Yoga Centric instructors each bring their own unique trainings, perspectives and personality that deeply influence their teaching style and practice. We encourage all yogis to take each one of our dedicated and talented yoga teacher’s classes. There is so much to be gained by trying something new with someone new. At Yoga Centric, we live by the words, “When one teaches, two learn.”
All of our studio instructors are trained and certified through the Yoga Alliance®, the largest non-profit association representing the yoga community.
Candice Hennessey, RYT 500, E-RYT 200, Owner/Founder, Bel Air, MD
After years of sports, high impact exercise and a full life shared with her husband and three daughters, Candice began to explore yoga as a way to ease her busy mind and tired body.
After attending hot yoga classes regularly, she quickly fell in love with her practice and the unexpected benefits yoga brought to her life. As her practice took on new form, so did her vision for the future.
In 2015, Candice made a life changing decision to leave her 15 year career as a pharma-sales rep & changed gears, by fully immersing her time into the foundation and future of Yoga Centric. Although creating a studio from those qualities that made her most comfortable as a student and not yet a teacher, would be risky, she believed that the busy people of Harford's suburban towns would also see the benefit of having a place where they could just come to relax and “be.”
With creativity and the provisions of comfort and ease at the forefront of her mind, Candice has since become a yoga teacher herself, bringing that creative flare to her classes.
Jen Barrett, RYT 200
Jenn’s initial attraction to yoga was the heat and sweat factor. Jenn enjoys varying her workout routines and thought hot yoga would be a great complement to her fitness repertoire of running, bootcamp and strength training. She started taking Bikram yoga classes in 2012, where she was encouraged to push her body to its limits.
Jenn began taking heated vinyasa classes when Yoga Centric opened near her home in 2015. She fell in love with the therapeutic benefits of a challenging yet mindful practice, and has been hooked ever since. Jenn graduated from Yoga Centric’s 200 hour YTT in January 2018. Jenn enjoys showing her students how to balance mental and physical fitness to benefit mind, body and soul.
Jenny Barrett, E-RYT 200, RYT 500, Lead Trainer and Lead Instructor
As a mother of three and advocate of healthy and balanced living, yoga has been a part of Jenny’s life for almost a decade. Being an athlete, naturally drew Jenny to the physical practice of yoga. After several years of deepening her own practice, she found herself on the mat to focus more on her intentions and ability to clear her busy mind.
In May 2013, she completed her 200 hour yoga certification, with a focus in Ashtanga. She encourages students to find their own practice while guiding them on the mat. Jenny feels that yoga is for everyone and watching students evolve is truly a blessing. You can typically find Jenny in the YC studio, practicing binds with her students and helping her clients deepen their practice through private yoga sessions! Jenny enjoys teaching at every level and has a passion for pose alignment and helping students reach beyond their imagined limits.
Laurel Betley, RYT 200
Yoga to me is creating space free from challenges in your own journey to live life to the fullest. With a background in competitive sports, I was never blessed with natural flexibility which at first, turned me away from yoga. Not until I was exposed to the mind and body connection through breath did I fully become a practitioner. While the asanas are fun to explore, the true relief, for me, comes from linking my breath to my practice and treating each sequence as a moving meditation.
In my classes, I have fun combining creative sequences for all level practitioners. Whether you have been practicing for 10+ years or stepped onto your mat for the first time, you will have the chance to explore your edges, find peace and practice self-care. My wish is to help fellow yogis manifest their needs so that they can live a life full of peace and harmony.
Chelsea Dresher, RYT 200
Chelsea is certified 200 hr yoga teacher. She believes practicing yoga on and off of your mat is the key to a happy and healthy life.
She married her husband in 2012 and is a mother of two wonderful little boys. Growing up, she was considered the social butterfly of her family. She is an optimist and always strives to help people in anyway she can. With her welcoming and outgoing personality, Chelsea is sure to lead a fun and comfortable class.
