Emily RidoutEmily is a Teacher, Speaker and proud Mamma to her 3 children Sutton, Gabrielle and Evangeline. She is forever a student of yoga, pilates and meditation and most recently has become enchanted by essential oils and playing crystal and Tibetan song bowls. Emily Co-Founded 889 Yoga with her sister, Christine in early 2007. Together, Christine and Emily have enjoyed infusing lightness and happiness into the lives of many for over 9 years. With a passion to inspire happy, healthy, peaceful lives, their intention and purpose is to hold a space where people can explore their own divine essence in a deeply caring and accessible way. They are known for their generous spirits and more recently for their passion to spread the light through their unique meditation classes that give students tools to practice meditation daily, in an easy, light and simple way. Christine and Emily developed and continue to direct the 889 Living Yoga School, a 200-hour Yoga Alliance Certified Teacher Training Program that has featured faculty such as Elena Brower, Seane Corn, Eoin Finn and Sarah Powers. Christine and Emily are both graduates of the 889 Living Yoga School. Christine and Emily raise awareness in their local community through their Karma 889 initiative. They co-curate The 889 Shop, a collection of mindful and spirited accessories, beauty, clothing and organic cold-pressed juices appealing to the discerning yogi shopper both in –house and on 889yoga.com. The 889 Shop has collaborated and co-branded with the likes of lululemon, Holt Renfrew and The Mala Collective. Christine and Emily are also avid participants in the Pilates classes at 889 as they feel they are the perfect complement to a yoga practice. 889 Yoga is also in partnership with the Four Seasons Hotel Group, bringing even more yoga classes and lightness to the local Toronto community and to the savvy traveller. Emily holds an Honours Bachelor of Arts degree from Queen’s University with a major in Linguistic. She is fluent in both French and Spanish. Prior to starting 889, Emily worked as one of two Operations Managers for Butterfield & Robinson, an exclusive experiential biking and hiking company curating trips all over the world. Emily spent 6 months of every year with the company stationed in various European cities and towns. She first practiced yoga in 2003 in Barcelona. Christine and Emily have been featured in commercials for Amex and Blackberry and have most recently been speakers at the Global Entrepreneurs Organization Conference in Toronto. Christine and Emily also founded Yoga Unplugged, Toronto’s largest outdoor weekly yoga class experience, in partnership with lululemon. They co-taught meditation at Wanderlust Tremblant in 2015. 889 Yoga has been featured in Vogue, Toronto Life, The National Post, Globe and Mail, Forbes Travel, Elle Canada and The New York Times. They have just launched their first line of 889 Himalayan Loose Leaf Tea and have recently become Wellness Advocates for their favourite company (other than 889 of course!) doTERRA infusing the goodness of essential oils into their teaching.
Christine RussellHi, I am Christine, 889 co-founder, teacher, and devotee. 889 was a tiny seed, envisioned in 2006 by my sister Emily and I with the mission to inspire happy, healthy, peaceful lives. Proudly after many years with this business mission, this mission has become a part of me. So much so, I was inspired to become a student of the 889 Living Yoga Program to be able to serve our 889 community not only as an entrepreneur and leader, but also as a teacher. My life purpose is to love and be loved, and feel the connection that results while inspiring others to do the same. It is with deep love and reverence that I have come to teach yoga and mindfulness meditation classes at 889. I love teaching! Where did it all begin? I started practicing yoga in 2003 when I lived in California and stepped on to the mat to move my body and meet friends. The yogis I have met along my journey have led me to where I am today: to walk the life path of yoga, stand in the space of transformation, to follow my breath into the moment, to trust in my inner-knowing, to let go of perfection, to know my hips WILL release one day with practice, and to know, most importantly, that we are all one.
