Maureen Tonge (Dhanraj Kaur), E-RYT500 is an Internationally Certified Kundalini Yoga (as taught by Yogi Bhajan) and Hatha Yoga instructor certified with the Canadian Yoga Alliance, and has been offering Kundalini Yoga and Meditation & hatha yoga (with a focus on restorative yoga) classes in and around Yellowknife, NWT since 2007. She is one of the founding members of Collective Soul Space.
When you attend one of Maureen’s classes, you will be encouraged to listen to your body’s needs but simultaneously be asked to challenge yourself to always do your best – whatever that might look like that day! Maureen takes to heart Yogi Bhajan’s expression: “Keep Up and You will be Kept Up!”
Known for her genuine passion for “all things yoga”; her enthusiasm, positive energy and good-natured humour, Maureen considers it an honour to make her classes fully accessible to all levels of experience and ability. Whether you’re looking for stress relief, to strengthen your body’s systems, to increase your flexibility, for an opportunity to make a spiritual connection, or to take time for self-care in your busy life, Maureen offers a class for you!
Currently, Maureen is offering a variety of Kundalini Yoga classes, as well as Baby & Me Yoga, and Restorative Yoga.
Johanna has always had a passion for movement and the energy that is created from movement. A dancer as a young girl, she practiced ballet and jazz for many years. University opened the door for yoga practice, including valuable time for calm meditation and self-reflection. She often wondered if there was a way to marry the two concepts.
Just before moving to Yellowknife in 2000, Johanna discovered Nia. With only time to attend a few classes, she held her experience dear to her heart and shortly after, traveled to Gibson, BC to complete her white-belt training. During this blissful week, the spirit of Nia manifested itself in her soul and upon returning home, she began her journey as a teacher, sharing this spirit with others in her community. In 2011, Johanna completed her blue-belt training in Portland, Oregon at Nia Headquarters, with one of the co-creators of Nia, Debbie Rosas. This experience further deepened Johanna’s appreciation for this technique and how vital it is for us to be aware and connected to ourselves, and in essence each other.
Johanna’s classes are a journey in themselves. As the teacher, she guides the class but encourages her students to remain aware of what the movement feels like to them – physically, emotionally, spiritually and mentally. Each class starts with setting a focus – be it a body part, an emotion, breath, or a special event – which helps bring a common awareness among the students and guide the energy of the class. The movements of Nia are simple and natural, a beautiful and forceful energy evolves throughout the class. In the end, students leave feeling alive, happy, energized, balanced and blissful. For over 15 years, Johanna has taught every week to an ever-evolving group of women and men, all who come to seek the joy of movement.
In 2014, Johanna became certified as a Dancing for Birth™ teacher. Founded in 2001, classes focus on birth preparation and include a mixture of feel-good prenatal fitness, essential birth wisdom, and celebration of pregnancy, birth and mothering. As Johanna is also a certified birth doula, these classes are fun, empowering and educational. Johanna has expanded to teach a postnatal Dancing WITH Your Baby class for new mothers, which fosters bonding with your baby, getting a bit of exercise and meeting other new mums in the community.
Christa has always been drawn to benefits of alternate therapies in maintaining and improving health. She has practiced yoga for over twelve years, and found complete refuge in the depth of Sivananda Yoga practice after becoming a mother in 2005.
The physical and mental benefits she gained from the practice of yoga at this time in her life guided her to become a teacher of classical Hatha yoga in the Sivananda tradition in 2007. She taught classes at the former Yoga Centre in Yellowknife, and as co-owner of Sundog Yoga, has been offering custom workshops in yoga for both kids and adults since 2008.
Christa also became a certified Thai Yoga Massage practitioner in Jan 2010, and spent a month in Thailand in 2012 to gain further training. She greatly enjoys offering this healing bodywork to the community of Yellowknife.
Following completion of a twelve-day residential Ayurvedic Yoga Therapy Certification Course taught by Dr. Marc Halpern at the Sivananda Yoga Retreat Centre, Paradise Island in the Bahamas in 2011, Christa completed her practicum and began offering Ayurvedic services in Yellowknife.
