexible, You are balanced; You are all things you want to be. You just have to see it to believe it.
The greatest lesson I have received from yoga over the years is the power of dedication and enthusiastic repetition. Everything else works itself out.”