Teachers

 Jessica Read

“My greatest lessons in life have been learning to listen to the body, as it knows how to heal if we are willing to listen.”

Jessica has been practicing yoga for eighteen years and teaching for over ten. She is natural, light-hearted and engaging, and loves being involved in community. She strives to guide people into their body; to stay connected to their own needs and availability so the practice brings joy into their life.

Her first Ashram experience in 2006, at the Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centre in India, sparked the teacher inside.  Soon after being drawn to the movement and the free flow of shakti, Jessica was led to Shiva Rea, completing her 500-hour RYT training as a Prana Vinyasa® teacher in 2017.  Our breath is the force and the focus behind Prana Vinyasa® Flow, which is an evolving form of traditional hatha yoga. Jessica believes that yoga is the beginning of a journey within oneself to reconnect, transform, and evolve to our full potential.

Jessica’s passion to help heal individuals brought her to Visionary Craniosacral Work® with the Milne Institute. This visionary approach to cranial sacral work uses precise and gentle contacts that help the client feel more aligned, and more at home in themselves so they can understand what troubles them. This therapy combines an analytic and intuitive approach to create a relationship with the breath of life, where deep release, balance and healing can occur.

Originally from Vancouver Island, Jessica Read, E-RYT 200 – RYT 500 – YACEP, spent seventeen years living in the Yukon Territory where she created Breath of Life Yukon Wellness Collective in 2012.

 

Bonnie MacDonald

 

Bonnie

For 25 years Bonnie has been deeply committed to yoga as a path to returning home.  She has studied with teachers from many traditions, completed a 3 year certified Teacher training program in California and taught yoga in the Yukon for 20 years.  Her greatest wish and aspiration is for each of us to find our way home to truth and to offer the benefits of this exploration to our world.  Namaste

 

 

Heather Sweeney

 

dorkfaceHeather joined her first yoga class to survive the winter of 2010 in Dawson City. Yoga rekindled a love of movement and body awareness from a childhood background in dance. It also became a gateway to all kinds of outdoor activities. Throughout the years, the main draw of yoga has been the simple and practical embodiment of intention: bowing the head to invite gratitude and humility, strong warrior poses to bring courage and focus, and light backbends to open the heart.

Heather travelled to India in 2015 for her first yoga teacher training, and then to Costa Rica in 2016 for another training in Prana Vinyasa Flow. As a teacher, she aims to guide all bodies and all levels through a practice that brings freedom, lightness and joy.

 

Terice  Reimer-Clarke

 

IMG_0551Terice discovered yoga at Yasodhara Ashram in the Kootney’s 20 years ago. This practice spoke to her and she has been a dedicated yoga student and practitioner ever since. Terice is continually grateful for this practice that has been a wonderful, curious exploration of the mind-body-spirit-breath connection as well as a grounding and support in everyday life.

Terice teachers in the Iyengar tradition and is certified at Int. 1 level. She brings 18 years of teaching yoga and 30 years of professional experience as a physiotherapist to her teaching and can assist you with acute or chronic conditions.

The Iyengar style of teaching is marked by an emphasis of the alignment of the body in performing yoga poses or asana. The different shapes of the poses bring shape to the breath. Mr. Iyengar developed the innovative use of props which are commonly used today. The props allow for students to attain proper alignment and make the yoga poses accessible to all students no matter how flexible or strong. Asanas will vary from class to class depending on the theme or focus. Asanas are sequenced to gradually open the body, deepen the awareness of body and breath and quiet your mind.

Terice’s teaching is clear, informed, compassionate and infused with a send of humor and fun! Her goal is that you feel better at the end of the class as compared to when you arrive – more grounded, more open, more space to breath!

 

 

Audrey Percheron

 

audrey-yogaAudrey moved to Canada from France in 2008 with her husband. After backpacking and exploring Canada, they eventually settled in Quebec City, where they remained for 7 years. In 2016, Audrey and her family decided to venture north and moved to Whitehorse.

While living in Quebec, Audrey discovered yoga and she fell in love with it. In a short time, she became a highly-qualified instructor authorized to teach Power Yoga, Yin Yoga, and Aerial Yoga. But her interest and passion for holistic wellness didn’t stop there. She went on to complete her teacher training in Pre- and Post-Natal Yoga, as well as Yoga for Seniors.

Prior to embarking on her yoga teacher journey, Audrey was a dancer. In fact, she’s been dancing since she was 6 years-old. She has danced for 25 years and has taught many different forms of dance for 15 years.

Whether it’s yoga or dance, Audrey loves to teach and help others bring their mind and body into harmony. Her extensive experience, broad range of knowledge, and understanding of movement enables her to tailor the learning experience to the individual needs of her students.

