Meet the Troupe
I have always danced to the beat of my own drum, and my biggest goal in life has always been to help people. I studied Psychology at Auburn University, and I obtained my Master’s degree in Education from AUM shortly thereafter. I fell into yoga, and it forever changed my life for the better.
I was an awkward teenager, and I am an even more awkward adult. I am clumsy, and I have never been exactly graceful. Anyone who knew me in high school can confirm that I was not flexible – at all. The fact that I am a yoga and aerial yoga instructor still amazes me sometimes. I came to the mat with few expectations. I wanted to lose a little bit of weight, and I wanted to be happier. I never thought that I would dive head first into yoga the way that I did. I am living proof that there is hope for anyone! Trust me.
I am a certified yoga teacher (200 E-RYT), and I hold a 65-hour certification in Unnata® Aerial Yoga. I also recently completed teacher training at the Circus Arts Institute in Atlanta, and I am now certified to teach the silks!
I strive to enrich other people’s lives. My entire education path has been a product of my desire to help people. My classes are built around enthusiasm, encouragement, and acceptance. I love making people smile!
As a young woman if anyone would have told me I was going to grow up to be a yoga teacher, or even practice yoga, I never would have believed it! Who knew? I was very involved in all kinds of activities, but yoga was nowhere on my radar!
However, all that changed for me when I was diagnosed with a degenerating neuro muscular disorder in 2007. Hence began my yoga journey! As I sat in the Kirkland Clinic at UAB waiting to be seen by a Neurologist I found an article in a neurological magazine that was reporting a research study. It demonstrated how doing yoga 2-3x a week not only prevented deterioration in M.S. patients, but participants in the study actually improved. Three years after the study concluded, the M.S. patients were still receiving the health benefits they saw during the duration of the study. This spoke hope to my heart. I truly believed that I had stumbled upon something that may be able to help me. I can now say, with absolute certainty, that if I had not listened to my heart that day and began to practice yoga, I would be a knot on the floor, and would likely be wheelchair-bound today.
I am a wife and a mother of three very active young daughters, so dropping out of life was not an option! I was in bad shape and very sick when I started my practice. Yoga was the only relief I got from the brutal hammering my neuro muscular system was taking day in and day out. The benefits were so immediate that I went to every class I could find, and on days yoga was not offered I started doing my own practice at home. I saw more and more improvements and LOVED it! I decided to get my teacher certification in 2008, just one year after I started practicing. I believed that God had given me a gift that had transformed my life in all of the best ways possible, and I wanted to share that gift with others.
Prior to my Yoga Training I received a BA in Psychology with minors in Sociology and Philosophy. I worked as a counselor, and I taught Successful Life Management Classes for Women, coupled with effective communication skills.
In 2008, I received my 1st yoga certification from YOGA FIT, and later received level 2,3, and 4. I then found Asthanga Yoga and fell in love. I completed my 200RYT certification in Asthanga yoga in 2011. Just before completing my 200RYT I opened a small Yoga Studio Called “The Yoga Room,” where I taught and practiced for the next four years.
As you can see, I am a Yoga Mutt! There are many different kinds and/or schools of yoga, and I love them all! I study and try to learn from as many different sources as possible; it’s all good! I like to mix it up in my vinyasa classes by drawing upon my knowledge in order to give my students whatever it is they are needing that day. Never the same class twice!
“PRACTICE AND ALL IS COMING… “ -Sir K. Pattabhi Jois
(Note: Jenny is currently on maternity leave. We are so excited for her as she welcomes her fifth child, a baby girl.)
I started practicing yoga my Freshman year while attending the United States Air Force Academy. It was my stress reliever and place to get away and focus on just me. Yoga helped with my flexibility as a cheerleader at USAFA. I graduated with a Bachelors of Science degree in Systems Engineering Management and have a Masters in Business Administration with a concentration in marketing.
I was pretty deep in my practice and upon college graduation decided it was time to deepen my knowledge and share it with others. I completed my teacher training through CorePower Yoga in December 2011. I am a 200 hr RYT through YogaAlliance. I specialize in Hot Yoga (traditional 26 poses by Bikram), Hot Power Fusion, and Yoga Sculpt.
I have taught yoga classes at each of my assignments as an officer in the United States Air Force around the world. I love teaching and practicing with others. I am passionate about all of the benefits of yoga both physically and mentally.
I took the last couple years off from instructing and focusing more on my practice and starting a family. I have four boys ages 1, 1, 2, and 4 who keep me constantly active and on my toes. Now that life is a little more stable, I am eager to start teaching! I love challenging myself and others through yoga and am very excited to lead classes in Montgomery.
I found yoga in 2012 as a way to reduce stress in college. At the time, it also acted as my main physical exercise, too. There were free yoga classes on campus, and once a week the Buddhist studies group would meet for an hour long meditation–Buddhist or not, I went. The combination of meditation with asana practice showed me what I had been missing–peace of mind and a healthy body. I honestly don’t think I would have graduated with the grades I did if it weren’t for my practice. Fast forward 5 years and I finally received my yoga teaching certification (RYT-200) in November of 2017. My plan was not to teach, but to learn. However, I’m learning that teaching brings it’s own set of lessons. Outside of yoga you can find me out eating and supporting local restaurants (to my downfall), hanging out with my cat Bonner, or making trips to Georgia; my second home.
Amanda Edwards began her yoga journey in 2008 for a high school project where she connected gardening with yoga. Ever since, she has been unfolding a practice deeply rooted in an appreciation of the unknown, which she believes has been instrumental in her life. Amanda trained in Ayurvedic Yoga at Yoga Gem, LLC in 2018 and is a registered yoga teacher with Yoga Alliance at the 200 hour level (RYT200). She believes by staying curious, we learn to enjoy a life of abundance, joy and peace.
