Teachers at the Center


FEZ ASWAT (Insight Meditation) has been teaching yoga and meditation in the Boston area since 2001.  He regards his hatha yoga practice as both a natural extension of and a pathway back to his meditation practice which serves as the basis of his teaching.  As a musician and a Cancer Survivor Fez regards yoga as an invaluable practice for the maintenance of his own well-being.  He works closely with his primary teacher Tom Alden and has also studied extensively with Barbara Benagh, Patricia Walden, Arthur Kilmurray and Jin Sung

ANA AYVAZIAN (Nia) has been performing and teaching Ethnic Dance for the past 15 years. She began her dance training in Armenian Folkloric dance, traveling with a troupe throughout the U.S. Canada, and Armenia. She has studied Flamenco under Ramon de los Reyes and more recently with Omayra Amaya. This summer she presented a flamenco workshop to the young students at the New England School of Dance. In June of 2002 she became certified to teach NIA. Building on her background of dance, she has through her NIA classes combined her passion and love of dance with the movement forms incorporated in the NIA technique. It's a great workout for everyone, dancers and non-dancers alike. We celebrate the joy of movement - no matter what our dance experience

ANNE CURTIS (Yoga, Iyengar Yoga) has practiced yoga since 1996 and has been teaching since 2003, after completing her Iyengar-based teacher training with Larry Hatlett in Palo Alto, CA. Anne is a Yoga Alliance certified RYT 500 and graduated from the Lotus Room Teacher Training Program in 2008. Anne is devoted to teaching in a student-centered way, in which each student’s unique characteristics are taken into account.  Her goal is for each individual to find their way toward greater understanding of their own body and how to work with yoga poses to bring about a finely tuned and mindful balance

SUSAN DESMARAIS (Yoga) was brought up as a Buddhist by her mother, with an immediate connection to yoga, which she began to practice in 1981.  After her first teacher training in the Sivananda tradition, she began teaching in 2001 in Toronto.  Her teaching style has developed from various trainings and classes with many different teachers over the years.  She currently enjoys the work of Liz Owen, Arthur Kilmurray, Barbara Benagh and Zoe Stewart in the Boston area.  Susan's classes are invigorating and replenishing, with humor and a light touch

PATRICIA GEARIN, RYT (Gentle Yoga, Vicaara Yoga) bases her practice and teaching style on the belief that yoga evokes new focus and direction in our lives: body, mind and spirit. A graduate of the Yoga Works 200 hr TT Program, Patricia has practiced yoga of various styles since 2000, and Iyengar yoga for the past five years with Liz Owen at the Center. Vicaara Yoga classes encompass asana practice in the Yoga Works Method (Iyengar, Ashtanga and Vinyasa influences), breath work and meditation (beginner and intermediate levels). Patricia encourages the application of the Yoga Sutras in asana practice and in daily life, as a means to cultivate comfort and stability as we maneuver through our often hectic environment

TED GOODMAN SENSEI (Aikido) was introduced to Aikido in San Francisco in 1970, but did most of his training in Japan with 3 years under Bansen Tanaka Sensei and 7 years under Steven Seagal Sensei. Since returning to the States, he has studied under Lou Perriello Sensei and Mitsunari Kanai Sensei. A black belt since 1987, he has been teaching Aikido since 1993. In 2002 he became a certified R.A.D. (Rape Aggression Defense) Systems instructor, and founded First Line of Defense for women's safety awareness and self-defense training

CHIP HARTRANFT, PT (Yoga, Insight Meditation, Yoga-Sutra) bridges the traditions of yoga and buddhism. He is the founding director of The Arlington Center, dedicated to the integration of yoga and dharma practice, and has taught a blend of yoga movement & insight meditation in the Boston area since 1978. An independent scholar of yoga and early Indian buddhism, Chip is the author of The Yoga-Sutra of PataĖjali: a new translation with commentary (Shambhala), and his work has also been featured in The Wisdom Of Yoga by Stephen Cope, Freeing The Body, Freeing The Mind (Michael Stone, ed.), the Shambhala Sun, and elsewhere (read his recent interview in Insight Journal). Chip teaches about the origins, evolution, and practices of yoga and buddhist traditions at teacher trainings and retreats across the country

ANNIE HOFFMAN (Iyengar Yoga) has practiced yoga since 1986. First teacher-trained at Kripalu in 1988, she then studied with Patricia Walden for fourteen years. Annie has taught since 1990 at the B.K.S.Iyengar Center, and was certified in Iyengar yoga in 1994. Annie brings a heartfelt creativity to her work. She feels every class should be a well balanced sequence giving greater clarity, alignment, strength, and ease to the practitioner. All families of postures will be woven into a semester's curriculum, including standing poses, backbends, twists, inversions, balances, forward bends, and relaxation. Yoga practice unveils the jewel of our inner beauty and allows it to shine forth. Each day I intend to make of myself an offering of surrender, transformation, and peace in order to contribute my love and reverence for life into the world. My practice and my teaching harmonize beautifully to create that vehicle. Namaste!

