Our teachers bring a wealth of experience and knowledge to the highest quality of teaching. They have devoted their lives and careers to sharing the benefits of Yoga and Meditation, and embody PranaShanti’s own spirit of continuous education.
Alaysha
Alexis
Anastasiya

After practicing yoga for over a decade I knew it was time to share with others. I am a 200-hour Hatha yoga instructor, and teach with a trauma informed approach. Classes place emphasis on strength, balance, flexibility and most importantly on the breath.

Self-love, compassion, gratitude and fun are prominent themes of my classes. I believe in the subtle transformations taking place within us on and off the mat.

Alexis’ interest in yoga began in childhood through her parents. She began practicing regularly in university and completed her first 200 hour teacher training in 2010. Since then, Alexis has continued to take trainings and workshops. She has achieved her 500 hour designation for Hatha yoga and, most recently, completed her level 1 Kundalini teacher training. Alexis teaches Hatha, flow, hot, Yin and Kundalini styles of yoga. Her personal practice reflects these styles but she has really enjoyed delving deeper into meditation and mantra through her Kundalini practice. 

Having a regular practice brings a sense of calm and comfort into your life. Alexis has found that yoga makes being in her own skin more comfortable, both physically and mentally. A regular practice also brings deeper compassion for other beings and provides more balance to her busy lifestyle of being a high school teacher and mother. Pranayama and meditation are excellent stress management tools and the sense of spirituality and community that Alexis finds through yoga is also very important to her. Alexis believes that yoga is beneficial for everyone and hopes that her students find the same comfort and ease through their practice.

Alexis has an academic background in neuroscience and she loves when modern science aligns with traditional knowledge and experiences from her practice, which is more often than you might think! She strongly believes in having a regular gratitude practice, as changing your brain’s chemistry, changes your perspective towards the positive, and literally changes the way you experience life. There is a beautiful balance between nature, ancient knowledge and modern research. 

Over the years Alexis has watched her practice change through different ages, pregnancy, and fitness levels. She aims to bring that perspective into her classes and provide options for all practitioners. Her classes bring an easy going and welcoming style, with regular breath and alignment cues. She is delighted to have found a home at Pranashanti and looks forward to sharing her passion for yoga with you!

Anastasiya, a dedicated 200-hour RYT, embraces yoga as both a teacher and a student. With over 1000 hours of teaching and continuous education, she aims to inspire and empower students to tap into their inner strength. Combining breath, movement, and mindfulness, Anastasiya's classes find a balance between ease and effort, fostering strength and grounding.

Offering a diverse range of asana styles, including Hatha, Vinyasa, Somatic Yoga, Power Yoga, and Ashtanga, Anastasiya's sequences blend traditional methods with modern movement modalities, inviting students to deepen their practice in an enjoyable and accessible manner. For her, yoga illuminates life's path, and she seeks to share that light with as many people as possible.

Anastasiya is a practitioner of the Ashtanga method, currently practicing the Intermediate series, and having studied under two L2 Authorized teachers. Led both Mysore-style classes and Led Primary in multiple locations. Anastasiya has completed a 40-hour Primary intensive with David Robson - L2 Authorized Ashtanga Teacher.

Anathele
Anne
Bren
Camila

Anathèle Zamor is a registered yoga teacher with yoga alliance international, and received her Hatha yoga 200 hours certification from PranaShanti Yoga studio in 2019. Since then, she has obtained training in Power Yoga, Yin Yoga, Restorative Yoga and Chair Yoga. She is also currently completing her 300 hours certification. Anathèle started a regular yoga practice in 2010, and has experienced first hand the healing power of the practice of yoga. She aims to share these benefits in her classes.

Anne Wanda Tessier is an E-RYT 500 certified yoga teacher and trainer. Anne took a leave from her busy routine and set out to complete her RYT 200 hatha yoga teacher training in Bali, Indonesia in 2013. At the time, she was finding it tough to balance a healthy lifestyle, work, while also maintaining her yoga practice. She wanted to fully understand the benefits of regular yoga on the body, mind and spirit, and came back restored and ready to share her knowledge with others. She completed several trainings focusing primarily on restorative, yin, pranayama, and meridian yoga. She received her RYT- 500 Certification from PranaShanti Yoga center in 2018.

Life’s daily routines can be overwhelming, and Anne finds that yoga can help find balance, restore the body and find calm in our day to day life. Anne has studied with Judith Hanson Lasater and has also assisted Judith in her in several trainings. Anne is a certified Relax and Renew ® Restorative Yoga Trainer and offers individual and group classes.

In her classes, Anne’s calm and confident voice guides you through a practice that is suitable for beginners and advanced, offering various options throughout the class. Focusing on accessibility, breathing techniques and offering options for all students, Anne’s aim is to make it a safe and welcoming environment where students are comfortable, supported and safe throughout the class. She enjoys teaching classes based on themes that relate to daily life and enjoys sharing her knowledge of how yoga can help promote health and overall wellbeing.

When she is not teaching yoga, Anne enjoys traveling and hosting yoga retreats in Canada and abroad. She also enjoys making art.

Bren’s mission is to help you advance your yoga practice, live in tune with the seasons, and experience the benefits of meditation (even if you don’t like to sit still!).

In her classes you will find clear, directive language, and respect for your individual anatomy and experience. She specializes in the connection between Yin Yoga and Traditional Chinese Medicine and creative sequencing in both strengthening and gentle Flow styles. Bren is passionate about helping practitioners realize they are the observer of their experience and to share in a practice of intentional choices that help bring one to present moment awareness.

Bren is a long-time yoga practitioner, and has used traditional yoga practices as well as modern mindfulness and psychology to greatly improve her sleep, become less reactive, and to find some peace in both stillness and movement.