Kerry HemingKerry Heming is a certified Pilates Instructor and is the Community Director at 889. Kerry has high energy, and a bright spirit which she weaves into all she does at 889. Kerry's joyous personality especially shines through in her fun + uplifting Pilates classes. She is as much fun on the mat as she is in life! Kerry has always been passionate about health and wellness and from a young age her interest and enthusiasm for all things movement-based was apparent. Kerry's healthy, active lifestyle led her to obtain her Honours Degree in Outdoor Recreation at Brock University. Following her formal studies she spent several years working with children and adults in the Outdoor Education field in various leadership roles. In 2011 Kerry decided it was time to shake things up and moved to Toronto to pursue a new career in the fitness industry. She started her journey as a personal trainer and fitness coach before landing at 889 Yoga where she tapped into the wondrous world of Pilates. Kerry quickly became enthralled by this practice and the importance it plays in maintaining a healthy and balanced lifestyle. It was this recognition that drove Kerry to obtain her Pilates teacher-training certification from Body Harmonics. Through her practice, Kerry knows firsthand how effective Pilates can be at transforming the body’s shape and structure while establishing a powerful mind/body connection. With her safe approach to a controlled and effective practice, Kerry’s students are sure to share in her passion as she guides them towards becoming their most mobile selves. Assisting others in becoming the best version of themselves through Pilates is Kerry’s true passion. It is her mission to help you thrive. Her classes are focused, upbeat, challenging and fun – and you are guaranteed to feel the burn! As a compliment to her Pilates practice, Kerry is furthering her education through 889’s Living Yoga School and is currently studying to become a Nutritional Therapist.
889 Living Yoga Faculty
Matthew RemskiI began my process of self-inquiry in my late teens as a poet and novelist. It was a period of solitude: reclusive joys and sorrows. By 25 I was yearning for guidance, and some kind method or worldview that would allow me to really feel the interdependence with others and with life generally that I dreamt and wrote about. I joined a Buddhist community for four years: Tibetan tradition, two trips to India to study in Dharamsala and the monasteries in Karnataka. I was schooled in basic tenets of ethics and philosophy, and began daily meditation practice, using tools of inquiry to investigate my conscious and unconscious impulses, and the fabric of perception. But that was a lot of studying and sitting, and by 30 I realized that I had been neglecting my body. And I still hadn’t really come out of my introversion: I really wanted to help people, and I knew this wouldn’t happen in my meditation-pod. My first asana class was a revelation. I looked at my hand and burst into tears in the realization that I had a hand, that this hand was how I touched this world; that this hand was how I reached out. I was also buoyed up by the energy and breath and effort of the others in the room, sharing the vital intimacy of embodiment. I studied asana hard for five years, traveling a lot to work with my primary teacher Kim Schwartz (senior student of Ramanand Patel), and increasingly becoming interested in therapeutic applications, and especially Ayurveda. By 35 I was practicing 2 hours daily, had certified with Darren John Main, had become a Yoga Therapist through RMIYA, completed 800 hours of Ayurvedic studies through the American Institute of Vedic Studies, and had started seeing clients for Ayurvedic consultation. Then I met Hart deFouw and his lineage of jyotish (East Indian astrology), hasta samudrika (palmistry), and vastu shastra (spacial design), and have been working in the Vedic arts ever since. Buddhism showed me how to ground my mind existentially. Asana showed me how to inhabit my body more fully. Ayurveda showed me my ecological interdependence, and the Vedic arts have shown me the granular splendour of our interconnections: psyche, some, and mythos. As a therapist, I’ve seen close to 1000 clients. I’ve taught courses in Ayurveda similar to the course I will be offering at 889 to close to 400 students. I’ve never stopped writing. And it doesn’t make me lonely anymore.
889 Pilates Teachers
Chivon BielawskiThis Certified Pilates Instructor is madly in love with mobility. She brings her passion to the mat with unique sequences that keep muscles firing, joints moving, and blood flowing. Connect to stabilizing muscles for better alignment and a strong, functioning bod. Experience a different, powerful kind of flow. Able body. Able mind. Full heart.
