Melanie Checknita - Instructor and Owner
My yoga journey began over 37 years ago taking classes with Gerda Krebs. Over the years yoga has woven a path through my life and my heart. Yoga has taught me that strength and flexibility in my body is important but combining it with strength and flexibility of my mind allows me to face life’s challenges with courage and a positive outlook. Yoga is something that anyone can do. It becomes a need not a want and the benefits are endless!
I have been teaching yoga for over 30 years. Yoga Within opened its doors, 10 years ago, with the help and support of a very patient family and many friends! Our hope was to create a nurturing, welcoming environment where people of all levels could learn, share and practice yoga together. I have been blessed with the opportunity to work with wonderful instructors, students and friends who have shared in creating this space.
We are a 200 hour and 500 hour Registered Yoga Alliance School. This is our 9th year of running our Yoga Within Teacher Training Program. I am a Registered Yoga Alliance Training Instructor and a Senior (over 800 hours) Yoga Association of Alberta Senior Teacher.
I am thankful and fortunate to have studied many styles and traditions of yoga with many wonderful, knowledgeable teachers:
Gerda Krebs, Friedel Khattab, David Swenson, Nancy Gilgoff, Tim Miller, Doug Swenson, Phattabhi Jois, Shakta Kaur Kalsa, Sat Dharam Kaur, Rosemary Antze, Bernie Clark and many others over the years.
Yoga Association of Alberta certified, Yoga Alliance 500 hours, Ashtanga with David Swenson, Prenatal, Radiant Child, Healthy Breast, Okido yoga, Yin yoga.
Aly Daly - 600 Hour Yoga Within Certified
My introduction to yoga was quite serendipitous! When I was just 16 years old a friend of mine had mentioned that there was a part time receptionist opportunity at a local yoga studio called Yoga Within and I could never have imagined how wonderfully everything would align from then on. Working at the front desk, I have had the unique pleasure of observing how powerful and transformational yoga can be. The feeling of bliss that emanated from students after their classes was largely what inspired me to continue to learn more about yoga. Now, almost 10 years later, I still call this very same yoga studio 'hOMe away from home.' This sacred space has gifted me with endless opportunities to grow as a yoga student, teacher, and human being. Of the many things I love about this studio, at the top of the list are all the kindred spirits who teach and practice here. This supportive community offers a safe welcoming space for every body to explore yoga in a way that they truly resonate with.
I feel that every posture and every breath is nourishment for the body, mind, and spirit. When practiced authentically with care, yoga weaves a path of awareness into each part of our being. From that awareness emerges a felt sense of unconditional self-love that radiates from within and can be shared with all. This love is what regenerates, nourishes and heals the deepest parts of us so that we may feel the abundance that has always been present, fully connected and harmoniously experiencing the magic of each moment as we ebb and flow within the natural rhythm of the universe.
In 2013 I began my teaching journey in a 200-Hour Hatha Yoga program facilitated at Yoga Within. Since then, I have had many opportunities to further explore my love for yoga and wellness in Hatha, Ashtanga, Purna, Yin, Yoga Nidra, Ayurvedic Wellness, and Natural Nutrition programs.
I love practicing and teaching here, and I look forward to sharing the beautiful gift that is yoga with you!
with love and light,
Anita has been practicing yoga for 45 years and teaching for over 25. After studying with teachers from a variety of different traditions, she was certified by the Yoga Association of Alberta (YAA) in 1990 and by Sandra Sammartino (from White Rock, B.C.) in 1994 She also trained and was certified by Yamuna Zake as a Body Rolling instructor in 2000. She has considerable knowledge of therapeutic yoga and has been President of the Yoga Association of Alberta for 10 years.
