Each instructor is a highly respected, independent, certified hatha yoga professional. All are well-educated in various methods of yoga and, in many cases have created their own signature style based of years of study and training. Our community of instructors are some of the top in their field, they teach throughout NYC, Westchester and Connecticut and are highly connected in the New York yoga industry, their classes reflect this dynamic quality.
Allison Waguespack: Allison fell in love with Yoga while living in San Francisco in 2000. After five years of sampling all the classes SF had to offer, Allison completed her comprehensive teacher training and certification in San Francisco with renowned Ashtanga Teacher (and personal instructor for the Grateful Dead), Larry Shultz in 2005. Since that time she has attending trainings and workshops with David Swenson, Shiva Rea, Rodney Yee, Sarah Powers and Jason Crandell. Her journey began with her enjoyment of all the physical benefits that Yoga had to offer but as she became a teacher and more intimately explored Yogic philosophy, the principles of living Yoga off the mat gave her an even deeper connection to the practice. In Allison’s Prana & Power classes she offers nourishment for the Physical Body and the Spirit with challenging and creative Vinyasa sequences, dynamic music and real life philosophy that can be applied every day. She hopes to inspire others to live in their Yoga practice both on and off the mat. The Journey is the Joy after all. Allison resides in Irvington NY with her husband and two children. In addition to teaching classes throughout Westchester, she also created and teaches a Yoga for Actors curriculum in the Conservatory Program at Michael Howard Studios, The Professional Acting Studio for Theatre, Film and Television in Manhattan and writes a blog based on her teaching. http://www.allisonwaguespack.com .
Ani Laura Hadjian: Ani first discovered the transformative power of yoga some twenty years ago, working behind the desk at the then Santa Monica Dance and Exercise studio. After moving to Manhattan to work as a reporter, she began to study more seriously, better appreciating the many dimensions physical yoga offers.
Drawn, in particular, to the power of joining the breath, movement and attention, she made a journey to study Ashtanga Yoga in Mysore, South India with K. Pattabhi Jois in 1999. Back in New York, she explored other styles in the Krishnamacharya lineage, becoming a Certified YogaTeacher under Govinda Kai, David Hollander and Michael Gilbert. She furthered her training with YogaWorks, completing their Teacher Intensive, and also becoming certified in Baby OM.
Ani has been teaching yoga in Manhattan and Westchester since 2004, incorporating a friendly and accessible approach to help students tap into their potential. Her eclectic teaching style draws from the lineages of TKV Desikichar, B.K.S. Iyengar and K. Pattabhi Jois, focusing on correct alignment, the use of the breath and flow and internal awareness to uncover the highest within. She thanks all her teachers, in particular Greg Tebb, for their guidance.
Elizabeth Cornett: Elizabeth is a Barkan Method certified hot yoga instructor. She has a dance background ranging from classical ballet, modern dance and many other styles. Her open minded way of teaching allows students the space to grow in their yoga practice as well as the emotional and mental connection. Elizabeth teaches our yoga classes at the Ursuline School in New Rochelle and continues to be our bright star here at Riverstone.
Fran Sperling, Skybody Float Yoga: Fran Sperling has spent over 30 years in the performing arts, beginning with her interest in theatre with her most notably performance as Sarah in Matty Rich’s film, Straight Out of Brooklyn. Her circus career took flight when she became the topmounter of a two-woman acrobatic duo. Acrobrats traveled worldwide and performed for Donald Trump, Patricia Birch, Lincoln Center’s Little Orchestra Society and Out of Doors Festival, Big Apple Circus, MTV, new world circuses and festivals, corporate events and for an educational program they created- teaching children about equilibristics.
As an aerialist, Fran has performed on trapeze, double trap, lyra, rope, and Spanish web. Her credits include Late Night with David Letterman, Bindlestiff Circus, Big Apple Circus, the Zipper Theatre’s Above the Belt, Streb, Zampirla Circus and the spider in Alessandra Belloni’s various adaptations of Tarantella; Spiderdance-- most recently directed by Jeff Whiting. Fran performed in this past New Year’s Eve Phish concert in Madison Square Garden. The aerial show, above the 20,000 fans, and stage show was conceived by David Gallo, with choreography by Lisa Shriver (currently of Jesus Christ Superstar fame).
