teachers

As teachers we all have our own style and backround, but we all share the same passion for serving our students and building community.


Melanie M. Gerber

(Hatha Yoga, Vinyasa Flow, Yoga for Kids)


I'm Melanie Gerber – wife, mother of two, Yogini & nutritionist and a woman dedicated to the path of conscious, connected and happy living.

 

As a proud mom of two and a loving wife, I'm passionate about healthy, easy-to-prepare food for the whole family.

When my healthy-food blog and cookbook took off I decided to become a certified health coach (Institute of Integrative Nutrition, New York) and to support people on their way to living healthier lifestyles. Seeing my clients reaching their goals and becoming better versions of themselves makes me deeply grateful.

 

Being blessed with the teachings of yoga from early childhood, I know about the power of yoga to make life easier, happier and more meaningful.

 

Taught by the daily challenges of family life and many wonderful teachers along the way, I know much about the magic that comes from practising yoga and enjoying healthy food.

I am deeply grateful for my long term yoga teachers Irene Wohnlich and Stephen Thomas who were - and Stephen still is - a true companion on this journey.

 

After graduating from university (Master in Economics and Finance, HSG), I had a successful career in business management and banking but I always felt I was working against my true nature.

 

After opening my yoga studio in Zurich – Yoga in a Bag, I found my true calling; my flow. The combination of yoga and healthy food is simply magical.

 

I am learning about life every day, but my vision is clear: to find and share tools suitable for modern life that help us live in more conscious, connected and happy ways.

 

My approach is open-minded, non-dogmatic and full-hearted! My yoga classes are creative, powerful and fun. It’s all about taking the next step – everyone is welcome and appreciated.

 

Image: Katja Zauchner.

 

Malwina Lasota

(Katonah Yoga, Hatha Yoga, Yoga for Kids & Teens)


Malwina is a Certified Katonah Yoga Teacher and she is continuing to study the framework of Katonah Yoga with her teachers: Abbie Galvin, Nevine Michaan, Dages Juvelier Keates and Alex Sharry.
She studied Hatha Yoga at Sanapurna Studio in Zurich with Poonam Stecher Sharma, Sanjeev Bhanot and Manoj Bhanot, and she trained as a Children’s Yoga Teacher with Susannah Hoffman at Triyoga, London.
She is registered as a RYT 200 with Yoga Alliance.

Yoga plays a very important part in her life but she isn’t dogmatic about it. She teaches it in a light and playful way, using a lot of props in her classes making it accessible to people of all levels and ages. Teaching breathwork (pranayama) is her all time favourite and it’s always a part of her classes as well her own practice.
 
She is mostly inspired by nature (barefoot walking & moon stalking), books (in fact she is an avid reader), human-to-human interactions, podcasts, ancient wisdom, coffee and food explorations around the globe, her life partner Alex and her yoga teachers.
 
Come, say hello, drink tea together and learn from each other!

 

Malwina is teaching in English.

 

 

Katja Zauchner

(Hatha Yoga, Vinyasa Yoga, Prenatal Yoga)


It was 2005 and Katja was studying Media Design in Austria, when she went to her first Yoga class. Although she was intrigued, she did not practice on a regular basis until years later. However she then soon noticed, that Yoga is more than just moving into poses, and that the practice gives her a lot. Especially after the birth of Katjas first daughter she realised how greatly Yoga influenced her physical, mental and psychological well being. The wish to go deeper and learn more about Yoga led to the decision to do a 200h Hatha Yoga Teacher Training at Airyoga Zurich with Stephen Thomas. She is grateful that she was able to study not only with Stephen, but also with other international teachers like Doug Keller, Claire Dalloz and Anya Porter. In 2018, Katja will attend a pre- and postnatal Yoga Teacher Training with Sue Elkind, so she an accompany women during a very special time in their lives. 

Katja is excited to share her fascination and love for yoga.

 

Apart from yoga, Katja loves her husband, her daughters, photography, books, sewing, baking (she makes killer chocolate chip cookies), music, summer, thunderstorms, crashing waves, walking barefoot, cats, naps and laughing. 

 

She teaches in English and German. 