Maria Fratus, RYT 500, Joppatowne, MD
From Maria herself, “Well, let’s just say, I love to move!” For Maria, this passion started a long time ago. Probably during elementary school, in her living room, where she spent most nights dancing to Elvis records. She never stopped dancing from the time she can remember. She spent her teenage years in a dance studio, training for a competitive dance team, and then as a Carolina Coquette, dancing with the University of South Carolina’s marching band on the football field. Three decades later she still spends most of my time moving her body in a studio, teaching many fitness formats from yoga to dance classes.
After discovering yoga in the late 90s, she realized that it was exactly what her mind and body needed, as she found it to be a dance that nourishes and heals. This is what built Maria’s desire to teach. “Everyone, all ages and fitness levels, can benefit from Yoga, and I thoroughly enjoy sharing it with the world!” Maria has a powerful practice, focusing on strength and flow which is evident in YC’s Signature Heat Vinyasa class.
Adonia Garvin, RYT 200, E-RYT 200, Rising Sun, MD
Come rock your Flow - Sunrise Yoga with Adonia!
It was Love at first pose for Adonia. Stepping foot in her first yoga class 12 years ago. She found yoga with the intention of getting back into shape after her second child, but soon realized there were so many more benefits of yoga than the exterior results. Wanting to deepen her practice and continue to see where the journey would take her, she completed her Vinyasa Flow 200 hour Yoga Teacher Training with Master Susan Smith of One Yoga over five years ago to become a Certified RYT through Yoga Alliance. Through the gift of teaching she went on to earn her Accreditation with Yoga Alliance as a 200hr E-RYT.
Adonia teaches a lively, sweaty, and FUN class, emphasizing living your life fully and not taking yourself too seriously.
With a soulful & invigorating expressive flow she will sprinkle in traditional and playful sequencing along with great music into each class. She encourages students to have a healthy curiosity about their edge, “when we create new edges for ourselves on the mat it trickles out into the world and we begin to create new edges in our day to day lives.”
Emily Glasgow, E-RYT 200
Emily's journey to Yoga is somewhat of a happy accident. Having never practiced yoga before 2015, Emily was employed at Yoga Centric as a studio caretaker and quickly fell in love with the energy and spirituality of the practice. A people person through-and-through Emily knew that she wanted to able to connect with people on a larger scale.
In April of 2017 she completed her first certification (RYT 200) and has been working rigorously to improve her craft while also being one of the faces of Yoga Centric as the studio manager. To this end you may see Emily working the front desk, teaching a class, or even on the mat next to you taking a class or four.
Emily's guiding philosophy is to always learn and she takes great pride in learning as much from you as you do her. Emily is a well known master chef when she's not in the studio. Although she sometimes feels like the imperfect yogi because of her love affair with the occasional pizza, cheesesteak and fries!
In the past two years Emily's life has changed so much, as a person, a friend, and a mother, she wouldn't change anything about her past, her present, or whats to come in the future. Those things make her the person she is today! “Difficult roads often lead to beautiful destinations.”
BJ Hart, RYT 200, E-RYT 200, RCYT Baltimore, MD
BJ began practicing yoga in 2004 at Charm City Yoga in Baltimore. Right away, he saw and felt the benefits of yoga. BJ practiced intensely for about three years before he decided to become a yoga instructor.
BJ received his 200 hour certificate in 2013 and has since taught at several studios in and around Baltimore. BJ believes that the transformative power of yoga reaches far beyond the confines of his mat. BJ teaches out of gratitude and service and hopes to spark and nurture such transformation in others.
When he is not on the mat, BJ can be found writing, playing guitar, juggling, hiking and spending time with his son.
Courtney Hart, RYT 200, RCYT, Baltimore, MD
Courtney found yoga during a time of great change in her life. She had drastically changed her lifestyle to improve her mental and physical health and along the journey (after many recommendations from a loved one) she stepped onto a mat.