She holds RYT500 designation and has taken additional trainings in Yin, Mindfulness, Yoga for Chronic Pain, and is a Trauma Informed Facilitator.

When not teaching or practicing yoga, find her reading nonfiction or playing one of many musical instruments. Whatever she's doing, she is probably singing.

Born in Mexico City, I started doing yoga when I was 14 years old after my mom introduced me to it.

I recently completed the 200 Hours Hatha Yoga Teacher Training at PranaShanti Yoga Centre.

Yoga has been a life changer on me. It plays a big role in my daily life and I love it so much that sharing it with other people makes my heart burst with happiness.

Additionally, I also enjoy biking, crocheting, and travelling.

Carmen - Manager
Catherine
Chantal
Debra

Carmen has been working in the Fitness and Wellness Industry for 13 years. In addition, she has helped in organizing National/International Sporting Events as a Volunteer Coordinator for Ottawa Dragon Boat Festival and World Karate Commission (WKC) Alberta.

Carmen has an educational background in Community and Justice Services/ Fundraising Management. Her passion lies in Community Reintegration and reducing recidivism.

Carmen has been practicing yoga for 15 years, but only in the last few years has she been practicing regularly. Through 2020, she was struggling with her mental health and turned to Yoga to try to ground herself. It has been since then that her love for Yoga has continued to grow and shape her positive outlook on life.

Carmen can be reached at: carmen@pranashanti.com

For Catherine, yoga is moving meditation that offers a pathway to self-knowledge and finding balance in mind and body, strength and flexibility, ease and effort. Although yoga is a personal, individual practice, it also has a strong component of connectivity and community. Catherine believes yoga is not a rigid discipline; there is a starting point and style of yoga for everybody.

Catherine's teaching style emphasizes mindfulness, body and breath awareness, and incorporating yogic principles into the postures and practice. Her hope is that by sharing her love of yoga her students are able to breathe well, move well, and find more ease and balance in their lives, both on and off the mat.

Chantal is a Yoga Alliance-certified 500 hour therapeutic yoga teacher who understands yoga as a practice in awareness of and acceptance of our selves.

She offers nourishing, trauma-informed classes that invite students to cultivate self-compassion while releasing tension and balancing the nervous system. Her systems-based teachings draw on elements of several yoga lineages learned from practice and from over 900 hours of teacher trainings around the world, as well as on principles of ecopsychology (fostering a connection to the earth), and have a strong focus on nurturing the nervous system.

Chantal has led Yoga for Sleep, Restorative and Reiki, and Yoga Nidra workshops and supported students in healing from PTSD, anxiety, insomnia, and sciatica in Canada and internationally. She has taught in hospital, school, home and studio settings as well as virtually and in person.

Chantal has also written for Yoga International, Elephant Journal, and other publications about how to apply tools and bring lessons learned through yoga into practice in everyday life.

Debra has been practicing yoga regularly for over 15 years.  She started with prenatal yoga classes during her first pregnancy and continued to explore various styles of yoga including Hatha, power, hot, yin, tune-up, yoga nidra, meditation and Kundalini.

Debra completed 200hr Hatha yoga teacher training at PranaShanti in 2018 and is a registered yoga teacher(RYT) with Yoga Alliance. She enrolled in  PranaShanti’s 300hr Hatha yoga teacher training the following year.  She has completed training in chair yoga, hot yoga, meditation and Ayurveda.

Debra is passionate about meditation and practices daily.  It keeps her grounded and balances her busy family life with two active boys.  She often incorporates meditation into her classes.

Debra believes that yoga gives her the tools to embrace any challenges that life brings.  She encourages her students to be guided intuitively and explore the practice of yoga at their own pace.

Eric
Gabrielle
Geneviève
Gitanjali

Eric's wellness journey began at a young age, when at his first Karate classes he learned about the benefits of meditation and physical exercise. This later led him to explore the practice of Yoga and in 2005 he completed his first Yoga Teacher Training. In 2009, he graduated with distinction from La Cite Collegiale as a Physical and Occupational Therapy Assistant and began to explore how Yoga and Mindfulness might be used in Rehabilitation.

He travelled to India and has been classically trained in Rishikesh, the world capital of Yoga, under the tutelage of his present-day Guru. He went on to complete further levels of training, including two 500-hour Yoga Master Programs and received the title of Yoga Acharya, Master of Yoga, M.Y. from the International Sivanada Yoga Vedanta Centre. He has taught and travelled extensively abroad from India to Thailand, the Maldives, Japan, Indonesia, Singapore, Vancouver and Hong Kong, leading numerous yoga teacher trainings, workshops, and retreats.

During his travels he experienced the healing benefits of Thai massage. In 2011 he returned to Bangkok, Thailand to study at Wat Po, the birthplace of traditional Thai massage. He is certified in Thai Traditional Massage for Health from the Chetawan Thai Traditional Massage School.

Eric is passionate about sharing his expertise in the practice of Yoga and Wellness. He presents Yoga in a way that is accessible as he emphasizes safety and body alignment in all his classes with his grounding and vibrant energy. He is practical and results oriented and believes that Yoga, Massage, Meditation are a benefit for everyone on their own healing journey.

Gabrielle’s love for yoga, teaching it, sharing it, learning more about it and how to live a healthy and mindful life is matched by her affinity for her students.

“Our students are the golden threads that tether us into a deeper sense of community, self-love, awareness of how connected we are to one another and gifts us with an enhanced personal yoga practice. Yoga brings us more joy, more freedom of movement and an intense knowingness of our true selves.”

Forever a student of life, this self professed lifelong learner enjoys being both the teacher and the student. Her yoga journey began in Okinawa, Japan where she taught English to the great-grandchildren of the largest group of the longest living humans on the planet. Surrounded by like minded souls and this wise aging population she learned that movement, diet and lifelong service was their secret. This led her to take her first yoga training with Doug and David Swenson (early disciples of Pattabhi Jois - the father of ashtanga yoga, which birthed vinyasa, power and flow yoga disciplines).