Fran started her own company 4 years ago. Skybody System is a fitness fusion of aerial artistry, conditioning and yoga. Her signature FIERCE and FLOAT® classes are licensed into facilities, and she teaches classes in NYC out of Manhattan Movement and Arts Center and Bridge for Dance. Her classes have been seen on Live with Kelly and Regis, TV Guide Network, Good Morning America and have been hailed by NY Magazine, Time Out, German Glamour Business and Vogue, Self, the NY Post and Vital Juice online. She is a certified personal trainer, ISHTA Yoga instructor, Thai yoga practitioner, Acro yoga performer and instructor, and Yamuna Body Rolling Practitioner.
Jaimie Finkelstein: Jaimie come to us from Canada after moving to New York to pursue her passions.
Jaimie is a certified Hot 26 and vinyasa yoga instructor, a Certified Reflexologist and Life Coach with a Master's in Mental Health Counseling. She has practicing reflexology for ten years, working with independent boutique spas and private clients. We are thrilled that Jaimie may offer both yoga and reflexology here at Riverstone Yoga.
It is her goal to help others heal through yoga and reflexology.
Karen Young: Karen is a passionate yoga instructor who focuses on proper alignment and energy channeling. She studied with the legendary Tao Porchon-Lynch, a student of BKS Iyengar, and holds a Master of Public Health degree with a specialization in health education and nutrition. After ten years of coping with chronic pain due to ruptured discs and stress, Karen found yoga, and now enjoys a virtually pain free life. Karen believes that “yoga removes obstacles from our true path, leading us to the abundant health, happiness, and dream realization that we all deserve.” With nurturing (and sometimes comedic) instruction, her students find her positivity and energy contagious. As a blogger and nutrition geek, she shares her plant strong recipes with the world on KarenYoungYoga.com, KrisCarr.com, and EatCleanDiet.com.
Kristine Gerber: Kristine facilitates a strong as well as healing interactive flow in her Vinyasa classes. She has a Modern Dance background from Bennington College and She completed her 200 hr teacher training in 2008 under Cyndi Lee at OM in NYC. You can expect an evenly blended class of challenging sequencing, mixed with dharma talk and meditation. Kristine is also studying to become a psychologist, has a very approachable demeanor and makes connections with her students that opens them, keeps them motivated and gain deep self acceptance.
Michelle Lou Lan: As a child in China Michelle began her training as a ballet and modern dancer where her love for movement was founded. She began her yoga tutelage under Duncan Wong, a world-renowned master, and completed her 500 hour teacher training at Y+ Yoga Center in Shanghai.
Michelle quickly became one of the most highly sought after yoga teachers in China. Her teaching is inspired by many different styles of yoga, and her background in modern dance keeps these classes dynamic and fun.
Michelle focuses on precise alignment to maximize core power and stability. She supports the individual needs of her students allowing them to find their personal power. As you master breathing, moving and meditation you leave with a quiet mind feeling satisfied and alive.
Natthanan Junthongpipat (Nat): Nat is a certified Bikram Yoga instructor from Spring Teacher Training 2006. Since then she has been teaching yoga in New York, Manila and Bangkok.Yoga has always been a resource for her and helped her realize how important it is to nurture body, mind and spirit, and to develop a sense of well-being. Yoga is her way of life and is the way she takes care of herself. During her pregnancy, practicing yoga proved essential in staying strong and healthy throughout those months, helping her deal with the physical and emotional changes that occur during and after pregnancy. In addition to her own practice, the wonderful experience of practicing yoga with her newborn babyafter the delivery brought her a new joy and added a new dimension to her practice and teaching - Yoga and the inspiration of new life. Nat is also certified to teach Prenatal,Baby Om, and yoga for children. Nat and her family recently moved to Tarrytownand she is very happy to be part of the yoga community here, and to share her love and experience of yoga at Riverstone.
Nicole Alexander: Nicole is a graduate of the YogaWorks Teacher Training program and is a registered yoga teacher with Yoga Alliance. Nicole teaches an alignment-based vinyasa style class, focusing on linking movement to breath and proper alignment to keep the body safe. Through the practice of yoga, Nicole has learned the importance and beauty of connection, to the self (becoming connected to one’s core, one’s truth) to others (the sense of community), and to the environment; Nicole’s intention is to share, with her students, this sense of wholeness she has found through yoga.
