Our teachers here at Balance are individuals just like you. They are not cookie-cutter yoga teachers, they are all unique and highly qualified. Every teacher at Balance is insured and certified, and always more than ready to answer your questions. They will encourage, challenge, motivate, and help you on your yoga journey.
An avid student since the late 90's, Nani felt a passion to spread the joy and enlightenment she gained from her practice to others. Trained and certified by the original CorePower founders, Nani's enthusiasm and love for yoga and for her students was contagious, and in 2009, she was named "One of Denver's Fitness Stars" by the Denver Post. Nani is certified in Power Yoga, Hot Yoga, Hot Power Fusion, and Sculpt Yoga and has advanced certification from an intensive training program in Pahoa, Hawaii in 2006. As founder and previous owner of Balance Yoga, Nani continues to seek out and participate in advanced training programs and bring that knowledge back to Balance. Nani's passion is helping grow and nurture the mindful, burgeoning yoga community in Lake Travis. Nani has a daughter, Zoe, in college, and a son, Reid, a recent graduate of LTHS. Her husband, Bart, looks after their mutts, Rosie and Moose.
With several past lives in the fitness industry as a coach, administrator and entrepreneur, it's no surprise that it's the physicality of the power practice that first attracted Sara-Mai to yoga. Years later, it's the spiritual limbs of yoga that keep her hooked, and she strives to offer the full spectrum to her students. Sara-Mai's classes are informed by her athleticism and her advanced studies in mindfulness and Tibetan Buddhism. Her teaching will encourage you to seek challenge where you need it that day, be it via movement or stillness. A 200-hour Yoga Alliance certified instructor, Sara-Mai is currently working towards her 500-hour Mindfulness Yoga certification with Bodhi Yoga Spain, and has completed several hours of continuing education in meditation, Buddhist studies and Yogic philosophy. Off the mat, you can be find her adventuring via motorcycle through the Texas Hill Country, or on a surfboard in Baja, with her husband and two dogs by her side.
Word on the mat about Sara-Mai is: "She gets bodies in places they have never been." - David
After 24 years in the medical field as a psychiatrist sales specialist, Dayna is furthering her love of anatomy and physiology by teaching students how to incorporate yoga into their lives. She completed a 200 hour program through The Living Yoga Institute and is certified by Yoga Alliance. She is now 150 hours into her advanced certification to become a Yoga Therapist. Dayna is also a certified personal fitness trainer through AFAA and practices smart nutrition as a Juice Plus distributor. On the side, Dayna sings and plays guitar at Emmaus Parish and sings in her sister’s roots boogie band, Debra Watson & the Smokin’ Aces. Dayna specializes in making challenging yoga accessible for yogis of all ages, regardless of injuries or illness. She teaches privates, chair yoga, corporate yoga, and power Vinyasa classes. The two loves of her life are Bill Culwell and Sao Paulo, her Portuguese water dog.
Over the last 20 years of being a yoga student and then yoga teacher, Adrienne has explored a wide range of practice and teaching styles, including Hatha, Vinyasa, Ashtanga, Gentle, PreNatal, Heated Fusion Flow, Guided Meditation and Yin Yoga. Currently, Adrienne specializes in teaching Vinyasa styles, with an emphasis on strength building, intentional movement, and moving meditation. Off the mat, Adrienne is a wife and mother to 3, originally from Austin, now residing in beautiful Dripping Springs, TX.
Mama, wife, yoga teacher and lifelong student, Tricia’s passion for yoga began with the first class she took at Balance Yoga. Everything about yoga completely resonated with her from the physical practice and community to the teachings. Fueled with a desire to understand the practice deeper, she received her RYT-200 certification from Del Sol Yoga under the guidance of Claudia Castro-Leverett and Thomas Leverett and has been teaching (vinyasa, fusion flow, yin, gentle, kids’, and meditation) ever since. Tricia is committed to supporting every person on their path towards their highest self. She teaches with a desire to serve and share the wholeness and connection that is accessible through yoga and meditation. Forever grateful to all her teachers, past, present, and future and to the practices of yoga and meditation which promote healing, peace, and freedom.
Perla was born and raised in Mexico City. She moved to Lakeway in 2008 and is honored to be a part of the Balance Yoga family since the first day they opened. She started practicing yoga in 2003 and got her 200 hr. certification at CorePower Yoga. She is currently studying Kriya Yoga to further immerse herself into the spiritual journey. In her classes you can expect core strengthening, meditation and self-realization while listening to a blend of music from around the world.
Laura Sander began studying yoga in 1998. As an athlete, she looked to yoga to bring harmony and balance to her mind and body. She began teaching yoga in 2004 after completing the intensive 200-hour Teacher training program at The Chicago Yoga Center. There, she learned various styles of yoga including Iyengar, Hatha, and Ashtanga yoga under Suddah Wexler. She has traveled and studied with many wonderful teachers such Manju Jois, Richard Freeman, and Paul Grilley. After finding a love for golf, she completed her Level 1 and 2 Yoga for Golfers Certification under Katherine Roberts in 2011. Laura enjoys teaching many styles of asana practice and i s influenced by Ashtanga, Hatha, Bikram, and Yin yoga. She teaches self-awareness and self-acceptance in the present moment. Laura believes yoga has the extraordinary power to heal and feed the soul. She enjoys sharing her energy with students and loves helping transform their bodies to be stronger, leaner, and more flexible in a more mindful way.
