Michele Lawrence, Program Director
Michele (ERYT 500) believes in yoga’s ability to heal and transform, and that yoga, regardless of one’s ability, is available to all. As a way to balance out her active life, Michele first stepped on a yoga mat in 1999. It was not long after that she began to practice regularly; and while she could not quite put her finger on it, she was amazed at how much better she felt. For the first time, she began to live in and appreciate her own body. And, more importantly, she started to understand that she was much more than her physical body.
Michele started teaching yoga in 2005, has studied various yoga styles and has completed over 800 hours in teacher trainings. Through her own journey of Self-discovery, she has come to realize that yoga is a practice for all life situations. She leads retreats, teaches private yoga sessions and a variety of classes including Yoga for Grief, and Living Well Yoga for Cancer. Originally from New Jersey, Michele moved to Durango, CO in 2006. Along with her yoga teaching credentials, she also has an MBA, and has worked in large and small corporations for over 15 years. She still uses this skillset in her current endeavors. Michele is co-owner of Yogadurango, co-director of Yogadurango’s Teacher Training program, and is also the director of Inner Peace Yoga Therapy.
Hamsa Gooderham, Assistant Director
Hamsa (CYT, ERYT500) has been teaching yoga for 10 years and working as a Yoga Therapist for 4 years, certified by the Ananda Seva Mission. She works in conjunction with other health professionals at an alternative health clinic in her community in southern British Columbia. Combining Thai Massage, Cranial-Sacral, and Healing Touch modalities into her Therapeutic Yoga sessions, Hamsa’s work is compassionate, intelligent and deeply connected to Spirit.
Hamsa believes firmly in the transformational potential of a balanced practice as a portal to our True Nature and the Divine. Her classes are imbued with humor, spontaneity, and wisdom, energized by a conspiracy of Love. She is committed to finding ways for all people to awaken to, and embrace, the intelligence of their body-mind to facilitate consciousness evolution.
She lives in the mountains of southwestern BC, on a 10 acre farm with her husband, horses, and dogs.
Stevi Self, Assistant Director
Stevi Self (ERYT-500, CYT) is a certified yoga instructor and certified yoga therapist with 12 years experience. She is the co-owner of Southern Star Yoga Center in Oxford, MS where she teaches a variety of classes for special needs–including prenatal yoga. Stevi is the mother of three beautiful children: Riley (11), Raina (9), and Jaden (7). She completed her first teacher training when she was pregnant with her oldest child. “I owe the ease of three successful home-births in part to my genetics but also to my daily yoga practice. During pregnancy yoga helped me to feel comfortable in my body, and during labor it was a source of personal strength. Yoga showed me how to surrender to the innate wisdom that exists within me. In essence, it taught me how to get out of my own way.” She is a member of the Yoga Alliance and the International Association of Yoga Therapists.
Theresa Conroy, Program Mentor
In January 2007, Theresa left her reporting job at the Philadelphia Daily News to teach yoga full-time. She was driven to share the benefits yoga has brought to her life. With the support of her yoga practice, Theresa quit smoking, shed 50 pounds and overcame an anxiety disorder. She trained as a Yoga Therapist with Inner Peace Yoga Therapy and Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy. She is trained to teach Adaptive Yoga for Disabilities, which includes instructing those with spinal cord injury, traumatic brain injury, cerebral palsy, stroke, MS, Parkinson’s and other conditions. She is also a certified Core Strength Vinyasa teacher and runs a Yoga Teacher Training to teach Yoga for Parkinson’s Disease.
Lisa Bergly, Program Mentor
Lisa Bergly, Swami Swarupananda, is a teacher whose light transcends the classroom environment. Lisa has been teaching since 1999, her students, many of whom have practiced under her nurturing guidance for the past decade or longer, continue to benefit from Lisa’s teachings on and off the mat. Her hatha-styled yoga classes are fun, challenging and informative. Her healing touch and therapeutic knowledge and skill set are the perfect pairing in her heartfelt yoga therapy work. Lisa’s approach to sharing the teachings of yoga are based on over 2,000 hours of accumulative hatha yoga teacher trainings and advanced yoga therapeutics teacher trainings. Lisa is the owner/director of Spirit of the Lake Yoga & Wellness Center in Excelsior, MN, where she teaches yoga classes, has a yoga therapy practice and offers specialty workshops and dharma talks to the surrounding community. Lisa also leads yoga retreats including Pilgrimages to India, and offers yoga teacher training programs through Spirit of the Lake Yoga and One Spirit Center for Sacred Study. She is a graduate of the 300 hour Inner Peace Yoga Therapy Program.
Dr. Sue Dilsworth, Program Mentor
Dr. Sue Dilsworth is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist and Certified Yoga Therapist working in the Greater Grand Rapids area. Sue has worked as a psychologist in university settings, non-profit agencies and private practice for the past 17 years. Sue has trained extensively with Amy Weintraub and has served as a faculty member for the LifeForce Yoga Practitioner Training Level 1. Sue is also a graduate of the 300 hour Inner Peace Yoga Therapy program. Clinically, Sue is a holistic health practitioner that establishes treatment protocols that are specifically designed to meet individual needs. Yoga and yoga therapy are the perfect adjunct to her clinical practice. Sue is passionate about helping people take a break from telling their “stories” and finding greater meaning as they explore their SatNam through mindfulness based practices. Sue is the owner of Heart’s Journey Wellness Center in Allendale, MI.
Sarah has been diving into the deep tradition of yoga since 2001 and began teaching in 2009. She completed her 200-hour teacher training in Minneapolis, 500-hour training with certification in Yoga Therapy through Inner Peace Yoga Therapy, and has additional training in Prenatal Yoga, Kids Yoga, ParaYoga, Reiki, and Yoga as Medicine.
Sarah is currently on faculty of a 200 hour and 500 hour teacher training where she resides in Minneapolis, MN. She is also a practicing Physician Assistant integrating Eastern and Western Medicine. She enjoys teaching yoga anatomy and educating others on the intimate link of mind, body and spirit in living life to the fullest.
Heather Menzie, Program Assistant
As a body-centered psychotherapist, Heather sees the benefit of integrating yoga into her therapeutic practice. She has a passion for supporting individuals in their healing process. In addition to teaching Vinyasa Flow and Yoga for Grief and Loss classes, Heather offers 1:1 Yoga Therapy sessions, which is an individualized practice that emphasizes breath work, asana, and intention. She believes that by offering time to connect with one’s inner wisdom, an individual can build awareness and identify as well as work towards removing obstacles. In 2008, Heather completed her graduate degree from Naropa University in Transpersonal Psychology, emphasizing in Wilderness Therapy. She has been working as a therapist, family quest guide, and yoga instructor at Open Sky Wilderness since 2007. Heather grew up in Westford, Massachusetts and now lives in Durango, CO. Heather teaches at Yogadurango and completed the Inner Peace Yoga Therapy program in 2011.