- leala enfield (director)
Leala attended her first yoga class in New York City when she was nineteen. It was a gentle, meditative class that opened a tiny doorway into her heart, and catalyzed great changes in her life. Within a year, she had moved to the remote side of Maui where she met David Williams and began a three month intensive study of Ashtanga Yoga. She went on to develop a steady home practice. Living in community on Maui and traveling, she taught whoever wanted to learn, including the Secoya indigenous people in the Amazon tributaries of Ecuador.
Her exploration of yoga led naturally into an interest in meditation, and in 1994, she attended her first silent ten day Vipassana meditation retreat, which deeply rekindled her sense of connection to the source. She continued to travel, attending meditation courses and at times living and working at retreat centers, practicing yoga all the while.
In 1997 she met her husband at a meditation center, and a few months later they had the grace of meeting their spiritual teacher, John DeRuiter of the College of Integrated Philosophy in Edmonton (www.johnderuiter.com).
In 2000, Leala attended an Ashtanga Yoga teachers training course with renowned instructor David Swenson and in 2003 completed her level three training through Trinity Yoga. In 2006 Leala founded Prana Yoga Studio, and the following year she hosted and attended an additional 200 hour teacher training course with her beloved yoga teacher Yogi Vishvketu of Northern India, founder of World Conscious Yoga Family (www.akhandayoga.com), further exploring the diverse and traditional aspects of yoga, including pranayama (breathwork), chanting, mantra and yoga philosophy. Leala is now the Director of Training for the World Conscious Yoga Family Yoga Teacher Training program at Prana.
Leala’s passions include practicing yoga outdoors, hiking in the Rockies, ocean swimming and quality time with her husband and their two vivacious daughters.
The benefits of yoga are precious and far-reaching. The invitation is to be profoundly gentle inside while holding vibrant presence for boundriless, limitless growth and evolution.
- isabelle (sakshi) stahl
What can I possibly say about yoga?
Three words: Worthwhile. Transformative. Necessary.
Although I discovered asana practice in the mid-nineties, it was not until a few years ago that I dedicated myself to my practice. In the meantime I plunged heart (and head) first into an exploration of yogic philosophy – though non-dual teachings and satsangs as well as studying Kundalini Yoga and traditional Vedanta with some excellent teachers in the San Francisco Bay Area and Australia.
At age 40, through the kindness of life and Leala Enfield, I completed the 200 hr Yoga Teacher Training at Prana Yoga Studio. That month of intense sadhana catapulted me into total yet gentle change on all levels. I watched, from the sidelines, mystified, as my body, diet, lifestyle, priorities and relationships shifted. I used to roll my eyes when I would hear people quote Patabhi Jois saying “Practice yoga, all is coming!” Dude was right. That is how it works.
I completed my 500 hr Yoga Teacher Training in the fall of 2011 through Yogi Vishvketu and the World Conscious Yoga Family. I am so grateful for Vishvaji’s guidance and example, humor, softness and integrity. If you get a chance to meet and practice with him – take it.
I also sing regularly at kiirtans and offer the Work of Byron Katie (inquiry-based stress reduction) through my company KindMind – www.kindmind.ca Come and join me on the mat! Let’s breathe, move, sit in silence, and transform side by side.
- yogi vishvketu (vishvaji)
Yogi Vishvketu has studied and practiced Hatha and Raja yoga and the Vedic healing arts in northern India since childhood. From the age of 8, he studied Vedic wisdom at Kanvashram in the foothills of the Himalayas. With its historic temple and Ayurvedic clinic, Kanvashram attracts many yogic saints and Ayurvedic masters and was an ideal place to absorb these ancient healing and consciousness-raising traditions.
Vishva went on to attain a Bachelor’s degree in Sports and Humanities with a specialization in yoga, as well as an M.A. and Ph.D. in Yoga Philosophy. While at the University of Haridwar, he also pursued courses in Naturopathy, Reike, Pranic Healing, and Yoga Therapy. In 1992 and 1995, he won the All India Inter-University Yoga Championships. He moved to Ottawa in 2001, where he continues to dedicate himself to teaching the arts of yoga and Ayurveda. Internationally, he offers holistic yoga workshops including asana, pranayama, cleansing kriyas, Ayurveda and Vedic chanting. He also offers yoga teacher training programs, and retreats for dedicated practitioners in Canada and in the foothills of the Himalayas. The teacher training programs are recognized by the Yoga Alliance at the 200-hour level. Vishvaji visits Prana Yoga Studio twice yearly for workshops, retreats and to teach our final week of yoga teacher training in Sylvan Lake.
