One of the first to join Yoga Connection back in 2002, CAROLE quickly became one of the most dedicated YC students. Her love of Hot Yoga led her to become certified by Jimmy Barkan in the Barkan Method of Hot Yoga, Levels I, II, and III, and Yoga Alliance certified (Regular and Advanced), and then to become our assistant manager, as well as one of our beloved teachers. In 2008, Carole and her family relocated to a small town in the Midwest where she lived for 2 years. Finding no Hot Yoga in her area, Carole converted her basement into a Hot Yoga studio. Word spread quickly and Carole’s membership grew consistently to have a base of over 80 weekly students! She believes that the Barkan Hot Yoga flow is optimal for opening the body, one asana leading naturally into the next, releasing each muscle group in its time. Carole lives her life knowing that yoga is not just a physical practice, but a state of being that brings peace and joy into her classes. Her eloquence, humor, peaceful voice, loving and encouraging spirit are most valued by students and staff alike, and we are all thrilled to have Carole back with us teaching Hot Yoga classes and managing again at Yoga Connection.
BEA RAYDO – TEJAS
BEA began studying Yoga with Jimmy Barkan in 1985. First, Yoga was simply a form of exercise but after a few years, Bea began to explore other styles of Yoga and studied Ashtanga Yoga under the tutelage of David Swenson. In 1997, Bea took her Practice to another level and it became, for her, a way of life. Bea’s journey has taken her to India several times where she learned Yoga Philosophy and Sanskrit under the guidance of the Divine Life Society in Rishikesh. Bea’s committment is to spread the message of Yoga wherever she is. She has explored many styles of Yoga and has found the unity in their diversity. She has been trained in Bikram, Barkan Method, Ashtanga, Jivanmukti, Sivananda, Iyengar and Universal Yoga. Bea’s goal is to make everyone see that all Yoga is only ONE. Bea is the Director of Yoga Connection’s Teacher Training Programs.
More than 30 years of experience in Ballet and Modern Dance give BARBARA an awareness of body alignment and movement which is evident in her method of Yoga Instruction. In addition to teaching, Barbara has danced professionally and directed her own modern dance company. Since 1985, Barbara has been a co-owner and dance instructor at The University Center for the Performing Arts. Barbara has an enormous respect for taking personal care of the body in all her Yoga classes and she provides individual instruction in alignment work. Barbara has studied contact improvisation and body work with Nancy Topf and Restorative Yoga with Elise Browning Miller and all of these studies culminated in Barbara’s interest in Yoga for Scoliosis and Yoga for Back Care. Barbara is certified in Sivananda Yoga and Kundalini Yoga and provides instruction in Hot Yoga, Hot Vinyasa and Deep Yin Stretch along with other heated and non-heated yoga styles. She blends various styles of Yoga studies with body mechanics and proper alingment principles with attention to the body and spine.
AILENE began studying Yoga in 1999 and has been with Yoga Connection since its inception in 2002. Ailene’s practice evolved when she began exploring different styles of Yoga. Her dedication to Hot Yoga led her to become a certified teacher of the Barkan Method. She has found, through her journey, the ultimate emotional and physical joy in life. Ailene brings a combination of detail and explanation along with humor, joy and intense compassion for each individual student. She is passionate, compassionate and models her life on Joseph Campbell’s maxim – “The privilege of a lifetime is being who you are.”
SAMANTHA’s love for Yoga began at the age of 20 and led to her pursuit of certification in the Barkan Method of Hot Yoga and Hot Vinyasa. She is also a participant of Access Energy Transformation, a modality which facilitates a potent means of conscious embodiment. Sam utilizes verbal tools while teaching Yoga and offers a differnt form of moving meditation as she hopes to give each student the ability to perceive, to be and to receive the infinite possibilities available in the Yoga studio and in everyday life. Sam believes that “All of life comes to me with ease, joy and glory … “
JESSICA CHIN FONG
JESSICA has been practicing Vinyasa yoga since 2005. Her yoga style, a mix of physical and mystical, has slowly evolved into a modern, yet down-to-earth blend of Eastern and Western approaches. She completed two RYT-200 Yoga Alliance approved certifications at Philip Christodoulou’s Anuttara Yoga Method and Leslie Glickman’s Yoga Journey. She also received Jimmy Barkan’s 80 hour Advanced Teacher Certification. She is currently pursuing a Yoga Therapy certification and has over 1000 hours of teaching experience. She has recently been chosen by luluLemon Athletica to become a prestgious “ambassodor” for their company too.Her classes vary in intensity from graceful, slow and meditative to playful, fiery, and vigorous Vinyasa flows. As a student, you can expect creative sequences, clear alignment cues, and modifications to suit beginners as well as challenging inventive flows that will satisfy the intermediate/advanced practitioner. Her goal is to inspire students to make small changes on the yoga mat that they can weave into their personal lives to become a better, healthier and happier version of themselves.