Candace Wickins - Yoga Within Certified
Having played competitive sports for most of my life, I wasn't sure if Yoga was going to be for me. But after taking my first Beginner Hatha class, I was hooked. After I retired, I starting practicing Realignment Yoga with Jill Gaumont to address hip and lower back pain that was a result of the years I had spent sitting at my job. The Realignment Yoga has helped get me pain free and I now incorporate these learnings in both the Yoga and Older Adult exercise classes I teach. I am currently working on my certification as a Postural Alignment Specialist through the Egoscue Institute to further my understanding of alignment, biomechanics and sustainable movement.
Catherine Coutu - Yoga Within Certified
My love for yoga started about 15 years ago when I decided to attend a class offered by a local gym. Initially I pursued yoga for the physical aspect and it was a fight to find the patience to hold the postures and bring my mind to stillness. But I soon realized how much more this practice could offer. It was the quiet whisperings of the spiritual side of yoga, the mantras and mudras that called me back to the mat over and over again. Practicing yoga and meditation has offered me the ability to calm my mind from the business of “life”. I learned to honor my body, focus on the present, and let go of things that no longer serve me.
This sense of connection and gratitude I felt in my own practice inspired me to follow my dream to attain my 200 hour certification and begin teaching. My dedication and passion for yoga allows me to continually grow while sharing my knowledge and enthusiasm with students.
My classes are taught with the goals of improving posture, enhancing strength, promoting concentration and increasing energy levels. My intention is for you to embrace and honor your body and work at the level that suits you.
Corinne (Indu) McNally
Corinne’s friendly and joyful personality brings honesty, humor, and an open heart to her teaching. She balances and integrates her flowing classes with breath, alignment, strength, and ease. With a communications and performing arts background, Corinne incorporates a love of yoga in all aspects of her life, including her work as a Certified Doula (DONA) and Thai Yoga Massage practitioner (RMT). In November 2009 Corinne traveled to Rishikesh, India and completed a 500 hour advanced teacher training from World Conscious Yoga Family with Yogi Vishvketu. She is extremely grateful for her transformational experience, as it has provided her with a solid foundation to continue her journey of self-discovery while assisting students to deepen, open and “let go”. Corinne is an Experience Registered Yoga Teacher (ERYT500) with Yoga Alliance (YA), specializing in Yoga for Pregnancy.
Our Hormone Yoga Specialist, Corinne, was trained and certified in Hormone Yoga Therapy for Women by the founder Dinah Rodrigues from Brazil. HYT is very popular in Europe and Brazil, however Corinne is one of few teachers, certified, in Canada. She is excited to be able to teach women the HYT method across Canada, and is honoured to be offering the workshop at Yoga Within. Corinne also teaches the Tuesday evening classes of Prenatal & Yin/Restorative Yoga.
Corinne is delighted to be teaching at Yoga Within and she feels blessed to be able to share the harmony and serenity that yoga brings to her life with others.
For more information on Doula care or Thai Yoga Massage please go to http://www.lotusmoonyoga.ca/.
Dani Checknita - 1000-Hour Yoga Within Certified
Yoga has always been a part of Dani’s life. As a young child she learned the healing effects of a pranayama practice in addition to the importance of moving her body in asanas. From a young age she was blessed to study with and learn from Gerda Krebs and Friedel Khattab. After developing a mindful Hatha yoga practice, she began to study and explore other styles and lineages of yoga such as Yin, Ashtanga, Desikachar and Purna. She has completed her Ashtanga training with David Swenson and Tim Miller. Dani is grateful for the many wonderful teachers she has been fortunate to study with: Gerda Krebs, Friedel Khattab, David Swenson, Tim Miller, Rosemary Antze, Aadhil Palkhivala and many others.
Darria Hirsekorn - 800-Hour Yoga Within Certified
Practicing yoga since 2002 has helped create balance in my life in many ways. Whatever happens, yoga is there. On any given day my practice is what it is - some days feel better than others, but there is always something to learn. I love that yoga is a practice. I don't need to BE anywhere, I just keep practicing. Some days it all comes together as I'd like; often it does not, but I keep trying to improve - both on and off the mat.