Rebecca YakimowskiBorn in the prairies with adventures on the west coast under her belt, the east coast vibe, pace & culture claimed Rebecca’s heart. With a creative background & intrinsic love of movement she built her teaching base in TO with a following in the city’s uptown core focusing on Pilates, Yin, Restorative & Reiki. She is inspired by empowering students to redefine their own definition of personal strength & prioritizes classes that emphasize quality movement, grace, balance, support, depth, humor & community.
Taya GriffinTaya has been obsessed with all things baby since she was a young girl. She is in awe of the capability of a woman’s body as she moves through pregnancy, birth and the discovery of her unique mothering instincts. After leaving the corporate world in 2002, Taya received her Yoga Teacher Training Certificate in Cape Town, South Africa and the following year she received her Classical Pilates Certification in Hong Kong. She began teaching pre and postnatal yoga and pilates in Hong Kong and has not looked back. Furthering her education, in 2007, she graduated from the Ontario College of Homeopathic Medicine with a Professional Diploma in Health Sciences and Homeopathic Medicine and practiced as a Homeopath focusing on pregnancy, pediatrics, and women’s conditions. Realizing her passion lay in helping mothers reach their breastfeeding goals, in 2011 Taya graduated from the International Breastfeeding Centre / Newman Breastfeeding Clinic’s Lactation Medicine Program. During her education she achieved over 700 hours of clinical experience and worked as an intern directly under Dr. Jack Newman and Edith Kernerman. She has a private practice teaching prenatal breastfeeding classes and seeing clients postnatally in their homes and in hospital. Taya combines her love of the surrender of yoga and the power of pilates to her breastfeeding consultations. Taya is also mother to two little munchkins. Amelia Grace who is 4 years old and Mabel Mackenzie who is 1. Both love yoga and breastfeeding!
889 Yoga Teachers
Adam BoltonAdam leads classes designed to quiet the mind and inspire the body through music, movement, and breath. His goal is to provide a supportive and inclusive space - safe for students to awaken the body’s vitality, and to release stress patterns. To develop an intelligent, and satisfying yoga practice, Adam integrates conscious alignment and proper breathing techniques into engaging and challenging sequences. To support the constant evolution of realizing your potential, Adam’s classes are an opportunity to clear the slate - physically and emotionally to make space for the connection to spirit.
Bryonie Wise"Love is what we are born with. Fear is what we learn. The spiritual journey is the unlearning of fear and prejudices and the acceptance of love back in our hearts. Love is the essential reality and our purpose on earth. To be consciously aware of it, to experience love in ourselves and others, is the meaning of life. Meaning does not lie in things. Meaning lies in us." ~ Marianne Williamson Bryonie’s life is rooted in the belief that when we come from a place of love, anything is possible. Her teachers include Seane Corn, Pat Harada-Linfoot, Scott Davis, Diane Bruni and every star in the clear night sky. When not teaching yoga or writing her heart to the bone, she can be found frolicking in the sunshine with her camera and her dog, Winston, living her yoga.
Corrie TeahenCorrie Teahen began a journey of integrating her passion for body and movement through yoga in Vancouver, British Columbia. Her engagement with instructors at Semperviva Yoga brought Corrie to a place of self-discovery, spiritual growth, and reunion with one of the most sacred energies - breath. Corrie completed a 200-hour yoga certification with Semperviva and began to contribute her unique blend of teachings and synthesis of form to Vancouver’s yoga community. Corrie has studied with Yoga Works, where she uncovered her ardor for the Vinyasana flow practice, and has completed intensive training with Shiva Rea in Los Angeles, California. She also has studied with Tracey Sogharti and is a certified Yin Yoga teacher, incorporating the chakra theory and traditional Chinese medicine into her classes. Corrie has completed a Masters in Social Work at the University of Toronto, with a specialization in Mental Health and also works as a therapist.