- denise currie
Denise Currie (Sukranti) has a passion for the wholeness, health, and awakening of the human spirit. Her spiritual longings and her study of the healing arts came together when she discovered the practice of yoga. She recognized that yoga has the potential to help us discover our hidden depths through inquiry and personal investigation, literally breathing life into unexplored and disavowed parts of ourselves. This recognition inspired her to complete her 200 and 500hr trainings with Yogi Vishvketu of Rishikesh, India. She has over 30 years experience teaching group fitness, and has had 10 years experience as a personal trainer. In addition to teaching yoga and anatomy to yoga teacher trainees, she is a registered massage therapist and has been training other massage therapists for the past 6 years.
- mallorie buoy
I was first drawn to yoga in 2006 as a way to complement more fast-paced fitness activities, and to experience relaxation while attending university. I realized my unwavering passion for yoga asana and philosophy while sharing what I had been learning with friends and family. I have been incredibly blessed to have had my journey lead to Prana Yoga Studio, where the holistic practice of mantra, pranayama, meditation, and asana continually bring me closer to my true, blissful, and fearless Self.
In August, 2010, I completed my Akhanda Yoga 200 hour YTT, during which the beautiful teachings of Yogi Vishvketu shone light on so many aspects of my life. The teachings of yoga are continually integrated into my life, as I am guided to live fully and with an open heart. In 2012, I completed my Yin Yoga Teacher Training (60 hours) with Bernie Clark, as well as became certified in Kundalini yoga, restorative yoga and Yoga Lifestyle Counseling during my 500 YTT in Rishikesh, India. It is has been so exciting that through sharing this path with others, I am continually learning in the presence of compassion, uniqueness, and devotion.
During the past five years of my university education, during which I received my Bachelor of Arts (majoring in psychology; 2010), and my Bachelor of Education (2012), I have been working with diverse groups of children and youth. I have worked extensively with children who have Autism Spectrum Disorder, in the capacities of a specialized services aide, a classroom teacher, and a yoga teacher for groups and families. I have also been trained with the organization Om-4-Youth (60 hours), which enables me to facilitate yoga groups with marginalized children and youth. I am continually striving to connect my passions for education and yoga; thus, I have created Awaken Education, with the intention of teaching children yoga, and teaching teachers how to bring yoga into their classrooms. Through Awaken Education, I hope to share tools in which to alleviate subconscious emotional reactions, develop awareness of individual and collective wellbeing in the classroom, develop a deeper sense of purpose in each student, and foster healthy bodies, minds and spirits.
- jaya devi (cheryl amy)
Jaya began practicing yoga in a tiny bedroom in 1997, learning from the pages of a discount book. She was immediately enamored by the embodied freedom she found from moving through the poses and connecting to the breath. Jaya moved on from that book to study ashtanga, power, hatha, and kundalini but ultimately fell in love with the art of intuitive flow, tapping deeply into the body’s innate intelligence and utilizing yoga as a profound tool of life exploration. Jaya was honored to train with Yogi Vishvketu in the classical Raja system of yoga and was deeply moved to receive the spiritual name Jaya Devi which means goddess of victory. She endeavors to inspire her students to feel victorious in their inspirations through challenging the ways in which they believe themselves to be restricted. As a certified Holistic Health Practitioner and Reiki Master/Teacher Jaya approaches the body as an incredible metaphor that dramatically reveals the secrets of the head and heart. Her intention for all of her students is to fall in love with exploring the vast freedom that can be found within any apparent set of limitations, mind/body/spirit. Her classes are a combination of philosophy and fun, challenge and rejuvenation. Mostly she hopes others are inspired to have fun keeping it real. Hari Om.
- emily schutz
Emily is the studio manager and a yoga instructor at Prana Yoga Studio. Her bio will be up soon.