In my classes, my intention is to create a space where everyone is welcome. I believe everybody will benefit from yoga and I want students to feel comfortable with wherever they are in their own practice.
I completed my first teacher training program at Yoga Within in 2013. I continue to train and I feel fortunate to have learned from wonderful teachers who generously share their knowledge such as Friedel Khattab, Rosemary Jeanes Antze, Anita Sielecki, David McAmmond, Fiona Stang, Aadil Palkhivala, Cassie McColl, Tara Woltjen, and many others. I am ever grateful to Melanie Checknita and Gerda Krebs for their encouragement and wisdom.
Gerda Krebs, also known as "The Yoga Lady", began teaching yoga in 1972 after completing her teacher training with Friedel Khattab. A year later Gerda brought yoga into the homes of many with her television show “Yoga Fits In”. This show ran on Shaw cable for 25 years and was often taped at her acreage, with regular appearances from her cat. Numerous students and many teachers have trained with her through the Gerda Krebs Hatha Yoga Centre.
To this day I still love to teach. I love to watch people come and practice yoga and to watch the improvement in their bodies and also their lives. It brings me much happiness to watch one of my students do a 'pleasure pose' such as pigeon or headstand. It brings pleasure to my eyes and pride and joy to my heart. I love to end each class with a saying that comes from the bottom of my heart: "Thank you for coming to my class. Without you there would be no class. Namaste".
Glenda Hinse - 1000-hour Yoga Within Certified
It is said that ‘everything happens in its own time’. I hadn’t practiced yoga for many years, but after the loss of my father, I began to practice again. I would sometimes go to a class with a heavy heart but then leave the class with a light heart. What a beautiful gift.
As my yoga practice grew, I began to feel a desire to deepen my understanding of yoga and its effects on mind and body. At the encouragement of a dear friend, I enrolled in the teacher training program at Yoga Within. I completed the 200 hour Teacher Training program and am now a Certified Hatha Yoga Instructor.
I am also a Certified AFLCA Fitness Leader. This allows me to blend both fitness and yoga. Two of my favorite things!
I have been a runner for many years. Running distances ranging from 5km to 50km – I love them all! I believe yoga is a wonderful compliment to running and strength training. A balanced body has strength, flexibility and a peaceful mind.
I have been fortunate to learn from Gerda Krebs, Friedel Khattab, Rosemary Jeanes Antze, Aadil Palkhivala, Melanie Checknita and Marjorie O’Connor.
Janette has practiced yoga since the mid 90’s and has trained exclusively in the Iyengar method under the tutelage and guidance of Teddy Hyndman and Judi Mirus of Edmonton, AB. She is certified through the Iyengar Yoga Association of Canada at the Intermediate Junior 2 level and certified to teach with the Yoga Association of Alberta since 2006.
Janette regularly attends workshops and intensives held by Senior International Teachers and has studied with Geeta Iyengar and Abhijata Sridhar (granddaughter to B.K.S. Iyengar) at the Canadian conference in 2008 and at Ramamani Iyengar Memorial Yoga Institute in Pune, India in 2015.
"Yoga is a for all and I am grateful to be teaching this practice and methods with students of various ages and capabilities."
Jeremy Bell - Yoga Within Certified
Jeremy Bell is a registered psychologist and a certified Yoga instructor. He has maintained a personal Yoga practice for many years and has over a decade of experience working with mental health and addictions. Jeremy currently works as a Mental Health therapist with Alberta Health Services and has done extensive research on the benefits of Yoga in healing depression and anxiety. Yoga is a central part of Jeremy’s life, providing him with a solid path towards improvement in health and personal character.
Karen Stralak - 500-Hour Yoga Within Certified
Karen is a 500-Hour Yoga Within and YAA certified yoga instructor. Karen has been teaching yoga since Yoga Within opened in 2008. Influenced by the Himalayan tradition, her style is gentle and brings strength, flexibility and peacefulness. Karen also works as an Occupational Therapist.
