Shana founded mini yogis yoga for kids in 2002 and is one of the global leaders in the yoga for kids market. She holds adult yoga certifications from Sri Dharma Mittra and Mark Blanchard, as well as from Next Generation Yoga for Kids. Her personal yoga practice is the cornerstone of her life. She is also the founder of YOGAthletica (for adults). Shana teaches yoga to both teachers and students all over the world and is the creator of the popular Yogi Pokey©. Click here for Shana’s full bio.
Whitney has worked with children ages 3-17 for more than five years as a Pre-K and elementary teacher and high school mental health counselor. She fell in love with yoga after years of running left her injured, sore, and defeated. Yoga has since helped her through life’s most challenging moments. She has completed mini yogis foundation and teen/tween trainings and will complete her 200-hour teacher training with Tamal Dodge in October 2014. She holds her California K-8 teaching credential, as well as a Child Development Permit for early childhood.
As an elementary teacher, Whitney founded her school’s first ever Yoga Club for Kindergarten-4th Grade students at a charter school in East L.A. She fell in love with seeing a different more playful, calm, and silly side to her students and hopes to bring yoga to children of all ages. She is now a graduate student in Clinical Psychology and hopes to one day bridge her passion for mental health and yoga.
Sharon is a Registered Children’s Yoga Teacher and has completed both the mini yogis foundation and advanced teacher trainings as well as the Zenergy Yoga Therapy 4 Kids and Yoga Education for Autism Spectrum trainings. She has been teaching for mini yogis since 2009. Sharon completed her 200-hour adult teacher training with Michelle Mazur, and her 500-hour training at Loyola Marymount University, where she became a Certified Yoga Therapist. After Sharon found yoga to be a tremendous part of her healing process with cancer, she began teaching survivors throughout Los Angeles as well.
Sahel was born and raised in Orange County, and is a proud mother to a beautiful son. She recently beat cancer and during her recovery from the effects of chemo, she found that yoga helped her not only physically, but emotionally and mentally, as well. She regained strength and a new passion for life, and has since embraced the yoga lifestyle, sharing her passion and knowledge with others.
Sahel completed her 200-Hour Vinyasa Yoga Certification with Carolyn Long at Beyond Hot Yoga and from there expanded into the children’s field. She is has completed certifications with mini yogis, Yoga Education for Autism Spectrum, and Karma Kids. Sahel’s goal is to share this love with as many beautiful beings as she can.
Rachel is mini yogis’ Director of Marketing. She is married with two beautiful children and lives and works in Laguna Beach. She went to UCLA for her Bachelor’s Degree in psychology, and then went on to get a Masters of Education in London, England at Brunel University. While living in London, Rachel met her Kiwi husband and they spent many years traveling the globe before settling down to have their family. In her spare time, she loves to read, cook, travel and practice yoga!
Monica is passionate about helping and teaching children because she remembers her own childhood so vividly and fondly. Much of her adolescence was centered around Figure Skating. She competed in both local and internarnational competitions for eight years, won several medals and performed in skating show tours.It wasn’t until she was diagnosed with Scoliosis (a sideways deviation of the spine) that she realized her path in life would have to bend a little too. She had already been practicing yoga for years as part of her athletic training, but yoga became a more profound part of her lifewhen she started using it to ease both the physical and emotional pains of her condition. Monica is a certified mini yogis yoga teacher and is also certified in Pre-natal/Post-natal yoga, and Yin Yoga. She is currently completing the Advanced 500-hr certification through Yoga Tree San Francisco.
Melvin: “Sit in the corner, count to ten and be still!!!” A phrase I heard a lot as a child. Through yoga experiments with my yogini daughter i have learned a way to parent through compassion. I have been honored to have this same compassions teaching creative writhing and self-esteem classes to youth since 1996…I fell in love with yoga in 2002 and learned its amazing healing and calming benefits for children. For the last four years, I have taught yoga to youth and adults in the Los Angeles area and recently the Honolulu community. My yoga teacher training was with the humble Nzazi Malonga E-RYT, who taught us to have compassion and care through deep inhales and exhales…So know when I ask children to sit and be still, they usually count to 1000! I am also a certified mini yogis instructor.
Melissa has been studying Hatha yoga since 2001 and teaching since 2006. She is a graduate of the Vinyasa Krama Asana, Pranayama and Meditation Loyola Marymount University sequence and has studied regularly with Srivatsa Ramaswami. Melissa was certified with mini yogis in 2008. Melissa brings a playful and grounded awareness by using seasonal verses and core stabilization. Melissa loves teaching for mini yogis.
As a certified mini yogis yoga instructor and experienced children’s fitness and soccer coach, I wanted to share my passion for teaching through yoga, while providing a community for my students and their families to safely practice together. The best part of my job is making children laugh. The second best part is teaching kids something new, and watching them find confidence in practicing what they’ve learned. The way they think and express themselves is something extremely precious and awesome. It is my job to make their journey in yoga and in my classes fun and rewarding. I love to demonstrate the joy of yoga throughout Orange County and be a cause for positive change in our community, teaching love, patience, kindness, and teamwork.
