Instructors

Debra Ballweg

I began my yoga and meditation practice over 20 years ago as a Social Studies teacher. The stresses and strains of teaching can be daunting. Yoga and meditation brought clarity to my teaching, so much so, that I began to share my practice with my students and fellow teachers. During this time I completed the 200 RYT through Breathe For Change (2016), an organization which focuses on teaching yoga and mindfulness to K-12 teachers in order to bring their benefits into the classroom. 

I found that after my retirement I wanted to continue teaching yoga; and so my journey continued. My passion is to share my love of yoga and its benefits with others as I have seen my life philosophy grow and change through the practice. The classes I teach are designed for all ages and body shapes. 

When not teaching I am spending time with my loving husband Sid, our two daughters and five grandchildren. I love to garden, read, and ride on the back of my husband’s motorcycle across the U.S., taking my travel yoga mat with me. I am a lifelong learner and so my personal journey continues through workshops, retreats and other professional development. 

I follow: Kathryn Bruni-Young & Jenny Rawlings (Alignment Yoga), Jillian Pransky (Restorative Yoga), Sherry Zak Morris (Chair Yoga) , Sarah Powers & Paul Grilley, Bernie Clark (Yin Yoga)

Certification: 200 RYT & 30 hour Yin Yoga

Avery Carpenter

Yoga has been a part of my life for more than 10 years. Through yoga I have found physical, mental and spiritual strength as well as a community of like-minded people to share my journey with.

I completed my 200-hour training earlier this year in Tamarindo, Costa Rica with Hari Om Yoga & Wellness. I have also received certifications as an Ayurvedic Health Coach and Reiki Practitioner as well. 

My classes focus on cultivating strength, peace and balance, both on and off the mat.

Outside the yoga and wellness world, my passions include traveling with my two dogs, writing and spending time in nature.



John Harmon

Currently what is happening in my class is… I’m simply trying to make yoga a fun, healthy event you can look forward to attending. Let’s keep it loose and light while getting athletic.

I teach the class I would want to take. I play a wide variety of music; and I play it a little louder than other classes maybe do.

My process is this – I create a playlist. I run to it multiple times. Then, try to improvise a flow based on the music and the physical prowess of the attendees. Come give it a whirl.




Joan Herzing

Joan started her yogic journey over a decade ago. What began as an hour of refuge from the stresses of career and family turned into a path of self-discovery, spirituality and education, including a 200-hour yoga teacher training at The Studio in Madison. By facilitating connections with body, self and others in a safe, loving container, Joan feels that modern yoga is a powerful healing agent in our world. In her classes, expect dynamic movement, breathwork, guided meditations, energy visualizations, and for flow classes, a physical challenge. Her goal is for students to leave feeling lighter and stronger physically, emotionally and spiritually.

Outside of yoga, you’ll find Joan writing music, playing various instruments and singing in two local bands, adventuring in the kitchen and traveling with her partner Gary and their two huge pups.




Nichole Hester

My journey into yoga has been one of fits and starts, of putting off trying, of dragging my feet, and ultimately one of transformation. In 2013 I finally found a practice that worked for me, teachers who spoke to me, and a place that inspired me. Within two years of starting this practice I enrolled in the 21st Century Yoga on the Mat teacher training and my yoga education has continued and deepened ever since.

My classes are much like my practice – steady, grounding, and strong. During our time together we will focus on our breath, move together, and better know and love ourselves.  My greatest hope is that you will leave our time together feeling that you have a better understanding of the person you currently are, the authentic person who exists within you, and a pathway between the two.




Lisa Joyce

I have been practicing yoga on and off for 20 years. I was a gym rat for many years, pushing my body to its limits. I developed plantar fasciitis in both feet, and slowly came back into my yoga practice. My mother inspired me to take a 200 hour training, which I completed in 2016 at Perennial. My first thought was that I just wanted to go deeper into philosophy, not to teach. I’m so happy I made the leap into teaching-I have come to realize that my path is to help people go deeper into their bodies. My practices are slow, grounding, and nurturing. I welcome people of all abilities with my playful style-life is already serious enough! have completed a 40 hour training in trauma sensitive yoga, and also am certified in accessible yoga. I truly believe yoga is for everybody, and it is my goal to make everyone feel welcome. I hope you will join me on Sundays at 9 am. Namaste.