 

 

Elena Scafuro

(Hatha Yoga, Flow Yoga, Yin Yoga)


At first Elena completed her Teacher Training without any intention to actually teach yoga. However, during her teacher training she realized how much fun it is to pass on what she has learned and to create an individual teaching style. Her classes are powerful and soft at the same time. Breath awareness and correct alignment are important for Elena. Besides physical challenge and relaxation also meditation and modern yoga philosophy are part of her teaching. She meets her students on the mat, where they actually are in life and takes them to an inner journey to themselves.

 

After her 200h vinyasa- and yin yoga teacher training in Zurich several advanced educations like the advanced yoga teacher training “therapeutic art of adjustment” (Rae Indigo) and the yin yoga teacher training (Markus Henning Giess) followed. At PilateSwiss (Zurich) she absolved the Pilates Mat Basic course.

 

The classes of Elena will be accompanied by soft and modern music.

 

Elena teaches in German or English.

 

 

Aliki Celeste Senn

(Vinyasa Yoga, Hatha Yoga)



Bereits in jungen Jahren setzte sich Aliki Celeste Senn mit Themen wie Gerechtigkeit und Gesundheit auseinander und entdeckte ihre Leidenschaft fürs Tanzen und Yoga.
Die Verbindung von Körper, Geist und Seele durch die Praxis des
Yoga hat sie schon immer fasziniert.
Auf ihren Asienreisen vertiefte Aliki ihre Yogapraxis und lernte die Reikiheilung. 
Aliki unterrichtet Yoga in Gruppen- und Privatstunden und liebt es, Ihre Schüler im Savasana mit der Reikiheilkunst zu verwöhnen.
In ihren kreativen Stunden fokussiert sie auf die Kräftigung des Körpers, die Entwicklung von Stabilität und Flexibilität und die Auflösung von Blockaden. Sie ermutigt ihre Schüler dazu, die Achtsamkeit auf die innere Erfahrung zu lenken sowie die vorhandene Energie und das Bewusstsein auszudehnen, um so mehr Klarheit und Einsicht zu erlangen. Durch ihre grosse Empathie kann sie sich wunderbar in ihre Schüler einfühlen und sie auf dem Weg zu mehr Harmonie und Zufriedenheit begleiten.
Für Aliki ist Yoga eine Lebensphilosophie, die weit über die Yoga-Matte hinausgeht. Sie ist stetig bemüht sich selbst weiterzubilden und ihren eigenen Horizont zu erweitern. Das ganze Leben ist ein Lehrpfad.

«Du darfst selbst die Veränderung sein,
die Du in der Welt sehen willst.» (Gandhi)

Aliki ist diplomierte Hatha und Vinysasa Yogalehrerin 200 Std RYT und Reiki Heilerin. Yogatherapie 300 Stunden.

 

Aliki unterrichtet auf Deutsch und English.

 

Mehr über Aliki: https://www.yogaliki.com.

 

 

Ivy Kwok

(Hatha Yoga, Meditation)


Ivy, was a passionate creative in the advertising industry working in Hong Kong and China. In 2003 she had her first encounter with wake boarding and yoga, both requires complete concentration and all about balancing, both mentally and physically. The yoga practice brought the awareness to be kind to herself and to stay grounded in the present moment. She learns to listen to the little voice in her heart and opening herself up to her inner strength to connect the feeling of love deep down inside. Over the year, she’s been attending various workshops and classes with different teachers including Julie Martin and Bryan Kest. 

Karma brought her to her mentor, Stephen Thomas. She practiced with him on a regular basis, not only asana but also pranayama and meditation. She had done her teacher training at Airyoga under his guidance in 2017. Tonglen and Metta meditation supports her to approach life, to take on the act of Maitri to spread unconditional love and compassion. Ivy has been teaching both open and private one-to-one sessions and continues to study yoga as therapy and sustainable movement with Anya Porter. Ivy has also completed kids’ yoga teacher training in 2016 with Greville Henwood at Groovy Kids Yoga.

As a dedicated student and teacher, I am passionate in encouraging the practitioners to let go of the thought of how their yoga should be but use it as a tool to connect to the heart and to explore their inner potential. It is an honour for Ivy to share the wisdom of mindfulness and to support everyone to say yes to life, to live in harmony with our own nature and all of nature. Get ready for a yoga adventure that is freeing your body, clearing your mind and uplifting your spirit. To surrender and to reconnect with yourself completely. and to pamper yourself by feeling each breath of joy. 

Ivy is currently based in Zürich, Switzerland where she lives with her husband and their three children.

 

Ivy teaches in English.