Yoga became Gabrielle’s go to remedy for a decade worth of snowboarding injuries and decades more of faulty breathing and posture. After her return to Canada, the birth of her daughter and formal Hatha yoga training, she began a blossoming full-time teaching career in 2011.

With training and experience in multiple yoga disciplines, functional anatomy, mobility, resistance stretching and intuitive movement, her classes are a creative mix of traditional and non-traditional movements and sequences to move the body and energies in creative ways.

Whether the seeker is looking for a good stretch or to strengthen their core or simply sit in a silent meditation, Gabrielle is ever ready to share her passion for anatomy, body mechanics and alignment and ways to connect with our inner guidance system. She teaches from the heart with compassion and a few giggle along the way. Her offerings are supportive and welcoming with an inclusive, all ages and abilities approach to every class.

“Yoga was always intended to be shared. Through sharing, our students join us on this journey and in return we become better versions of ourselves.“

Geneviève (she/her) studied nursing and took contemporary dance and gymnastics classes before venturing on her yoga journey. She loves anatomy and is a lifelong student always seeking to learn more. Genevieve studied with world renowned Shiva Rea. Since the beginning of her journey she has accumulated over 600hrs RYT.

Geneviève’s offerings are layered with breath work, intuitive movement, creative transitions and meditation. All this is served at a steady pace syncing breath and movement, as well as giving lots of options. Genevieve invites you to return and reconnect with your internal landscape and come back home to yourself.

Genevieve loves being outdoors, cycling, camping, kayaking and hiking, when she is not on the mat.

 

When guiding a class, Gitanjali integrates different aspects of yoga practice to create a balanced and harmonized practice for the spirit, mind and body. Experience Indian traditions and stories, a keen sense of alignment and a big smile in her classes. Gitanjali looks forward to sharing the joy, lightness and strength that can be found on and off the mat through yoga. A scientist by training and at heart, she likes to experiment to enable everyone to find the inner strength to empower each asana.

Gitanjali’s upbringing in India, surrounded by the scriptures, the daily chants and rituals, formed the basis of her spiritual pursuits. It is in Canada that she heard the call of her body to move and breathe consciously. She has been actively pursuing the asana practice for over the last decade. Her first 200-hour yoga teacher training in a Vinyasa based style opened the doors of her curiosity and since then she has added more than 800 hours of training in different styles including Ashtanga, Sivananda, Hatha, Restorative and Yin.

She has gone beyond Canadian national borders to teach in two additional continents and has imparted more than just the physical and philosophical aspects of yoga by sharing her knowledge of Sanskrit at teacher trainings. Even so she continues to train with renowned teachers and lineages all to strive to live yoga every day.

She invites you to join her on your mat to enjoy the exploration of the power in the pause and the space between the yin and the yang.

Imad
Janice
Johanna
Karen

Imad’s teaching focuses on breath work and guided body movement working closely with the mind. His goal is to help his students develop functional movements that help them improve their everyday life. From a background of Yoga, Martial arts, and fitness, Imad is all about finding fun and creative ways to help you improve your overall health. He loves educating youth about his many experiences and methodology in the health and fitness world, hoping to leave his mark and make a positive impact.

Imad moved to Thailand in 2015 for two years Learning mixed martial arts. Following his dreams was the best decision he made in his life. He loves cooking, running, reading, and spending time with friends and family. He’s also a Big fan of Naruto and likes to watch Anime.

Imad is certified as a martial arts teacher from American Kick-boxing Academy, 200 hrs Vinyasa Ashtanga RYT, 40 hrs Yin Yoga RYT, and Canfitpro Personal Trainer

Janice has been actively involved in the Ottawa Yoga Community for over 20 years.

Throughout her career, Janice has travelled the world teaching movement, fitness and yoga. Her expertise brought her back to Ottawa to conduct Teacher Trainings and workshops over the years.
Janice has been accepted into and completed five Teacher Training courses from renowned Richard Freeman. These trainings have had an enormous influence and inspiration on her for which she is grateful. Janice was also able to study with Pattabi Jois when he visited Canada.She holds a special place for meditation and has studied at the Shambala Center in Boulder Colorado.

She teaches from the heart to make all feel comfortable and inspired to follow their own path. Janice continues to teach, grow, study, meditate and hold space for all who want to share and learn from this beautiful practice.

Hope to see you on the mat soon!

Johanna was introduced to yoga as a teenager and quickly fell in love with it. She deepened her commitment to yoga by completing a 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training with PranaShanti in 2010. Since then, she has explored various yoga and meditation practices for personal growth, finding the mind-body connection to be a powerful tool for self-awareness.

While living in the Arctic and teaching yoga in Iqaluit, Johanna developed an interest in Trauma-Informed approaches, particularly Sensory-Enhanced Yoga for self-regulation and healing. Trained in Restorative, Hatha, Meditation, and Mindfulness practices, and she holds a Master's degree in Occupational Therapy from the University of Ottawa. Johanna appreciates the adaptability of yoga, recognizing its ability to cater to different needs at various stages of life. Her diverse training has taught her the understanding that each person has unique needs in yoga; there is no one-size-fits-all approach.

For over a decade, Johanna has integrated yoga and meditation into her career as an occupational therapist and finance coordinator. She has diverse experience providing yoga- or mindfulness-related health services across Ontario and in Nunavut. Her experience ranges from yoga studios, gyms and schools - to residential mental health treatment facilities, community-based intervention programs, private practice, and online yoga classes with veterans. She has worked on body movement and self-awareness with children and adults.

Johanna's therapeutic and teaching goals revolve around helping people connect with their body and breath and inspires them to engage in meaningful activities. She believes in the holistic integration of yoga, mindfulness, or meditation into everyday life, aiming to guide folks toward well-being and optimal daily functioning.