Upon moving to Fort Saskatchewan in late 1999, I began taking Hatha Yoga classes with Joan Randolph. I was immediately hooked! Joan’s beautiful, gentle style of teaching really resonated. At the same time I discovered I was pregnant with my first child and believe that the movement and knowledge gained practicing yoga along with support from amazing family allowed for an uncomplicated natural birth. Fast forward to 2003 I enrolled in Hatha Yoga Teacher Training at Yoga for Today in Sherwood Park. By January 2004 I was blessed with the opportunity of being a regular teacher on the amazing YfT schedule.
I have had to opportunity to work with many amazing and inspiring teachers from a wide variety of yoga lineages along the way including: Chris Erdmann-Boyko, Gerda Krebs, Freidel Khattab, Mark Darby, Fiona Stang, Michael Stone, John Scott, Marla Erickson and Kathryn Bruni-Young.
Possibly the greatest influence on my particular teaching style came in the form of chronic, debilitating back pain. In my early 30’s after giving birth twice and practicing very vigorous forms of asana I found myself unable to stand or move around with pain. At this time it was again my beloved teacher Joan that showed me the light, sharing The Egoscue Method! Shortly after I became an Egoscue Certified Postural Alignment Specialist.
Upon embracing the alignment model, a family member then introduced me to the work of Katy Bowman and I have since completed the Restorative Exercise Specialist Certification.
Kat Boehm began her journey of inner reflection in 1997. She has practiced and studied Buddhist Meditation practices as well as Yoga Meditation techniques. Within her explorations, she has had the opportunity to learn from a wide variety of Meditation Teachers both in Asia, and here, in North America. She continues to deepen her practice by sitting silent Meditation Retreats yearly. Kat’s focus centers on practicing Mindfulness Meditation. Her intention is to bring Mindfulness into daily life activities, reinforcing presence and relaxation. She is also an experienced Certified Yoga and Pilates Teacher, and teaches Mindful Movement classes. www.movingmindfully.ca
Kim Jago - Yoga Within Certified
I have always found joy in being physical, preferable outdoors, dabbling in a variety of activities over the years. I knew little of Yoga, but the 60’s Flower Child in me was drawn to it. I signed up for my first Hatha class over 20 years ago. My children were young, and this 90 minutes every Wednesday night, became my sanctuary. I always left feeling so relaxed and rejuvenated. Karen, a student of Gerda Krebs, was my first teacher. She moved with ease and was the picture of peace. I was inspired to continue my journey with Shaun Giroux, another student of Gerda’s. Shaun recognized my love for yoga and encouraged me to deepen my practice. As is my style, my yoga practice was eclectic. In 2007 I attended my first Yoga Retreat. I can’t think of a better way to spend a weekend and I have participated in several since then. This was also my first experience with Melanie Checknita, who would become my mentor and Senior Teacher. As a retirement gift to myself, I completed the 200 hour Yoga Teacher Training in 2014 at Yoga Within. Following that, my heart found a home in the studio, working part time on reception.
In addition to the benefits of the physical practice, yoga has taught me the power of breath, the strength in silence, the art of letting go and so much more. I feel a part of a community of the most wonderful beings. In hindsight, yoga has always been a part of my life.
In Gratitude to those have shared their love and shone their light along the path… Melanie, Shaun, Karen and Cassie McColl, Jenn Parks, Corinne McNally, Tara Woltjen, Satwinder Sran and of course Gerda Krebs and Friedel Khattab.
LIVE, LOVE, LAUGH
Kushok Lobsang Dhamchöe
Kushok Lobsang Dhamchöe was born in the remote valley of Kyedong, Tibet in the mid 1950s. This valley is mentioned in the famous book Seven Years in Tibet. by Heinrich Harrer, who wrote: "I shall never cease thinking of this place with yearning, and if I can choose where to pass the evening of my life, it will be in Kyirong." (Tibetan spellings of the valley vary.)