 

 

Beverley Avano

 

Beverley  has been avidly teaching and practicing yoga for 15 years. She was drawn to yoga after an injury and quickly discovered its ability to influence quality of life beyond physical fitness. She sees yoga as a tool which, when practiced regularly, allows her to have a more rounded and holistic lifestyle. Since discovering yoga, it has shaped her both personally and professionally.

Beverley strongly feels a regular yoga practice will provide a person with more possibilities physically, spiritually, mentally and emotionally than he or she can imagine. All that is needed to benefit from yoga is a desire to learn, a chance to try, and willingness to practice.

Beverley believes yoga is for everybody and every body. She knows that anyone can benefit from any range of participation, from one class to ongoing classes to retreats.  Over the years she has observed amazing changes in her students lives.  She advises students to be the expert on their own bodies, to always listen to how they are feeling, and to be willing to modify poses to accommodates their own personal needs.

As well as pursuing her yoga studies, Beverley also holds an Early Childhood Education diploma, an Elementary Bachelor of Education degree, and a Master of Education degree in Leadership.

 

Karen McColl

 

IMG_KarenAgnistambasana_4592Karen’s first downward dog was on Salt Spring Island in 2001, under the guidance of a yogi friend. She had eaten a lot of chocolate eggs that weekend (it was Easter) and remembers thinking yoga might be a good way to get some exercise. She got hooked of course, but like many people, Karen initially liked doing yoga postures for the physical benefits — it made her feel stronger, healthier and more flexible. As the years went on, she began to realize that yoga could also help relieve stress and calm her “monkey mind” (still working on that). This, in turn, got her interested in balancing more active styles of yoga with quieter types, like restorative and yin. Karen has a few friends who say they can’t do yoga because they are a “block of wood” (really inflexible). Well, Karen used to be a block of wood too, before she started practising. Now she is slightly more malleable but still has to work hard every day to stretch her mind and body a tiny bit further.

 

 Kayleen Willms

 

image1Kayleen fell in love with yoga in 2009 in a Vancouver hot yoga studio. She was in University at the time attending UBC and needed and outlet for the stress and mental exhaustion. Over the next few months her practice grew from 2 days a week to 4 – 5 days a week. This is when she really started to see a change not only in her body but mood and energy level as well. After moving home to Kelowna, Kayleen fell in love with the Moksha yoga sequence and community. In 2012 she moved to Whitehorse and has practiced at many of the studios in town and has continued to practice Moksha yoga on her own because of her love for the series.

In 2015 Kayleen completed her Moksha yoga training in Nicaragua. It is her dream to bring the Moksha sequence to the yogis in Whitehorse and create the space in her class to make them feel welcome and safe in the yoga room. She hopes to create a sense of community and love in her yoga class.

 

 

Barbara Frain Gower

 

unnamedWould you like time to breathe?  If you can breathe, you can do yoga…

I am a certified yoga-teacher with Yoga Alliance. Yoga has enriched my life for 30 years… through energetic and healthy seasons, to pregnancy, times of less energy, and illness… yoga has accompanied me. Loving many styles of yoga (hatha, iyengar, ashtanga, sivanada, yin, and restorative), I bring an open mind and fullness of heart to my teaching and my own yoga practice. At ​Breath of Life, I am delighted to be teaching restorative yoga, one of my favorite forms of yoga.  Please join me in this beautiful opportunity to rest and soothe your body, mind, and spirit through restorative yoga.

Jonathan Henkelman

 

Head shot
 I found yoga… or perhaps more correctly, yoga found me in 2008 and I have been a constant practitioner since. First yin yoga, and shortly after acroyoga (with a side of ashtanga yoga along the way) my practice has changed my approach to life. It brings an authenticity to connections that is much needed in this modern world; after all ‘yoga’ means ‘union’.Yin, and the associated inner meditative practices connects me with myself, giving me tools to understand who I am and my place in the world. Acroyoga brings an authentic connection with the people around me in ways that can be so hard to find—a sharing of physical and emotional spaces. This gives rise to a joyful playfulness that fuels my zest for living.
Having recently moved back to Whitehorse, YT, I am excited to share these practices, and to build an open, safe, and sharing community where we can learn about ourselves, and make true and authentic connections with others. Namaste!

 

 

Sylvia Gibson

 

dscf2330Sylvia is a Yoga Works certified instructor with a back ground in dance, creative movement and yoga.  She began teaching movement, breathing and stillness to children in Calgary, AB.  Since moving to Yukon, she has had two of her own children. She finds magic in working with children and youth and seeing the befits yoga can bring to them.

 

 

 

Dale Cooper

 

dale cooperDale Cooper is originally from Montreal where she began her dance training and has been a performing artist, dance teacher, & fitness instructor for just over 30 years.