 

 

Chris Moffitt

(Hatha Yoga)


 

Chris` first contact with the importance of movement and breathing was on Gozo where he worked for many years as a diving instructor. The job itself lead to his passion for fitness which lead to his discovery of yoga.

 

Today Chris is an art restorer and yoga teacher living in Zurich, his profession is very meditative perfectly complimenting his passion for yoga.

 

Chris has been on the mat since 2002 and finished his teacher training in 2018.

 

Chris teaches in English and German.

 

 

Alice Summermatter

(Hatha Yoga, Hatha Flow, Yin Yoga, Yoga Nidra, Passiv Yoga, AYTM,  Klangschalen Therapie, Moon Mother®)


Joining her fist yoga class, Alice experienced a deep and profound feeling of familiarness. After the Savasana it was crystal clear to her - a life without Yoga is no longer an option.

To her, Yoga is a path of life - an engagement, not only a lifestyle product.

 

Her yoga journey has led Alice through the many different Yoga styles known today: from Asthanga Yoga, Bikram Yoga, classic Iyengar Hatha Yoga, Vinyasa, Anusara, Kriya Yoga, Yin Yoga and Yoga Nidra. 

 

Her apprenticeship as a medical assitant at a anthroposophic medical center has influenced her view of the world and her understanding of a holistic approach to health and the interrelation of body, soul and spirit deeply.

Her own medical history has inspired her at an early age, to use Yoga as a therapeutic tool.

Ever since she has become a  Mother, she has developed a special interest in Yoga for woman. 

Helping woman to understand their own authentic nature and how this impacts the way we perceive the world and our Yoga practice is of utmost concern to Alice.

 

Alice is a optimistic, joyful and creativ person. she shares her love and passion for Yoga in very compassionate and joyful way.

 

Alice teaches in German and English.

 

 

Amy Vaillancourt

(Hatha Yoga, Vinyasa Flow)


Amy began studying yoga as a teenager in the early 1990s. After completing a master’s degree in dance with a cultural anthropology emphasis she taught in Tokyo, Japan, then in Los Angeles, California. Having studied a wide variety of yoga, Amy believes that investigating the connections of body, mind, and energetic forces can lead you to a personalized path of healing.
Amy teaches in English.

Michèle Kalberer

(Vinyasa Flow)


Michèle is a warm-hearted person who loves yoga in all its forms and facets. She is a certified Yoga Alliance teacher and practices a dynamic style of yoga that calms the mind through the exhaustion of the body. Her Vinyasa yoga is characterized by creative flows that endeavour the body’s strength and flexibility. In her classes, you will experience the power of breath and its healing qualities, gain balance through focus as well as soften the fascial tissue of the body.

 

Michèle trained with Banyan Gallagher according to the teachings of T. K. V. Desikachar and adopted his philosophy of a playful approach to the limitations of body and mind. She believes that Yoga not only seeks the perfect alignment of the limbs, but also the softness and freedom in each asana that allows the yogi to find his individual flow. After all, yoga is a treatment for body and soul – and moreover, a fun way to explore oneself. 

 

Michèle's classes are suitable for every level, as a continuous build-up over various difficulty levels provides the appropriate variation for each student. Before Michèle became a Yoga teacher, she worked as a certified training instructor and learned about the different aspects of fitness and health. She uses her experience and knowledge of the physical body to individually align students during the Asanas. At the end of each lesson, Michèle enjoys enlivening the yogi's senses with aroma oils. Her classes are accompanied by gentle contemporary music.

 

Michèle teaches in German and English.

 

 

Nadja Brenneisen

(Prenatal Yoga, Hypnobirthing, Yin Yoga, Yoga Nidra)


Kurz nach der Geburt ihres Sohnes zwang die Diagnose einer Autoimmunkrankheit Nadja dazu, ihr Leben neu zu überdenken. Die Krankheit war durch die traumatisch erlebte Geburt ausgelöst worden. Nadja beschloss, es sich zur Herzensaufgabe zu machen, anderen Frauen eine selbstbestimmte Geburt zu ermöglichen. Im eigenen Heilungsprozess spielte Yoga eine gewaltige Rolle: Er half, wo Chemie versagte. Deshalb war für Nadja klar, dass Yoga auch der richtige Weg ist, Frauen auf ihrem Weg in die Mutterschaft zu begleiten.   