Patricia Fischer Donohue: Patricia Donohue has been studying and practicing Hot Yoga in the Bishnu Ghosh (Bikram) tradition since 1998. She was trained and certified with Bikram Choudhury in 2002 and became the first certified hot yoga teacher & studio owner in Westchester. Her efforts opened the door for thousands of students to experience the transformative power of hot yoga. Patricia's never ending quest to learn now keeps her traveling annually to Mexico to study at the at the Ghosh' College of Physical Education with Tony Sanchez - arguable one of the world's most respected authorities in the Ghosh lineage. In addition to Hot Yoga, Patricia's teaching draws from and incorporates the principals of many other yoga styles that she has learned from renown yoga teachers such as Berly Bender Birch, Seane Corn, Vinny Marino, Alan Finger and Carrie Owerko. In 2010 Patricia founded Riverstone Center Ltd. which now incorporates a full range of yoga styles and disciplines drawing from both the hot yoga and non hot yoga traditions such as Ashtanga, Iyengar, Yin, Aerial Yoga and more. Her first year open, Patricia is proud to have her studio named the most innovative yoga studio in Westchester in 2013 by Westchester Magazine. Patricia is grateful that she has been given the opportunity share her passion and that she can provide a safe space where talented teachers meet eager students under one roof called Riverstone Yoga.
Phil Lynch: Phil Lynch believes that alignment focused postures and steady flowing breath are the keys to a great practice. Although he took some yoga classes in the mid 90’s, it was his diligent practice in 1998 that allowed him to complete his first training in classical Ashtanga at Mt. Madonna in California, under the direction of Baba Hari Dass. It was there that he learned the slow flow, meditation and breath techniques that remain the foundation of his classes. His second training was a couple years later at the KaliRay TriYoga Center in Santa Cruz. There he focused on mudras and taught their spinal wave-like sequencing. He continued his studies in Los Angeles, completing his third training in Vinyasa at Sacred Movement (Max Strom, Shiva Rea). Even after teaching for the past 15 years, he is still amazed at how it is always fresh and new with each student and situation. He plans to continue practicing and sharing all aspects of yoga, tailored to suit the individual and their specific needs.
Shannon McGee: Shannon has been practicing yoga for 10+ years and was certified to teach at At One Yoga in Scottsdale, AZ. She was first drawn to yoga for the excellent “workout” but soon discovered the spiritual benefits surpassed the physical practice. She looks forward to sharing her passion with her students highlighting how yoga can inspire you to live your best life. Her class will challenge students to find their own moving meditation by connecting breath with movement. A dynamic series of flowing yoga sequences will challenge you and work to increase strength and flexibility while detoxifying the body and mind. Fun, high energy, upbeat music helps to cultivate a relaxed environment that encourages students to explore their individual strengths on a path to their own self transformation. A heated room will help you to open up your body, mind and heart. Open up to happiness!.
Suzanne Braden: Moving from a career in traditional healthcare to becoming a Bikram Method Yoga Instructor in 2002 led me on a journey that today encompasses a holistic approach to yoga, yoga therapy, nutrition and wellness in general.
Following Yoga Teacher Training, I was certified in Thai Yoga Therapies and subsequently as a Nutrition and Wellness Coach. My eclectic background in traditional healthcare, yoga, bodywork and nutrition enables me to see my students in a unique, "wholistic" perspective. I specialize in one-on-one instruction, therapy and consulting... working with those who face challenges in their pursuit of a rewarding yoga practice or healthier lifestyle. The joy in my life comes from helping my students, clients, and loved ones find more balance in theirs! Contact Suzanne about personalized nutrition and wellness counseling either here at Riverstone or in Long Island.
Victoria Ramos: Victoria's journey into the yoga practice began at the Jivamukti studio in the East Village in 1990. Ten years later she was certified by Cyndi Lee at Om Yoga and has been teaching in New York City and Westchester studios since. She is also certified in pre-natal yoga trauma-sensitive yoga and Somatic Healing. Victoria is known for her deep knowledge, and visual imagery (no surprise as she holds a degree from Pratt in photography). She teaches vinyasa flow classes from all levels from beginner to advanced with a strong commitment to alignment. She currently studies with one of the master teachers on alignment, Genny Kapuler of the Iyengar Institute in New York. She is the creator of AjnaYoga.