On her mat, Courtney could finally step into the stillness, clarity, and power she had been yearning for; she began to internalize peace within herself. Courtney relished in the mind-body connection of yoga as it built upon her academic studies of mental health.
Courtney completed her 200-hour certification program through Red Lila Yoga School in July 2016. Off the mat, Courtney enjoys hula hooping, being outdoors, writing and hanging out with her rescue cat.rove her mental and physical health and along the journey (after many recommendations from a loved one) she stepped onto a mat.
Karlee Kavanaugh, RYT 200
Karlee was born and raised in harford county. Along with being a yoga instructor she is also a massage therapist. In her free time she loves to be outside with her dog. Dancing, hiking and camping are some of her favorite things. Live music also holds a special place in her heart.
On her journey as a healer, with her enlightened and spiritual outlook, she wishes to guide others into the comfort and awareness of their own bodies.
Tara Lundon, RYT 200
For as long as she can remember, Tara has been interested in the practice and methodology of Eastern philosophy, and searching for ways to infuse some of its key aspects into daily life.
It wasn't until she moved with her family from New Jersey to Harford County in 1995 that she began to seriously study Kundalini yoga, under the guidance of teachers at a local dharma center. In 1998, Tara started incorporating meditation into her practice, continuing to expand on her teachings by attending workshops, open practices, and online learning.
When her foremost place of Eastern study closed in 2006, Tara continued with her personal practice, however shifted her focus more towards her career as a paramedic firefighter, and to various volunteer projects.
Eventually, after months of sensing that something was missing from her life, Tara finally found her “Happy Place” at Yoga Centric, and felt her love of yoga reignite. She completed her RYT-200 certification in 2018, and continued her yoga education by certifying as an instructor in both Aerial, and Yin Yoga. Tara firmly feels that everyone, at any age, can benefit from yoga, and is currently working to bring both yoga and meditation to first responders, and those working is fields that are both physically and emotionally stressful.
When she's not on her mat, or in the aerial silks, Tara, an avid animal lover, can be found playing with her dogs: Saffron, Olive, Jingles and Carmen, and her hedgehogs, Clover and Livvy, or working on her quest to find Maryland's best French fries and craft beer.
Greg Nigrin, RYT 200
I received my RYT200hr through Yoga Centric in the summer of 2018 as well as my Yin Certification through Richard Gartner at Yoga Centric in the fall of the same year.
I have always been searching and exploring for the deeper meaning to life. The death of my son in 2013 propelled me into a life of solo traveling as well as some very deep spiritual understandings.
I found my way to the jungles of Peru in 2015 to explore the mystical meanings to my life. I made two more trips to Peru in two years and, through months of integration, took my first yoga class in the heat of the Peruvian jungle. Upon returning from my most recent trip there in December 2016, I was introduced to a new yoga teacher beginning her community practice in a barn behind her house. I instantly fell in love with the practice, both physically and mentally. I continued to practice yoga for two years and yearned for a deeper understanding — that's when I registered for YTT.
Through the yoga community I was introduced to and experienced the benefits of Sound Healing. I noticed that there was just a small corner of the community who had any knowledge of Sound Healing or Sound Baths. This led me on my next pursuit of providing this amazing service to the community. My investment into sound therapy, or gongs to be exact, has blossomed from the seed that was planted three years ago at my first yoga class!
Annie Koukoulis, RYT 500, Instructor, Abingdon, MD
Lauren Nadler, RYT 200, Yoga Centric Instructor
Lauren is a recent graduate of Yoga Centric's 2018 Yoga teacher training program. She first discovered yoga while in college after suffering a traumatic back injury. Her love of the discipline was further fostered by taking a course in yoga philosophy and Sanskrit.
