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Yoga Teachers Image

Meet the Teachers

We introduce our wonderful teachers to you…

The ISHTA Studio of Yoga & Health is proud of the unique and collective energies of the teachers of the studio and the differing teaching styles. They not only bring a wealth of knowledge and wisdom each within them, but all resonate with the shared love of yoga and the eternal spirit from which it was born.

We welcome you to try all of their classes!

Wendy Wood (Nandiva)

Wendy is an initiate of Kavi Yogiraj Mani Finger and has been practising yoga for over thirty years. Wendy believes that by linking the mind and body with the breath we create a centred, harmonious feeling.
Wendy Wood (Nandiva) is an initiate of Kavi Yogiraj Mani Finger and has been practising yoga for over thirty years. After Mani left to live in the USA in the later part of his life, Wendy, inspired by the teachings of her guru, mentor and wonderful friend, continued the tradition of ISHTA by creating the ISHTA School of Yoga & Health.
Nandiva – a spiritual name given to Wendy by her guru – is a name derived from the Bilaspur goddess Naina Devi who, being the goddess of eyes, saw things that most others could not see.
Contact: To contact Nandiva, call (011) 880 3601/ 082 338 8153 or email az.oc1414678956.low@1414678956avidn1414678956an1414678956

Debbie Lutrin

Debbie began practicing yoga at the age of 11 and has been teaching at ISHTA for over 10 years. Since her first encounter with yoga Debbie felt a strong sense of what it had to offer – not only physically, but on mental, psychological and spiritual levels too.
Debbie says yoga provides her with a firm centredness a feeling of deep harmony and balance. Yoga, she says, helps us to connect more profoundly with ourselves, with others and with the universe – an essential practice for our busy, modern lives.
Debbie’s inspirational, physically assertive and precise teaching methods brings with it her experienced calm and you will leave, having connected body and mind, re-energised and completely invigorated.
Contact: To contact Debbie, call 082 459 1170

Bernice Funk

Bernice FunkBernice brings many years of teaching to the ISHTA School of Yoga & Health, herself an initiate of Kavi Yogiraj Mani Finger. Registered with The Chiropractors, Homoeopaths and Allied Health Service Professions Council of South Africa as a Remedial Yoga Therapy Teacher, Bernice’s classes are restorative, calming and deeply healing.
Through her teaching and her extended occupation as a wellness and holistic stress facilitator in the corporate world, Bernice helps students develop self-awareness and, through her understanding and experience of yoga, its teachings and techniques, offers personal growth and transformation to her students. Helping students tap into their emotional intelligence too, her teaching style is accessible, practical and experiential.

Theoni Papoutsis

Theoni PapoutsisTheoni teaches Pregnancy yoga at the ISHTA School of Yoga & Health and is also a qualified Doula, certified HypnoBirthing practitioner and aromatherapist.
Theoni is passionate about creating the right environment for a child to enter the world and believes in the capacity and courage of women to face life’s journey and all its challenges. With a sensitive and practical approach to your wellness during pregnancy, Theoni guides students on a yoga journey that they will be enriched through, learn from, delight in and ultimately, treasure.

Contact:
To contact Theoni, call 083 229 3253 or visit www.consciousbirth.co.za for more information.

Itta Roussos (Ravi)

Itta has studied the flow ofItta Roussos energy in the body through different forms of yoga including Kundalini yoga as taught by Yogi Bhajan, yoga and meditation with the Himalayan Institute (Swami Veda Bharati) and through the Tao (self-study). Itta has developed a wonderful system of healing which she has incorporated into her Kundalini teachings that she teaches to full, lively classes at ISHTA.
Contact: To contact Ravi, call 082 441 6745 or email moc.s1414678956ossuo1414678956ratti1414678956@atti1414678956.

Wendy Young

Wendy is a qualified yoga teacher and holistic wellbeing coach. She has been practicing yoga for 12 years and has trained in India, Thailand and in the United Kingdom at a Satyananda-inspired yoga ashram. Wendy has studied traditional Thai massage, Ayurvedic oil massage (Chavutti Thirumal), nutrition, Ayurveda, Jin Shin Jyutsu, Buddhist meditation and is also a Reiki master. She regularly attends workshops and retreats to deepen her practice and further her understanding of yoga, herself and life.  She has been teaching yoga for 7 years and has a calm, caring and down to earth approach.

Karin Geldenhuys

Karin GeldenhuysKarin’s yoga journey started as a search for an alternative form of exercise after a wear and tear injury while long distance running. Her searches lead her to yoga and what she calls “a reunion with her soul”. Karin began practicing yoga at the ISHTA School of Yoga & Health and says it is now here where she is privileged to share her love of yoga.
Qualifying as a Kundalini yoga teacher in India in 2003, Karin opened the Shakti Khaya Yoga centre on Linksfield Ridge. A two-year trip to India and an unfortunate armed robbery later, this journey lead Karin to qualify as a Trauma Healing therapist, and she now offers trauma counseling from her centre in Linksfield.
As a teacher, Karin reflects the divine teacher that lives in and through all of us. As she says, “Yoga lives through and within me. I pursue the sweet spot where courage and compassion meet.”
Contact: To contact Karin, email moc.l1414678956iamg@1414678956legni1414678956rak1414678956 or call (011) 616 3789 or 083 226 9834