- sara hastings
Sara took her first yoga class in January 2003 and by her 5th class was hooked. After what seemed like a lifetime of searching for some sort of personal validation, it was revealed to her on the yoga mat; Yoga was the gateway to her self discovery. Amazed by its healing benefits, Sara advanced her practise through Trinity Yoga’s teacher training in 2005. With the guidance and support of her first teacher, Leala Enfeild, she was on her way to becoming a yoga teacher. In 2006 Sara co-founded a yoga studio in Leduc Alberta but stepped away from the business in 2009 to pursue her desire to enrich the lives of children through yoga. She has since completed her YogaKids International Teacher Training and became a Certified YogaKids Trainer in late 2009.
Sara teaches from the heart and fills her classes with love, laughter, and peace.
- kate (satori) denis
Kate’s first dip into the vast ocean of yoga began in 1998. From her first class, yoga carried her down the path of self-healing and discovery. Kate’s thirst to learn more about this new mystery led her to become certified through the Gerda Kerbs Hatha Yoga Centre in 1999 and soon after, Kate took her Reiki Master and Thai Massage therapist training. She is currently enrolled in the Mount Royal University yoga therapy program.
Kate is continually enamoured with the healing power of the body/mind. Her classes (and workshops) often blend her yoga, reiki, and Thai massage background with her keen interest in Ayurveda and the chakra and meridian systems.
Kate believes in studentship and has explored many different paths of yoga and has had the pleasure of taking classes with esteemed teachers: Seane Corn, Shiva Rea, Judith Lasater, Sharon Gannon, David Life, Scott Blossom, Rod Stryker, and David Swenson. She also believes in living her yoga ‘off the mat’ by sharing yoga with young girls and women in-need and has led numerous drumming and chanting circles in support of local charities.
Little did Kate know when she first came to yoga how life altering this practice would be. How yoga would mold, embrace, and transform her from the person she was to the yogini she is now. Yoga has been Kate’s solace in times of loss, her light in the dark, and her source of laughter as her heart continually opens to varying degrees of herself.
Kate’s exuberance and passion for sharing yoga shines forth in her classes. Her students are encouraged to accept their bodies no matter what their current state of health might be, to find softness within strength, and to breathe fully, live joyfully, and love deeply.
- sean forchuk
Yoga has taught me a lot about myself; most importantly about strengthening my body, mind and spirit. It has made me realize how important being in the present is, and not letting myself get weighed down with the past and future. The more I accept and let go, the more I have. It’s as simple as just remembering to breathe fully into the body.
I found yoga, or should I say, yoga found me in 2007. For me it was a way to lose some body weight that had been added over the past years. With yoga and heathier eating habits, I achieved my goals. After beginning to deepen my practice, I discovered that the seed of yoga was planted and has grown ever since.
I decided to expand my love of yoga and engage in teacher training in 2010. There I learned so much more, not only about myself, but fellow students. With that love and knowledge came encouragement to share with others from my heart and to help plant their yoga seed, bringing light and awareness to themselves.
- lane edwards
My yoga journey began as a small child, twisting and turning my intuitive body into whatever felt right and nourishing. Little did I know this reverence for free-flowing movement would evolve into becoming a yoga teacher. After many years of self- directed practice, I traveled to Nosara Yoga Institute in 2003. In the prana charged rainforest, amongst the power and serenity of nature, I completed my Interdisciplinary Teacher Training.
Today, my yoga classes focus on self-enquiry, self-love, and connecting with our authentic selves. Together, we work on the mind, body and breath coming together. This union inspires energy to flow freely, so we are able to ask, “Who am I?” We learn to draw from our deepest reservoirs, discovering clarity and a renewed relationship with our inner peace. I love getting to know my students, and often use humor and my own life experiences to create a safe, fun and transformative environment. Being a yoga teacher has given me the gift of spreading LOVE, limitless growth, and a deep appreciation for the value of balance, openness and relaxation. When the mind is quiet, and the heart is patient, all the answers can be found. Yoga is absolutely and awesomely essential.
Lane also carries Pura at Prana. Pura is a collection of eco-luxe botanical tinctures made with pure essential oils. Learn more about Pura and her story at www.purabotanicals.com. You may also be able to find some of her beautiful mala jewelry at prana too.
- donna nygren
Donna first discovered yoga in 1998, taking classes twice weekly from a beautiful yoga teacher in a small church in south Edmonton. She continued this gentle Hatha practice till the birth of her first child in 2002.