Miranda Maloney

Miranda Maloney’s journey into yoga began with her quest to bring stillness and peace to America’s fast paced and stressful society. She also wanted to be a part of bringing new, healthy alternatives to the pharmaceutical driven Western-style medical philosophy. She became a Certified Ayurvedic Educator at Kanyakumari school of Ayurveda and then went on to become a Certified  Ayurvedic Practitioner at Bhavana School of Ayurveda and Yoga in La Grange, IL.

Ayurveda is a 5000-year-old healing science originating in India that seeks to treat and integrate body, mind, and spirit using a comprehensive holistic approach; especially by emphasizing diet, herbal remedies, yoga, meditation, breathing, and physical therapy. Miranda went on to produce a line of Ayurvedic herbal Chakra therapy topicals. Most recently, she has traveled to Rishikesh, India to earn her 200-hour yoga teacher certification at Rishikul Yogashala, where she studied both Hatha and Ashtanga styles of yoga. She now teaches Restorative Yoga and Yoga Nidra at Wishing Tree Studio and teaches yoga to children at Woodland Montessori School. 




Aleta McGee

I’ve been active my whole life but my yoga journey started about eight years ago as a way to work on flexibility and strength after having 3 kids in 4 years. I came for the exercise and I stay because I find connection to body, breath, spirit and mind.

My classes are a balance of strength building and flexibility with a focus on exploring body awareness. I teach upbeat and energetic classes where we explore how we move and experience our bodies. As we move together during asana I hope we grow in gratitude and that we can learn to delight in what it is to show up on our mats to move and breathe together. 

Off the mat you will find me curled up with a good book, tackling home projects, volunteering or spending time outdoors with my family.



Katie Monk

Katie is a spirited instructor who began practicing yoga as a way to ground her enthusiastic energy and to connect the body and mind.  After practicing for a decade, her curious nature led her to take a 200 hour training program.  Since then, Katie has taken several additional trainings including yin, restorative, yoga personal training, hands on assists, working with injuries and working with beginners.   Katie is certified through Yoga Alliance as a 200 hour E-RYT (1200+ teaching hours) and 500 hour RYT, as well as a Yoga Alliance Continuing Education Provider (YACEP). Katie’s teaching style is supportive, fun, and filled with lots of options so that every yogi has something to explore in each pose.  



Kelly Scholz

I discovered what yoga can do for the body after my first Ironman triathlon in 2007.  My body was battered and yoga helped me to recover physically. I found an added bonus – my mind and spirit were being healed as well.  I made it through two more Ironman tris and a handful of half Ironman tris with the help of yoga. I loved yoga so much that in 2015 I completed my 200 hour training with Alex Pfeiffer, 21st Century Yoga on the Mat.  I continue training with Alex, pursuing my 500 hour yoga certification and will be certified with Davidji’s, Master of Wisdom, Meditation Teacher Training in October 2019. I have found my passion! 

I retired from my nursing career in 2016 to teach yoga, and practice and teach Reiki full time.  I love how yoga, Reiki and meditation naturally flow together. These practices have taught me to slow down and be in the moment, to listen to my body and continually heal my spirit. My goal for my students, from beginners to advanced, is to find the same healing qualities in yoga that I have found.  When I’m off my mat I’m playing with my dogs, riding my bicycle or on a traveling adventure. I look forward to seeing you on your mat in one of my classes or workshops.



Susan Smedley

Susan Smedley came to yoga as a compliment to running in 2011.  Along the way, she noticed her breathing and flexibility improve – no small accomplishment as she had lost most of her right lung to cancer at the age of 32.  Over time, she began to notice the deeper, more emotional and spiritual benefits yoga was bringing to her life.

Susan received her 200 hour RYT in May, 2016, and has been teaching ever since. As a former crisis worker, and self -described karma yogi, she is increasingly curious about the ways yoga can be used to release held trauma in the body.  She is a certified Yoga for First Responders Instructor and Ambassador, and manages their volunteer program. 

During her classes, expect a compassionate and even paced offering with a playful spirit and evocative playlist. 


Jo Temte

My first encounter with yoga was through meeting a friend’s mother while she was in headstand.  This was the late 1970s and totally out of character for mothers of the time, at least in my neighborhood.  I later learned that Mardi was a yoga instructor!  She helped me think very differently about what our bodies and minds are capable of and launched me on my yoga journey.

