Lisa came to yoga through dance. Receiving a BFA in dance in southern California, it is a shock that she did not stumble upon a yoga class until after college. In that first class it became apparent that an exciting and mysterious connection to something deep within began to unfold. With an overwhelming sense of joy and compassion, she continued the search for that internal connection and received her 200-hour certification from Mark Stephens in Santa Cruz overlooking the righteous ocean waves. It is through a sense of curiosity that she continues to explore the yoga practice and it is something that she tries to cultivate in each of her students.
Lisa is continuing her education at Yogamaya with Stacey Brass and Bryn Crisman in the 300-hour program. She is grateful for all of the amazing teachers thus far, both in yoga and otherwise, and for the encouragement and positivity from her family.
After taking her very first class in 2003, Joanna knew that yoga would a part of her life forever. She bounced from studio to studio in Washington, DC and New York City until being introduced to Yogamaya by cousin and fellow teacher, Emily Hyland. It was here that Joanna not only found a beautiful space to continue practicing, learning, and exploring yoga, but also the sense of community she was seeking.
Joanna completed her 200-hour training with Yogamaya under the wise and watchful eyes of teachers and mentors, Stacey Brass, Bryn Chrisman, and Anna Greenberg. She strives to create balanced, creative and well-sequenced classes and foster an environment that encourages openness, exploration and awareness.
Jessica was introduced to yoga at a young age and has felt a deep connection to it ever since. Being a professional dancer, she was first drawn to yoga for the physical aspects of the practice. She soon realized that her yoga mat also provided a safe space for emotional and spiritual growth.
Her classes are composed of a graceful flow with a careful focus on alignment in a warm and nurturing environment.
Jessica received her 200-hr teacher training certification through Yogamaya and is also a Reiki practitioner. She is forever grateful to all of her teachers throughout life, especially to Stacey, Bryn, Deborah and her mentor Anna.
Halima found her way to a yoga mat through a friend’s not so gentle encouragement. She stayed out of pure joy and a deepening curiosity. Halima quickly discovered that the practice is a wonderful way to both decompress and strengthen the body, mind and spirit!
After decades of dance instruction, she finds the flow-based movement of Vinyasa a natural fit. Halima’s classes bring the same focus of proper alignment, a straightforward yet challenging sequence, coupled with a healthy dose of humor. Halima believes that a mindful practice can unlock hidden potential and invigorate our vibrant beings!
Halima is a Michigan native and proud University of Michigan alumna. She is a professional actor, a teaching artist in the NYC Public Schools and is grateful to have graduated from Yogamaya’s 200 hr Teacher Certification program led by Stacey Brass, Bryn Chrisman and Deborah Bagg. Thanks to her mentors, teachers and the Yogamaya community for their endless laughter, support and dedication. Halima has a strong penchant for good books, gummy bears and a well-timed hi-five.
From her first class, Aimee fell in love with Yogamaya and is thrilled to be a part of this beautiful community. Although she has taught for decades in academic settings and as a movement teacher, she credits her brilliant teachers, Stacey and Bryn, for reminding her of what the core of teaching and learning is really about. Aimee completed her 200-hr. teacher training certification from Yogamaya in 2015.
Aimee is a cultural anthropologist, movement artist, and professor at Fordham University. She is the author of Shapeshifters: Black Girls and the Choreography of Citizenship (Duke 2015) and the forthcoming edited volume, Gender & Space (MacMillan). She has also written articles and book chapters on performance, youth culture, and urban space. Aimee is a former professional dancer who trained on scholarship with The Dance Theater of Harlem and toured widely with Ailey II/The Alvin Ailey Repertory Ensemble. She is also the founder of BlackLight, a youth-led performance collective that has produced work in Detroit, Newark, and New York City.
Aimee teaches with a generous spirit and sense of humor combined with rigor and creative challenge. She thanks her mentor, Julie Pasqual, for being such a wonderful guide on this long and glorious journey.