Johanna teaches with a gentle approach, fostering a safe and inclusive space, and offering modifications for all levels. Her classes reflect her fun, yet calm and grounding energy.

Karen is a Kundalini Yoga Teacher with 200-hour certification and is working towards her 500-hour certification. Karen has practiced several types of yoga for many years enjoying the benefits of flexibility, muscle relaxation, and stress relief. Her meditation practice has evolved over a period of 20 years from personal self-led, to facilitator-led silent meditations, and, in the past 2 years, to a whole new level with Kundalini Yoga.

Karen's first Kundalini Yoga class at PranaShanti resonated so much on a holistic level (mind, body, and soul), leading Karen to sign up for the Kundalini Yoga teaching program at PranaShanti.

As a woman, a mother, a partner, a professional Project Manager, and a volunteer in the not-for-profit sector, Karen understands how self-awareness can greatly help navigate through life's challenges with authenticity, integrity, and with perspective.  Karen's goal, as a Kundalini Yoga teacher, is to help others learn how to achieve self-awareness.

Katherine
Kayla
Kethy
Kim

Katherine was first drawn to yoga by the desire to cultivate mindfulness and inner peace. She believes that yoga is a holistic healer for the body, mind, and soul. She has been practicing for over 12 years and has relied on her regular practice to ease her anxieties, fears, balance her emotions and improve her overall well being.

Katherine received her 200 Hour Hatha Yoga Teacher Certification at PranaShanti in 2022 and teaches various styles, rooted in Hatha, and will lead you through a series of poses that guide you into a state of relaxation. For Katherine, creating a safe space for everything is crucial. She wants everyone to feel welcomed and teaches classes that cater to all practitioner levels.

Through a spiritual and inclusive approach to teaching, Kayla aims to bring students from any background to the heart of true yoga and the peace within themselves. In her classes you can expect different props/variations, thoughtful guidance, poetry, and spiritual inspiration. She has completed two 200hr yoga & meditation teacher trainings and has over 300 hours of continued education in Mantra, Tantra Meditation, Trauma-Informed Teaching, Yoga Philosophy and more. She is a student of Nataraj Chaitanya, Guruji Maharaj of the Shivoham Tantra Lineage and Artemis Emily Doyle & Bhairav Thomas English of Anuttara Ashram. She is also a team member of Anuttara Ashram’s Yoga & Meditation Teacher Training. Her practice and teaching are also largely influenced by Rupert Spira, Mooji, David Frawley, and Thich Nhat Hanh.

Kayla shares in her classes, in a spiritually devoted, accessible, and compassionate manner, what she’s learned through years of living at ashrams, studying with masters in India, and exploring the ancient wisdom of yoga as a way of life on and off the mat. For Kayla, yoga has helped her access an unshakeable inner peace all while not taking herself too seriously and guides her students to that place in themselves as well to live a more joyous and aligned life. 

Kethy (she/her) is a Cameroonian – Canadian 200 hour Registered Yoga Teacher with a background in ashtanga and vinyasa hatha yoga. She teaches Slow Yoga Flows that are accessible to Beginners.

The yoga practice she leads is meant to be taken at one’s own pace, letting go of expectations and meeting the body and the mind in the present. Mindful movements — strengthening and stretching muscles — while focusing on the rhythm of the breath. Participants are invited to be kind and gentle to themselves.

To breath, move, modify and rest. Go hard. Go slow. Do you. The journey is all yours. Enjoy!

Kim is a 200 hour certified yoga teacher and visual artist with a strong desire to unleash the creativity within her students. Believing that yoga and art are intrinsically linked, Kim crafts creative sequences that are both nourishing and challenging, through which she encourages students to travel inward and find their personal flow state.

Kim’s use of heartfelt language and humour, allows students of all walks an opportunity for deeper self-reflection, and reintroduces a sense of play in each of her classes. Motivated to embolden students to trust in their own power, Kim serves her classes with compassion, and familiar kindness.

Following her training at PranaShanti Yoga Centre, Kim continues to attend workshops and trainings, including Advanced Anatomy, Teacher with Therapy Balls and Advanced Yin.

Roll out your mat in Kim’s class to roll into a deliberate and reflective experience.

Laura
Laurie
Lindsay
Lucie

Laura is a warm and welcoming 200 hour experienced yoga teacher. Although her sequences combine functional movements, traditional hatha postures and movements borrowed from other modalities, she is a firm believer that yoga is for every BODY and will ensure that all bodies feel respected and welcomed in her classes. Students can expect to flow slowly, with intention and move in both traditional and novel ways. Laura’s personal yoga is equal parts Yang and Yin; a strong physical practice accompanied by a deep reverence for meditation and mindfulness.

This can be felt in her classes as she strives to honour the true essence of Yoga by integrating breathwork, mindfulness and meditation into her sequences. Laura believes that to be a good teacher you must also be a perpetual student. With this in mind she is committed to frequently pursuing opportunities that further her yoga education: Advanced Vinyasa Sequencing, Yin Yoga, Meditation, Yoga Detour Method, Honouring Yoga’s Roots, Advanced Anatomy, Biomechanics for Yoga just to name a few.

Laura strives to deliver creative sequences where students feel equally challenged but present with their own experience. You’ll leave her classes with a deeper appreciation for mind, body and soul connection.

Laurie was one of those who was unwillingly dragged to a class back in 1988, and Anne Pitman was her first teacher. She loved yoga from the start, though the journey to embracing the practice fully was bumpy, to say the least. Over time, yoga has become one of the most potent tools to help her navigate through life. Some of the things she loves most about yoga is that there is no end point and that the “perfect” asana is the one you can do with how your body feels at the time. It doesn’t have to look good to feel right.