Sensei Bob Harris is a 4th degree Black Belt with over 40 years experience in Isshin-ryū karate. He is also a retired Major from the US Army. He is a supporter of the Boy Scouts of America and has earned his Wood Badge. Bob volunteers with the local animal shelter by being on the Board of Directors and helping with fund raising. Sensei Harris enjoys wood carving with his wife, Betsey; and he’s an active photographer with the Capital City Camera Club. Spending time with the grandchildren makes his life complete.
HIs interest in the martial arts began as a child. His dad was a career airman in the US Air Force. His father’s travels would frequently take him to Japan, Okinawa, and Korea. His father would tell him stories about the amazing fighting skills from the people of the Orient. Earning a black belt was the pinnacle of achievement. This became his dream.
As a child, Bob studied judo at various bases. When his dad retired, there were no judo schools in his area. He started taking karate from Sensei Pete Peterson in 1972 in eastern Tennessee. Watching Sensei Peterson move was a flash back to the stories his father told him about – he was instantly hooked! Of course, the surge of martial arts movies on the big screen in the early and mid 70s fueled the desire. Back in the day, there was only white, green, brown and black belts and no protective gear when fighting. You had to be tough to survive! Sensei Harris made it to Green belt with Sensei Peterson.
College studies and moving a lot while on active duty got in the way of his growth. Eventually, Bob would find an instructor at a new location. The instructor would tell him, “We do things differently than the way you were taught.” He would have to surrender the belt and start again as white. He’d move again and the cycle repeated. He was eventually promoted to Brown belt.
After leaving the Army, he needed something to help him find balance in his life. Bob found a karate school in Columbia, SC. He worked with Sensei Boyd Bolte until he was promoted to Black Belt in 1999. Bob finally made it! Little did he know that his martial arts training journey was just beginning!
Prior to moving to Wetumpka in 2006, Sensei Harris had a school in Monroe, NC with 40 students. A long-term medical issue prevented him from teaching, but did not stop his learning. The issue appears to be gone and he’s feeling better, and he’s excited to be getting back into teaching and growing. His instructor is Grand Master Mitch Kobylanski from Charlotte, NC.
Amy DeCal is an E-RYT 200 and has been teaching in the Montgomery area since 2014. She has continued to develop her practice and teaching through trainings around the country. She is passionate about helping others find physical, mental, and spiritual healing through the gift of yoga. Her teaching style ranges from yin/restorative to Ashtanga to power vinyasa.
Sita began her Yoga journey over 5 years ago while looking to change up her workout routine and address some of the physical pain she was dealing with. Not only did a regular yoga practice add balance to her normal aggressive styles of fitness, but it allowed her to find relief from her chronic pain and provided skills that made her better at managing her stress. Through yoga Sita found balance in many aspects of her life, and she found her life begin to shift in amazing ways. She quickly fell in love with the practice and has been obsessed with it ever since.
Sita is a certified yoga instructor (200 RYT), and has taught Hatha, Yin, Ashtanga and Hot yoga styles. She has continued her yoga education with Ashtanga and Kundalini trainings in Guatemala, and has also attended White Tantric events in New Wales, Florida, and Knoxville, Tennessee. Sita is certified to teach aerial yoga, having learned under renowned instructor Leisha Knight. In order to broaden her education she regularly attends a variety of workshops throughout Alabama and Georgia giving her tools to use on and off the mat as both student and teacher.
Sita believes that yoga allows individuals to embrace their own sacred space. It is her goal as a yoga teacher to bring students to a deeper level of understanding that gives them the tools they need to begin exploring the Self. She believes one’s practice isn’t about where you’ve been. And it’s not about where you’re going. It’s about the present moment on your mat —for everything it is, and everything it is not. She loves reading about the metaphysical and anything involving yoga philosophy. Sita is also a student and practitioner of Reiki and has a love of essential oils that she incorporates into her teaching and personal practice.
Shilo Lucyk, ERYT-200
I found yoga in 2005 when I was living in Monterey, CA. I had just gotten back from an overseas trip, and the malaria prevention medicine I was prescribed made me very sick. It gave me vertigo, constant headaches, and debilitating anxiety. I couldn’t work, drive, or leave my house. On a webpage for people who experienced the same bad reaction to the medicine, I read that yoga sometimes helped people get their lives back. I was desperate to find anything to help me recover, so I had my husband drive me to a restorative yoga class. That one class ended up changing my life for the better. The more I practiced yoga, the better I felt. Eventually, I was back to my old self, with much love and gratitude for yoga.
I ended up getting my yoga teacher training certification when I lived in Denver, CO. I have since taught yoga in Colorado, Texas, and Utah. One of my favorite yoga teacher opportunities was with the Wounded Warrior Project in Colorado Springs. There I met combat veterans who were also trying to get their lives back through the practice of yoga. It was a humbling experience that once again reinforced the amazing things yoga can do for us. I also taught a lot of power yoga along the way, probably because my high-energy personality lends itself to an upbeat practice. But personally, as a yoga student, I gravitate towards restorative and Yin classes.
I’m new in town, having moved to Montgomery in July of 2018. Pretty early on I found Kimberly and this wonderful studio, and I’m so very happy to be a part of the teaching team. If you’re wondering what my teaching style is like, it’s fun, playful, and upbeat. I don’t like to take things too seriously, and I love laughing. When I’m not practicing yoga, I’m probably reading, playing tennis, or spending time with my husband and two dogs.