As a health care professional in cardiac care, Lauren has merged her love of yoga and caring for people by introducing mindfulness and meditation techniques to add comfort to her patients. Her classes combine a traditional Vinyasa flow with a modern pop flavor. Lauren has also has a strong background in acro and aerial yoga. When not on her mat or in scrubs, Lauren loves to travel, read and paddle board with her pup Calli.
Amanda Pierce, RYT 200, Rising Sun, MD
Amanda Pierce has been practicing yoga since 2003. She found yoga in college beginning with a home practice and continued to practice through her pregnancy and after the birth of her daughter. Today, she is still finding yoga’s many benefits for overall health and wellness and sharing them with her students.
The link of breath and movement was compelling and inspired her to teach and share yoga with others. Not long after in, 2014 Amanda received her 200 hr certification from One-Yoga of Delaware.
Amanda’s passion is helping others enhance their overall health and well-being and is always sharing her fun and loving style with her students.
“I came to yoga for the physical practice and through this practice discovered my own individual strength and learned to release and let go. I truly feel that yoga is for everyone and that it will give you the key to unlock whatever hidden potential you might be searching for, and in the process you may find so much more. Yoga is a gift that I love to share, so others too can find their inner light and let it shine.”
Jen Quint, RYT 200, RPYT
Jen’s passion for fitness began long ago, in the great state of Maine, when she stepped onto the ice at the age of 3. She played ice hockey for 16 more years, even playing for Salve Regina University, in Rhode Island, where she earned her B.S. in Economics and her MBA.
After graduation, she married a young Army officer and moved to Germany. While her husband was deployed to Afghanistan, Jen turned to yoga, mainly to keep active, and fell (quite literally) head over heels with absolutely everything it had to offer. Four years later, in Colorado, she became a 200-hour Registered Yoga Teacher and a Registered Prenatal Yoga Teacher. She has taught at the United States Air Force Academy, cambio, Donation yoga, Enso Prenatal (a yoga studio just for moms and moms-to-be) and at Fort Carson as part of the Army’s Pregnancy and Postpartum Physical Training Program. Recently, while her husband was completing his graduate studies at the University of Tennessee, Jen taught heart-pumping, muscle burning barre classes at Barre3 in Knoxville.
At 36 weeks pregnant, she, her husband, her 3 year old daughter, and rescue pug, Mr. Boo, moved to Bel Air, Maryland. Her sweet baby boy was born just three weeks later! Having had two wonderful birthing experiences, using techniques and mindfulness practices learned in prenatal yoga, Jen can’t wait to share what she’s learned, and experienced, with the Maryland yoga community. Her goal is to create a safe, enriching environment where students can delve deep into their bodies while cultivating mindfulness and strengthening ties with their community.
In her free time, she loves snuggling her adorable children, antiquing (you can never have too much vintage Pyrex), and spending time in Maine with her family. Jen specializes in vinyasa flow, prenatal, and yin yoga classes. She is also a Certified Personal trainer and barre instructor.
Paula Shaw RYT 200
Paula began practicing yoga 5 years ago to connect with herself and minimize the stresses of life. Her practice deepened within the past two years as she noticed how yoga began to enhance her life. Her love for Yoga and compassion for people and nature has influenced her practice and teaching of both Yoga and Breath work Therapy. Through her own experiences and witnessing the results of clients, Paula places focus heavily on the breath through fitness, mindfulness, meditation and Yoga.
Paula completed her 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training with Yoga Centric to become RYT 200 certified. She is also a Certified Breath Master, Mindfulness Coach and Spiritual Lifestyle Consultant. Paula was led on this path through a journey towards self-actualization and love for humankind. She learned that Yoga connects each of her professional disciplines & allows her to serve others which is a joy as she believes that our primary purpose is enhancing the lives of others.
Tanja Smith, RYT 200
Tanja received her 200hr teacher training in 2016 from Charm City Yoga in Baltimore.
As a former student and teacher of ballet, Tanja was drawn to the physicality of yoga. The beauty of expression she uncovered in the practice proved to be an outlet for emotional cleansing and physical well being.