In 2012, Christa co-founded Collective Soul Space to provide a sacred space for the healing arts in Yellowknife. After a short break from the Collective, she returned in September 2015.
Cheryl is a Certified Yoga Instructor (RYT-200), completing her training in 2015,through the Midnight Sun Yoga Teacher Training Course, taught by Saraswati Sylvie Boisclair, in Yellowknife, NT. She also completed her 15hr Teen Yoga Instructor course through Yogaminded, in 2015.
Cheryl has been practicing yoga since 2006, after realizing her body needed some TLC after having children and running injuries. Over the years, Cheryl has been able to practice Hatha, Hot Yoga, Yin, Vinyasa Flow, Restorative and Sivananda yoga. It’s been her passion to share her practice and love of yoga with others.
Cheryl teaches Hatha, Vinyasa, Restorative, and Sivananda style classes. She works with all age groups starting at 4 years and beyond. Cheryl also has the pleasure to work with Aislinn Stirling teaching Partner Yoga classes and workshops.
Knowing that everyone’s body is different, Cheryl aims to make each person feel success with their own practice and to help them realize that the practice is a journey.
With working with kids, preteens, and teens in schools and teaching piano, Cheryl loves to have and share a place for them, where they can build self-esteem, strength and flexibility. And of course, have fun at the same time.
Cheryl also provides private and group sessions in and out of the studio.
Aislinn Stirling is a Certified Teacher in Hatha Yoga (RYT-200) and has been offering yoga classes at Collective Soul Space since 2015. She is also certified to teach Yin Yoga, as well as Prenatal Yoga.
She has been practicing yoga since her introduction to Sivananda Yoga in 2004. In more recent years she began to fully grasp the powerful influence that yoga was having on her life, and her desire to share that joy with others only grew. In 2015 she completed the Canadian Yoga Alliance Accredited, Midnight Sun Yoga Teacher Training Course, taught by Saraswati Sylvie Boisclair.
Her teaching style is deeply rooted in the Classical Hatha Yoga tradition of Sivananda. A modernized practice of Hatha Flow is also offered. Both styles are accessible to all levels of experience, from beginner to the advanced yoga practitioner. Each class offers an opportunity for the student to find a balance between relaxation and exertion. Her teaching is profoundly inspired by the idea that, “The Self is not the individual body or mind, but that aspect deep inside each person that knows the Truth” -Swami Vishnu-Devananda. Aislinn treats each yoga class as an opportunity for the student to move closer to that truth: eternal bliss.
Andrew Matthews, Certified Yoga Instructor (firstname.lastname@example.org)
What Andrew lacks in flexibility he more than makes up for in positive energy and creating fun, unique yoga classes!
After spending ten years living the dream as a professional snowboarding athlete Andrew found himself in less than optimal shape after incurring multiple snowboarding injuries. After a serious concussion in 2015 resulted in a variety of post concussion symptoms, Andrew began a new chapter in his life endeavouring to increase his physical, mental, emotional and spiritual well-being. His challenging recovery has given him a deep level of empathy for others going through their own personal struggles as well as a new found passion for helping others find greater well-being in their lives.
After practicing yoga for several years during his competitive snowboarding career, Andrew took strongly to yoga and meditation in 2016 as a way to improve his health and well-being. By the end of the year he felt pulled towards taking the next step in his yogic journey by enrolling in Yoga Teacher Training at Yandara Yoga Institute in Baja Mexico. This experience of a life time was transformative in many ways including finding tranquility and joy through yoga practice as well as finding a new calling in energy work.
While at Yandara Andrew had the opportunity to learn Reiki from Allison Eatton, who is fifth in the lineage of Reiki masters from the original creator Mikao Usui. After having a very strong experience during his attunement as well as amazing results with his first patients (who called him the Reiki Wizard) – Andrew couldn’t deny that he had a gift for energy work and was encouraged by Allison to further pursue Reiki.