Born and raised in Los Angeles, Liz considers her favorite position as that of Mom to her two girls, ages 6 and 8. Professional highlights include her position as Executive Director at a non-profit corporation for teenage entrepreneurs, and positions at various group homes for teens. Liz splits her time between her family and her athletic pursuits including tennis, skiing, hiking and of course yoga!
Active in many sports throughout her childhood, Liz started her college career by earning a BA in Sociology at SDSU and moved on to earn a MA in Social Work from USC. This education combined with her 200-hour Yoga Alliance Certification and her Children’s and Teen/Tween Yoga Certificates from mini yogis yoga for kids makes Liz a warm, empathetic teacher whose classes are lively and fun.
Laurie has completed children’s yoga certifications with mini yogis and YogaFit Kids, as well as adult certifications through YogaFit and CorePower Yoga. She also holds a Master of Science in Education and has been an Early Childhood Educator for 15+ years. Her yoga training has driven her to deepen her own practice while strengthening her desire to share the fitness, flexibility, confidence and compassion she has experienced with others. Enthusiasm to live your best life is contagious around Laurie. Her motivation for personal growth connects people to their own joyful potential. When not teaching, Laurie loves caring for her family, while introducing her children, Aubrey and Boden, to all the wonders of the world around them.
Kristin has been able to share her passions in different capacities with children from swimming, to theater and the arts, to Yoga and hiking. Kristin moved to the West Coast in 2009, leaving her career as a custom fabricator for Broadway on the east coast in pursuit of a healthier lifestyle. She took the leap to becoming a family Yoga instructor in 2010. On this path she has received certifications for 200-hour YogaWorks teacher training, mini yogis teacher training, 30-hour Karma Kids Teacher Training, Yoga Education for the Autism Spectrum, and Every Kid’s Yoga for Special Needs. Her mission is to be able make a connection with any child that crosses her path. Currently she is taking Early Childhood Education credits at Santa Monica College to further her understanding of child development. She loves the positive affirmation, “If you try you can do, it is in trying that we achieve.”
Kimberly: As a yoga teacher, I’ve had many amazing opportunities to work with all different types of people at various levels of practice. My passion for teaching is always rewarded by the aid I’m able to give my students. I’m humbled and grateful to forever be a student of yoga and pride myself in learning as much as I can as often as possible. I have completed both mini yogis foundation and advanced teacher trainings and am proud to be certified through Shana Meyerson to teach children of all ages. Additionally, I completed my 200-hour Yoga Alliance certification from Rising Lotus Yoga.
Kathleen is a mini yogis certified teacher who completed her 200-hour training at Yoga Works. She graduated from California State University Long Beach with a B.A. in Recreation and a specialization in Recreation Therapy and Child Life. At the age of six, Kat began as a competitive gymnast and went on to become an accomplished dancer. It was through dance she discovered yoga and took to it naturally. Yoga provided a way for her to integrate her love for body movement, expression and conditioning within a warm and peaceful environment.
Her love of yoga, dance, and teaching children lead her to mini yogis foundation training, and her teaching style incorporates respect, integrity, creativity, attitude, and a lot of ENERGY. She actively volunteers for a number of children’s wellness foundations and it is her continual goal to share her knowledge, instill a love of dance, movement, yoga and help guide others to achieve their dreams.
Jody is an Associate Clinical Social Worker with over 12 years of experience working with children, adolescents and adults struggling with a history of sexual abuse, domestic violence, PTSD, disrupted attachment, adoption and depression. It was through this work that Jody’s interest in the mind-body connection was reinforced and led her toward utilizing yoga as a adjunctive practice toward healing and building life skills that really facilitate lasting change. Jody is certified in mini yogis yoga for kids, is a graduate of Cloud Nine Yoga School and a RYT-200.
Jody’s intention is to create a practice that inspires personal greatness and creativity, promotes healing and inspires humor through a journey of exploration. Currently, Jody offers transformative groups and yoga to children and adults.
Jodi started practicing yoga in 1998. She believes that yoga is a life-long practice that goes beyond the physical & should be introduced as early as one can walk. In 2007 she completed both her 200-hour Living Yoga and mini yogis certifications. She teaches yoga to children & teens, in addition to coaching & teaching yoga to the Special Maccabees, a co-ed basketball team for children with special needs. In 2013, Jodi did her second 200-hour training with Rudy Mettia. Jodi’s teaching philosophy is that yoga can benefit all bodies; if you can breathe, you can benefit from yoga. Her classes are light, fun & accessible to beginners, while also challenging for intermediate & advance practitioners with individual attention towards to each student. She has worked with toddlers through seniors of all levels of experience and abilities.
Hope has been joyfully teaching yoga to children since receiving her mini yogis certification in 2008. After successful careers as a journalist and a professional dancer, Hope, a 20-year practitioner of yoga, sought a career which would allow her to spend as much time as possible with her now going-on-seven-year-old daughter (also a mini yogi!) “While the primary focus of my classes is always yoga, children also get incidental lessons in language, musicality, math, astronomy, and ecology among many other topics. Empathy and caring for others is also an ongoing theme.” “I continue to learn from and be surprised by my students, the littlest teachers.” In her spare time Hope enjoys dancing, gardening, and doing yoga with her daughter. She also holds certification in adult Barre Yoga.