John Malherbe

John has practiced various styles of yoga – having started with Kundalini Yoga in 2005, Ashtanga and Hatha styles soon followed and for the next three years John developed a solid yoga practice and foundation from where to teach and spread his love and gentle wisdom of the yoga teachings.
John teaches Ashtanga yoga at ISHTA as well as a new style he developed that combines and incorporates these much-loved yoga influences into a style he describes as Hatha Fusion. John’s energetic yet flowing Ashtanga yoga classes will help you move into richer, deeper physical and mental states and his structured Hatha Fusion classes, incorporating a blend of Ashtanga, Hatha and Kundalini energies are taught from a his unique spiritual perspective and offers wide benefits to many a yoga practitioner.

Marina Contardo

Marina ContardoMarina’s introduction to ISHTA yoga came about as a young girl when she was at school with Kavi Yogiraj Mani Finger’s daughter, Lisa. Yoga was introduced to her at this early age and it became a lifelong journey and commitment for Marina who has over 35 years of teaching experience.
Marina encourages and teaches with a relaxed yet mindful awareness of the yoga teachings, psychology and philosophy which she believes offers the internal equipoise we need to create healthy, sustainable lifestyles for ourselves.
As Chairperson of Yoga Teachers Fellowship of Southern Africa, Marina offers a 500-hour ISHTA Teachers’ Training Course (with an International Yoga Federation affiliation) at the ISHTA Studio of Yoga and Health. Further to her philosophy degree, Marina has also studied reflexology, Reiki, Shiatsu and Advanced Counseling through Unisa as a Hospice bereavement, loss counselor and care giver.
Contact: To contact Marina call 083 300 3512/ 011 886 2117 or email az.oc1414678956.fty@1414678956anira1414678956m1414678956. You can also visit the YTF website at www.ytf.co.za.

Patsy Finger

Having always been a seeker, studying most of the major religions of the world, Patsy was introduced to yoga by her father-in-law and founder of ISHTA Yoga, Mani Finger. Patsy found yoga to be an extension of all that she held to be true. After immigrating to America in 1996, she completed a teacher training with Alan Finger and taught yoga at the studio she opened in Boca Raton Florida, 13 years ago. Studying under teachers such as Rod Stryker, Aadil Pakival, John Friend, Angela Farmer and Shiva Ray in the States, Patsy has developed a unique and personalised style but says that her roots are be very firmly planted in the ISHTA tradition, founded by Mani and Alan.
Having studied a number of energy healing modalities too including Reiki, Healing Touch, Crystal Healing and Intuitive Healing, in addition, Patsy will be introducing Crystal Healings, Thai Yoga Massage and One on One yoga that includes Patsy’s unique Yogassage at ISHTA’s Crystal Healing Room.
Contact: To contact Patsy, call 079 327 0370 or email moc.l1414678956oa@al1414678956lasta1414678956p1414678956

Jason Hallman

Jason trained in the US as a Kripalu yoga teacher in 2005. An American, he lived in Copenhagen for four years before moving to South Africa, where he has lived and taught in Johannesburg for the past three years. In addition to yoga, Jason studies meditation techniques with a variety of Buddhist teachers. He has completed teacher training in Jon Kabat-Zinn’s Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction. All of Jason’s yoga classes emphasize meditation in motion, focusing on cultivating awareness. His approach to physical postures includes instruction on proper alignment and developing stronger energetic sensitivity. When not teaching, Jason also works as a communications consultant in the NGO sector.

Contact: To contact Jason, email jasonmoc.l1414678956iamg@141467895627nai1414678956 or call 072 357 1754

Mitesh Desai

MiteshMitesh took his first yoga class when he was 23 and knew it would not be his last. Mitesh has been practicing under guidance of the experienced teachers at ISHTA School of Yoga & Health and completed his 500 hour ISHTA teacher training in 2013. Mitesh leads an ISHTA-inspired class that offers the balancing effects of yin (passive) and yang (active) styles of yoga.  This class draws upon the more internal and longer held postures, balanced with the more active and dynamic postures to create a holistic body experience. Mitesh’s passion is to share the positive effects yoga has had upon his life in hopes of continuing this positive effect among others.

Contact: To contact Mitesh, email moc.l1414678956iamg@14146789563iase1414678956dhset1414678956im1414678956

LeLeanne Glanvilleanne Glanville

Leanne has a UNISA Honours degree in Psychology. She is a certified children’s yoga instructor and has completed her 500 hour International Yoga Teacher’s Training at the ISHTA School of Yoga & Health. However, she believes it is the lessons learned from the  “University of Life” and the grace of the Divine Light within that has led her to walk the path of yoga with the most precious beings on earth… children.

“It is my intention to spread the light of yoga to all beings…especially to our children. I strive to create a safe space for children to grow, play and simply BE. I feel truly blessed to share the knowledge of yoga with these little people whom more often than not, are my greatest teachers”

Contact: To contact Leanne call 082 972 9843, email moc.l1414678956iamg@1414678956sraeb1414678956agoy.1414678956ennae1414678956l1414678956 or visit www.yogabears.co.za