Our Yoga Instructors
Cori Vanker, RYT 200
Cori graduated from Oakland University in 2004 with a major in English, and for many years has worked in day schools and Early Childhood programs. She also has had a deep interest in the effect of nutrition on the body and other drug-free approaches to promoting and supporting good health. She spent a few years focusing on strength training and cardio activities, and had at first assumed that yoga would merely supplement her other activities. However, once Cori became a serious student of yoga, she found the practice to be a natural approach to stress management, and later discovered wise and profound responses to timeless, universal human concerns in the ancient teachings.
Cori completed yoga teacher training in 2019 and found the months-long immersion in the yogic teachings and lifestyle to be utterly life changing. She is now passionate about teaching students to incorporate mindfulness into their practices and is concerned with sharing the importance of movement variety and proper alignment for pain relief and injury prevention.
Eva Schumacher, RYT 200
Eva began her yoga practice in 2016, knowing it would be a good workout, but could not have foreseen the incredible things a yoga practice would open up inside of her and describes her experience with yoga as transformative.
For far too long, she avoided finding a yoga studio for fear of not being “enough” for yoga–flexible enough, thin enough, fit enough. She now has a deeper understanding of those limiting beliefs, that were mostly rooted in fear: of judgement, failure, or vulnerability.
Her commitment as a teacher is to encourage everyone to come to their mats and let that fear sit quietly in the corner for a bit and just be their beautiful and unique selves. To build on that small kernel of strength and confidence, and see where it might take them, on and off the mat.
Since completing teacher training, Eva has found particular joy in teaching yin and restorative classes. With any class, she loves to incorporate props such as blocks, wheels, and straps to help students deepen their practice.
Eva has a passion for sharing the truth that yoga is for everybody, because everyone deserves to find the place within them to be happy and free from suffering.
Julia Laity, E-RYT 200
Julia became a dedicated yoga student in 2010 while searching for a way to find inner peace. She found that yoga not only toned her body, but it also calmed her mind and eased her anxiety. Within a few months of attending classes at The Yoga Studio, she knew she wanted to become a certified yoga instructor so she could share the power of yoga with others.
Julia completed RYT-200 training with Lisa Tokarz at The Yoga Studio in 2014. She and her husband realized they were expecting during her training and Julia had her baby girl in February 2015. During her pregnancy, she became passionate about prenatal yoga and began teaching that as well. She loves yoga and strives to give students a break from the demands of day-to-day life and remind them how important it is to take time for them. Now a mother, she realizes now more than ever that one needs to pour into their own cup before they can pour into others’.
Christy Tchakerian, RYT 200
Christy’s healing journey began only a few years ago with yoga. Upon becoming a true student, she was blessed to find that the answers to ending suffering were always within. Yoga teacher training granted her the opportunity for self-exploration, with the breath as the most valuable tool. Christy immersed herself in the practice of self-awareness and dedicated herself to her mat, where she found that nurturing the emotional body and strengthening the physical body was the key to connecting with the soul. She achieved her RYT-200 certification at Bodhi Seed Yoga in 2018, where she continued down a path of positive lifestyle change.
Christy earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work at age 21 and since then has worked in case management for Community Mental Health. She has a strong passion for working with those in need of healing. Her hobbies include writing, chakra and crystal meditations, spending time with her two cats, and creating new experiences with her loved ones.
Although she did not expect to teach, Christy’s experience inspired her to want to show others the way to that inner peace and connectedness. It was yoga that helped Christy to align with the truth, that we are all connected, and that “darkness cannot exist without light.” As an empath, teacher and friend, Christy desires to grow alongside you on your path to awakening.
Andrea Rose, RYT 200
Andrea Rose is a passionate yoga student and teacher who believes we are all here to learn from one another. She completed her RYT-200 certification under Christie Cairo, Director of Yoga Teacher Training at Bodhi Seed Yoga & Wellness Studio, and credits Christie with instilling in her a strong sense of yogic spirituality and a whole-self approach to wellness. Andrea’s goals as a yoga teacher are to make people feel more comfortable in their own skin, to inspire peace and strength, and to give back to the world by sharing the many gifts of yoga and meditation. In her classes, Andrea Rose brings creative asana sequencing mixed with a series of inspirational messages, with the aim to inspire her students both physically and spiritually.
Andrea describes her path toward teaching yoga as “a series of non-decisions”, events that fell into place with divine perfection. She began her yoga practice at home, enjoying the chance to move mindfully as in her past, with ballet and gymnastics. Inspired by this momentum, she took her practice to the studio, attending classes and finding a sense of community and spiritual connection there. Next, she attended a women’s retreat, where she was struck with the inspiration to pursue teacher training. Almost immediately after returning home, she took those first steps to pursue this new dream and has not looked back since!
Aside from teaching yoga, Andrea Rose is involved in many things, including marketing, freelance journalism, bird watching, photography, reading spiritual texts, journaling and spending time out in nature. She is one of four recipients of the 2018-19 Emerging Leaders Scholarship at The Cardoner Institute, led by Alan Haras, Director of the Hamsa Yoga Center. Andrea is excited for the opportunity to continue to learn and grow alongside you as both an individual and as a leader.
Kelsey Gronowski, CYT 500
Kelsey’s focus as a teacher is to explore the harmony between body, mind, and spirit. Yoga is so much more than just a physical practice. It is the combination of the physical body working in sync with breathwork and finding your Self. The root of her classes rises from Hatha, Vinyasa Flow, and Ashtanga and inspires students to make the practice their own. Students can expect a safe, creative space to practice and flourish physically, mentally, and spiritually in their own unique way.
Jordan Furest, RYT 200
Jordan’s journey began on this path when she began asking questions about her own mental health and way of living, which brought her to meditation. A year later, in the fall of 2016, as she was attending Grand Valley State University for her degree in photography, the asana practice of yoga came into her life. After her first class, her world changed. Her first teacher, Claire Crowley, was the first to inspire and encourage her to practice and pursue this Path.
She has been practicing ever since and completed her 200 hour yoga teacher training in 2018 under the guidance of Christie Cairo.
Jordan is currently enrolled in the International Institute of Yoga Therapy program and continuously expanding her knowledge of yoga philosophy, asana, meditation, and pranayama.
She continues to grow her curiosity for ways to bring the practices of yoga into the lives of others. For Jordan, the heart-to-heart connection allows us to find space for living in the present, slowing down, and coming back into harmony.
She is excited to practice with you!