Under the guidance of many skilled teachers and following her own unending curiosity, Laurie’s practice continues to unfold and evolve. She started to teach almost as soon as she returned from completing her first 200 hour teacher training at the Kripalu Yoga Centre, in 2005.

Yoga opens doors and pathways for awareness, expression and acceptance. Laurie’s mission is to help others see that who they are and what they feel is valid and beautiful in all its complexity. Being perfectly imperfect is perfect enough.

Lindsay is a certified yoga and barre teacher who is dedicated to meeting people wherever they are on their wellness journey. Lindsay’s mission is to help folks feel grounded in their bodies and minds, fostering a sense of empowerment and self-discovery.

Lindsay grew up as a dancer and came to yoga in her teens as a way of taking care of her body. She had no idea the benefits of yoga extended so far beyond the mat! She is grateful to have trained with teachers she admired in Toronto in 2017 and 2018, and to be settling into the yoga community in her hometown of Ottawa. Lindsay loves a good slow flow or a juicy Hatha class, and she looks forward to helping create a nurturing and supportive environment where folks can realize their inner strength and recognize that they are capable of more than they believe.

Lucie is a certified teacher in Hatha, Kundalini and Yin Yoga. She is now expanding her knowledge in the Kundalini Level 2 with the Pranashanti Yoga Centre and The Wellness Path Centre. She is a Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT) with the Yoga Alliance. She has also completed training in Yoga for Everyone with Dianne Bondy.

Lucie discovered yoga in the mid 90’s and has been practicing several disciplines of yoga since then. With the years, Kundalini yoga became her regular practice. She has learned to play the singing bowls and enjoys using them during Shavasana or Corpse Pose.

Lucie’s approach on yoga is simple: you do it because it makes you feel good, keeps you healthy and makes you feel happy.

Lucila
Maria H.
Melissa
Michael

Lucila is yoga practitioner, singer-songwriter and creative arts facilitator. Her classes aim to inspire, empower, and advance awareness of breath and movement. Lucila takes a mindful approach that reminds students to be gentle with themselves and to appreciate the ever-changing moment.

She is known to weave her love of music into her yoga classes, to her, singing is a powerful form of breathwork and meditation. Her hope is that you step off the mat and into the world feeling refreshed, nourished and connected.

Maria is a 200hr PranaShanti trained Hatha Yoga Teacher.

After teaching 3 to 4 fitness class a day on a regular basis, Maria was in search of a means to help balance out her very high energy day. Yoga answered the call and since then has been a part of her everyday life for the last 9 years.

She wanted to fully understand the benefits of regular yoga on the body, mind and spirit so she acquired her Teacher Training in the summer of 2020 through PranaShanti and has not looked back since.

Combining her knowledge and training of fitness with yoga allows for a unique understanding of how the body works. She uses humor, compassion and empathy with her students to help bring a comfort level and ease to the class.

Maria’s happiest places are anything to do with water, sailing is her latest endeavor, and live music!

If you don't see her teaching then she is probably at the Front Desk waiting to help you with anything you may need.

Melissa has been practicing yoga since 2004 and fell in love with it immediately. Constantly amazed at all the benefits yoga has to offer, not just physically, but mentally and emotionally; her passion for yoga led her to wanting to share it with others.

One of the things Melissa loves about Yoga is that it can be practiced anywhere, anytime and by anyone. Many of us feel that we can’t, aren’t able, haven’t…., etc. But Yoga is not about flexibility or getting into that funky pose. It’s about being in the moment and using our breath to create balance and awareness in ourselves.

Melissa is registered with Yoga Alliance as E-RYT 500 & Continuing Education Provider and the International Association of Yoga Therapists.

With her diverse trainings, she teaches many styles of yoga including Hatha (all-levels), Flow, Yoga & Mobility, Yin, Restorative, and Prenatal & Postnatal Yoga. She also offers workshops such as Partner Yoga, Mother’s Day Yoga and her own Bliss Yoga! She specializes in pelvic floor health, proper breathing and postural alignment as well as prenatal and postnatal women, including postpartum recovery.

Melissa teaches with compassion and humour and offers a supportive and welcoming environment for all students and clients. She offers modifications for all levels and abilities and loves when someone finds that ah-ha moment! With breath centered awareness, she encourages people to find their balance between effort and ease, doing and doing nothing.

Her classes reflect her warm and playful spirit!

Om Sri Hanumate Namaha

Anjaneya, Michael Hutkins teaches traditional Hatha Yoga and meditation classes to students of all ages and abilities. With his foundation of classical Hatha Yoga, classes incorporate Pranayama (Breathing exercises), Sun Salutations or other warm ups, Asanas (Steady postures) and a deep guided relaxation. He adds gentleness, challenges and humour, to help students along their path. Classes can be made accessible to all students.

Training at several Sivananda ashrams in Canada, USA and India has allowed Michael to live with his teachers and be fully immersed in the yoga experience. His training covers a wide scope of yoga, from philosophy and Bhagavad Gita courses to chanting and devotion ceremonies to the physical postures, breathing exercises, and meditation. As well as enjoying family life, Michael is also a Certified Yoga Therapist.

Mona
Monique
Philippe
Randy

Mona is committed to helping people find comfort and ease within themselves. She spent a good part of her career as a college and university counsellor helping students with various personal, career and academic struggles. At the same time, she started to engage in a yoga practice to stay fit and found it to be beneficial in many other ways: connecting back to her body, finding calm, presence, and peace of mind. This led her to pursue a 200-hour Hatha Yoga Teacher Training (YTT) in 2014 with Caroline Elson and Donna Davis. Since then, she has continued her personal practice, started teaching and read many books on the topic while pursuing a variety of other trainings on topics such as chakras, pranayama, meditation, yoga Nidra, restorative yoga, Ayurveda, trauma, the subtle body, chair yoga, and she is currently completing an additional 300-hour YTT at Pranashanti.