D.M. has taught in studios, private homes, and more than a dozen schools since completing her mini yogis training in 2008. Her experience spans all ages–from toddlers to teenagers–and includes one-on-one instruction for young people with Autism Spectrum Disorder, Asperger syndrome, and Down Syndrome. A yoga practitioner since 1999, D.M. builds classes around students’ ideas, and encourages children’s self-expression every step of the way. D.M. holds 200-hour certification from Liberation Yoga, as well as certifications from mini yogis and Yoga Ed. She has also completed Relax & Renew Restorative Yoga Certification from Yoga Tree SF, Thai Yoga Therapy Certification from White Lotus Foundation, and Yoga Education for Autism Spectrum Certification from Vanessa Kahlon.
Carrie feels like she was born practicing yoga, since she started taking classes at 14 years old with her mother over 30 years ago. Yoga and yogis have allowed Carrie to conquer her fears and obstacles and continually grow in so many ways. She completed mini yogis teacher training June 2014 and 200 hour Integral Yoga teacher training in 2011. Carrie volunteer tutors children with Reading Partners and continues to grow in her personal yoga practice with all different styles of yoga. She also likes to bike, hike, swim, lift weights, travel, read. Her most precious blessings are her 25-year-old daughter, 28-year-old son, and fun-loving active husband of almost 33 years! When her children were school age, her home was called “Camp Carrie’s.” It was the place to make a mess, have fun, learn how to go down the water slide, swim, do monkey bars at the park… Now she is getting back to her first love of working with children of all ages. To Carrie, it is really all about play and staying with your true spirit to live your dreams!
Brooke has worked with thousands of children around the world on US Embassies, military bases, schools, youth centers, and private homes. She has a degree in Creative Drama/Youth Theatre/Theatre in Education & Performance from the University of Northern Iowa, received her RYT200 training from Black Dog Yoga in Sherman Oaks, CA and kids yoga trainings through: mini yogis and Yoga Ed. Tools for Teachers and is a registered Children’s Yoga Instructor with Yoga Alliance. As a child, Brooke spent five years in a back brace for scoliosis and had a spinal fusion at age 13. This experience fueled her passion to help children take care of their bodies, minds, and find the voices of their unique selves. She is certified by Infant Massage USA and the International Association of Infant Massage as an educator for parents learning to massage their babies. She received training from Clarity Institute in Neuro-Linguistic Programming and is licensed by the father of NLP, Dr. Richard Bandler as a practitioner of NLP. Over the past nine years, she has also worked professionally in Children’s Entertainment throughout LA, representing more than thirty companies in costume, providing improvised comedy, silly magic, games & drama, painting faces, balloon sculpting, storytelling, and more. Her work with children parallels the creation of her paintings, colorful expressions inspired and fueled partly by the love she feels working with children and paying attention to the details in life that children naturally appreciate.
Ania’s relationship with yoga began more than ten years ago when she stepped into a Santa Monica Power Yoga class led by Master Teacher Bryan Kest, and left physically exhausted, but mentally invigorated.
Since then, she has completed 200-hour teacher training from the National Yoga Institute, yoga for kids training with mini yogis, Thai Yoga Massage certification from Exhale, a second 200-hour training from YogaWorks, plus Lead Primary Ashtanga Teacher Training. She is currently completing an additional 300-hour training at YogaWorks.
An avid and dedicated yogini, Ania was suddenly stricken with a serious illness in 2011 that not only chained her to a hospital bed but also caused total immobility. This led to the profound realization of how precious every moment in life is. Since then, she has learned to appreciate the days of physical flow, the stillness of meditative state and power of daily pranayama.
Amy started practicing yoga in 2003 because of a running injury. After she left her first yoga class she felt calm and at the same time rejuvenated and was back on the mat the next day. Her running injuries subsided and she took her first yoga teacher training in 2005 with Bikram Choudhury. She taught Bikram for a year and then was fortunate to take both mini yogis foundation and advanced teacher trainings with Shana Meyerson. She has also taken the Kundalini-based Radiant Child teacher training with Shakta Khalsa. Amy also works with special needs children and has studied with Sonia Sumar and Vanessa Kahlon. She earned an additional 200-hour certification at The Green Yogi in 2013. Amy is passionate about teaching yoga to children and her classes are fun, engaging and challenging.
An accomplished pianist, Allison’s first teaching experience came as a children’s piano instructor while she was an undergraduate at UCLA. In 2013 she completed her 200-hour teacher training with Shana Meyerson, founder of YOGAthletica and mini yogis yoga for kids, and Michelle Mazur, Yoga therapist. In 2014 she completed her mini yogis training, as well as Vinyasa Krama certification. She is currently pursuing her Masters in Yoga Studies at Loyola Marymount University and will be completing an additional 200-hour training with Tamal Dodge in Fall 2014. Allison is extremely playful and young at heart…two endearing qualities that shine through in all of her teaching.