Kushok was orphaned at four years old. His aunt cared for him within the sacred valley until he escaped from Tibet in 1963. Kushok's paternal uncle was Drakar Rinpoche Tendzin Norbu, the 16th reincarnation of the Drakar Rinpoches. This monastic lineage is a combination of Kagyu and Nyingma. After Kushok's uncle's death the 17th Drakar Rinpoche was discovered at the direction of the 16th Karmapa; he now resides in Kathmandu, Nepal. Kushok's uncle's lineage is revered and treasured, and is unique to the valley of Kyedong. He inspires visiting lamas and pilgrims from Tibet and Nepal. For more information, go to www.dakkartaso.org.
After escaping Chinese Communist occupied Tibet, Kushok enrolled at Kalimpong Central School for Tibetans in India. He received his novice monk's vows from the great Tibetan master Kyabje Song Rinpoche. But after only a few years the school closed from lack of funding and Kushok was left homeless. He spent several years working and living in Clementown, India, and then traveled to Dharamsala. He was accepted at Namgyal Monastery, the personal non-sectarian monastery of His Holiness Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama. Kushok obtained his Geshe degree from the Council of Religious and Cultural Affairs of His Holiness the Dalai Lama in 1991. He became an expert in Buddhist scripture, ritual, philosophy, chanting, meditation, ritual dance, and the intricate arts of sand mandala and butter sculpture. Kushok's primary teacher was His Eminence Lobsang Nyima Pal Sangpo, the 100th holder of the throne of Je Tsongkhapa - known as the Ganden Tripa.
In the year 2000, after 30 years of study and service in India, Kushok moved to Edmonton at the request of Gaden Samten Ling to become the society's spiritual director. Since then he has worked unceasingly to advance the vision of the society's founding teacher, Geshe Ngawang Kaldän, and Gaden Samten Ling has grown under his constant guidance and care. The small house that served as the society's meditation centre became too small for its growing numbers and was torn down in May 2011, along with the neighbouring house which the society also owned, to make way for a brand new centre.
Gaden Samten Ling's Alberta Centre for Peace and Meditation opened in 2012 and since opening Kushok has already started to introduce new courses including the Introduction to Meditation and Introduction to Buddhism classes which have drawn dozens of new people to the centre. The centre's programming is intended to accommodate anyone with a desire to learn about meditation and developing positive states of mind. The centre also serves to preserve the Tibetan cultural traditions by continuing to study Tibetan Buddhist philosophy and conduct Tibetan meditation practices in both the Tibetan and English languages. We invite you to join us for any of our weekly classes to experience the wisdom of Kushok's teachings firsthand.
Lori began her yoga journey in 2004 as a form of exercise. From that point on, her journey expanded to include the beginnings of the lifestyle of a yogi. Combining body and soul, Lori shares her learnings with everyone around her.
Lori graduated from Yoga for Today Hatha Teacher Training program in 2008. She has been teaching Hatha yoga ever since. Lori’s teaching is based on a well rounded workout, that includes strength, flexibility, and stamina, with a little bit of challenge thrown in. Grateful for the knowledge received from the esteemed teachers at Yoga for Today, as well as, Michael Stone, Robin Golt, Judith Lasater and Fiona Stang.
Yoga for Today Certified, Apprenticeship with Gerda Krebs.
Louise Rene - Yoga Within Certified
My first experience with yoga was when I registered for a 12-week session of classes many years ago, my goal was "physical conditioning". The movement, breath and atmosphere was unlike any other fitness endeavours I had undertaken. I didn’t realize it at the time, but a seed was planted. I had connected with something within and thus began a personal journey that would slowly evolve. For years yoga would come in and out of my life, gradually weaving itself into the fabric of my life. Over time, I noticed my practice was making me a better person and I could no longer deny that yoga had become a part of me. Embracing it was not only natural, but essential. Yoga connects my mind and body through breath, teaching and constantly reminding me that I am in control of myself. IT allows me to switch off autopilot & live more authentically. I absolutely love the path it has put me on and I know no matter how far I might stray, it is just a breath away. I am grateful for every opportunity that allows me to share the joy that is yoga.
