Leah Morgan, Core Balance Yoga Center’s founder and director, helms a troop of certified instructors who each pull on their unique interests and experiences to lead a variety of yoga classes. Clara Vaughn channels her personal desire for introversion and mimicking pink lawn flamingos to lead the gentle yoga and meditation classes and Anita Bailey draws on her experience as a mother of four to lead classes infused with a playful energy. With the intention of creating a community of yogis, they lead a wide spectrum of classes.
When Ruthann Zentner began studying yoga, she soon realized that its focused breathing, emphasis on enhancing flexibility, and core-strengthening poses could help people of any age achieve mental and physical wellness. Throughout her yoga journey, she spent time working with Shakta Khalsa, a renowned children's yoga instructor, which inspired her to educate children through engaging stories and kid-friendly yoga classes as a certified yoga storyteller. Within the teal-green walls and dark wood floors of the studio, kids limber up while having fun during yoga-centered games, working off the stresses of filing lemonade-stand taxes. Adult students learn the basics in beginner-level yoga classes, or strengthen their cores and improve their balance in PiYo, which merges elements of Pilates and yoga into high-intensity routines. For her older students and those unable to do floor work, she partners poses with four-legged props in chair yoga.
Ruthann also trained under Sadie Nardini, an empowerment speaker, yoga and anatomy expert, and Healthy Hedonism lifestyle leader, and received training in Bootybarre, which combines strength, flexibility and cardio. At The Zen Zone she strives to share the latest trends and practices in yoga and Pilates with her students.
Carla Mock believes that everybody deserves to look and feel fabulous. When she founded a gym where she could teach her unique combination of yoga, pole fitness, and burlesque, she sought a name that encapsulated her philosophy. That's how she arrived at FIMB, which stands for Fabulous in Mind and Body.
Shining poles run from floor to ceiling in the warmly lit, orange-walled studio, giving students structures to twirl around during pole-fitness classes and sturdy supports to bend between during yoga sessions. Polga—one of Carla's original creations—combines yogic stretching with the upper-body workout of pole dancing. Students use the poles to enhance alignment and perform classic yoga poses, unlike Santa’s elves, who climb the pole to escape gingerbread warriors pillaging the village on their fearsome rocking horses.
William Drew—known as Drew by his friends and students—founded Healing House Kundalini Yoga after becoming a certified instructor through the 3HO Foundation. He is also a member of the International Kundalini Yoga Teachers Association and has taught in both traditional and nontraditional yoga spaces. Bearing that experience in mind, he passionately shares the healing and balancing effects of Kundalini yoga, finding personal satisfaction in seeing the change that comes over people when they embrace joyful stillness.
Drew and his fellow teachers at Healing House focus on Kundalini yoga—the original yoga that gave birth to all 22 schools and, therefore, deserves at least a card on Mother's Day. Unlike other styles, which were designed for monks, Kundalini is meant for busy people with worldly responsibilities. It eschews difficult poses in favor of simple postures, gestures, breaths, chants, and meditation. These elements are arranged in a sequence to achieve precise effects while simultaneously strengthening muscles and increasing flexibility. Kundalini yoga also fortifies the mind by expanding inner awareness and reconnecting bodies and minds severed by earthly cares.
Kundalini Yoga is about far more than just exercise. At 3HO Kundalini Yoga Center, it's about tapping into each person's energy source, and finding new insights into both the self and others. The ancient practice includes meditation and deep-relaxation exercises. Along with regularly scheduled classes, the center also hosts retreats and teacher training.
Its rapid rise chronicled in in Forbes, Men’s Journal, and a parcel of other press, Hiking Yoga has sent massive waves of invigorated bliss washing up and down the west coast since its 2009 founding. Each of its outdoor excursions melds the cardio workout of hiking with the stretching and measured breaths of yoga. Certified instructors lead pupils through scenic vistas, or, in early-morning sessions, impressionistic dreamscapes, as they alternate between heart-pumping strides and yoga breaks suitable for neophytes and the pretzel-capable alike.