Born and raised in Birmingham, Alabama, Rachel moved to Nashville, Tennessee after graduating summa cum laude from the University of Alabama. Eager and ambitious, she graduated early to pursue a career in politics and manage Vice President Al Gore’s personal office.
In 2009, Rachel followed new opportunities to New York City to work for the CEO of a healthcare private equity fund. She spent 5 years managing the hectic life of a high level executive until her own life completely changed. Faced with a failing marriage and a lack of fulfillment at work, she struggled to find her true self. Rachel eventually left the corporate world and her marriage behind and vowed to find a way to enrich her life and find happiness in transformation and change. Her mother encouraged her to try yoga and with a sigh she reluctantly agreed. From the moment she placed her hands on her mat, she was hooked. With a background in dance
and gymnastics, Rachel was a natural at the physical practice, but found the greatest reward in embracing a simpler and more mindful lifestyle.
In time, Rachel’s daily practice grew into something more as she decided to obtain her 200 hour teacher certification from Yogamaya. Stacey, Bryn and her training mentor Julie, pushed Rachel to step outside of her comfort zone in order to truly understand the gifts of yoga and the incredible art of teaching others. Rachel’s classes are challenging, yet fun, with upbeat music and an emphasis on the relationship between alignment, breath and self-awareness.
Sarah’s love for yoga began more than 10 years ago when she went with her sister to a yoga class at a small studio near her hometown of Baltimore, Maryland. Over the next decade, in studios from DC to NYC, she for a yoga community that felt as warm and welcoming as that one. In 2013, Sarah finally found it at Yogamaya! She loves the anchor that yoga provides in her often-stressful life as a creative director and the measurable difference in the quality of body and mind that daily practice provides. She strives to bring these same qualities to her own classes while infusing them with humor, good music and an open, relaxed energy.
Sarah completed her 200-hour teacher training at Yogamaya New York and is forever grateful to Stacey, Bryn and the other teachers at YM for sharing their invaluable knowledge and devotion to this practice.
Kate is thrilled to be a part of the Yogamaya community, to teach and learn amidst this coterie of high-caliber, inspirational and caring teachers. Kate received her 200-hr. teacher training certification from Yogamaya under the tutelage of studio founders, Stacey and Bryn.
While newer to teaching Vinyasa Yoga, Kate has been teaching acting, voice and theatre for over a decade, nine years of which have been at the college level. She has taught with University of Virginia, where she received her MFA and was nominated for the Seven Society Excellence in Teaching Award. Additionally, she has been on faculty with Temple University, St. Joseph’s University, Rosemont College, Montgomery County College, She currently teaches with Broadway.com’s Broadway Classroom program.
In addition to teaching, Kate created the education program for BCKSEET Productions, a nonprofit theatre company for which she now serves as Artistic Director. She is also a member of Actor’s Equity.
A lifelong student, Kate is working towards a Designation in Linklater Voicework under the guidance of Ms. Kristin Linklater. Her extensive study of voice and breathwork add a unique perspective to her yoga classes. As a teacher, she believes in holding students to a high standard while also creating a safe space to discover and explore. She is interested in helping her students unearth their truest selves on and off the mat, with a strong undercurrent of humor to enliven the journey.
Karen came to yoga from a background in dance and sports, initially thinking it was easy but boring; she didn’t get it. When she finally started a regular practice, she was motivated by the solace that a few hours on the mat gave her from a stressful time in her life, quieting her mind and allowing her to grow during a time she felt stagnant.
As a former high school teacher, she thrives on the energy of a room full of learners! Karen’s classes are athletic and challenging,
and she relishes the opportunity to demystify challenging poses and offer a space free from judgment for students to grow in their
practice and feel strong and capable in their asana practice as a way to cultivate a calm mind and peaceful heart. Karen believes that one of the greatest aspects of learning yoga is that we are all perpetual students: there is no end point to our learning; it is fluid and constant, keeping our bodies and brains young, and our egos in check.
When she’s not with clients or in class, Karen can be found outside the city soaking up some nature and fresh air with her dogs,
training for a race, or struggling to meditate for more than 7 minutes at a time.