I’m American Council on Exercise (ACE) certified and have been teaching group fitness for over 20 years – everything from kickboxing and weight training to yoga and Pilates.  While I loved all styles of movement, I kept gravitating back to yoga and all it has to offer mind, body and spirit.  In 2018, I completed my 200 hour yoga teacher training with Alex Pfeiffer at The Studio in Madison and also added a Mind Body Specialist certificate from ACE.

My special interests are hands, feet, pain-free movement, functional fitness and healthy aging. I also enjoy working with at-risk youth. Outside of the studio, you can find me in my garden or kayaking, paddle boarding or hiking with my family. I look forward to practicing with you!



Brittany Waltz

My relationship with yoga did not have the greatest start. During my very first class, the teacher only spoke Sanskrit, I didn’t know the poses, and I was nearly knocked over by a guy practicing headstand. Needless to say, I wasn’t inspired to show up to my mat each day. Fast-forward two years. My anxiety was at an all time high, and I was looking for a way to reconnect with myself. So I tried out a yoga class again. This time around a spark ignited. I walked away from class feeling grounded and alive. I was hooked.

During my class, I never want you to feel alienated or confused. I aim to hold space for you to shed the layers bogging you down. You can cry, you can laugh, and if you’re feeling the music, boogie on in your down dog. My class is your class. Take what you need. Leave what you don’t.

I completed my 200hr teacher training at the Studio in Madison through Alex Pfeiffer’s 21st Century Yoga on the Mat. I’m also Advanced Reiki certified. 


Leanne Widen

Leanne began her yoga journey at the age of 50, 7years after overcoming breast cancer. Through the practice of yoga, she was able to reconnect to the same body that had betrayed her. Using breath and movement, she found a dramatic impact in nurturing her body, mind and soul. She studied yoga and attended workshops in the Sacred Valley of Peru and Tulum, Mexico with Tara Nolan, of T Nolan Yoga. She received her 200 Hr RYT, through 21st Century Yoga on the Mat with Alex Pfeiffer at The Studio in Madison, WI. Leanne additionally received advanced certification through Yoga for Breast Cancer & Beyond with Camille Kittrell, founder of exclusiveYoga, in Waltham, MA. Leanne will guide you to explore breath and movement in a way that can help any body thrive. Leanne teaches with an upbeat, patient manner that anyone can follow. She challenges her students to embrace life both on and off the mat.



Jess Winkler

I discovered yoga at a young age seeking a physical and mental challenge. In the beginning my practice was aimed at gaining strength, balance, and flexibility. As my practice matured I became aware of the connected use of the breath to the mind. My yoga practice became a self-­‐study that has helped me attain a mental state of clarity and enjoyment—my meditation.

 Every time I step on my mat I experience new growth. My mat is a playground where I can fall, laugh, play, and let go. Having fun with yoga is important to me because it reminds me to be honest with myself, not rush the process, and not take life so seriously.

 The key to yoga is to breathe and enjoy the moment. I welcome students with an open mind and heart to take my playful and joyful class.




Lisa Zingale

I came to yoga after years of dealing with lumbar and back pain from scoliosis and arthritis.
Chiropractors and acupuncture helped a lot, but provided only temporary relief. I had almost no range of bend in my back and even walking would sometimes cause pain.

My husband swore yoga helped heal a herniated disc; so, I gave it a try and I was hooked after a few classes. It took two years of consistent, cautious practice to build up my back strength; but I am now a pain-free-believer in the healing powers of yoga. My experience informs my teaching and I strive to offer options and the use of props to help accommodate all bodies. If you are working through injuries or other issues, there can be a way for Yoga to work for you.





Ali Zuba

 Ali stumbled into yoga on the mat practice in 2012 after a nudge from a friend.  She instantly connected to the teacher’s flow, and made asana practice a weekly habit at her local gym.  As her practice matured, she was called to pursue a teacher training program in downtown Madison – 21st Century Yoga on the Mat. Learning that Yoga practice is much more than physical poses, Ali believes that daily practice – on and off the mat – allows you to tap into and build awareness of your authentic self.  She shares these joyous gifts with others through the art of teaching.  Come join her on the mat, and together we will practice finding our breath to build bridges for expansion, grounding and connection through the Flow of Life