Bikram Yoga Classes that Make You Sweat

A Guide to Bikram Yoga Classes and Gear for Monterey

Tag: Bikram Yoga Instructors

Meet Our Instructors

Antonella Caruso: Director of Prema Shanti Yoga began her journey with yoga in her teens. At age 23, she began a holistic journey, finding her first yoga teacher. She soon found with consistent yoga practice relief from her health issues – back problems, poor energy and concentration, negative thoughts, weak immune system, poor eating habits.  

Later with the encouragement of a friend and yoga teacher she began sub-teaching classes. The experiences were transforming and so pursued yoga instructor training through the local YTA and Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health. Now practicing Yoga for 20 years, and teaching yoga for 15 years throughout West Chester to various populations.

A longtime journey to create space, cultivate a yoga community, serve and introduce students to a deep yoga practice and support from friends, students has naturally blossomed into prema shanti yoga.

Her passion and unique style has been cultivated by studying with great yoga masters: Shiva Rea, Rodney Yee, Yogi Amrit Desai, Bikram, David Swenson, Beryl Bender Birch, Duncan Wong, Senior  Kripalu Yoga Teachers, Alphonse Trapanese, Janice Clarefield, Judith Lasater, Jonas Westring. 

You are invited to experience authentic yoga practice and learning.  Her classes blend the dynamics of flow, integrating and interweaving movement, breath and postures. She invites you through gentle language to deepen your connection with body, mind and spirit. You are invited to play and explore movement, sound and breath…often exploring the full range of sensations and investigating as well as training the mind.  

Available Yoga Classes

Classes are structured with an intention for practice, centering, pranayama, warmups, postures, relaxation and meditation.  Classes are designed to be beneficial and serve the students individual needs.  

A comfortable, meditative environment is prepared; purposeful music is played, candles are lit, optimal room temperature maintained, inspirational quotes are read, students provided with individual attention. Yoga blankets, pillows, blocks, ties are available for students to explore body awareness and encourage ease in postures. Her joy lies in her relationship with students, integrating their individual paths on and off the yoga mat.   Contact her at antonella@premashantiyoga.com

She enjoys teaching students of all ages, body types, needs and levels.   She specializes in teaching yoga to pregnant women and enjoys the introducing and teaching the benefits of restorative yoga to everyone.  She particularly finds private yoga sessions a great tool for everyone to indulge in- working one on one with her students is very rewarding.

She is currently registered with the Yoga Alliance as an Experienced-Registered Yoga Teacher at the the 500 hour level-   ERYT-500.

To deepen her understanding and to serve her pregnant students with greater skill she is currently studying to become a DOULA under DONA.

Meet Our Instructors PT 4

Scott Shelton

I discovered Bikram yoga in 2006, after coming back from living in Europe for a couple of years. I didn’t initially go for the exercise; I thought it might help bring clarity and bring me out of the funk I was feeling after returning home to the States.

I learned to really love the practice and the new feeling of increased vitality and mind/body connection. It’s the taming of the monkey mind that has been the greatest benefit for me, and learning that the asanas (postures) are just the tip of the iceberg of the study and practice of yoga. It’s the greater self-realization within the unified whole that has become the focus of my practice and my website, cafenamaste.com. Since the fall 2009,

I’ve loved sharing my enthusiasm for this practice, and hopefully helping to inspire others on their own journey. I began my teaching in Boise, Idaho, and now enjoy being a part of the awesome community at Bikram Boulder!

Jordin Murphree

I have been practicing Bikram yoga since fall 2001. I attended Teacher Teaching in spring of 2002.

Health and wellness has been a great interest of mine since I was a teenager. I had always been involved in some sort of physical exercise, whether it was swimming, aerobics at the gym, trail running, or any other number of sports.

When I first started my yoga practice, I immediately recognized it as so much more than just another form of exercise. I was fascinated by how empowered and connected to myself I felt after each class, along with feeling that I had a complete physical workout.

