Julie is pleased and honored to be part of the Yogamaya family! She received her 200 hour training through Jillian Pransky and Carrie Parker’s Bright Spirit Teacher Training, and is REALLY proud to have been part of the first 300 hour training at Yogamaya where she was, and continues to be inspired by Stacey Brass, Bryn Chrisman, and their staff of amazing teachers, and guest instructors. She has also received her prenatal yoga certification through Carrie Parker. Every day she is awed and humbled by the practices of Yoga, and she endeavors to share what she has learned with her students, hoping that their lives will be as touched and uplifted as her’s has been.
While in Seattle pursuing her BA, Kirsten discovered and enjoyed flirting with the asana practice. But it wasn’t until moving to New York City that she found the yoga mat to be an essential spiritual refuge from the chaos of city life. The asana practice calmed her physical body during chaotic days, but it was the messages of the texts that kept her mind stilled. She feels blessed to share the practices and aims to create challenging classes that creatively weave yogic philosophies together with inspired sequences. Kirsten encourages her students to see yoga as a grounding experience that helps us let go of daily fears and our attachments to goals, and accept the process of finding our true Self.
Kirsten completed her 200 hour teacher training at OM Factory and further pursued her study of the healing powers of Meditation with David Nichtern and Restorative Yoga with Jillian Pransky. She continues to be inspired by the teachings of Stacey and Bryn and is so honored to be teaching at Yogamaya and part of Yogamaya’s 300hr Advanced Teacher Training Program.
Growing up in the electric folds of New York City, Bridgette never expected to fall for yoga. One day after being forced in by a friend to try yoga, she immediately felt connected to the creativity, movement, and space that each class provided. She aspires to recreate these feelings in her own class, while weaving together an environment that allows students to question the inner workings of their body and mind. She finds endless inspiration in the beauty and complexity that breath, asana, a fun play-list, and what an open heart can conjure.
She received her 200hr teacher training at Yogamaya New York and would like to send endless thanks to Stacey and Bryn for their invaluable teachings and inspiring devotion. Bridgette is grateful for every teacher and student who has crossed her path, as each has allowed her to remain the ever-searching student.
Gianna Gioia started practicing yoga about four years ago. Coming from a long history of studying ballet, it was the movement that initially attracted her to the asana practice. However, her practice soon evolved; it was the feeling of truly being connected to her body for the first time through her breath that made her realize the unique power of yoga. After trying out a few yoga studios around the city, she came across Yogamaya and knew that she had found her yoga home.
Gianna feels inspired by the artistry of her teachers here; she values their ability to incorporate principles of alignment with creative and challenging sequences, and she endeavors to do the same in the classes she creates. She also feels a deep connection to heart-opening, soul-warming chanting along with the yoga philosophy the studio honors.
Wanting to deepen her practice and enrich her life with the incredible teachings of the yoga philosophy, Gianna completed her 200 hour teaching training at Yogamaya in May 2012. She is grateful to her teachers Bryn Chrisman and Stacey Brass for creating such an amazing community and for continuing to inspire her practice and her life.
Gianna is honored to be part of the Yogamaya family. She teaches with compassion and seeks to provide her students with a fun, challenging class and hopefully some bits of yoga wisdom that can be practiced both on and off the mat!
When she came to yoga in her early twenties, Emily was considerably overweight and out of touch with herself. Quickly, she learned how flexible she was and realized that her physical body was inhibiting her from delving deeper into poses that she would otherwise be able to move into and enjoy. This want – to be better equipped in her physical body in order to deepen her practice – was when she truly understood her commitment to something meaningful. Thus, Emily is drawn to yoga not just for the movement but for the meaning behind the movement – a chance at stillness and calm.
Emily’s academic background is in poetry, and she is continually inspired by the poetry of yoga asanas and the relationship between form and meaning. The discipline and structure of form – ardha chandrasana or pantoum, perhaps – help channel energy into awareness that she tries to cultivate in her personal practice as well as infuse into her creativity as a teacher.
Emily tries to participate in her daily life through a genuine lens of devotion and love. Above all, she aims to honor the importance of ahimsa and thus cultivate as much nonviolence as possible through the choices she makes and the way she acts in the world.
Emily earned her 200 hour certification at Yogamaya, and she is wholly grateful for the intuitive and continued guidance of Stacey Brass and Bryn Chrisman as she moves forward on this lifelong journey. Emily intends to earn her 500 hour advanced certification at Yogamaya in 2013 and plans to attain her certification in restorative yoga shortly thereafter.
Aubrey’s teaches a challenging vinyasa class that focuses on proper alignment. She creates a safe haven where her students can push their physical and mental limits, as well as discover and savor their sweetness. Yoga has helped Aubrey grow both on and off the mat, and she wants to share that with others.