Tanja’s traditional approach focuses on the long term effects a deepened yoga practice can bring to the body. A lover of all yoga forms, Tanja blends Hatha, Ashtanga, Vinyasa, 26/2, and Yin into a total immersion on the mat. Her teaching style is strength based incorporating longer holds and challenging balancing postures.
Believing that self study is key to success, Tanja has attended workshops with notable yoga teachers, Richard Freeman, Seane Corn, Coral Brown, Giselle Mari, Jason Crandell, Kathryn Budig, Noah Maze and Cyndi Lee.
In 2018 Tanja received her Yin Yoga certification from Richard Gartner of Frameworks Yoga.
Angela Spagna, RYT 200, Bel Air, MD
Angela’s love affair with yoga began in 2001 when she took a Hatha yoga elective course in college. However, things only got serious three years later when she joined a Baptiste affiliate studio in Dallas. From then on she’s been hooked! Yoga is a constant in her life and she enjoys exploring all of its aspects (physical, spiritual and philosophical) and different formats of yoga.
Like most, she was originally attracted to yoga for its physical benefits, but it's the spiritual aspect that keeps her coming back to her mat. Once that spiritual seed took root, Angela realized that sharing the joy of yoga was her true passion.
When she moved to Chicago in 2009, her fashion career took a back seat and she enrolled in teacher training with CorePower Yoga. Since completing her power training in 2010, she has gone on to train in Yin and a Bikram inspired Hot Power Fusion format. In each class, she aims to help her students find a deeper mind/body connection through breath work. She believes that it is through the breath that we tap into our inner True Self where our spirituality dwells.
Laura Spencer, RYT 200, Baltimore, MD
While getting her BA of Science in Psychology from University of Georgia, Laura started practicing yoga while working at a yoga/acupuncture center in Athens, GA. Laura was a cheerleader and gymnast throughout her younger years, so she instantly connected with the physical aspect of yoga. However, as Laura learned more about yoga she was drawn to the stress relief and relaxation that yoga offered her. In 2012, after practicing for nine years, Laura received her 200 Hour YTT certification from Asheville Yoga Center.
As a Yoga Teacher, Laura encourages students to focus on alignment in their practice and deeply connect with their movement and breath. Laura creates a comfortable environment for her students where they can open their hearts, relax into each postures and be playful in their own practice. She encourages students to smile and have fun! Laura brings a laid back, playful approach to class, making yoga fun and accessible for every type of body and level. Laura’s practice is a combination of vinyasa and the restorative method of Yin Yoga. She loves working with beginner and intermediate students, athletes, military, kids, pre/postnatal and seniors.
In her spare time, Laura enjoys traveling, SUP Yoga, anything outdoors — going to the beach, hiking, skiing, camping and playing with her fur kids Isabelle and Cooper.
Amanda Wagner, RYT 500, RPYT
Amanda began with a love to run and push her limits with racing and high intensity training. After injuries and little recovery, she needed to find a balance to all the intensity of her workouts and running. She started a consistent yoga practice while pregnant with her son in 2013, In 2016, Amanda felt inspired to teach and commit to a life anchored by yoga, she earned her 200 RYT at Yoga Centric in Harford County.
With a guiding philosophy of always being a student, Amanda has completed her Prenatal Yoga Teacher training as well as Pilates training as a way to teach a well-rounded, alignment-based class. She has a passion to teach yoga to athletes, mamas-to-be and those looking to incorporate balance and ease with their training and everyday life.
Amanda is still busy being a mom to her son, Max, and committed to her graphic design career, but possesses a certain calm. Her classes bring a sense of balance between hard work, self-improvement and exploration to a more peaceful state of mind and being.