At 39 years of age, Donna found herself waking up each morning barely able to move. She was experiencing stiffness and pain in her lower back after three years of a dedicated Pilates practice and found her way back to yoga in the fall of 2008.
The healing aspects of yoga can not be denied. Donna was deeply drawn to, and fell in love with, the holistic practice of yoga – learning mantra, pranayama and meditation, as well as asana. This style fed her soul, healed her spirit and helped make all aspects of Donna’s life healthier and happier.
In June 2011, Donna took her practice to the next level and completed her yoga teacher training through World Conscious Yoga Family at Prana Yoga Studio and began teaching shortly afterwards. Donna loves teaching yoga, and through it learns so much about herself as well as feeling an immense sense of service.
- jeanette ward
Jeanette’s passion and enthusiasm for teaching yoga is a delight to be a part of. She began to experience the numerous positive benefits of practicing yoga in 1996 and started teaching in 2002. With a background in Group Fitness (since 1988), Jeanette has discovered that bringing unity and balance to the mind, body and spirit, is just as important as keeping the physical body in shape.
During her extended yoga teacher training in India (2009), Jeanette’s knowledge and understanding of yoga was deepened and enriched by her teacher, Yogi Vishvketu. She considers it one of the most transformational experiences of her life, and is most grateful for the profound healing that she received.
Other teachers that Jeanette feels most fortunate to have studied with are: Donna Farhi, TKV Desikachar, Mark Whitwell, Rodney Yee and Shiva Rea.
Jeanette’s awareness of the energetic aspect of the human body has been enhanced through the practice of yoga. She has taken numerous courses in energetic anatomy, is a Reiki Practitioner and has experienced first hand, the power of hands on healing. Jeanette is thrilled to be sharing the many gifts of yoga and energy healings on a full-time basis.
- sandy brown
As a student of yoga I am energized by a physical and spiritual practice, where the wonderful benefits spill out into my everyday life as a woman, mother, wife, sister, daughter and friend.
Teaching yoga to expectant mothers is an absolute thrill for me, and to be sharing in this life changing occasion, an honour. Providing the skills she needs to birth and mother this child is the reason I became a yoga teacher. From that seed, my enthusiasm blossomed into something so much greater than I could have ever expected or dreamed.
I am blessed with the ability to share my passion for yoga with others through teaching. I hope to inspire in my students the bliss of living ones yoga, on and off the mat, all while smiling!
Yoga is relaxing, challenging and fun and so I say “Let US have fun”!
Namaste friends; old, new and soon-to-be.
- dawn hills
Dawn began her life long love of dance when she was 2 years old. She has studied various forms of dance including Jazz, Tap, Hawaiian, Tahitian, Bellydance, Bollywood, African, Flamenco, Ballroom, Ballet, and Modern. In University, she received her degree in Education with a Major in English and a Minor in Physical Education. After receiving her degree she got a job as a teacher for the Japanese Government. She spent 2 years living and working in Japan, travelling to Bali,Thailand, and Italy on her holidays. Dawn discovered Bellyfit after she became a mother. Bellyfit is a perfect combination of Bellydance, Bollywood, African, Cardio, Yoga, Pilates, and Meditation in a one hour workout. It was created by the amazing Canadian Alice Bracegirdle (visit www.bellyfit.ca for more details). Also, combining her love and experience of dance, Dawn created a class called “Dance Around the World”. It allows children and adults to experience various forms of dance from all over the world. Dawn is very passionate about inspiring and helping others to heal their lives. She studies health and wellness, and spirituality.
- shrina patel
Shrina has been dancing for 17 years. She has experience in various dance styles including Zumba, salsa, dancehall, reggaeton, ballroom, belly dance, Bollywood and contemporary jazz. She has also danced hip hop competitively. She says “dancing is more than a hobby for me; it’s the language of my soul and sets me free; it is all about learning to love yourself through exploring yourself.” She hopes to share her unique twist on choreography and dance expression with all that are willing to take the journey of discovering a new side of themselves.
Shrina is a licenced Zumba instructor, and she particularly enjoys this Brazilian art form, which fuses dance and cardio into one, to challenge even the fittest of people. Shrina has been dancing since childhood, and incorporates a wide variety of dance knowledge into her classes and performances, sometimes fusing elements latin and hip hop dance with East Indian dance and bhangra creating a unique, exotic, creative, and purely original twist.