Aubrey’s introduction to yoga was purely based on an invitation from a friend and openness to try something new. She went to class not knowing what to expect and thought it was a little weird while she was there, but couldn’t escape the wonderful feeling she had as she left the class. Her yoga practice quickly became something she scheduled other rehearsals and plans around. Yoga was safe haven for Aubrey–a time when she only had to focus on herself and how she was in that moment. It remains that way today, both in her personal practice and her teaching.
She is very grateful to have completed her 200 hr. training at Yogamaya, which has taken her relationship with yoga beyond a merely physical one.
Nahdi Devi is an 800-hour Jivamukti teacher and is always expanding her yoga repertoire. By the combination of sound fused with movement, Nahdi’s classes enable students to experience the healing power present in the ancient practices of Yoga. Her deep understanding of the subtleties of balance and grace and their application to ones’ yoga practice will inspire both the neophyte as well as advanced yoga practicioners.
Since a near death experience at a young age, in which she caught a glimpse of the Divine, Nahdi has intensely sought out this Divinity in her daily life. Music and dance were instrumental in inspiring and awakening her creative nature. As a little
girl she could only dream of coming to NY to dance and in 2003 completed her BA in Dance and Psych at Manhattanville College NY. She wrote her thesis on movement therapy and for 4 years worked closely with teens in psychiatric facilities teaching dance and creative writing. As a certified Personal Trainer she began to develop more substantial relationships with her clients beyond the realm of mundane fitness.
For 6 years she studied and trained at Jivamukti. In that time she continued her practices with asana Guru, Dharma Mittra. Currently, Nahdi engages in serious study in the Gaudiya Vaisnava Philosophy under the instruction of local Bhakti Yoga communities and studies yoga at Yogamaya Yoga Studio.
Joanne’s life changed the first time she stepped onto a yoga mat. She knew she had found a way of moving and being that could open her body, yet soothe her soul. It was after discovering a yoga studio in her West Village neighborhood that she began to deepen her exploration of yoga. She resonated with the fun, flow-like vinyasa style of yoga taught there, and went on to complete her yoga teacher training with the Laughing Lotus Yoga Center in 2002. She has been teaching yoga ever since.
The yoga practice has taught her that being flexible is often more a state of mind than a physical state of being. Never-the-less, she can now touch her toes with ease, and is living proof that with perseverance, and a lot of fun along the way, you can make life-long changes to your body and, in turn, your whole being. Her passion lies in teaching those new to yoga.
Joanne’s interest in Eastern philosophy began while studying at Ithaca College. In conjunction with her degree in Communications, she minored in Mystical and Spiritual Religion. She enjoys weaving theories from varied spiritual traditions throughout her classes.
Joanne teaches at yoga studios and corporations around Manhattan, and has an established list of private clientele. She has mentored numerous times in yoga teacher training programs and enjoys leading retreats to far-flung places.
She studied restorative yoga with Judith Hanson Lasater and is a certified “Relax and Renew” teacher. Her therapeutic yoga training was completed with Cheri Clampett and Arturo Peal. She is certified in pre-natal yoga with Mary Barnes. In addition, Joanne completed her training in Reflexology through the New York Open Center in 2000 and her Reiki Master training with Mary Mallon in 1999.
When not teaching, Joanne can be found hiking, skiing, taking photographs and enjoying life in the Big Apple. She often flies home to visit her family in her native England, where vacations in Cornwall involve cream teas, and long walks along the coast with the family dog.
Spending his first three months of life in a small town just outside Toronto, Canada, Glenn eventually grew up and graduated from College in Northern California.
With illusions of grandeur, Glenn moved to New York City to pursue his dream of living and working in the financial capital of the world.
Eventually reality and the natural order of things asserted itself and he was directed to discover the art and practice of Yoga.
Subsequently, after a dedicated Vinyasa practice of seven years, he graduated from the Laughing Lotus Yoga College Teacher program in the beginning of 2009, and thus began his journey of deepening his yoga experience and applying his lessons and knowledge as a teacher.
Her teaching is deeply devotional, transportive and transformational. Fun, but far from frivolous, she is known for her entertaining personality and dropping unexpected and salient truths along the path of a creative and challenging asana class, always (usually) set to an inspired soundtrack.
Bryn is a long-time student of Iyengar teachers Carrie Owerko & Kevin Gardiner. Her vinyasa class taps into the beauty and art of movement-based sequences while integrating the texture and subtleties of focused alignment in each asana & purposeful sequencing overall in each class. Deeply drawn to Kirtan and the Bhakti path, Bryn spends her free time singing kirtan with great devotees at RadhaGovinda Mandir and hearing deep philosophy from Dhanurdhara Swami and other devotional teachers & practitioners from the Gaudiya Vaishnava tradition.
After graduation from Tulane University with a dual major in economics and business, she joined the corporate ranks in Washington DC. Less than two years later, she moved to New York City to seek a job in fashion.
After six months in a SoHo boutique, she discovered a yoga studio down the block from her apartment, and she knew instantly that she wanted to be a yoga teacher.
Bryn has led several Teacher Training courses and leads retreats in Mexico, Costa Rica, India, and throughout the world.