Jaya Leigh BowenJaya Leigh is a deeply knowledgeable leader in a vivid range of healing arts and yoga, with a sincere following in the Toronto area. She has been facilitating classes, workshops, and sold out retreats for over a decade. Jaya Leigh brings a unique and welcome combination of humour, relatedness, and an intuitive understanding of individual needs. She weaves together powerful techniques acquired from her own training and depth of experience working with people from all ages and walks of life. She is a certified and natural Channel who offers Readings and healing sessions that clear old, often past life impressions keeping people stuck in patterns that are limiting their joy, flow and the true expression of their Soul’s purpose. Having studied with powerful medicine women, she is a recognized energy healer, Reiki master, and teacher to other practitioners and healers. Jaya Leigh teaches reiki, meditation, yoga nidra, and kundalini, yin, hatha, and restorative yoga. Her sincere desire is to empower people to remember their own Divinity, potential, and reason for being here so that we may all live a life of fulfillment, freedom, and joyful service. Her website is: www.jayaleighconnects.com. You can also follow her on Instagram at @jayaleighconnects
Jodi FischteinJodi is a mixed lineage yoga teacher, loving the many aspects of Ashtanga and Vinyasa yoga. She has also completed Thai Yoga massage training which complements her diverse skills as a teacher. In 2010, Jodi visited Kerala, India with world renowned teacher Shiva Rea, to immerse herself in local Ayurvedic traditions, as well as Kalarippayattu, an ancient South Indian martial art tradition. Jodi has near completion of 500 hours in Prana Flow Yoga which builds on her foundation 200 hour training that she received from Cynthia Funk at the Yoga Sanctuary in Toronto. Jodi is committed to raising money and awareness for projects she believes in. In June '11 she rode 200km for part the Ride to Conquer Cancer, to benefit Princess Margaret's research initiative. She also teaches karma yoga classes to raise money towards the Global Seva Challenge 2012, an Off the Mat, Into the World project. Jodi also received her BA in English Literature and Creative Writing at NYU. She lives in Toronto with her husband, four children and a pomeranian.
Justin HaleyJust in Haley is a graduate in Yoga Education and Yoga Therapy. Justin sees Yoga as a universal health care system that can create a harmonious balance in one’s life. Justin believes yoga to be a continuous therapy that allows us to deepen, strengthen and heal the inner relationship with ourselves, with other human beings and our planet at large. Although Justin has been a student of Yoga for nearly a decade it wasn’t until his own personal experience with cancer in 2007 did his relationship to the practice transform into a profoundly passionate connection. This experience led Justin to India where he studied over the course of a two year period, allowing him to really explore and deepen his bond to this ancient tradition. Seeing and experiencing the transformative qualities of the practice first hand, Justin now dedicates his life to helping others evolve, explore and discover the miraculous and exhilarating health benefits of practicing yoga. Justin always approaches his classes with joyful energy, humour, a skilled touch, and with a compassionate light-hearted approach. His steady pace, balanced sequencing, and attention to detail encourage students to move slowly, deeply, and mindfully. Justin creates an environment for his student’s that is warm, open and very nurturing. Justin offers immense gratitude to all his teachers that have shared their love and light so that he can bring passion, warmth and knowledge to every class: Mr. Vishwas Vasant Mandlik, Kate Woodworth, Yogi Amit, Seane Corn, Hali Schwartz, Jesse Enright, and, currently with Pat Harada Linfoot, Scott Davis and Alix Bemrose at Octopus Garden.
Lana SugarmanLana was introduced to yoga ten years ago and has been practicing ever since. A certified Jivamukti and Yin yoga teacher, she has been graced with the teachings of many inspiring yogis, including Sharon Gannon, David Life, Tracey Soghrati, and the wonderful women of Jivamukti Yoga Toronto. She has found yoga to be a wonderful tool in her life, opening her body, heart and mind to the world, and is eager to share the joy with others. Her classes are a mix of expressive asana, music, and philosophy. Also a performer, Lana merges her love for song and yoga through kirtan (call and response chanting). She leads workshops and kirtans with her harmonium spreading the magic of mantras!