Watch for her high energy dance performances at our Bhakti Boogie parties! Shrina is also available for wedding choreography (think Bollywood bridesmaids surprise!)
- tina wong
If I had to describe my yoga journey in a single word, I think ‘impulsive’ would sum it up nicely. My first foray into yoga began when I made the snap decision to sign up for Prana’s Spring 30-Day Sunrise Challenge without even a clue as to what yoga was. Little did I know how revolutionary that seemingly small decision would become – I finished the challenge head-over-heels in love with asana practice & how mutually complementary it was with my involvement in team sports. I went on to complete another Sunrise Challenge the following fall & on the thirtieth sleepy morning, I decided then & there that I wanted to become a yoga teacher. Seven months later, I was graduating from Prana’s 200-hour YTT program with my heart & mind blown dizzyingly open.
It’s been a rapid & transformative path of self-exploration & I still find myself falling more in love with yoga every day because of the way it teaches patience & perseverance, but also a ton of humility when you try to rush the process – I will forever be a student of yoga. My aim is to hold a space for students to reflect inward while simultaneously exploring outward via breath, movement, & a bit of playfulness. I feel extraordinarily honoured to spread the yoga love at my home studio & look forward to continuing on this absurdly impulsive yet incredibly beautiful journey with you.
- angela dechaine
Angela Dechaine Before yoga, beloved animal mentors supported me to discover conscious breathing, present moment awareness, universal consciousness, unconditional love and connection to who I am at my core. I found that yoga was sharing the same messages and it became a weekly practice for me in 2004 as I attended classes in my community. Through the years yoga became an increasingly large part of my life as I felt it was supporting my cultivation of a deeper sensitivity to energy and communion with nature and animals, as well as a deeper understanding and acceptance of myself.
In 2009 I was feeling a call to explore a new career that would align with my passion for conscious communion with Life and inspiring others to do the same. Soon friends and family, even people I did not know very well, were encouraging me to explore the yoga teacher training. At that time I felt that I was more a student then a teacher, but the message was coming in loud and clear to explore teaching, so I trusted it and gave myself a year to explore different styles of yoga. Two blessings came from this exploration, I found Akhanda Yoga and Kundalini Dance. As I attended these classes I found that the practices powerfully complimented each other and my journey to reconnection, self realization and evolution was accelerating! In both practices I was feeling expansion in every cell of my being and a deep connection with all Life. These practices also supported a deeper awareness of the samskaras (deep impressions in the mind or belief patterns) that were holding me back from complete union with my True Self. Yoga and Kundalini Dance gave me the tools to be who I am meant be and the insight that I desire to share this information with others to support them on their own journey.
In August 2010 I completed the intensive YTT program with Prana and Yogi Vishvaketu and in October 2011 completed the Kundalini Dance Facilitator training with Leyolah Antaraʼs blessing. I am thrilled to be able to share Akhanda Yoga and Kundalini Dance with others as it is my deepest desire to inspire others to connect deeply with the Truth of who they are, be who they are meant to be and honor the Divine spark of Life in all beings.
I feel my time with animals has taught me much about what it means to be a teacher. A teacher builds a relationship with her students and she learns about them through observation and interaction. She learns what motivates and encourages the student so that they may succeed and she sets the student up for success by creating achievable steps. She understands the importance of play and joy in teaching and has patience and the ability to listen to what the student has to share. She understands that teaching is a co-creative process and that the student is also sharing information that is valuable. Although I teach, I know I am also forever the student… Letʼs learn together and cocreate new ways of being that are in alignment with the Truth of who we are!
Although I teach, I know I am also forever the student… Letʼs learn together and cocreate new ways of being that are in alignment with the Truth of who we are!
“If you want to master something, teach it” – Yogi Bhajan
- april (divya kali) cantafio
I am ever amazed as to how I jumped into my first yoga class more than a decade ago (2000). At that time I was overly shy, cautious and would rarely stray into the unknown. To be honest I knew nothing about yoga. But there seemed to be some kind of energetic pull that brought me to class that day and continued to draw me back time and time again.
