clear mind ...
strong body ...
open heart ...

Our Expert Team of Professionals:

Yoga Instructor   

Denise Dougherty

deeva88@optonline.net

While training for a triathlon in 2000, Denise injured her knee. Her coach told her " You need to stretch...do Yoga!" So, reluctantly, she took a yoga class at her gym and was hooked instantly. Denise continued to add yoga into her workout routines and witnessed first-hand the many benefits of yoga in her own body, mind & spirit and wanted to share these health benefits with the world.

In 2006, Denise decided to leave Corporate America & the pharmaceutical world behind and become a Certified Yoga Instructor. She has a 200 hour RYT certification, is studied in Sivananda Yoga with an Iyengar influence, is a member of the Yoga Alliance and also has training in teaching yoga to infants and children, including Indigo children and is certified in Reiki -Level 1.

Denise practiced and taught yoga & meditation through 8 months of her first pregnancy and practiced yoga throughout her second pregnancy as well. Now she & her 2 little ones practice yoga together.

Denise had her own small yoga studio at one point called Sunshine Spirit Yoga. She hopes you leave her class with your spirit shining brightly to carry you through the day, the week & your life.



Yoga Instructor   

Grace Pulis

twinserenity@yahoo.com

With great love and gratification for the practice, Grace is a welcoming, fun, and supportive teacher! She has been practicing Yoga for 8 years and has taught in Miami, New York and New Jersey since receiving certification in Hatha Yoga in 2007, through The School of Complete Yoga, in Chester, New Jersey.

With experience in teaching both children and seniors, Grace has seen the positive effects of Yoga and feels Yoga is the most important part of everyone's daily life.



Yoga Instructor   

Julie Amsallen

squirrelbait2001@yahoo.com

Julie is a Yoga Alliance registered instructor with a 200 hour YogaFlow certification, and is also certified through the American Aerobics Association International. A school teacher by profession, teaching comes naturally to her. Teaching yoga allows her to combine her interest in physical and spiritual health with that natural inclination.

Julie has been practicing yoga for more than 15 years. Her journey began when she discovered "Power Yoga" at a local gym and was impressed by the practice's affect on her physical condition. Her interest in yoga has since expanded to include the more introspective and relaxing aspects that yoga had to offer. Her class format reflects all of those components, combining dynamic, flowing postures, stretches and core work with breathing techniques, intention, introspection and relaxation.



Yoga Instructor   

Karen Noel

strryskyes777@yahoo.com

Since l993, Karen has dedicated her professional life to helping her clients enjoy more balanced, healthy and cognizant lives. This quest has led her to study the sacred sciences of Yoga & Meditation, the healing art of Reiki and the fitness regime of Pilates. Working with groups and individuals, in studios, homes and therapeutic settings, she brings a rare healing quality and ability to impart knowledge to students of all ages and experience levels.

Karen has worked with elders, hospital staff members, teachers, moms, and children. She has experience with breast cancer survivors, veterans, and the visually and hearing impaired and also brings energy healing to pets through Reiki and Massage.

In the year 2001, she achieved the designation of Certified Yoga Therapist having studied at "The American Yoga Academy" under the direction of Claire Diab, International Yoga Therapist, known for her work and travels with Deepak Chopra. In 2005, she achieved her Reiki Mastership. She also studied aromatherapy in Belfast Maine in 2007-2008.



Yoga Instructor   

Kat Baresic

ksbyogini@gmail.com

Kat Baresic started teaching Yoga in 1993, and has been studying the Oriental Healing Arts since early 80's, including Yoga, Shiatsu/Acupressure, and Nutrition. She is a Certified Chi Yoga Instructor, Certified Shiatsu Therapist, Certified Holistic Health Counselor and has a Masters Degree in Business Administration. Her training in Yoga, besides Chi Yoga, includes Oki, Power, Iyengar, Kripalu and Sivananda Yoga styles.

Her knowledge of yoga postures includes hundreds of variations and combinations/flows and you'll always learn something new in her classes. She customizes every class to meet her students' needs. She loves teaching all levels and different specialties, in both group class setting as well as individual personal yoga training: gentle, beginner, intermediate, advanced, pre-natal, kids, teens, yoga for women only or men only, yoga for athletes (golf and tennis players, bikers, runners, etc.), yoga for back pain, carpal tunnel, sciatica, hip flexibility, shoulders, neck, and other specialty classes.