 

Nadja begleitet als Doula Frauen während der Schwangerschaft und Geburt. Daneben ist sie anerkannte HypnoBirthing-Kursleiterin und unterrichtet Prenatal Yoga.

 Nadja teaches in German.

 

Mehr über Nadja: www.yogamama.ch

 

 

Gisi & Paula from Little Sunshine Yoga

(Family Yoga)


Gisi und Paula – zwei Mamis mit Herz und Seele. Sie haben sich in einer gemeinsamen Kinderyogalehrer Ausbildung kennen gelernt. Die Idee, eine gemeinsame Kinderyogastunde ins Leben zu rufen entstand während einer Kaffeepause. „Little Sunshine Yoga“ war geboren und damit ein weiteres Herzensprojekt der beiden Frauen. Ihr Kinderyoga berührt, verzaubert – und ist nicht nur für die Kleinen Yoga Minis, sondern auch für die beiden Yogalehrerinnen ein garantierter Moodbooster. 

 

https://littlesunshine.yoga

 

 

 

Gisi 

Yoga lässt Gisi schon seit ihrer ersten Begegnung vor über 14 Jahren nicht mehr los. Einige Monate nach der Geburt ihres Sohnes Matteo im Dezember 2015 meldete sie sich für ihr erstes 200h Yoga Teacher Training bei Inside Yoga an. Seit 2018 ist sie zudem als Kursleiterin bei Y.E.S. STARKE MÄDCHEN dabei und führt im Teamteaching Ferientrainings durch. Gisi unterrichtet aktuell als Primarschullehrerin unter anderem ihr Lieblingsfach Französisch an der Mittelstufe in Winkel. Mit Matteo und Olivia teilt sie eine grosse Leidenschaft: das Singen und Musik machen, backt Muffins oder Kekse und tobt gerne auf dem Spielplatz herum.

 

 

Paula 

Seit sie 2013 in der Schwangerschaft zu Yoga fand, ist Yoga als Balance und Energiequelle aus Ihrem Alltag nicht mehr wegzudenken. Eine Auszeit auf Reisen bot ihr 2017 die Möglichkeit die eigene Praxis zu vertiefen und mehr über die Hintergründe und Philosophie des Yoga zu erfahren. Ihr RYT-200 Teacher Training hat sie in Costa Rica absolviert. Zusätzlich leitet sie „Family-Retreats“ für Eltern und Kinder in Europa.

Ab der Matte findet man die gebürtige Argentinierin beim backen feiner Empanadas, irgendwo „unterwegs“ mit Valeria - am liebsten mit dem Skate, auf dem Spielplatz oder am Zürisee.

 

Paula and Gisi teach in german.

 

 

Viola Pazidis

(Yin Flow)


Yoga has changed Viola’s life completely, and that’s when she decided to turn down another promotion at her «serious office job» and start a new chapter as a yoga teacher. Regular yoga practice helped her to overcome burnout syndroms and strong allergy attacks, rediscover her true self and start sharing the magic of yoga. Since then she sees yoga and meditation as a holistic approach to physical and mental health, inner peace and joyful life.

After several years of studying different yoga and meditation practices around the world from Indian Bihar School of Yoga to Fascial Anatomy of Tom Meyrs, she developed her way of teaching and now guiding her students on the way to reconnecting with their bodies, rediscovering inner peace and harmony, and achieving better health in a holistic perspective. Viola was teaching private classes, yoga retreats and teacher trainings in Spain, Germany, France, Russia, Cyprus, Thailand, Sri Lanka, South Korea, Malaysia and Myanmar for the last years, and now she is finally settled in Zurich to reunion with her husband.

During her classes she pays a lot of attention to detail, correct alignment in asanas and safety during the classes. Viola shares lots of positive vibes and  her love to life  and yoga.

 

Viola teaches in English.

 

Judith Keul

(Dynamic Hatha)


 

Judith Keufl is a Holistic Guide with a strong focus on yoga, breathwork and meditation.

She currently moved from Berlin to Zurich.

Yoga enriches her life daily on so many levels and it fills her heart with joy to teach yoga as a whole.

In her work she incorporates her expertise in Ayurveda, aromatherapy and consciousness work. This enables her to work holistically and individually.

Her mission is to elevate the well-being and consciousness of her clients.

 

She holds certifications in Vinyasa Flow Yoga, Yin Yoga, Katonah Yoga and attended several trainings with well known teachers such as Elena Brower, Gabby Bernstein, Rod Stryker and Gurmukh.