I fell in love with the sense of peace, clarity and overall awareness that appeared during and after class. I began to understand and value the unification of the body, breath and mind. Within a short while I became utterly fascinated by the physical and subtle bodies and began to immerse myself into any style of yoga or healing discipline that my teachers (Deb and Lacie Cosgrove) were offering, from Kundalini Yoga to Ashtanga and Reiki/Energy Healing to Thai Yoga Massage.
Over the years my practice naturally led to teaching, as I taught my first class in 2004. Although I was nervous I experienced an overwhelming sense of gratitude to share the wonderful gift of yoga and the breath. I knew then and there that teaching would be a path I would explore more deeply in the future. From that point on I subbed and assisted classes under the guidance of my teachers, Deb and Lacie. However, it wasn’t until finishing my Bachelor of Design that I was able to furthur my training. First completing the 200YTT Ashtanga training and later the Sattva training with Rameen Peyrow, then traveling to India to study with the ever blissful Yogi Vishvketu at his ashram for the 200YTT in 2010 and 500YTT in 2012 . I feel blessed to have had such wonderful opportunities to immerse myself in the practice of yoga. I truly believe that yoga has guided me in ways that I may not even realize yet and thus have chosen to dedicate this life to the discovery of the self and ultimately union.
- Megan Paprotka
I was first introduced to yoga when I was sixteen years old, and was immediately hooked. I loved the intensity of the physical practice, and this was what initially drew me back to my mat day in and day out. Being heavily involved with the dancing community from a very young age, physical fitness has always been very important to me, however as I delved deeper into my practice, yoga began to teach me that there is much more to physical health than aesthetics. Yoga has helped me understand that in order to be a healthy individual, you need to have balance in your mind, body, and spirit; the awareness of this interconnection has helped develop me as a practitioner as well as a whole person. Wanting to share my love of yoga with others, I made the decision to complete my 200hr Akhanda Teacher Training through the World Conscious Yoga Family at Prana Yoga Studio. In my classes, I strive to connect the fluidity of the breath to create a continuous, organic yet strengthening flow class that teaches students to follow their intuition and love themselves. I will be forever grateful to yoga for the life lessons and personal growth it continues to show me each and every day.
- tyler enfield
Tyler is Prana Yoga Studio’s resident writer. His workshops explore the origins of creativity, encouraging self-discovery through the use of language, meditation, and visualization. Writing opened for him at the age of twenty-one when he chronicled his adventures in Asia: teaching English in Cambodia, sneaking into Tibet, and hitchhiking to Mt. Kailas disguised as a Buddhist monk. His work has been awarded the Writer’s Federation Of New Brunswick Literary Prize, the New Times Fiction Prize, the Feathertale Micro Fiction Prize, and others, appearing in numerous journals throughout the US, Canada, and Europe. His children’s book, Wrush: The Secret Worlds Of Tabetha Bright (Greenleaf Book Group) is due out in 2010. Keep your eyes open for The Tinderbox: A Creativity Workshop, as it tours Alberta’s art venues, hospitals, and elementary schools this fall. For more information, please visit www.thetinderbox.ca
- alethea heudes
I’ve been practicing Yoga for about 7 years so far; everything from hot, to yin, to hatha, to restorative. I realized half-way along my journey that Yoga was more than just something I wanted to ‘do’, it became something I also wanted to share with others. I am a teacher, it’s not just what I do, it is so much of who I am; some people do what they Love, I teach what I Love. Therefore, I needed to teach Yoga. My style is such that I get very excited about maintaining variety in my practice as both student and teacher. I wish for my students to leave my classes feeling inspired, energized, as well as physically and mentally challenged. It is through these experiences that I feel we are given the gift of being truly connected with one another, even if it is for just the short time we have together on our mats.
- kris elaschuk
I have always been interested in consciousness and the way of living in peace. In cultivating for a life of happiness and an expansion of wellness and awareness, I have embraced everything from the eastern arts that direct oneself on a personal journey within, to the dynamics of eastern and western science, psychology, history, and philosophy which all make the universe complete . ~ It all inspires me to pursue and live a path of integration, positive abundance, and happiness. In embracing the practices and experiences that allow the familiarity with the truth within, I choose to create from a place of truth, purity, and unconditional love. On this journey, I feel the passion and desire to a share that which I have learned, that which I embody, and that which I love – and allow and inspire the essences of harmony, wellness, and peace in others. ~ Blessings and Light! Namaste