Lisa MitchellLisa has been practicing yoga since 2002. Lisa completed her first yoga teacher training at the Esther Myers Yoga Studio. In 2012, Lisa completed a restorative yoga teacher training and an additional 300-hour training at the Octopus Garden Holistic Yoga Centre. As a mother of two daughters, Lisa credits yoga with helping her to practice acceptance and remain present and grounded most days! Lisa possesses a Master of Education from the University of Toronto in Adult Education, Community Development and Counseling Psychology. Her work has always focused on education, previously delivered in social services and public health. Lisa is awed by yoga’s capacity to transform and heal and offer strategies for living beyond the mat. Lisa has taught yoga to women recovering from substance abuse and women who have experience violence. She co-developed and teaches a therapeutic yoga group for women experiencing anxiety and depression at St. Michael’s hospital. Lisa is drawn to the psychological and emotional benefits of yoga. Whether teaching beginner or more advanced students, Lisa’s classes are welcoming and offer a meditative flavor. Metaphor, poetry, quotations and imagery are often woven in to enrich the learning experience.
Michelle KarkicMichelle attributes much of her desire to delve into her yoga practice to her years of ballet training. Having had to connect to the body at a very young age, it was refreshing to start a practice that was rooted in, not only, connecting to your body, but also your breath, mind and self. For Michelle, practicing yoga is all about connecting to oneself physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. Integrating her training from Kripalu, Vinyasa, Yin, Restorative and Yoga Therapy, Michelle works to create classes that inspire students to explore these aspects in an intuitive, relevant, invigorating and fun environment. “I believe that practicing yoga is all about connecting to yourself both physically and mentally. Yoga and your practice is constantly evolving along with all other aspects of your life. In the same way that it is sometimes essential to alter you pace of life due to circumstance beyond your control, for example when you get sick and must slow down, it is also important to adapt your yoga practice to meet these different paces. Sometimes a more active, vinyasa flow style is called for, and at other times we need a more restful, restorative practice. I believe that by connecting to your own rhythm and it’s cycles it is possible to achieve and maintain balance and health. I am filled with gratitude for the entire community of 889. This has been a place of tremendous, learning, healing and growth for me on many levels and I look forward to practicing with you!”
Nora BenianNora Benian, E-RYT 500, Yoga therapist, Reg. Prof. Counsellor, loves to share the wisdom found in the Science of Yoga. She is a seasoned instructor and teaches all levels from absolute beginner to advanced. Her classes are taught to a wide range of people with a wide range of challenges whether physical, emotional, psychological or spiritual. Nora’s knowledge of anatomy, physiology and Yoga Therapy guides students safely through yogic postures and practices. Her compassionate yet confident teaching style challenges students to release stress and tension, strengthen the body and mind, and learn to relax deeply. Each class is geared toward the needs of the group and modifications and adaptations are used when necessary making the yoga class experience positive for all. Through Yoga Therapy Nora prescribes Yogic practices along with counselling to help bring clients back into alignment, build strength, and clear energy channels to increase the life force. Nora inspires students with her enthusiasm for life and motivates them through self-development with ease.
Sara MoncreiffSara's yoga journey started while working at Rama Lotus Yoga Centre in Ottawa, Ontario. Her passion grew daily to the point where she turned down an acceptance to a master’s program in Positive Psychology to go to Bali and enroll in her first 200 hr yoga teacher training. This amazing, well rounded teacher training had many influences, Vinyasa most of all, but also covering things like, basic nutrition, NLP, Pranayama chanting, etc. Coming back to immediately start teaching, she was quickly pulled back to the east to continue to pursue becoming a Raw Food chef and to get her 500 hour Yoga teacher training. Sara's main teachers include Daniel Aaron, Gabrielle Whitewolf, Edward Clark, Alanna Kaivalya and Dave Stringer. My most treasured source of inspiration is by an unknown author: "Life isn't about finding yourself; it’s about creating yourself."