LILY has been a dedicated Yoga student since 2006. She began her study of Yoga at the Barkan Method of Hot Yoga and quickly experienced life changing transformations on a health, physical and spiritual level. Lily completed Level 1 yoga teacher training with Philip Christodoulou and Leslie Glickman at Anuttara Yoga Shala (200-RYT), in December 2010 and Level 2 (100-RYT) Raja Yoga (Yin) training in September 2012. Lily pursues her dharma in sharing the ancient pearls of wisdom with others so that they may experience health,contentment and peace.
EMMA has made Yoga an integral part of her life since she was very young. Her father was a dedicated Yogi who traveled all over the world in the 1940′s and 1950′s performing and practicing acrobatic “hand standing.” Today, Hand Balancing is popular and accessible practice known as Acro Yoga. Emma was introduced to Heated Yoga in 1990 when her father began to guide her through Asana practice in the community sauna. Although they had been practicing together for a long time prior to that, it was during that time that Emma had a conscious awakening and experienced a real transformation in Yoga. Together they practiced various styles of sitting meditation, read the yogic scriptures and explored the asanas and pranayama. In 1997, her father passed away and Emma stepped into her first public yoga class and discovered Vinyasa Yoga. During this time, she experienced another awakening that led to her own independent re-discovery of Yoga. Having practiced for most of her life by her father’s side, this was a pivotal turn in her practive. Vinyasa Yoga led Emma to Ashtanga where she deepened her practice. Emma obtained her 200 hour certification in 2008 from the Yoga Education Institute. Her practice is a tapestry of the various forms of Yoga that have been ingrained in her throughout her life. It is a free flowing style that integrates and explores the spiritual concepts of Yoga with the physical practice of asana.
Various sports related injuries have brought Shayna to this yogic path. Her athletic background and mentality made yoga a true challenge at first. However, as she continued to practice and observe the profound effects it has on the mind and body, yoga became such an integral part of Shayna’s life. With a foundation in Jimmy Barkan’s vinyasa flow, she aims to create a challenging and inspiring flow incorporating other styles such as Ashtanga, Anusara and Jivamukti. Her intention is to inspire people through their practice on a journey of breath awareness and exploration of the body. Every time you unroll your mat, it is a different opportunity to explore the body. No two days of your practice will ever be the same. Shayna encourages students to explore the body with no judgement of themselves, expectations from their practice, or attachment to the outcome. Simply become an observer of yourself and enjoy your yogic journey. Each class, Shayna aims to create a dynamic flow, in which you can heal, observe and challenge you body.
Los Angeles. 1993. Violence, drugs. Cops, guns. Amidst the chaos, KATHLEEN, a federal law enforcement agent, was introduced to Ashtanga yoga by a guy who would become her husband. Classes with Erich Schiffmann and an introductory series with Ana Forrest – and Kathleen still was not convinced that yoga was a good thing. Fast forward. 1996. Miami. Kathleen reengaged yoga in vigorous physical Bikram sessions – but found herself returning whenever possible to the inspiration of Erich’s “Moving Into Stillness,” traveling back to L.A. for his classes and attending weekend workshops. 2001. Nearing retirement, Kathleen’s spiritual yogic path was awakened at New York’s Ground Zero. And then her Karmic yoga path crossed that of Bea Raydo and Kathleen joined Yoga Connection before the studio opened. As the notorious “#1” student, Kathleen has practiced beside the Yoga Connection family for many years. Completing teacher training in May 2012, Kathleen remains faithful to Bea’s goal that all yoga is ONE yoga. She helps others find joy in their practice through Bruce Springsteen and her own style of “Free Flow” yoga. Kathleen’s never-the-same classes engage all levels of students, as she follows Erich Schiffmann’s advice: “Do not decide in advance about what to do or not do. Instead, listen inwardly for Guidance and trust into what you find yourself Knowing.”
ALEXIS began practicing Yoga in 2001 and completed her Yoga certification in 2012 at Anutarra Yoga Shala. She uses her mat to teach, encourage, and allows her students to tap into their inner-peace, strength, and wellness by using their breath. Her intention is simple: to provide a unique yoga experience, reflecting her love and joy for the practice. Classes are conducted to facilitate a practice that calms, bolsters the spirit and encourages a deep physical flow that engages each student. Join her on the mat for a unique yoga experience. You will leave class feeling rejuvenated, relaxed and energetically aligned.
Vikky describes herself as a reformed “24/7/365, Type-A Capricorn, withdrawing from control issues and all wrapped up in an OCD bow.” Now you have a taste of her humor, which she brings to every class. Vikky has been practicing yoga for over 15 years. She obtained her RYT-200 and RYT-100 Yoga Alliance approved certifications at Phillip Christodoulou’s Anuttara Yoga Shala. She is also a certified Reiki practitioner and Vedic Thai Body Worker. She knows yoga, energy and the human body and mind.