Maggie Lasko - Yoga Within Certified
I started my yoga journey when I was in highschool after being in a car accident. I got into it to try and gain back some mobility. It by far exceeded my expectations in that respect and I am eternally grateful. But what I am even more grateful for is all the other wonderful gifts yoga has given me over the years.
To me yoga is so much more than just a form of exercise. Each and every yoga practice is an opportunity to tune in and connect the mind, body and spirit in a way that can transform you both on and off the mat. I know from my own experience that a yoga practice is a precious gift we each deserve to give to ourselves.
Taking the Yoga Within Teacher Training was one of the best choices I have ever made and I believe it is truly the place I was meant to learn. I could not have asked for better teachers or a better community of people to learn and grow with.
As a teacher I hope to pay this forward. My intention with each class is to set the stage for others to truly connect with themselves and enrich their journey with acceptance, gratitude, and love.
Roxanne Miller - 1000-hour Yoga Within Certified
Beginning yoga was for me a feeling of arriving home to a familiar, calm and comforting place, and at the same time, a feeling of starting a remarkable journey of discovery, adventure and serenity. I graduated from Melanie Checknita’s Hatha Yoga Teacher Training program in June 2011 and am delighted to continue learning and teaching at Yoga Within.
With a background in psychology and over 40 years experience working with babies, children and adults, including those with special needs, it is a joy to share my passionate belief that yoga can be of benefit to anyone, on many different levels, regardless of age or ability.
My gratitude goes to the people at Yoga Within for ongoing enthusiasm and support for “all things yoga”, and to the many esteemed teachers who have shared their yoga wisdom: Gerda Krebs, Friedel Khattab, Rosemary Antze, Judith Lasater, Aadil Palkhivala, Tara Woltjen, and most of all to Melanie, who taught me to listen to and to trust that inner voice!
Rebecca has been practicing yoga since she was a teenager, and has been teaching for the past 14 years. Her passion started with Ashtanga, and quickly spread to many other styles of yoga. Rebecca has experience teaching Hatha, Yin, Prenatal, Kids, Restorative and Ashtanga Yoga in both studio and corporate settings. Rebecca strives to find breath and the balance between strength and flexibility in her personal practice, teaching, and in life!
Rebecca Hung - Yoga Within Certified
Rebecca Hung is a Grant MacEwan University graduate of the Holistic Health Practitioner Program. She holds certificates through the Dharmadhatu Institute, Yoga Within, Lifestyle Meditation, the Australasian Institute of Psychosomatic Therapy, Natural Health Practitioners of Canada, and The Mindfulness Institute.
She is a 200-hour certified Yoga Instructor, Usui Reiki Master Instructor, and lifetime student. Rebecca has worked with many groups including high risk youth and recovering adults. Her passion is facilitating reiki, yoga, meditation, relaxation classes and creative workshops. She has had the honour of learning yoga from Gisele Cramer, Melanie Checknita, Gerda Krebs, Friedel Khattab, Aadil Palkhilvala, Cassie McColl, Suzy Hatley and Satwinder Sran. She has studied reiki, mindfulness and meditation with Susanne Lehrol, Jason Baumle, Dorothy Hermary, Catherine Phillips, Tara Woltjen, Mandy Trapp and many other teachers and students along the way.
Rejoice Apedoe - Yoga Within Certified
Yoga truly is an art form and this art form is for every-body.
No matter the age, size, or restriction; Yoga is the medium where many can embrace a healthier and happier lifestyle.
Through yoga we can explore our character and express our creativity.