Whether you take it easy or work hard in Kat's classes, you will always have a lot of fun. Her own yoga practice came out of a necessity to de-stress and heal her body, mind and spirit from effects of hectic corporate jobs. After discovering the healing benefits of yoga and other ancient arts she decided to teach and share these amazing techniques with others. Her classes will give you a balanced workout for all your faculties: help you develop strong and flexible body, relax and calm your mind and help you find happiness in each moment.



Yoga Instructor   

Laura Jacobus

ljacobus@optonline.net

Laura has been teaching since 2003. Seeking the understanding of yoga, she has explored several styles and methods of practice. Her students set the tone for the class. Dynamic or soothing challenging or meditative, each day on the mat is a new adventure. As no student is the same, no method is right or wrong. All practice is for the same cause: "Harmony and Divine peace".

Laura's styles include: Ashtanga Vinyasa, Anursara, Iyengar, Kriya, Siddha, Sivananda



Yoga Instructor   

Laura Murphy

lauramyoga@optonline.net

Laura studied modern dance and T'ai Chi before finding yoga through Royane Mosley. She studied privately with Royane and began teaching at Flanders Yoga Studio in 2001 before becoming a Certified Kripalu Yoga Teacher in 2002 under Yoganand Michael Carroll.

Laura has continued her studies through yoga intensives with Rodney Yee, John Friend and Lois Steinberg. She teaches group and private classes in the Flanders area.



Yoga Instructor   

Maxine Swentzel

maxineswentzel@gmail.com

Born in Scotland and raised in New Zealand, Maxine moved to Oahu, Hawaii with her family at the age of 18. It was there that she first experienced yoga and began what has become her lifelong journey with health and fitness. Maxine has been teaching Vinyasa Yoga in our area for over ten years and feels it keeps her focused and centered. In January 2011, she began a Hatha Yoga certification with Paula Tepedino at the Breathing Room in Frelinghusen. Maxine is also a certified Group Fitness and Powerhouse Pilates instructor.

Maxine currently teaches Vinyasa Yoga to men and women in a private drug and alcohol treatment facility in Blairstown, and also offers chair Pilates to physical therapists patients who have restricted movement. She continues her training through classes and seminars to remain fresh and up-to-date in her practice.



Yoga Instructor   

Phyllis Togno

phyllis.togno@us.army.mil

Phyllis is a certified Kripalu Yoga Teacher registered with Yoga Alliance. Other studies and accomplishments include Reiki Master, Pranic Healing, Core Strength Vinyasa Yoga and Pilates. She teaches at Corporate locations, fitness centers, and yoga studios and also conduct private classes.

Phyllis' true passion is yoga. Stepping onto the yoga mat is when the journey begins. It is an invitation to practice with intention, breathing, moving and sensing the connection to your body's wisdom. As she continues the study and practice of yoga, she understands more clearly what it means to take yoga "off the mat" and "into the world". It teaches flexible thinking, compassion, and instills gratitude with an open heart.

Phyllis is grateful to continue on her journey to guide and be guided, constantly inspired by students and teachers she meets along the way. Her classes are a balance of gentle introduction of movement to the most challenging vinyasa flow, incorporating breath, balance, fun and relaxation.



Yoga Instructor   

Tom Casal

Tom began his practice in 1997, but by 2001, after a torn hamstring and medial meniscus tear, had given up on yoga. At that time, he was encouraged to attend a John Friend workshop. On the last day of the workshop, John asked Tom to demo triangle on his injured side to which Tom replied "John I can't do triangle on my right side". With a grin, John said "I'll walk you through it"… 5 principles later, Tom had his hand on the ground, full pose, perfect. The rest is history….

Tom's style of asana exploration is playful, light hearted, with a decent amount of flow. Together, he looks forward to taking his and your practice to the next level.



Massage Therapist   

Maggie McKenna

magkenna@optonline.net

Maggie truly enjoys helping others achieve a higher quality of life by helping relieve physical and emotional stresses, bringing balance to mind, body and spirit. Her main interest is to create a healing and nurturing bodywork session for each client.

Graduating in 1997 from the Institute for Therapeutic Massage with honors, she spent her first 6 years as massage therapist and spa treatment provider for the Estee Lauder Spa in Short Hills, NJ. Thru education and experience, Maggie instinctively blends elements of swedish, acupressure, reflexology and deep tissue techniques as well as Reiki energy.

As a volunteer at a local hospice organization, she wanted to expand her focus after providing gentle comforting massage to patients and caregivers. In 2009 Maggie completed an in depth oncology certification program that included clinic hours at UMDNJ working in infusion, ICU and CCU . Wanting to integrate energy healing into her sessions, Maggie achieved in 2011 Reiki master level.