SAHAJ KAUR SHELLEY LOHEED (Kundalini Yoga) received her certification as a Kundalini Yoga Teacher in 2000. She brings a deep love of yoga and 18 years of experience in studying both Hatha and Kundalini yoga. She is currently teaching with the Kundalini Yoga Teacher training in Millis, MA, and has been leading yoga classes in Cambridge and Boston for the last 9 years. Her classes are open to all ~ both beginners and advanced ~ and are powerful and dynamic

DEBORAH LOTUS, GCFP/T (Feldenkrais Movement, Movement Intelligence: Bones For Life) is a Bones for Life Trainer. Deborah was trained personally by Dr. Moshe Feldenkrais and mentored by Senior Trainer, Dr. Ruthy Alon, from the mid-'70's to present. She has taught both Feldenkrais and Bones for Life in such diverse settings as Harvard and Lesley Universities, Longy and Berklee Schools of Music, and the Cambridge Center for Adult Education. She is happy to answer queries at deborahelizabeth.lotus@gmail.com

LIZ LURIE (Yoga) is a certified Alexander teacher with a background in art, dance and yoga. She has over 35 years experience teaching, both privately and at many universities. Liz has developed a unique system of transformative work, illuminating the story of the body and the choices it can make. Her Monday morning class will utilize principles of several body work techniques to find ways of releasing body tension. With an emphasis on alignment and flexibility, the aim of the class will be to find a sense of expansion and ease of movement in the yoga poses

KATHY MARTIN (Yoga for Cyclists) has been practicing various styles of yoga since 1997. She became a Yoga Alliance registered yoga teacher after graduating from the 200-hour Lotus Room Teacher Training Program in 2010 and completed the 500-hour certification in 2014. Her teaching style is primarily influenced by Iyengar and Kripalu. She is also a certified in Restorative Yoga and Yoga Nidra. Kathy is a cyclo-commuter, utilitarian cyclist, recreational cyclist, road racer, cyclocross racer and is a member of MassBike, The Boston Cyclists Union, CRW, NEBC, Team KIT, and the Ride Studio Cafe Club. She aspires to meld her experience with both cycling and yoga to help cyclists (and other athletes) balance their bodies, strengthen their core, enhance the mind-body connection, and recover from their vigorous training schedules



LIZ OWEN (Yoga) is an inspired and passionate yoga teacher. She combines physical alignment, meditative movement, and the cultivation of a joyful heart to create an innovative and transformative class experience. She has taught since 1990 and is known for her light-hearted teaching style as well as for the depth of her knowledge. Liz has studied Iyengar, Vinyasa and Classical Hatha yoga for over 25 years and was a certified Iyengar yoga teacher from 1995 - 2010. She teaches classes and workshops throughout New England, including Yoga Journal Conferences and the Kripalu Center for Yoga and Wellness, and she is on the faculty of Wellesley College. Liz is co-author of Yoga For A Healthy Lower Back (Shambhala, Aug '13) as well as an NIH-funded study at Boston University Medical Center studying yoga as a healing modality for depression. Her articles about yoga practice have been published on Beliefnet.com, the national magazine award-winning faith and inspiration website. Visit www.lizowenyoga.com

EMMIE STAMELL (Gentle Yoga) has been teaching yoga for eight years. A Kripalu-certified yoga teacher and Ayurvedic practitioner, Emmie brings a balanced dynamic of playfulness and meditative awareness to her classes. Ayurveda, a sister science of yoga, informs and inspires Emmie's teaching and her personal life. When the bodymind moves with the rhythm of the breath and with regard to kala (time of year, time of one's life and time of day) we find ourselves purified, energized and deeply relaxed. The heart of Emmie's teaching encourages gentle self-nourishment through loving-kindness to one's body, mind and spirit

VERONICA WOLFF (Ayurvedic Yoga, Yoga For The 2nd Half Of Life) has been studying yoga since 2001 and has taught since 2004. She began teaching by implementing her own vinyasa yoga program while deployed to Kyrgyzstan with the USAF. Veronica studies with Patricia Walden, Lynnae Leblanc, and her mentor Annie Hoffman; she has also recently completed a 200hr Yoga of Energy Flow teacher training program with Daniel Orlansky and Liz Owen.  Veronica weaves both Iyengar and vinyasa styles through her teaching and truly enjoys bringing the experience of yoga to her students while maintaining a sense of humor. She is passionate about natural health and is currently working on her Associates of Applied Science in Complementary and Alternative Medicine at the American College of Healthcare Sciences. Yoga has completely changed my life, allowing me to see more clearly into my own heart. My goal is to bring yoga to as many people as possible and help them align with their true potential

WYOMA (African Healing Dance Training, Sole To Soul) is a dance performance artist, teacher, yogini and healer with a playful approach to African dance that allows everyone to find their authentic voice. Wyoma has trained with many inspiring masters including Katherine Dunham (Dunham Seminars), Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche (Naropa University), and Swami Vishnu Devananda (Sivananda Yoga Teacher Training). Wyoma created the groundbreaking African Healing Dance DVD and offers African Healing Dance Trainings & intensives throughout the US and internationally. At the Center she also offers Sole To Soul, an African dance workout that fosters strength, stamina, isolation articulation, and rhythmic precision while learning about a beautiful culture. Wyoma is also a Sage Coach and yoga instructor. Visit wyomadance.com for more information - please contact Wyoma at wyoma@wyomadance.com to pre-register for the training