Rejoice enjoys teaching, Hatha Yoga, Yoga for Stress Release, Restorative Yoga, and Yin Yoga classes at the studio. When she is not busy developing her own practice, she enjoys attending workshops, puttering in her indoor/outdoor garden and snuggling with her cat.
We all must live life in our own way to consider it successful. The greatest lesson I have learned from Yoga was finding my very own path (even though its been a little bumpy at times) and not following blindly along the trail of others before me, or trying not to revisit the same comfortable paths over and over again.
I started yoga purely for the physical benefits, little did I know how it would creep into and affect the rest of my life in ways I would have never considered. If we can surrender to the practice and let it just happen, low and behold, new as well as old worlds open up for discovery.
I’ve had the chance to study with many respected teachers from around the world and for that I give continued humbled thanks. Teaching provides a chance to be a student in a different way and I’m thankful for the lessons I learn from each class.
I welcome the opportunity to continue to grow and share my own journey. I strive to give my fellow Yogi’s a safe and comfortable feeling in class so that we can all enjoy, smile, and look forward to coming back and doing it again and again. (Remember it’s all right to laugh!)
Om Gum Ganapatayei Namaha
Satwinder obtained her BSc from the University of Alberta in 2000 and has been working for Alberta Health Services for the last 20 years. She has been teaching Kundalini Yoga for the last 18 years and holds an International Kundalini Yoga Certification from the Kundalini Research Institute, New Mexico. Satwinder has been very fortunate to learn from Yogi Bhajan, Master of Kundalini Yoga who brought these ancient teachings to the west for the first time in 1968. Satwinder has additional training through the Guru Ram Das Center for Medicine and Humanology to teach people with Cancer, Diabetes and Immune Dysfunctions. Satwinder also holds a certification in Radiant Child Yoga Levels 1-3. Satwinder has taught numerous workshops in Winnipeg, Lloydminster, Edmonton and area on topics such as: Healthy Breast, Diet and Eating Habits, Insomnia, Divine Goddess, Inner Vitality, etc. She holds weekend retreats on a yearly basis at the Sanctum Retreat Center. Satwinder has hosted world renowned teachers, such as Snatam Kaur, Shakta Khalsa, Krishna Kaur and Dr. Sat Dharam. Satwinder has been teaching the chronic pain patient population since 2007 at the University of Alberta Hospital for the Multidisciplinary Pain Clinic. She has presented talks on Yoga and Cancer, and Yoga for Insomnia for the Complementary and Alternative Medicine at the U of A hospital. She has also presented for the Arthritis society of Alberta and NWT on the benefits of Yoga. She recently completed her training in Yoga Therapy from the Mount Royal University.
Like many people, happy priorities joyfully filled my time - children, sports, artistic pursuits, volunteer work, etc. etc. etc. until a cancer diagnosis brought me back to my long neglected you mat. My yoga mat became my healing place where I began to re-braid my body, mind and spirit back to wholeness after the life-threatening disease and years of life-altering treatments.
Yoga transformed me and I was passionate to learn more and to share my hard earned wisdom with others. I took a 300-hour Hatha Yoga training, advanced trainings and my additional certifications include Low Back/Sacroiliac, " Relax and Renew" and "Yoga Thrive", a modified Hatha Yoga program designed to support people in and beyond their cancer treatments. And I continue to learn and share my findings.
| love to share yoga and to watch yoga empower healing transformation in others. With a humble and grateful heart, I honour my many teachers and peers. Their wisdom and warmth nurture and sustain me well. Thank you: Sherry Blanchard for supporting me through that first Yoga & Meditation class and wiping away my tears, Glenda Sartore, Gerda Krebs, Judith Hanson Lasater, Susi Hately, Julie Jeone, Tara Woltjen, Satwinder Sran, Michaelle Edwards, Tatjana Knowland and of course, our beloved Melanie Checknita.