Andrew has now completed his Reiki Flow Level II and has admittedly turned 180 from being a skeptic to strongly believing in the power of energy work as a crucial part of mental and physical well-being… one that is often overlooked in the West. He is very excited to help provide northerners with the deep relaxation, stress reduction and holistic healing that Reiki offers.
Dawna started her journey with yoga more than a decade ago and, over the years, she discovered that it is about so much more than the just the physical practice. While it is definitely good for the body, yoga also provides many mental, emotional and spiritual benefits and rewards. What originally started as a twice a week practice in a search for stress relief, quickly transitioned to a daily practice, both on and off the mat.
In a quest to gain a deeper understanding of this rich practice, Dawna received her Yoga Teacher Certification in 2016, through Midnight Sun Yoga Teacher Training with Do Something! Yoga’s Sylvie Boisclair, and is certified through the Canadian Yoga Alliance. She also obtained her Restorative Certification in 2016 through 40-hour training with Andrea Peloso. While her current training is Hatha-based, as well as Restorative, she also regularly practices Sivinanda, Vinyasa, Yin and Kundalini, and is pursuing additional training opportunities.
Dawna is drawn to different things from different styles of yoga. Her Yin and Restorative classes remain true to their specific disciplines, while her Mixed Style classes tend to draw elements from a variety of disciplines. When leading a Mixed Style class, she likes each class to be a little different so that students are able to experience a variety of elements from the large selection of practices out there. This allows her to share a taste of all the things she loves with her students. And, because Dawna believes there is a style of yoga out there for everybody and every “body”, her classes allow students to get a taste of different practices.
Most who know Dawna, know she is passionate about yoga – and about sharing this passion with others. One’s own time on their mat is about inner focus, reflection and growth, but sharing this wonderful practice with others is like offering them a piece of magic.
Nancy Mullick, Taiko Drummer (Personal Practice)
Taiko, the Japanese word for “drum”, is a musical tradition that combines percussion and martial arts for a physically challenging and visually impressive performance. This style of drumming is a whole body endeavour.
Nancy first experienced taiko drumming at Folk on the Rocks in 2008. Profoundly moved by those performances, in June 2009 she relocated to Vancouver for an intensive month of taiko lessons and has been drumming ever since. Her mentors are the members of Booming Tree Taiko from Edmonton. She has also studied with Uzume Taiko from Vancouver and had the opportunity to play with community taiko groups in Winnipeg and in Thunder Bay who are mentored by Fubuki Daiko from Winnipeg.
Her involvement with the Collective Soul Co-operative makes it possible for her to access a beautiful space to practice regularly. Nancy’s private practice gives her an incredible creative outlet to explore sound and movement, silence and breath, power and finesse.
GUEST INSTRUCTOR – Leslie Gray, Certified Yoga Instructor (email@example.com)
Leslie first met yoga in 2001 through a home-practice VHS with Rodney Yee, and later fell head over heels for Moksha hot yoga. Especially their mantra: “calm mind, fit body, inspired life.” Always an athlete, her passion for movement eventually led her straight into sports injuries – which led directly to yoga for recovery and to rebalance. Ever since, yoga has become a sanctuary and cornerstone, increasing physical and mental health, and enhancing both mental and physical flexibility and balance.
In 2014, she completed her YTT200 with Sadhana Yoga school in Hatha and Vinyasa flow yoga and has since studied Alignment based Hatha Yoga, Restorative Yoga, and Yin Yoga with Bernie Clark. She also deepened her meditation practice through a 10-day Vipassana course.
Yoga fits your body and your brain, wherever your body is, and wherever your mind may be. Leslie believes that the breath is the key and that yoga can be relaxing and fun. Working with the breath, you can change your day, relieve stress, and find a place of calm. Yoga as a whole system brings awareness to your body, mind, and soul and can benefit anyone at any time, or all the time! And even better, yoga is completely portable, so you can take it with you wherever in the world you go, and use it as needed. She aims for her students to be comfortable yet challenged, feeling their way into poses as their individual bodies allow, prioritizing function and feeling over form.