Sunny SmithSunny has always been delighted with the art of movement. A dancer from a young age, her passion for dance was stopped short after a serious car accident. After years of physical therapy and other forms of healing modalities she happened upon yoga. Yoga transformed Sunny's physical body and she knew this information must be shared with everyone. Sunny has over 1000 hours of teacher's training, and is a graduate from the Chakra Yoga school in Victoria and Downward Dog Yoga Centre. Sunny continues to study with master teachers Rachelle and Paul Gold, recently completed Tracey Sograhti's yin teachers training, and has completed Levels One and Two at the Toronto Thai Massage school. Sunny strives to create a welcoming environment where students feel safe, inspired and cherished. Guided through intuition and knowledge, Sunny's classes are filled with music, mediation and metta. Sunny encourages her student's to evolve all aspects of one's being, from body health to self realization. “Spiritual practices are the means. They keep this glowing light in the foreground of your mind and allow you to see by its rays.” - Gurumayi Chidvilasananda
Tara GoodTara believes that yoga is a practice of wholeness and love. In 2006, after 16 years of formal dance training and a degree in Psychology, Tara began her yoga practice, little knowing at the time that what would ensue would be a life-altering commitment and journey. Inspired by the philosophies and movements of Shiva Rae, Sara Powers, Seane Corn, and influenced by key experiences within various studios in the Toronto yoga community, Tara set out to attain her 200 hour teacher training certificate and has not looked back since. In practices Tara incorporates pranayama and ahimsa techniques, focusing on establishing an intuitive connection with every class in constant search of a flow in balance with the moment. She teaches vinyasa, hatha and yin classes and prioritizes fostering a safe atmosphere for students to venture inwards towards self-acceptance and sustained healing. Tara strives to practice with compassion, joy, and consideration. Her belief is that yoga can be anywhere at any time, and aspires that the balance and peace we discover on the mat blends into our everyday motions and being.
Tasha takes a holistic approach to yoga, stemming from her first training in Reiki healing in 1995. She has moved and inspired thousands of people through her teaching practices for over a decade. Students have been touched by Tasha’s heartfelt work and many are inspired to be the change in their lives. It was in Northern India and the Himalayas where she received a wealth of wisdom in the ancient vedic tradition. Tasha’s meditation training was acquired directly from the source in the India.
Tasha is a U of T graduate as a Religion Specialist, successfully completing studies in Buddhist Psychology and Mental Health. Tasha brings forth a playful and experienced presence in her yoga classes. She is highly intuitive, empathetic and a compassionate and gifted healer.
Several years ago, Tiffany followed her hearts desire and joined a sailing adventure aboard the tall ship, HM Bark Endeavour, sailing from Australia around Cape Horn to England. She spent the next 4 years aboard teaching hundreds of people how to sail as a "roughy-toughy sailor". Tiffany eventually returned to Canada, intending to return to her career in the film industry, but soon realized that her heart sincerely missed the joy and delight that she felt while teaching others. An avid yogi, Tiffany had an epiphany during savasana - that she could teach what she was passionate
about – Yoga.
Tiffany is a graduate of the Jivamukti Yoga 300-Hour Teacher Training with David Life and Sharon Gannon, creators of Jivamukti Yoga. This challenging, flowing style, richly entrenched in yoga philosophy, permeates all of her teaching. Tiffany is a naturally creative person who, through graceful asana sequences and the integration of words, music and philosophy into her yoga classes creates a calming, yet challenging environment for all levels of students.
Tiffany is grateful to her yoga practice both on & off the mat which has helped her over the years to grow from her own challenges. She is currently applying to become a professional Art Therapist because she is passionate about integrating all of her yogic, therapeutic & artistic skills to assist those struggling in the community. As well as continuing to further her yoga education through on-going yoga training, Tiffany also supports parents-to-be as a Birth Doula.
During her "me time" Tiffany enjoys photography, sailing, drawing, cooking
yummy food, writing, walking her dog and many other soul nourishing activities.