Our Team

Our instructors are certified and registered with Yoga Alliance, the largest standards setting organization that promotes and supports the integrity and diversity of the teaching of yoga.

Shelley D’Amico

Shelley #2

Shelley is a certified Ashtanga based and Broga® Yoga instructor registered with Yoga Alliance (E-RYT, YACEP) and the Founder of Namaskar Yoga Studio.   She spent her career life as an Executive Liaison, until she resigned to serve others in a more meaningful way. An entrepreneur and free spirit at heart, Shelley is first and forever a student of yoga.

Shelley is passionate about the countless benefits of yoga and believes that everyone should have the opportunity to practice regardless of their age or fitness level. She encourages her students to approach their practice (and life) with compassion, non-judgement, an open mind and an open heart. Shelley is deeply grateful to her Teacher, Deborah Carruthers for teaching her to look within, and to embrace everything as Divine.

What Shelley loves most about teaching yoga:    The connection to self, peace, joy and gratitude that student’s experience.

Why she became a yoga teacher: To help others create space and connect to their Divine Self.

Her very first yoga experience made her feel: Ridiculously bored!

Her favourite pose and why: Utthita Trikonasana (Extended Triangle Pose). It’s challenging yet graceful and in that moment, nothing else exists but the breath.

Something most people don’t know about her: She is a textbook introvert.

Melanie Beech

Melanie #1

Melanie is a certified Forrest Yoga Instructor registered with Yoga Alliance (RYT200) as well as a certified Wellness Coach.

She is a promoter of radical self-love and believes that your body is the greatest gift you’ve ever been given. In a safe, supportive and non-judgemental environment, Melanie invites her students to play, to move, to groove, to surrender, to breathe, to smile and to see where their incredible bodies take them. She is deeply grateful to her Teacher, Anna Forrest, creatrix of Forrest Yoga.

What Melanie loves most about teaching yoga: Observing her students, witnessing them rise to the challenge and grow stronger.

Why she became a yoga teacher: To encourage students to make their relationships with their bodies and with themselves the greatest love affair of their life.

Her very first yoga experience made her feel: Like she was being reunited with a dear friend she hadn’t seen in a very long time.

Her favourite pose and why: Virabhadrasana Series (Warrior Series).  Thanks to these poses she has learned to love and appreciate her strong legs.

Something most people don’t know about her: She loves keeping up with the Kardashians!

Wendy Balfour

Wendy #2

Wendy is a certified Hatha-based Yoga Instructor registered with Yoga Alliance (RYT200), with a strong foundation in Iyengar, Ashtanga and Anusara Yoga. She began her yoga journey in South Africa in the 80’s, and very quickly it became an integral part of her life and her attitude towards life.

Wendy believes that Yoga isn’t just about creating lightness and joy, but also about finding the strength and courage to face fear and pain, using Yoga as a platform for transformation and healing. She is deeply grateful to her Teacher,  Bev Roberts  for teaching her that with humility comes gratitude and with lightness, we can release ourselves from needing to take life too seriously.

What Wendy loves most about teaching yoga: Connecting with others.  Sharing collective energy and having fun.

Why she became a yoga teacher:  To share the incredible feeling yoga practice  brings as well as the deeper aspects of the Yoga Path.

Her very first yoga experience made her feel: Like she had come home.

Her favourite pose and why:  Ardha Chandrasana  (Standing Half Moon).  It requires complete focus to be aware of almost every aspect of the physical body, and brings her into her breath in a way that no other pose does.

Something most people don’t know about her:  Public speaking scares her!

Annica Melanson

IMG_5480Annica is a certified yoga teacher (RYT 200) registered with Yoga Alliance. She received her training from the Saltspring Centre of Yoga and is forever grateful for her time spent there. Annica is passionate about yoga. The teachings of yoga have brought immense peace to her life and she  is honoured to share the gift of peace with others. Annica believes we all deserve to be happy and happiness starts with self love.

Through the unity of body, mind, spirit, breath, and movement, Annica encourages a chance for self transformation. She believes in creating a safe space, free of judgement, for her students to grow. Her classes will leave you feeling restored, energized, inspired, and open. Annica is truly grateful for the teachers at Saltspring Centre of Yoga and to all the teachers she has had the privilege of attending class.

What Annica loves most about teaching yoga: Helping her students connect to their inner light.

Why she became a yoga teacher: To share her passion for yoga and self love with the world.

Her very first yoga experience made her feel:Like it was the missing piece in her life.

Her favourite pose and why: Ardha Chandrasana (half moon) She can feel the lines of energy so clearly in this pose. She absolutely loves the synchronization of balancing, opening, and creating symmetry.

Something people don’t know about her: She loves to sing but can’t carry a note.

Seton Bailey

Seton is a 200 hour certified yoga teacher (RYT 200) registered with Yoga Alliance. She received her training from The Blooming Lotus Yoga School and is endlessly grateful for her incredible teachers and the life changing experience.  Her original decision to complete a teacher training was to deepen her own practice and it was not until the end of the experience that she realized that it was her calling to share the absolute gift of yoga with others.

Seton’s passion for yoga is diving into the depths of the breath, body and mind through a gentle, accessible and restorative practice.  She believes yoga is for everyone and meeting each person where they are in their practice is essential for a sacred space.

What Seton loves most about teaching yoga: The notable shift in people as a gentle wave of peace washes over them at the end of a practice.

Why she became a yoga teacher: After experiencing years of bliss and taking the opportunity to deepen her own practice, it felt very natural to extend her experience and share the love for a practice that provided such profound healing.