My journey into yoga happened after 20 years of competing in triathlons. I went into Yoga kicking and screaming until I realized it was exactly what I needed to balance my body from years of endurance training. I started practicing yoga for the physical benefits of strength and flexibility and after these changes started to happen I became interested in the mental and more spiritual benefits of the practice. I hold 200-hr certifications in Kripalu and Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga with many years of training with senior teachers. Because of all the incredible benefits yoga can offer, I became a yoga instructor in Germany where I lived for 7 years before recently moving to Lakeway. I currently practice and teach Ashtanga, Power Vinyasa and Vinyasa style classes. I know that the practice of yoga is a practice that people of all ages and physical abilities can participate in to enhance their lives both physically and mentally. I tell my students that the practice of yoga on and off the mat is our greatest teacher.
Sylvia's passion for yoga reached a new level with her move to Austin. Recreational up to this point, her practice became a daily one, connecting her deeper to herself, her new surroundings and a new community. From this place of growth Sylvia knew she wanted to teach: she completed a Teacher Training and kept moving forward enrolling in a Yoga Therapy Training program here in Austin. She currently holds a 500hr RYT certification through Yoga Alliance with additional trainings in Ayurveda, Yin yoga and the Chakra system, and will complete her training as a yoga therapist in the spring of 2019. She teaches Power Vinyasa, more alignment focused slow flow classes, Yin yoga, corporate classes and is available for privates. “I absolutely love that yoga meets you where you are in life at that very moment. What I have learned in my practice is: Yoga always works. I learned to hold space for myself, to listen to my body and its needs and to stay present in midst of it all. Yoga brings balance to body and mind. This is what I love to pass on to my students.” Sylvia's classes are lighthearted and encouraging, while focusing on healthy alignment, building strength and creating self-awareness.
Since an early age Malia has always been interested in depth and connection -- be it through conversation, movement, music, art, animals, or nature. The introduction of the mind-body-spirit-psyche quest began in her undergraduate design studies UT-Austin when she began to discover different methods of yoga and healing to help her cope and thrive with the stress of life. A wild, curious renegade spirit at heart, yoga provided self-care, balance and discipline at the perfect timing and continues to do so to this day.
Over the past 17 years, Malia has been a dedicated student and teacher. She has studied with master yoga teachers including Baron Baptiste, Shiva Rea, Sean Corne, Christina Sell, Psalm Isadora and Bizzie Gold. She is passionate about teaching, empowering, encouraging, mentoring, coaching and counseling. She has worked in various settings from yoga studios, prisons, corporations and with individuals one on one. She has previous experience in account/project management, business, yoga studio ownership/management, marketing/graphic design, promotions and client relations. Malia is currently working on her last year of her Master's in Counseling to become a Licensed Professional Counselor to support individuals and couples.
Amy began her yoga journey when she started practicing yoga as a tool to alleviate her anxiety. She found the use of breath, meditation and presence yoga provided to be key in managing her panic attacks. As her practice grew, she discovered the physical benefits to be valuable as well. The one thing she truly embraces and loves about yoga is that learning is never ending. Every time you place yourself on the mat, you experience something new. Yoga is a philosophy that allows the physical to compliment and nurture the mental, emotional and spiritual sides of every individual. She believes yoga is for everyBODY and the benefits can be utilized off the mat in every aspect of our lives. Amy received her 200-hour RYT from CorePower Austin. Outside of yoga, she is also a massage therapist and enjoys a wide range of hobbies to include reading, paddleboarding and enjoying her pack of puppies – two adorable Yorkies and a beautiful German Shepherd.
Melinda is passionate about inspiring individuals and families to create healthy and sustainable lifestyles through yoga, nutrition, and self care. She simply considers herself a “space holder” for growth, delights in connecting with her students, loves great tunes, and keeps things real and relatable for all levels. Melinda holds over 700 hours of extensive yoga training with Baron Baptiste, and master Baptiste teachers Paige Elenson, Kiersten Mooney, Martin Morris, and Bethany Lyons, among others. She is also a certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach, registered through IAHC. Melinda is experienced in teaching individuals, large groups, corporate, and athletic teams. Her classes are filled with love, laughter, and lots of sweat!
Erin fell in love with a good, sweaty hot yoga practice after experiencing one too many cold Pittsburgh winters. Having four kids, she was looking for something to not only keep her warm, but help her with her aching back as well as add some “flexibility” to her life. The practice of yoga allows Erin to manage the pain of a broken vertebrae and limited neck mobility by keeping her aligned and strengthened in all the right places. Most importantly, the grounding spiritual foundations of yoga help Erin manage the joys of being a mom (of humans and fur babies) and owning this amazing studio that Balance has become.
Erin has a Bachelor of Science degree in Education and completed her 200 hour Power Yoga Teacher Training under published author Leah Cullis. She strives to bring her nurturing, fun-loving nature to Balance Yoga. She hopes you will experience a foundation of yoga that honors the teachers that have come before us. Erin truly believes in making Yoga accessible for people of all levels and ages. If you see Erin and Jeff outside of the studio, we can almost guarantee they will be running in and out of the Lake Travis schools, and Erin will probably have her sweaty yoga pants on!