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Teachers

The Yoga Centre Teachers at the Yoga Centre, Dorking have been through intense and all round training.
Their training has been conducted over a minimum period of 3 years, culminating in 200-hour yoga teacher certification. 

All of our Teachers are fully qualified and insured
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Studio Teachers

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Louise Ionascu – The Manager, The Yoga Centre

In 2000 Louise met Suzie Jennings who was offering Kripalu Yoga at the  work place.  Louise knew it would be good to help relieve shoulder and neck tension.
From that first experience and within 6 months Louise begun her studies as a Yoga Teacher and qualified in 2004.  In 2006 Louise studied at the Bio Medical Trust in London.  This was a foundation course in Yoga Therapy from which she graduated with a Diploma in 2008.
Louise feels blessed in being part of the team, teaching full time at the peaceful  Yoga Centre since 2004 and brings her own beautiful style to   her teaching.
Member of The Register of Exercise Proffessionals Level 3 and also Initiated Reiki 2 practitioner
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Hilary Coplestone

Having practiced yoga for many years before joining the  Yoga Centre
in 2005, I found my home at Kripalu leading me to qualify as a  Yoga
teacher in 2008 and I have since been actively involved in the teaching
programme at the Yoga Centre in Dorking.  I teach at all levels and I
am a member of the Register of Exercise Professional Level 3.
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James Norman – Tai Chi & Qi Kung Teacher

James Norman became a student of the internal arts in 2006, when he joined the Chi-Do Association at the Chi Clinic in Cheam. Since then, he has trained with two great teachers: Tony Hardiman and Vicky Ahern.
Tony has practiced martial and healing arts for over 50 years, and is Master of Chi-Do and Senior Practitioner with the Institute for Complementary and Natural Healthcare. Vicky is a highly skilled acupuncturist, therapist, and Senior Tai C
hi and Qigong instructor. James’ training with them has involved studying Chi-Do Martial Arts, Chi Kung and Tai Chi.
James is an accredited Instructor of the Simplified Taijiquan Yang Style 24 Forms by the Chi-Do Association. He also trains regularly with the Deyin Taijiquan Institute (GB), and has been assessed by them for his Simplified Taijiquan Form. In 2009 he went to China on a training tour, and was introduced to the Wu Qin Xi (5 Animals) Health Qigong form by Professor Li Deyin. He later became a qualified Instructor of this form by the British Health Qigong Association.
He attends seminars by international Masters on a regular basis, and is continuing his training and development through the Chi Clinic/Chi-Do Association.
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Gina Hardy – Yoga Teacher

Gina’s love and fascination with yoga started 18 years ago. After practising Iyengar, Astanga and Hatha yoga as a practitioner for many years, qualified with distinction as a teacher of Integral Hatha Yoga in 2008 from the Unity School of Yoga in Brighton.  She has specialised in teaching senior and couples yoga in Hove, Sussex and Coulsdon, Surrey and joined us as one of our  teachers in July 2012.
She says “Yoga helps you to remember the gracefulness and ease in your body and mind”
Gina’s teaching is a blend of her learnings from Intregral Hatha Yoga which focuses on the 12 core yoga asanas (postures) plus a mixture of inspiration from the Scarivelli and Iyengar Yoga styles. Her focus is on encouraging the exquisite relationship between your body, breath and mind and creating movement which eases your body to find its natural alignment. She is passionate about safe movement and not aiming for the perfect posture and believes Yoga is all about the breath and the personal experience, which is unique for everyone.
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Serena Valentine

Owner / Teacher
 

I took over the Yoga Centre in February 2012 a business that had been established in Dorking for over ten years with a good solid yoga foundation and a loyal clientele.  I had never practiced Yoga before but since I had a background in Sales and Marketing and starting small business from scratch, my vision was to keep the main foundation of the Centre as Yoga and to expand our portfolio by adding more styles and types of Yoga, by introducing Hot Yoga and various types of dance as well as meditation and Tai Chi Classes.

In 2014 I became a qualified Yin Restorative/Yang Yoga teacher, having graduated with Simon Lowe, one of the UK’s top Yoga Teachers. I now specialise in Yin/Yang Yoga teaching small classes of up to six people in restorative Yin Yoga.  I also offer one to ones for Absolute beginners to yoga to help build their self confidence before filtering into a normal Yoga class.

Yoga for Autism – I completed a course at the Special Yoga Centre in London and still continue my studies on a weekly basis in Surrey for people with Autism. Please contact me for a private appointment.