Her favorite pose and why: Child’s pose- this pose emanates surrender. There is such a sense of gentleness, a softened inward gaze, and tapping in to the parasympathetic nervous system– total restfulness.

Something most people don’t know about her: She is happiest lost in the landscapes of mountains.

Lisa Cecconi

Lisa completed her 200hr teacher training at Open Heart yoga studio in Richmond, BC.  Her love for yoga started in the early 90’s, and brings her a sense of awareness, inner strength and peace.

Teaching yoga and being able to share such an all encompassing tradition with the people around her has brought so much gratitude into her life!  Lisa believes it is so much more than us showing up to our mats ( although this is great place to start) — it is showing up to our lives.

We connect through breath and are able to come into our presence which brings awareness to our thoughts and emotions. This gives us pause and room to be with ourselves not only on the mat, but out into the world around us.

What Lisa Loves most about teaching yoga:

The end of Savasana when everyone is getting up and they all have this blissful look to them.

Why she became a yoga teacher: She found yoga to be so fulfilling, bringing mind into body and then connecting us to ourselves. This is something she really wants to share with other people.

Her very first yoga experience made her feel: absolutely grounded

Favorite pose and why: Eagle – the mixture of balance and strength and it gets into all her tight spots!

Something that people don’t know about her: She’s been a hairdresser for over 20 years

Julie Gauthier

Julie found yoga as a grounding and healing practice to navigate life in times of struggle in 2009. She did her 200 Hrs Yoga Teacher Training while travelling in Indonesia in 2016 as a modality to deepen her practice. Ironically, her intention was never to teach yoga, but she felt compelled to start volunteering as a teacher at Karma Teachers in December 2017, a non-profit yoga studio in Vancouver and she fell in love with sharing her practice with the students.

Julie has a nurturing and gentle approach. She brings compassion, non-judgement and empathy into each class she teaches and holds a safe place for her students to express and experience their true self. Passionate about people and sharing the yoga values off the mat, Julie founded The Karma Traveller, in hopes to lead humanitarian projects around the world.

What Julie loves most about teaching yoga: When she sees students in tune with their body and their breath in silence and just “being.”  Watching the movement of their breath when in savasana (or in restorative) when the parasympathetic nervous has kicked in, is the most beautiful thing.

Why she became a yoga teacher: When she came back from 2 months of travelling in Indonesia in 2016, she couldn’t afford to pay for a Yoga membership in downtown Vancouver.  She was referred to Karma Teachers, a non-profit studio where all teachers are volunteers. After her first class as a student, she felt compelled to support the community and share her practice. She had such a yoga high, she never looked back!

Her very first yoga experience made her feel: She felt  a new world was opening to her.  She had to look around to see what everybody was doing because she didn’t know any single poses!  However, it made her feel strong, grounded and at peace. It also made her feel that it was a beautiful way to love and appreciate her body more.

Favorite pose and why: It’s hard to only pick only one, but she chooses Savasana (corpse pose). This pose allows her to be more receptive and intuitive, to integrate the benefits from the juicy sequence of poses (asanas) and to facilitate meditation. It ties her practice together.

Something that people don’t know about her: She likes to have a 10 hours night sleep.

Challayne Kenney

Challayne was introduced to yoga 17 years ago. In an effort to cultivate feelings of calmness and strength during her second pregnancy, she completed her 200hr training at Feel Good Yoga & Pilates in Langford, BC and fell in love with teaching yoga.

Yoga has gone through many phases of life with her and it has not been a static or linear relationship. It took many years of off-and-on-practice for her to value all the information gleaned in a yoga class. Feelings of strength, energy, and relaxation were easily accepted, while feelings of being wobbly, off-kilter, or drained were often perceived negatively and led to self-deprecating thoughts. Challayne encourages students to notice and appreciate body sensations for what they are; valuable information that one can can use when moving forward.

Facilitating an opportunity for others to connect with themselves, sort through the noise of life, and begin to trust in the capabilities of their bodies is what drives Challayne’s passion to teach. She believes practicing yoga is about becoming more aware of ourselves so we can move easier through life doing the things we love.

What Challayne loves most about teaching yoga: watching students build their confidence and the energy in a room full of people breathing.

Why she became a yoga teacher: to stay connected to the community of yoga and to invite people in who may feel like they don’t belong.

Her very first yoga experience made her feel: calm, energized, and tired from overthinking the cues and silence.

Her favourite pose and why: Anything with a twist because they feel so good.

Something most people don’t know about her: She loves books and has trouble reading one at a time or finishing them.

June Stenning

June is a certified yoga teacher (RDYT200) and continues her training with her teacher, Kavita Maharaj at Red Door Yoga Studio. She has been enjoying her journey teaching for the last 6 years and loves sharing her energy with others! June has found the benefits of yoga as she gracefully ages and understands that this is a way of life, not only for her body, but mind and spirit moving towards more self reflection and actualization.

What June loves most about teaching yoga: She loves sharing her knowledge with her students and enjoys the giving and receiving of each practice.

Why she became a yoga teacher: Originally it was something to do after retirement from an office job, but once on this journey, she realized that this was meant to be, teaching others to love being on their mat, connecting with their breath and being present which, for some, can sometimes be a struggle.

Her very first yoga experience made her feel: that this was going to be an important part of her life and not a fad that she would out grow or become bored with!

Her favourite pose and why: Balasana, Child Pose, because no matter how you are feeling, what time of day it is, you can step onto your mat, find child pose, and feel any tension or stress slowly melt away as you surrender to Mother Earth.

Something most people don’t know: She loves to have her “coffee” meditation first thing in the morning watching the hummingbirds at the feeder.