Edith teaches in English and German.

 

Tanya Schuhmacher

(Ashtanga Flow)


Already during her school days in Zurich Tanya regularly attended yoga classes. She deepened her yoga practice in order to find a balance to her work as a legal associate (sitting in the office for many long hours). Thus, she has also focused more intensively on the other aspects of yoga (pranayama, meditation, philosophy, etc.). In Ashtanga-Vinyasa Yoga Tanya finds it easier to enter a meditative state. As the same sequence of postures (Asanas) is practiced and the sequence is guided through the breath, she can concentrate on her inner self. Last year Tanya completed the Ashtanga-Vinyasa Teacher Training (RYS 200 Yoga Alliance) with Guruji Sanjeev Dutta in India. Back in Zurich she regularly attends workshops (with Matt Champeoux, Max Strom, Brett Porzio, Frank Schmid, etc.) and deepens her knowledge and techniques.

 

For Tanya, yoga offers a way to support other people, to guide their focus to the inner centre. The correct alignment and safe performance of the asanas in her class plays an important role in this. During her class, the mind is grounded, the body is heated and strengthened, but there is also a lot of laughter. The energy generated by this can help to question one's own limiting thoughts and social patterns, so that one can meet oneself and consequently others with more love and serenity.

 

Tanya teaches in English and German.

 

 

Thindeka Dzimba 

(Hatha Yoga, Vinyasa Flow, Meditation)


Thindeka is a yogini and doula who began her yoga journey in her late teens. This introduction to a new language of body, mind and soul led to a world of self-discovery and an eagerness to continue to explore, grow, listen and learn from others. It is this same feeling of self-exploration that she likes to share with her students.

Her interest in people and cultures led to a masters in Tourism in Development which she put to great use working with the likes of UNESCO in Mozambique. But her passion remained yoga and its ability to connect her with people at all levels.

She is fortunate to have begun her training living with swamis and learning the philosophy of Sivananda Yoga. Since then other trainings followed through initiatives like Tribe Yoga.

In nurturing her craft she came across Vipassana meditation which has been fundamental in her learning about being present and surrendering to the now has giving her added tools to be aware of the sensations in the body and surrender to them, knowing that everything is temporary.

Her classes are intention based, designed in a way that students can feel empowered to trust their bodies and their individual needs, explore their own kindness and growth and hopefully take that energy when they leave the class.

 

Thindeka teaches in English.

 

 

Astrid Meier

(Hatha Flow, Breathwork Ceremonies, Meditation)


 

Astrid is a certified hatha yoga teacher, breathwork healer, process facilitator, DJ & soulpreneur.

 

After 6 years of intensive yoga practice and profound exploration of various spiritual themes, she decided 2017 to travel to India and dedicate herself to the teaching of yoga and meditation.

The basis of her teaching is a flowing Hatha Yoga, which she creatively combines with different Yoga styles.

Supported by specially curated music and the use of essential oils, Astrid tries to create a harmoniously vibrating connection between body and mind through the Yoga Asanas, which touches the soul.

 

Her classes are suitable for beginners and advanced students and can be held in German or English.

 

 

Polina Elencheva

(Ashtanga Flow, Ashtanga Yoga)


Polina has been teaching yoga full time since 2015. Meanwhile, she has completed a 6-month Mysore style teaching apprenticeships and several Ashtanga yoga immersions internationally. Always a student first, she has been practicing yoga for 15 years and Ashtanga yoga on daily basis for more than 6 years. In 2019, she became a certified FRC Mobility Specialist (FRCms) allowing her learnings and regular mobility practice to reflect into her teachings, sharing her own challenges. In the summer of 2019, Polina completed the Ashtanga 3rd series while she was practicing with Natalia Paisano in Mallorca. Currently, she has shifted her focus towards her ‘movement practice’ and developing her general movement potential. Her new movement project includes handstand work, locomotion & Floor Communication, etc.

 

Polina believes that teaching is equivalent to inspiring. The practice is a vessel for exploration in itself; the teacher is just the facilitator. It is all an experiment. She is known for her dynamic style, keen eye to detail and supportive presence. Her approach to teaching is engaging and open. One just has to be curious and willing to work. Her classes are designed to bring a balance of strength, flexibility and a steady mind. Polina teaches in english.

www.omshanti.ch; instagram @ashtanga_house_zurich