Massage Therapist   

Maria Fano

Maria Fano began her massage therapy career in Key West, FL, where she graduated at the top of her class in 2001 from the Florida Keys Learning Institute. She is Nationally Certified in Therapeutic Massage and a member of AMTA.

With over 10 years of experience she is fluent in Trigger Point, Swedish, Deep Tissue, Pre-natal, Infant Massage, Myofascial Release, Reiki and Reflexology. Clients appreciate her firm, strong touch, her intuition, and her specific knowledge of anatomy that allows her to provide skilled and effective work to meet her client's individual needs. Maria believes in the body's ability to heal itself and that massage therapy is one of the many paths to restoring health and wholeness to the body.



Massage Therapist   

Michelle Wood

Michelle has been practicing as a certified massage therapist for 10 years. She has worked with people of all ages and backgrounds on an individual basis in achieving their goals, whether that be stress reduction, pain management or simply bringing awareness to oneself. As we all have the innate ability to heal ourselves, massage can be a wonderful addition in maintaining that state of balance. In addition to relieving stress, massage improves blood circulation throughout the body, provides relaxation of the muscles, improves flexibility and range of motion as well as strengthening the immune system. Michelle's goal in working with you is to create a sacred space where healing of the mind, body and spirit can take place.

Michelle became certified in therapeutic massage at North Jersey Massage and Training Center in Parsippany, NJ. She practices a number of different healing methods including Swedish massage, Shiatsu, Deep Tissue manipulation, Prenatal/Postpartum massage, Trigger Point therapy, Reflexology and Hot Stone treatments. She is certified in CPR and is currently studying for her nursing degree at County College of Morris. Michelle is married and has 2 beautiful children.



Massage Therapist   

Shanna Behrje

shanna.behrje@gmail.com

Shanna completed her massage therapy education at the Connecticut Center for Massage Therapy in Groton, Connecticut in 2005. Shanna is a Connecticut licensed and nationally certified massage therapist and is also a professional member of the American Massage Therapy Association.

Shanna works full time as a high school health and physical education teacher and certified athletic trainer. Her athletic training background inspired her interest in working as a massage therapist to help aid weekend warriors and recreational athletes who benefit greatly from regular massages. With her sports medicine background, her specialty is therapeutic massage and deep tissue massage. However, she also enjoys offering the soothing benefits of pre-natal, Swedish, hot stone, and trigger point massages.



Massage Therapist   

Susan Crozier

susanacrozier@gmail.com

With over four years of massage experience and having completed the Anthem Institute Massage Therapy Program, Susan is trained in many massage techniques including Swedish, Deep Tissue, Therapeutic, Hot Stone, Reflexology, and Trigger Point therapy. Additionally, Susan is a certified Reiki Master. Her own journey for optimal health and well-being led her to a mind-body-spirit approach and she has dedicated her life to assisting others in their healing process.

We are pleased to be able to offer her to you. You'll find her heartfelt energy to be a wonderful, relaxing and therapeutic experience.



Massage Therapist & Yoga Instructor   

Tristina D'Amico

tristina@ptd.net

Tristina began her massage and body work carrier in 1989 in New York and is licensed and trained in various modalities, such as Reflexology, Aromatherapy, LaStone Therapy, Reiki and Ayurvedic Bodywork. She attended massage school at The Swedish Institute and received advanced shiatsu training at The Ohashi Institute.

In addition to private clients, Tristina practiced massage therapy at The Peninsula Spa and The Away Spa at the W Hotel, where she was the Spa Director. She was also Spa Director at the Sports Club LA, Rockefeller Center and taught massage and body work classes at Vassar College.

After moving to N.J. in 2000, Tristina became a consultant for Natural Resources Spa Consulting, NYC and Tara Spa Therapy, Carmel, CA. Tristina takes great care to customize her bodywork and massage therapy to meet each individual client's needs.

Tristina has also been a student of yoga for over 20 years and has practiced many different types of yoga. In 2011, she earned her certification as a Yoga Instructor from the Vibuti School. As with her massasge and bodywork, Tristina customizes her classes to meet her students' specific needs and teaches a variety of different styles and levels.



Massage Therapist & Yoga Instructor   

Michael Solano

msolstudios@aol.com

Michael, a graduate of the Cayce/Reilly School of Massotherapy in Virginia Beach Va., is a nationally/state licensed & certified therapeutic massage and body worker. He believes the body has an innate inner wisdom and the ability to heal itself: "My main goal when working with people is to help them learn to get in touch with that wisdom."