The Yoga Within Studio is a community of heart. Within this "Kula" there is passion for yoga and compassion for all who pass through the door. And a lot of fun! It is a privilege to serve as a yoga teacher here. Guided by the yogic principle of Ahimsa, we lovingly build our yoga community of practice, learnings, kindness and peace. I invite you to come and join me on the mat.
Tara was born and raised in the northern portion of the Rocky Mountains on treaty 8 land. She grew up with an adventurous spirit and with a deep connection to her environment. She regarded the trails, rivers, cliffs and canyons as her treasured companions and spent much of her time exploring the back country.
While in junior high, inspired by the book collection of her now late Uncle, Tara grew ever curious in natural and global indigenous healing modalities. Upon the completion of high school, Tara moved to Edmonton, Alberta and enrolled in the Holistic Health Practitioner diploma program at MacEwan University.
It was during one of her Holistic Health classes that Tara participated in her first yoga class. She loved it! Tara had grown up as an athlete, swimming competitively, running track and cross country, playing basketball, volleyball and a variety of other sports. She loved how sports, especially running, swimming and mountain biking connected her to the mystery of her breath. For Tara, yoga had the same effect, only much more impactful.
After twelve years of Yoga practice with her primary teacher Tara decided to take the Yoga Teacher training at Yoga Within. Initially, she wanted to take teacher training to deepen her own practice and understanding of yoga, however upon completion she felt a responsibility to share with others all that had so generously been shared with her.
Tara enjoys sharing the foundations of Hatha yoga to all levels of practitioners. Tara is an empathic, compassionate and whimsical guide who will encourage you to follow your own wisdom teacher. Tara strives to create a safe(r) space for all people to practice in regardless of ability, ethnicity, gender identity, sexuality and religion. Tara welcomes all people and encourages the whole person to shine forth just as they are. All of you is welcome in Tara’s classes!
Tara pays respectful homage to her many teachers, particularly to her primary teacher of 20 years, Zenna Ariel of Dakini Yoga, and to Melanie Checknita of Yoga Within.
Tara is a Mother of three and works at MacEwan University in partnership with Inclusion Alberta’s post-secondary inclusion program.
Tara is an Internationally Certified Yoga Instructor (since 1997) and Senior Teacher whose practice has taken her around the globe, serving in traditional ashrams surrounded by modern masters of yoga.
Tara has advanced certification in Raja Yoga and the Bhagavad Gita. She chants the Yoga Sutras of Patanjaliby heart, and plays an Indian instrument called a Shruti Box, which deepens relaxation and concentration, and "melts the brain into the heart".
Tara’s enthusiasm for yoga is infectious. Her passion for the Sanskrit language and traditional lineage teachings connect modern students to the roots of yoga. Her classes offer adaptations for all levels, encouraging each student to practice according to their own inner wisdom. She has been sharing the origin, history and basic philosophy of Yoga for more than ten years in Yoga Alliance recognized Hatha Yoga Teacher Training Programs and is honored to be part of our new 500 hour Certification Program!
You can visit her blog Kali's Kitchen for recipes, resources, movies and more: http://yoga-tara.blogspot.ca/
Tracy Carroll - Yoga Within Certified
For Tracy, yoga has been an oasis of calm and peace during stressful times and a mode of healing during illness...In the year 2000, she took part in a 3-week theatre intensive with One Yellow Rabbit in Calgary, where the group started each day with a glorious yoga practice. This was her first foray into yoga and she’s been hooked ever since.
When she started practicing Ashtanga Yoga, Tracy found that the breath and flow of that practice had a wonderful calming effect on her mind and energizing effect on her body. She is now dedicated to continuing to deepen her own practice and is excited to help others to learn the Ashtanga series of poses.
Tracy has completed the 200-Hour Hatha teaching training program, has done her Ashtanga teacher training with David Swenson and is so very grateful to have been taught by wonderful teachers over the years: Denise Clarke, Charlotte Smith, Melanie Cheknita, Friedel Khattab, Gerda Krebs and Melissa Wasserfall.