I started arranging my life so that I could attend class. Within a few months, I knew I wanted to teach and share it with others since it had made such an impact on my life. I am truly grateful for it!

Brenda Smith

I have been practicing Bikram Yoga now for eight years. When I moved to Boulder from Milwaukee, I was in search of yoga, as I had been practicing there. I went to BYCI in Boulder and never needed to go anywhere else. The yoga has everything one needs to achieve ideal health and well being during pregnancy! I went to the teacher training in spring 2010 in Las Vegas. What an experience!

The Bikram yoga practice is one of endless benefits; to just face yourself in the mirror each time you practice helps guide you toward what you need. I knew that this was something I’d commit to for a lifetime, and teaching has solidified this for me. I am also a teacher of kiddos, so it has been fun to see the similarities and differences of teaching in the studio.

I commit to being an instructor because the yoga works, and I have witnessed firsthand how it can better one’s life, in all ways. I was a broken-down, injured runner when I began, and to this day, post-baby, I am running painlessly and with more enjoyment than ever, baby stroller and all!

I practiced Bikram yoga though most of my pregnancy. Bikram yoga is a true gift, and I encourage ALL people to integrate it into their lives.

Tim Smith

I got Bikram’s book and tape in 1988 and practiced in my living room for years. I started attending class at Radha’s studio in January of 2000. I attended Teacher Training in fall 2000 and have been teaching regularly since then.

Years of running had resulted in chronic knee pain. Bikram yoga got me out of pain, and that more than anything else and inspired me to want to teach and share what works for me.

Latest Bikram Yoga Class Instructors

Below you will find another series of yoga instructor bios and introductions. You can find information about other instructors here as well.

Amy Grace

I have been practicing about five years. I have been teaching about 2.5 years.

I was in constant pain for about two years from a very irritated sciatic nerve during pregnancy. When I went to my first class, I had no idea what I was getting into. What I learned was that my chronic pain was gone after just six classes.

I was inspired and amazed by every instructor, and I still am. I am not sure if any one thing made me want to teach, but I have never regretted becoming an instructor as I see amazing things happen to people in every single class. I still love teaching; every single class.

Jonny Mauk

I have been practicing Bikram yoga since 2002. I attended Teacher Training  in 2004. The teachers at the Bikram Yoga studios have inspired me since the beginning.

I saw that after a couple of short months of practicing, the chronic joint pain I had disappeared, and I felt like I understood myself so much better. I knew I was committed to this practice for a lifetime and becoming a teacher was the next step.

Lori Hansen

I am originally from Los Angeles but have lived all over the world. I started Bikram at age 52 at Radha’s studio (September 2008). I went to the spring Training in Palm Desert in 2009.

I have taught many forms of exercise and dance since I was 17 (39 years of teaching in all). I LOVE to teach and help people reach their optimal health. However, due to injuries and having to demonstrate when teaching ballet, aerobics, etc.,

I had stopped teaching for a short time. When I stepped into the Boulder studio I felt like I had “come home” and decided to go to training within two weeks. I love the yoga and I love to teach. Bikram is one of a kind…

Luna Sheroff

I took my first Bikram class at Radha’s studio in November 1999 and was hooked immediately. I graduated from Bikram’s spring 2001 Teacher Training in L.A.

I love Bikram yoga because it keeps a person so vital! Within my first few classes, I knew I had embarked on a lifetime transformative journey with this practice.

Of course I had to share it! Bikram quotes his guru, Bishnu Ghosh: “You’re never too old, never too bad, never too late, never too sick to start from scratch,” and has delivered to us an amazing series of yoga postures available to heal the masses, not just the elite. This is revolutionary, and I am proud to be a part of the movement! Long live Bikram yoga! 

Our Senior Bikram Instructors

In this article we continue with more introductions to give you the opportunity to meet our Yoga instructors.