Having had an accident two years ago I thought it was time to change my life. Yoga appeared to be more calming and something different.  My body is full of metal and   I never thought that I would be able to practice Yoga, as like most people I thought you needed to be flexible, well-practiced and fit. Yoga is for people from all walks of life.  It’s for normal people!

My vision for the future at the Centre

To make newcomers more aware that Yoga is for everybody, including people with injuries.  I will be working on a more therapeutic level and we will be offering more classes for special needs students and more for seniors and restorative yoga. I am very focused on helping beginners practice yoga here in a non intimidating, safe environment.  Also Joint care as safety is a big priority for me.

 

Pamella Rhatigan

Pamela Rhatigan is a Yoga Teacher, Personal Fitness adviser, practitioner of complimentary therapies, including Natural Facelifts, Massage, Reflexology, Meditation and a Laughter leader. As an ex dancer, she  also hosts Yoga Dance, an event she devised, which includes yoga, meditation, dance and sometimes art. Her involvement with fitness started at school with sport, and she started to practise yoga at 18. Her professional dance career spanned 10yrs, until she had her son. Becoming more interested in health and fitness, she became a reflexologist in 1990, in 1992 qualifying as a fitness trainer, the following year as a masseuse. She also trained in natural healing, NLP and Reiki. She specialised in teaching mothers to massage their newborns and wrote Soothe Your Baby The Natural Way, an internationally sold book. She worked within the local council and in 2 de-tox clinics, as well as running her own holistic, fitness and health business. Pamela has travelled extensively all over the world to further her knowledge of how the body works.

 

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CHARLOTTE HUGGINS


Charlotte started practicing yoga as a child with her Mum but only seriously took it up when she was pregnant with her second child & was so      enthusiastic about the benefits that she decided to undertake training to become a teacher giving up her City based career. She trained with the  British Wheel of Yoga and gained her diploma in 2004.
Charlotte’s classes are inclusive and open to all regardless of age or fitness. Classes are suitable for beginners and those who are experienced as    each person is encouraged to work within their own capacity. There is an emphasis on stretching & strengthening the whole body whilst focusing on  and being guided by the breath which helps to keep us present to the experience of yoga and all it has to offer. Classes always conclude with a  guided, deep relaxation to leave you feeling refreshed and renewed.
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Jenna Kitchingham is a Yoga Alliance registered yoga teacher with 200-hour training in Vinyasa Flow style with Yoga London.

Since a very young age Jenna has bounced around exploring dance styles – including latin dance and street dance – but is wasn’t until Jenna moved to Dubai in 2007 to pursue her corporate real estate career that her Yoga journey really started taking shape.  She sat next to a successful CEO for a large corporate company on the aeroplane over who told her, ‘in order to survive working life in the Middle East, start doing lots of YOGA!’.  As such, Jenna started her Yogi Journey attending regular classes in Dubai, mostly taught by teachers from India, not knowing what a profound impact it would have on her life and wellbeing.  She later travelled to India to deepen her knowledge and practice. Whilst in India her passion for everything Yoga really blossomed, she was especially inspired by her wonderful Iyengar trained teacher.
On returning to the UK after a few years in the Middle East, Jenna undertook her Yoga Alliance teacher training and now teaches one-on-one classes, as well as group classes at various Yoga Studios in London and Surrey and corporate clients.  She teaches a fairly strong Vinyasa flow style and Hot Yoga.  She is also a Zumba teacher, keeping her energetic love for dance alive.
Jenna travelled to San Francisco (the second home of yoga) and found inspiration from a  Bakthi Vinyasa yoga studio who offered donation based yoga classes in a very run-down part of the city.  Overwhelmed by how beautiful this initiative was, Jenna is now the founder of a donation based Yoga community group in London called Urbananda Yoga C.I.C where her and her fellow Yogis and Yoginis from the teacher training course teach on a voluntary basis to make Yoga more accessible in London, where class prices are otherwise ever increasing.
Jenna’s passion lies in introducing newbies to Yoga for the first time.  She loves to make it accessible for complete beginners, no matter their age or body type. She believes that the joy of starting, persevering and practicing yoga should be shared with all, wanting to create a feeling of just waking up and ready to take on whatever the world has to throw at you by the end of her class.
Jenna’s classes are said to be uplifting and a challenge, where students are never afraid to make a mistake as she has a very down to earth and empathetic teaching style.  Jenna also has a keen interest in the chakras and likes to bring certain energetic themes to her classes, which her yogi students can explore further at their own avail.
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Claire Weatherley:

A very simple being or is she? She has a wealth of experience in many area including her passion for teaching yoga. She is a senior yoga teacher  with the yoga alliance u.k and has been teaching for over 7 years. She also teaches children’s yoga.
As well as yoga she is qualified in anatomy & physiology, body massage, hot stone massage and N.L.P
Added to this she has over 10 years experience in business and management and has used her yoga practice to keep a healthy work/life balance.
All of these talents she shares in a beautiful, elegant and simple way with others to support them in realising their full potential, health, purpose  and blissfulness.
Her other interests include reading, cooking and organic gardening.
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Sandra Zocher Zumba Teacher

“ Hi and welcome to my profile!
I trained as a gymnast until the age of 14yrs and studied Sports & Fitness Education at A Level followed by Sports Science & Nutrition. I am a certified group fitness instructor by the Register of Exercise Professionals UK (REPS) and hold active licenses to teach a variety of programmes within the Zumba Fitness module as detailed below.
What I like best about my work?  Being physically active and interacting with other people –  I grew up listening to african/latin music and this coupled with my love for sports & fitness got me hooked on zumba straight away – I love every minute of it!
Anyone can participate; there will be some wiggling and giggling and a lot of fun. Just bring comfortable clothing, trainers & plenty of water!
I HOPE YOU’LL DANCE!!!! IT’S MORE FUN WHEN YOU ARE THERE!!!!
See you in class!”
*First Aid *CRB Checked *REPS Registered
Qualifications and Licenses:-
*ETM Qualified   *Zumba B1 Instructor   *Zumba B2 Instructor   *Zumba Gold Instructor
*Zumbatomic Instructor   *Zumba Toning Instructor   *Zumba Gold/Toning Instructor
* Full Public Liability insurance

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Tristen Hennigs

Yoga
I have been practising yoga intensively for twenty years. Having spent my late teens and early twenties as an assistant teacher in my mother’s yoga and dance studio in Ohio, I went on to further my own yoga practice by studying the schools of Iyengar, Kashmir and Sivananda.  I studied Astanga Vinyasa with Derek Ireland in Crete, Gingi Lee in London and John Scott in London and Plymouth.  I studied Jivamukti Yoga in New York with David Life and Sharon Gannon as well as attended numerous workshops under prominent yogis and yoginis.

After leading yoga and aerobic classes throughout London for eight years, I took a break from teaching to study with Maarten Vermaase, student of Venerable Thrangu Rinpoche, and to re-qualify under his tutelage with the British Wheel of Yoga, a body with which I am still a member and maintain Continuing Professional Development and insurance.  I have taught Astanga Vinyasa classes at Camilla Campbell Yoga in Cobham, Hatha yoga classes at Physio-on the-River in Barnes, classes and workshops at the Kripalu Centre in Dorking and in a local school for 5 years and prior to that I ran my own classes in a local hall.  I continue to also teach privately in clients’ homes or businesses.

My classes explore the classic yoga postures (asanas) as well as breath work (pranayama), while simultaneously giving students information as to why the practices are important. Based on the time of day of the class as well as the demographic of the participants, my classes can be more or less dynamic as is appropriate.

With the aim of calming the mind and rejuvenating the body, my classes assist the students in finding their own mind/body balance.

 

GUNILLA HARTMAN

Gunilla’s classes aim to strengthen, restore and relax both body and mind through an uplifting yet calming practice. She teaches Hatha Yoga as well as Yin and Restorative Yoga.

Gunilla has always been a very active person with a great love for the outdoors, especially cycling.  She has practiced yoga on and off since the late 90’s but in 2007 when she was recovering from a serious illness she realised how her yoga practice really helped her to get stronger both mentally and physically.  Since then yoga has become a very important part of her life, to the extent that she decided to take up teaching to be able to share the great benefits of yoga with her students.

Gunilla fully believe that everyone would benefit by adding a bit of yoga to their lives and reconnecting their bodies and mind through yoga.

She is a British Wheel of Yoga Accredited teacher having completed an in-depth two-year teacher training course with The Yoga Academy (Principal Simon Low).  She has also specialised further in Restorative Yoga with Judith Hanson Lasater who is an internationally recognised expert in the field.

The studying and learning is a never ending process and Gunilla regularly attends training events and workshops to deepen her knowledge.  She is very interested in anatomy and physiology and puts a great importance in safe teaching.