Mona believes that the yoga mat offers an opportunity to find a state of well-being by cultivating presence and connection to mind, body, breath, and spiritual self and by moving the body into various postures while accepting and respecting our boundaries and needs. It is with that goal in mind that Mona will guide you through her classes hoping to shine the light into the treasure of all that you already are.

Monique values her yoga practice as an ongoing journey of becoming more self-aware and lighthearted. Over 25 years of practice, she has come to deeply appreciate the choices she has to live with integrity, to be of service in society, and to live as part of, and not separate from, Nature.

As a yoga teacher, Monique offers a space to pause, digest, and integrate. Feeling our body experience is prioritised over thinking about our body experience. Monique’s classes are breath-filled, grounding, and calming. She offers a space where students feel safe to be themselves and enjoy their practice.

Monique is passionate about finding ways to bring her yoga studies and practice into her engagement with conflict transformation work in all its many forms. She enjoys giving workshops where practitioners can explore their self-awareness and other skills to strengthen their services and teachings.

Monique is a certificed Yoga Therapist, C-IAYT. She is an RYT 500, E-RYT200, YACEP registered yoga teacher with Yoga Alliance. Monique has studied with many teachers over the past 10 years, focusing on Trauma-Sensitive and Trauma-Informed approaches as well as Yin, Restorative, Hatha, and Meditation.

Monique’s somatic teaching practice has evolved out of her embodied and somatic yoga therapy training, as well as other specific somatic trainings. Most recently, Monique completed trainings in embodied conflict resolution, somatic attachment, and her certification as a mind-body coach.

Philippe, an E-RYT 200 Yoga Teacher, has been teaching in the Ottawa-Gatineau region since 2012. He has logged in over 9000 hours of teaching Power, Flow, Yin, Meditation and Yoga Philosophy. On top of taking various trainings such as trauma sensitivity, advanced Pranayama, advanced anatomy, Yoga therapeutics, Yoga Core Tune-up, and Vipassana, Philippe’s daily studies and practice include the Yoga Sutras, an intense movement regiment, meditation and mantra.

His philosophy is simple; be aware of what is actually happening, accept it and move forward intelligently. This process required discipline, focus, the ability for self-honesty and the courage to follow one’s intrinsic values.

Philippe’s classes will challenge you to do your best while giving lots of options for all levels of practice. Expect some core strengthening and maybe a few optional arm balances or inversions.

Randy is a registered yoga teacher completing his 200 Hr YTT in 2018 and since then certified in Yin, Restorative, Meditation and Yoga Nidra. A daily practice of meditation,  breath-work, vulnerability and gratitude are the foundation of his practice.

Randy's background has always included regular fitness activities having completed multiple Ironman races, marathons, 100 km fundraising runs, endurance ski events, lake swimming, self guided biking vacations and anything outdoors.

As co-founder of 24 Hr Yogapalooza, an annual fundraiser for cancer research at CHEO, Randy has a special connection with the Ottawa Gatineau yoga community and is always recruiting volunteers. This event has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for research.

Randy specializes in Hatha, Power, Yin, Meditation and Nidra. 

When you attend his class you will soon discover his compassionate, authentic caring and soulful nature. Vulnerability is welcomed, and judgement not so much.  Randy brings a lifetime of experience, and known for story telling. 

You will be invited/challenged to explore and accept your edges, focusing on how movement and stillness feel rather than look, to slow down and connect the mind, body and breath.

Together we are sure to create a warm and welcoming community.

Sarah
Shar
Sharon
Stéphane

Sarah is a registered yoga teacher (RYT-200) who is passionate about movement and athletic disciplines. She had been competing at national level in point sparring karate and had to stop everything when she incurred her traumatic brain injury. Yoga and meditation helped her to transform her life and enabled her recovery. Sarah believes in continuous education; she has taken additional training in advanced anatomy and advanced power training.

Her approach is to create space for her students to explore their relationship with themselves on the physical, mental and spiritual level; as a balanced method to enable continuous growth of our ever-evolving best selves.

She challenges her students to meet their physical edge with friendliness and compassion, and invites her students to practice listening to their bodies and their breath.

Shar is a devoted practitioner and a life-long learner. She is on a journey to understand herself and consequently the interaction of life all around, while integrating the teachings of Yoga. Meditation has been a daily non-negotiable practice since 2017 and she notices it continuously relaxes her, bringing peace of mind. As the process of yoga unfolds, Shar is in awe of what can be perceived and felt if we pay attention. She is curious and enjoys playing with the edge.

Love is at the center of her teaching, on the mat and in her kindergarten classroom. She longs to share space and stories with humans. While teaching, she encourages her students to explore the sacredness of their experience with breath, movement and compassionate presence. She inspires inquiry and careful listening, in connection to students safely experiencing all aspects of themselves as they are. She helps make room for possibilities so that we can all find the deeper parts of ourselves, creating harmony, vitality and supporting the whole being.

Shar has immersed herself in teacher training since 2019, including a 20h Yin Yoga teacher Training, a 225h Fundamental (Vinyasa) Teacher Training, a 200h Kundalini Yoga Teacher Training and a 20h Teaching Yoga and Meditation to Children Training.

Let's come hOMe to ourselves, together.

Meet you on the mat!

Sharon can be described as a grounded, spiritually connected, and uplifting teacher.

She discovered yoga in her early 30’s at a time when she was racing through her life and career at warp speed and was feeling the effects of the intense pace, she was moving in. A friend suggested that she try yoga to help her slow down and after her first yoga class she immediately felt the effects. 25+ years after this initial experience this beautiful practice and lifestyle has become the foundation of her spiritual, mental, emotional, physical, and overall personal health care strategy.