Michael is trained in many healing modalities & incorporates them into his massage work including; Neuromuscular/Myofacial release, Cranio Sacral therapy, Proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation (PNF), Asian theories, Acupressure, JinShin do, Reflexology,and Hydrotherapy. He has studied Ayurvedic massage and is certified in Thai massage.

Michael has also practiced yoga most of his life since being introduced to it as a child from his mom and is happy to practice any form, especially Kundalini.

For over 5 years Michael has worked with his friend and teacher, Elaine Petrone at the Rehabilitation Center of Southwestern Connecticut at Stamford Hospital, on Elaine's creation: The Miracle Ball Method – An amazingly simple and incredible powerful method for relieving pain, reshaping your body, & reducing stress.

This revolutionary non-exercise method has been successful in alleviating the adverse symptoms of: Back pain, Shoulder/neck tension, Disc problems, Arthritis, Fatigue, Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, TMJ, Restless leg Syndrome, Migraine headaches, Injury/Surgery, Anxiety Attacks, and Sleeplessness and more. It is an innovative approach to movement, whereby the excess tension in our muscles gets relieved, allowing our body's own alignment system to work thus becoming a powerful tool in our yoga practice.

Michael is certified to teach all levels of this work and often works directly with Elaine.



Meditation Guide   

Brian Trautz

btrautz@whiteoakcenter.com

The owner of White Oak Center for Natural Health in Sparta, NJ. Dr. Brian is a Certified Hypnotherapist, Certified Instructor of Hypnosis for the National Guild of Hypnotists, a Chiropractic Physician, Professor of Anatomy & Physiology and a Kripalu Certified Yoga Instructor.

Brian has been practicing & teaching the joy of Yoga & Meditation for over 15 yrs. He studies,teaches & integrates into his practice the powers of essential oils, crystals & stones.



Life Coach   

Alissa Okrent

alissa@wholenesthroughaction.com

Alissa is one of the Mid-Atlantic region's truly unique fitness and wellness professionals. Her background NIA, Reiki, and Reflexology blends to create a completely inspirational workshop experience. She holds a bachelor's degree in Psychology and French from Clark University, Certified Mindful Life Coach, Certified Conscious Body Method Trainer and Coach, an ACE Certified Lifestyle and Weight Management consultant and Wellness Workshop Facilitator.

Alissa is currently teaching "Life Organizing to De-Clutter Your Brain, Live Your Life" and Individualized Nutrition for energized Living" for PSG each month. Fitness certifications include: Pilates, Pilates Reformer, Body Flow, Spinning, RPM, and Creative Movement.

Alissa's passion for health and wellness has been a lifetime journey. Beginning with her experience of Outward Bound, the mind/body connection has been an integral aspect of living. She has taught fitness classes for over 20 years, actively participates in her own yoga practice, hiking and biking as lifestyle connections to nature for nurturing her spirit and daily life.

Professional Certifications include:
Certified Conscious Body Method Trainer & Practitioner 2006
Certified Mindful Coach 2002 (Guiding Mindful Change, San Diego, CA)
The Institute for Dispute Resolution of New Jersey 2003
(40 hour training under Seton Hall Law School)
The Institute for Dispute Resolution Internship program 2004
(20 week supervised training)
ACE Group Fitness Instructor (American Council on Exercise) 1990
ACE Lifestyle and Weight Management Consultant 1995
ACE Faculty member 1997
Certified Johnny G Spin Instructor 1999
Certified Powerhouse Pilates Instructor 2000
Qualified Meyers-Briggs Evaluator 2000
Reiki practitioner 1995



Holistic Health & Nutrition Counselor   

Kristina Kurdyla

kristina.kurdyla@gmail.com

A native of Florham Park, NJ, Kristina returned to the area last summer after 7 years of studying and traveling across the US and abroad. She graduated with a double major in Sociology and Conflict Analysis & Resolution from George Mason University and is currently a practicing Certified Holistic Health Coach, Certified Transitions Coach for children and adults, and Nutritional Counselor.

An avid distance runner, hiker, and dancer, Kristina lives the healthy lifestyle she counsels. Wanting to share her passion with others, she searched for an organization that would be the melting pot of everything she loves - helping others reach their goals, and encouraging strong will, and healthy living. In the spring of 2010, she joined Girls on the Run NJ East as the program manager. Girls on the Run is a non-profit organization that encourages preteen girls to develop self-respect, empowerment and healthy lifestyles through running.

Kristina coaches both children and adults to live and maintain a healthy weight and lifestyle and believes the building blocks for healthy living begins with proper nutrition and supplementation.