She journeyed to the Yukon in 1982 to perform as a can-can dancer. The spell of the Yukon overtook her and she made the Yukon home. Over the years, Dale has performed in Dawson City’s Palace Grand Theatre, Diamond Tooth Gertie’s, the Frantic Follies and many Guild Hall productions.

She has taught various styles of dance at Whitehorse dance schools, the Music Art and Drama program and several public schools. She also teaches dancefit classes and has choreographed both amateur and professional productions in Whitehorse and Dawson City, Yukon.

Dale’s never ending search for a class that unites the dance and fitness world has inspired her to create a workout where the technique and movement of ballet can be used as a means to lengthen and tone muscles within the context of fitness, dance and well-being. Booty Ballet will strengthen arms, abs, legs, and booty in a low- impact, ballet-based, movement class. Dale believes that dance is a healthy way to leave you feeling fit, flexible and fine.

 

 

Jolene Ross

 

thumb_IMG_3728_1024Jolene Ross is a Teetl’it Gwich’in from Teetl’it Zheh (Fort McPherson), NWT. She has been practicing yoga regularly since 2007 and teaching since 2010. Studying under Yogi Vishvketu of the World Conscious Yoga Family, Jolene completed her 200-hr YTT at Prana Yoga Studio in Edmonton, AB and her 500-hr YTT at Anand Prakash Yoga Ashram in Rishikesh, India. 

Jolene turned to yoga to overcome personal issues and has seen the benefits change her life. Yoga awakened her spirit and brought her into her body. She truly believes in the healing powers of yoga and is convinced that the perfect place to get to know oneself is on the mat. Jolene thinks of herself as more of guide than a teacher and her classes focus on the mind, body, and self connection. Namaste

 

 

Hilary Seymour

 

IMG_0082Hilary has been practicing Yoga for close to ten years. She become hooked on hot vinyasa flow yoga in 2010 while studying in Ottawa. Since then, she’s completed her 200 hour Hatha Yoga Teacher Training in Costa Rica. Hilary believes in teaching people, not postures. Having grown up on Vancouver Island, she has always maintained a passion for the outdoors and enjoys trail as well as long distance running, cross-country skiing and volleyball . School teacher by day, Hilary has called Yukon home since moving up in 2014 with with her husband and Saint-Bernard, Sara-Bea.

 

 

 

Julia Mertz

 

18554425_10155195630376000_846473946_n

 Originally from Vancouver island, Julia discovered yoga in a fluorescent lit school gym in 2005. Her curiosity for yoga was first sparked by her late grandmother who weaved yoga, meditation and holistic health into her life. Julia’s love of yoga extended into the lives of family and friends before her passion took her to Costa Rica for her 200 hour Yoga Teacher Training in 2014.
Since then she has taught Vinyasa flow, with a focus on mindful movements and self-awareness, in Northern BC, Whitehorse, Thailand, and Laos. Julia has her Bachelor of Human Kinetics and currently works as a Therapist Assistant in Continuing Care. Julia’s compassionate and calm energy is infused into her classes and you will surely leave feeling rejuvenated and inspired!

 

 

Bree Blackstaffe

 

I discovered the healing power of yoga overseas in Australia in 2011, after the loss of three family members, migration removing my profession from skilled migration list forcing me to leave Australia early and other difficult health challenges. I was left feeling disconnected so far away from home. Having been a gymnast and avid snowboarder, I sought out the nearest yoga studio to find refuge in a physical outlet to regain my flexibility. What I wound up finding was a safe place to put down the weight of the world I was carrying and connect with myself- thanks to the teachings of Tammy Williams ( Yoga NRG -Power Yoga and Mindfulness). I noticed within a week I could sleep soundly through the night without sound distraction, my mind wasn’t deafened with incessant worry-some stressful thoughts and my body was very quickly and noticeably gaining strength, flexibility and energy…I could breathe!! I practiced everyday I could, sometimes twice a day until the day I had to leave.
After returning home to Whitehorse, I quickly saw my old habits creeping up and was back to sleepless nights filled with mind chatter. I realized that this practice was essential to me living a peaceful life and therefore I needed to find out how yoga works. In 2012 I returned to Australia to study under the tutelage of my dear friend and mentor Tammy and began this ongoing awesome–often times messy– beautiful journey into my heart.
I returned to Australia again in 2013 to study with guest teacher Heather Agnew ( Trinity Yoga ) the art of Thai Yoga Massage in order to offer students the treats of massage and yoga I’d grown to love in Tammy’s classes. By the end of these teachings, I knew I was meant to lead my life offering metta ( loving kindness) through massage and a safe practice for my students to breathe and find connection to their hearts.
My classes are taught with authenticity, lightness, healthy humour and will take you on a journey to living with Heart.