Sharon’s studies began with the completion of a 200-hour Sivananda Teacher of Yoga program where she spent one month immersed in study at the Sivananda Yoga Ashram in the Bahamas. During her training she experienced excruciating and debilitating back pain which became a chronic condition. This back pain led her to the study and practice of Soma-Yoga, and she completed her 200-hours of certification at the Yoga North and International School of Soma Yoga in Duluth Minnesota. The inclusion of somatic movements has been instrumental in the healing of her chronic back pain and continues to be the foundation of her yoga practice today. In 2016 she was invited to attend a Kundalini Yoga retreat just outside of Thunder Bay, Ontario. This is where she experienced her first Kundalini Yoga Aquarian Sadhana and something deep within her was awakened. She began her journey of learning with Sat Dharam Kaur in Owen Sound and in 2020 she completed her 200-hour certification as a Kundalini Yoga Teacher at Prana Shanti. She has already started working towards her level two studies and this beautiful technology has become the cornerstone of her personal health care strategy. Of most importance to Sharon is her early morning practice. You will see her at most if not all Aquarian Sadhana’s at Prana Shanti where she is not only a participant but also a leader of the practice. She also teaches an early morning Kundalini Yoga class at 6:30 a.m. on Wednesdays. Sharon believes that the early morning practice is a powerful tool to change the trajectory of your day creating a more uplifting, balanced and awakened experience.

Sharon is of Indigenous descent, a member of the Wikwemikong First Nation which is located on the shores of Georgian Bay. Her Indigenous spirit name, given to her by her mother, is Biidaajiimaakwe which means a woman bringing a message or carrying news.

She believes that we all need some help navigating the multiple challenges of this lifetime and for her this help has come in the form of Kundalini Yoga.

When it comes to yoga, Stéphane is all about balance. He strives for a “just right” combination of Yin and Yang when teaching yoga—a balance that shifts depending on the energy present in the room. He brings a strong, unhurried presence, a solid foundational teaching style and his sense of humour to every class, making for a well-framed and accepting environment for students.

As a teacher, Stéphane prefers to place the accent on fundamentals: a solid connection to the earth, alignment that considers the uniqueness of our bodies, and relaxed breathing. He provides clear, direct instruction and offers many variations for each asana.

Stéphane is grateful to have been taught by highly skilled teachers in many styles, including Hatha Yoga, Power Yoga, Anusara Yoga, Ashaya Yoga, Forrest Yoga and Yin Yoga. The result of learning from so many different styles is an understanding that each student needs to be approached differently, and that in yoga, one size does not fit all.

One of Stéphane’s favourite quotes comes from Sting and deals with the futile attempt at attaining perfection, which he feels applies to every yogi: “The search for perfection is all very well, but to look for Heaven is to live here in Hell”

Stephanie
Stéphanie W
Stuti
Sue

Stephanie’s love affair with yoga began in the fall of 2004 when she attended a Hatha yoga class given at her local community centre. Following this newfound passion, she went on to explore Bikram, Hot, Power, Ashtanga and Yin Yoga.

She is a certified Hatha Yoga Teacher, an E-RYT 200/RYT 500 and YACEP Registered Yoga Teacher with Yoga Alliance, and has been teaching in Ottawa since 2008. She blends yoga asanas with a pinch of philosophy, a touch of humour, and a steady breath.

As a full-time yoga teacher, Stephanie delves into a variety of styles, covering the spectrum from Yin to Power, Flow to Gentle and a few adventures in between. Stephanie has over 2,000 hours of teaching experience and to date, has taken trainings and master classes with Richard Freeman, Seane Corn, Ray Long, Bryan Kest, Ana Forrest and Sadie Nardini.

She was a Teaching Assistant for PranaShanti’s Winter 2017 200-hour Hatha Yoga Teacher Training Program and 2018 Restorative Yoga Training. Stephanie continues to teach at the 200 and 300 hour levels of PranaShanti’s Hatha Yoga Teacher Training Programs and is the Program Co-ordinator for our 300 Hour Hatha Yoga Teacher Training program.

Stephanie can be contacted at stephanie@pranashanti.com for any program questions.

For Stéphanie Wong, yoga means complete wellness - bringing one’s mental, spiritual and physical bodies into alignment and harmony. She has been actively practicing yoga for over 15 years.

She completed a 200-hour yoga teacher training in 2019, followed by Restorative Yoga training, Mindfulness & Yoga for Children training, and Reiki certification training.

She has taught at the City of Ottawa since 2019, working intentionally to reverse the pains and discomforts that often arise from extended hours working in an office setting. She created and taught a yoga program for disadvantaged youth, where she saw firsthand the positive impact yoga has on people's self-esteem, emotional health, and stress management. She includes elements of meditation, affirmations, intention setting, chakra balancing, mobility and strength training in her classes, while ensuring that her sequences are accessible to all.

Stephanie aims for all her students to feel refreshed, peaceful, and a sense of bliss upon completing her classes.

Stuti is an RYT 200 hrs and a Bharatanatyam artist(Indian classical dancer) based in Ottawa. She was born and raised in India and moved to Ottawa in 2016.

Stuti came across the art of Yoga only through dance. After a decade of practicing Yoga, she realized Yoga is her dharma, and that's how she blends her Indian roots of Yoga philosophy along with her Western knowledge of Yoga to pass it down to society. Stuti wishes to share the gift of Yoga so that our community can get an insight into the science and philosophy of this ancient practice. She wants our community to reap all the benefits of Yoga as she did! In 2016, after landing as an immigrant in Canada, Stuti started a regular asana practice. In 2021, she completed a 200-hr Yoga Teacher Training as a Warrior Yoga BIPOC Scholarship recipient. Towards the latter half of 2021, she started leading a community class—that was indeed a full circle! Stuti enjoys teaching strength-focused, philosophy-centred, playful, and challenging classes.

