I began my yoga practice in 2001 with Bikram and over the years, with stress from work and traveling, my practice became less frequent. I found myself always wanting to go back, and every time I did, I suffered from infrequent practice and an uneasy transition back to the 110F heat of the room. During my 9 month sabbatical, upon reflection of my unbalanced lifestyle of work and travel, I decided that I needed to change the flow of my life by creating a more balanced and solid foundation. I loved the heated aspect of Bikram, but not particularly at 110F, so when I found heated Vinyasa Flow at 90F – I fell in love with yoga all over again. From my own practice, in the last few years, I found inner strength from my heart. This transformation and bliss allowed me to start a new career with an open mind and open heart. I wanted to share my life changing experiences with others, so I decided to teach yoga to anyone who wanted to learn. As I continue to learn each day through my own practice, I hope to encourage, nurture, and empower students with my words. I’ve always believed that once you’ve recognized your true Self, the whole yoga practice will come to you.
With a Ph.D. in Physics, Michael spent nearly a decade exploring the fundamental structure of matter at particle accelerator laboratories around the world. He finds yoga philosophy & asana to complement to his stringent scientific profession – both work in tandem to increase energy, focus, and awareness. By assimilating his scientific background with yoga physiology, he presents a new grounded perspective on the practice. The challenging flow of Michael’s classes will leave you feeling strong and centered – his approach to teaching will develop flexibility, strength, and confidence.
I began this journey, as a 6 year old, by imitating Bruce Lee and Conan-the barbarian moves. I wanted my parents to enroll me into some kind of Karate! There were no programs available, so they signed me up for the little league Wrestling team. It was destiny! I left High School by making it to the state finals 3 times, grabbing 2 titles, and multiple national rankings. I would later leave Lindenwood University with 3 All-American finishes at the National tournament. After a brief stint in the workforce & growing bored by the gym ‘rat race’, I found Mixed Marital Arts (MMA) by way of Jiu Jitsu. I had my first fight shortly after and was hooked!
Yoga has been the perfect addition to my training, it has helped me to become more in tune with my body. Yoga allows me to relax, reflect, and give attention to my finer movements. I’ve been in San Jose, California since April 2008. I study my Kickboxing with Andy Fong, my Jiu-Jitsu with Dave Camarillo, & Wrestling with Daniel Cormier. …And -Vinyasa Flow-@ Just Breathe Yoga.
Over the past few years Monique has dedicated herself to the daily practice of yoga, which has transformed her life both mentally and physically. The practice of yoga allows Monique to feel strong, beautiful and have an undeniable connection with herself. Through Just Breathe Yoga Rivermark, under the direction of Noell Clark & Angie Poon, Monique completed her 200 hour Hatha-Vinyasa certification and is a registered yoga instructor through Yoga Alliance. She guides her classes with a humble and soulful heart that you cannot help but feel through her movements and artistic playlists that she customizes. Monique is excited to share her love of yoga with the community while creating a mystical space for others to find their inner peace through yoga.
In 2006 Erica Johnson moved to the Bay Area from her childhood home in Yosemite National Park. She found refuge in yoga after a severe knee injury in 2009 that took her away from her first loves; teaching and performing as a dancer. Movement and artistic expression through the body in motion has always been a large part of her spirit. During her recovery, Erica dove head first into yoga, falling in love with the power of the mind and body connection. She found she was doing things that her doctors had told her she most likely would never do again. Yoga healed her internally and externally, and since then she has worked hard to share her passion and love for yoga with everyone. Erica completed her 200-Hour Hatha-Vinyasa certification with Angie Poon and Noell Clark at Just Breathe Yoga @ Rivermark.
I started doing yoga when I was a teenager. Back in India I used to learn yoga in temple where it was taught free. At that time I was just fascinated by the flexibility of my Guru and was trying to imitate it. But later I kept on practicing yoga by watching videos online.
My life took a new turn when I was pregnant. I had a very challenging pregnancy and was left traumatised by the whole experience of it. When my daughter turned two I got the opportunity to learn and teach Pre-Natal yoga. Initially I was reluctant about but then I thought that the only way of dealing with my fear is to face it.
Now I not only find teaching Pre-Natal yoga healing for me but it gives me immense happiness when I can see the positive change this yoga is bringing in the life of mothers. I completed my 200 hour teacher training under the instruction of Angie Poon in June 2015. My classes are often incorporated with mudras, shlokas and Kirtan.
Nicole was first introduced to yoga as a runner to help increase her strength and flexibility as well as relieve stress. Throughout the years yoga became a part of her lifestyle; teaching her that it’s not just a relief for running but also a center where all sanctions come together (mind, body, and soul). That deeper connection allowed her to reach within herself and create a sense of stability in her life. She was then able to recognize that beautiful connection between the breath and the movement that the Vinyasa practice taught her. Nicole completed her 200 hour teacher training in Hatha-Vinyasa, under the instruction of Angie Poon at Just Breathe Yoga Rivermark. Nicole brings a sense of warmth into the classroom and a unique presence to her class. Nicole wants to ensure she empowers her students into the experience of yoga and assist them in deepening their practice. Nicole continues to be amazed by the practice of yoga and the benefits it brings to the mind and body each day.
Jinger began her journey with yoga practicing Bikram seven years ago. A transplant from Pennsylvania, she was looking for a yogi home here in Santa Clara, and found it at Just Breathe. She completed the Hatha Vinyasa yoga teacher training program under Angie Poon’s tutelage. Jinger has also received certification in teaching Yin yoga and enjoys instructing Prenatal classes as well. She is a mother of three children (ages 20, 16, and 6) and enjoys bringing kindness and love to her classes.