Jen Walsh, RYT 500, Instructor, Edgewood, MD
After practicing yoga on and off for nearly a decade, Jen found herself deepening her personal practice at Yoga Centric in 2016. Then a few months later, she enrolled in Yoga Centric’s first-ever Teaching Training — and there was no turning back!
At YC, Jen learned that yoga is for everybody and every body, including herself. Jen enjoys teaching yoga to all levels, especially beginners (just say yes to props and modifications!). And she loves restorative yoga — both teaching and practicing — because as a former TV newsroom journalist and marketing account executive, her mind and body are still recovering from living in a constant state of fight or flight!
Jen completed her 200-hour certification program in April 2017. Off the mat, she loves reading and listening to podcasts, going to the beach and hanging out with her husband, stepson and fur babies (one dog and three cats).
Caitlyn Weese, RYT 200 Instructor
Yoga came to me at a painful point in my life. What started as a form of self-care and stress reduction, became a practice that transformed my relationship with myself, my body, others and the world around me. As a result of this radical journey, I am driven to share these teachings with others in the hopes they too can transform their lives.
I believe in helping students find strength and flexibility on their mats, in hopes that they can find this in their lives. Beyond this, I believe that we are all our greatest teachers and empower students to tap into their own intuition and guidance to find their practice on and off the mat.
Katherine Will, RYT 200, Instructor, Monkton, MD
Katherine began taking yoga classes in college as a form of cross-training for her lifelong passion of dance. It was not until a few years later, when she was going through a period of transition and personal growth, that Katherine began to experience yoga as something more than just the physical asana practice. After deciding against a career in dance, Katherine began to spend more and more time on her mat, finding solace in the mind-body-breath connection.
In August 2016, Katherine completed her 200 hour yoga certification at Yoga District in Washington, DC, where her program focused on Dharma Yoga, Power Yoga and trauma-sensitive yoga. Katherine most enjoys taking and teaching Vinyasa yoga classes because of the emphasis on linking breath with movement to flow — or dance — through the sequence. To Katherine, one of the most amazing aspects of yoga is the opportunity to start each practice anew, without expectations or judgment.
Katherine takes and teaches classes at Yoga Centric, where she is inspired by the dedication of the teachers and compassion of the community. When she is not in the yoga studio, Katherine enjoys traveling, taking walks, organizing and spending time with family and friends.
Alexis Yauch, RYT 500, Community Manager/Teacher, Joppa, MD
Here at YC, Alexis has come into her practice, which has grown into a lifestyle and inspired the pursuit of a teaching career. Starting with a personal at-home practice at the age of 18, she began to find herself in love with the valuable experiences and lessons that yoga has to offer. From growing up in Pittsburgh to living in Virginia, North Carolina and now Maryland, Alexis has always been able to rely on yoga to provide guidance along the way.
As a recent graduate of YC’s first YTT, you can find Alexis not only teaching at the studio or working as a community manager at the front desk, but also leading Paint Night workshops. Aside from yoga, Alexis loves to paint to express her creativity. She often spends her free time eating tacos and guac with the studio manager Emily!
Teaching has flourished into a lifelong journey for her, as she wishes to spread the love of yoga and share the ability to ease the mind, heal the soul and strengthen the body. Keep it simple, remember to breathe.
Emily Waite, RYT 200, Bel Air, MD
As a student of Nutrition & Dietetics at West Chester University Emily was first drawn to yoga to receive physical benefits, but quickly came to find that yoga offered way more. Yoga offered her growth in other aspects of her life that keeps her coming back to her mat. She finds that whenever she steps on her mat there is always something new to discover. She encourages her students to deepen their practice and let go of all expectations!
Emily also is currently studying nutrition and dietetics at West Chester University. She loves to share her passion with others and encourage everyone to take on a healthy lifestyle! When she is not on her mat she is either in the kitchen cooking, taking her dog on a walk or taking a group fitness class. She also is a certified group fitness instructor and a dog lover. Emily hopes to inspire you to reach new limits on and off the mat.