Apart from teaching Yoga, Stuti is a recipient of several grants in Arts and Culture from the city of Ottawa, Toronto Arts Council and Ontario Arts Council. Stuti teaches beginners, intermediate, and advanced dance lessons to Ottawa's youth and adults.

Sue's yoga and meditation journey began about 30 years ago in graduate school. Much of her early training was in the Iyengar tradition, and living and travelling in many countries gave her the opportunity to explore different yoga styles and integrate these into her own practice.

After years of yoga practice on the side of a busy international development career, Sue had the opportunity to switch the balance and put yoga at the centre. She was drawn to teaching as the pathway to engaging more deeply in yoga, in part because of her experience in other contexts, including university and martial arts teaching, and she completed her 200-hour Hatha Yoga Teacher Training at PranaShanti in 2022.

Sue's focus is grounded in a more classic hatha practice, bringing emphasis to connecting the body and breath through mindful movement and developing a greater awareness of our own physical and mental alignment. With a strong belief in life-long learning, Sue is continuing her yoga journey by working toward the 300-hour HYTT certification at PranaShanti.

Susan
Valentina
Venus
Vidisha

Susan’s introduction to yoga began twenty years ago with weekly classes in the Chapel of the Mother House (a sacred space indeed!) at Mount Saint Vincent University, in beautiful Halifax, Nova Scotia. It was in this space that she discovered the positive and profound impact that yoga can have on one’s physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health.

Susan completed her 200-hour yoga teacher certification in 2009 (Atlantic Yoga Teacher Training). Shortly after finishing her training, she relocated to Ottawa with her family and began teaching from her small home studio. With a special interest in how yoga can help specific health conditions, she continued her studies and became a certified yoga therapist (C-IAYT) in 2020.

Susan uses a light-hearted approach to create a sense of safety and ease in her classes, offering options and modifications as an invitation to students to honour their specific needs. She sees yoga as an amazing tool for physical, mental, and emotional transformation, health, and healing.

Susan is also a certified trauma-informed yoga teacher and licensed facilitator of Sundara Yoga Therapy’s Overcome! program, which focuses on teaching people to use the various tools of yoga to self-regulate their nervous systems enabling them to manage and overcome, for instance, acute stress, trauma, anxiety disorders, and depression. And recently, to ensure her own and her students’ safety while practising yoga with Osteoporosis, she became Bone Fit™ Trained through Osteoporosis Canada.

Susan’s background is in health policy and planning. Before making yoga and yoga therapy her primary focus, she worked for almost 25 years with provincial departments of health, regional and district health authorities, and health-related national not-for-profit organizations.

Valentina discovered Yoga through a couple of friends that invited her to practice Hatha with Juan Carlos Linares and Ximena López, two pioneers yoga teachers in Caracas (her home town), in 2002. Yoga was the perfect ally to complement her workouts, to alleviate the muscular load that involved long hours of running, triathlon and climbing.

After a couple of years practicing in Yoga Pedregal and Yogashala (Caracas), she moved to Ottawa to complete a Master Degree at Carleton University together with her academic studies. She completed a 200 hour Teacher Training program at Rama Lotus Yoga Center (2008-2009). In the summer of 2009, she went back to Venezuela to teach not only in studios and gyms, but also as an active member of “En los barrios” and “Yoga en la plaza”, two NGOs focused in reinforcing the concept of non-violence, tolerance, respect to each other and peace in low income neighborhoods, slums areas and public places.

Back to Canada in 2016, new doors were open in Waterloo, Cambridge, Guelph and Kitchener where she shared countless hours of Power Yoga, Yin Yoga and Hatha inspired by the commitment of beautiful people eager to learn and improve their practice.

Teaching Yoga is her inspiration, her passion, the place where she finds spiritual guidance and physical strength. It is the path to interact with people by giving and receiving love and the way to express how grateful she is for all the blessings of life

Born with a naturally busy mind, Venus was always on the go, constantly in motion and unable to slow down. The mere thought of trying yoga and sitting still was daunting, as she believed high-intensity exercises were the only ways to release built up energy. Initially hesitant to trying yoga due to her busy mind and fast-paced lifestyle, Venus soon found that yoga brought a sense of calmness, improved sleep and helped her build stronger relationships with others and herself.

Always eager to explore new ways of relaxation, she discovered sound healing and completed a course in the practice. Now, she incorporates gongs, crystal bowls, and other percussive instruments into her yoga practice, offering a unique approach to relaxation and a deeply restorative experience.

Having practiced yoga for over ten years, Venus continues to share her love of yoga and sound healing with others to guide them towards a greater sense of calmness and inner peace. Her journey proves that even the busy minds can find solace and stillness through the practice of yoga and other healing modalities.

Come join Venus on the mat and experience the healing benefits of yoga and sound healing for yourself.

Vidisha completed a 200+ hour certified Kundalini Yoga teacher training from Kundalini Research Institute and a 20+ hour teacher training in Yoga Nidra from PranaShanti Yoga Centre.

Born and raised in India, she grew up in a home where the importance of yoga was profound. Her mother often discussed the importance of Yoga to find calm and balance in daily life.

Having moved to 4 countries across 3 different continents of Europe, Asia and US within 10 years for education and work, Vidisha found her balance through Kundalini Yoga at PranaShanti, when she moved to Alymer.

She teaches Kundalini yoga and Yoga Nidra with a belief that through her teaching she can spread and share the positive transformation she found through Kundalini Yoga. She believes that transformation is not a future event, it is a present activity.

Vidisha's style of teaching is very theme oriented where she brings a meaningful combination of Kriya and meditation which creates a wonderful totality to the practice. Vidisha firmly believes that when she practices and teaches, she is on a learning journey herself. When she is not teaching, you can find her as a participant at PranaShanti Kundalini class because there is something new to learn with every practice.