Esak Garcia

I have been practicing Bikram Yoga since 2007. I have been a Bikram Yoga instructor since 2011.

I love the practice from the first deep breathing exercise in the first class I ever did, which was being taught by Bikram. I practiced for 7 years before making the plunge into teacher training.

I was living in Brazil and practicing on my own, which made my friends curious, so I began to informally teach them. That experience motivated me to go to teacher training and learn how to instruct properly.

Even then I never imagined that the practice and teaching would become such a huge part of my life as it has. I love practicing because it makes me feel amazing! I love teaching because people love practicing and I get to facilitate that for them.

JJ Garcia

I was born right here in Boulder Colorado. My first Bikram yoga class was in 2004 at the age of 8 from Bikram himself. My mom was attending the first-ever Bikram Yoga Teacher Training and I came at the end of training for a trip to Disneyland. Little did I know this was just the beginning of a lifelong adventure with Bikram yoga.

I remember one of my first classes with Bikram: I was just a boy and only did the floor series at the time, but when it came time for Camel pose, Bikram told me, “Don’t let go of your heels.” He proceeded to pick me up by my lower spine, (with one hand, palm up), and then he walked me around the room and said, “This is flying Camel!”

I practiced this yoga from time to time between the ages of 8 and 13, but during high school I was involved in too many sports to keep up a practice. By 19, I had suffered injuries to both knees as well as my left ankle. This limited me from working out much at all for the next two years.

After another attempt in swimming and basketball, I decided that the pain was too much, and I returned to my Bikram yoga practice in 2016. I have been practicing four or more times a week since then, including a time where I came more than 400 days in a row.

In fall 2017, I decided three days before training started to attend. I packed up my truck and drove to LA where I spent an amazing nine weeks at training.

I love teaching this yoga just like I loved coaching kids’ sports. It’s helped heal me from several injuries, and it truly brings out the best in everyone—which I love that I get to see every day.

Meet Our Bikram Yoga Instructors

Here you will have the opportunity to meet our family of yoga instructors at Bikramyogamonterey.

This information is very useful when it comes to scheduling appointments depending on your level of yoga experience. For example, Lara is our go-to instructor for beginners and pregnant women looking for a light yoga session.

Lara Carey

I grew up in the Finger Lakes region of western New York near Rochester. I moved to Boulder in 2002, when I started Bikram Yoga. I was 23 years old. 

At first, I lived near another Bikram yoga studio in Boulder, which is no longer in business. When I moved to North Boulder and heard that there was a Bikram studio nearby, I was delighted.

I took my first class and was hooked. I loved the view of the mountains from the studio, the way it’s tucked back off the beaten track, and the vibe in general.

I was certified as an instructor in November 2010 in San Diego, California. In teacher training, at the end of class when all 400 of us were lying in savasana, Bikram would occasionally sing. If you get the CD, you can hear his voice. Imagine listening to that after class with four hundred other people. It was awesome.

My practice of Bikram yoga keeps me in tune with myself and also in tune with my physical body. Being in tune helps me make sound decisions in life and in health—both big decisions and the small daily ones.

This clarity has made my life more meaningful and fulfilling. I became an instructor because of my desire to be a part of facilitating this amazing process for others.

Erin DaCosta

I’m originally from Connecticut but came to Boulder from New York City where I lived for nine years. I started practicing Bikram in Manhattan in December 2008 at the age of 29. I came to Boulder to pursue my Ph.D in Diplomatic History at CU and have been fortunate enough to mentor with Radha and teach as much as my academic schedule will allow!

My first interaction with Bikram was when I saw him speak in Manhattan and waited in the long line to have him sign my copy of his book. But that paled in comparison to my second interaction: getting up in front of the 430 Bikram yoga teacher trainees, visiting teachers, training staff, and Bikram himself to deliver the Half Moon pose dialogue. He smiled and said “very good, next!” which is precisely what you want to hear from him—no commentary, no criticism.

I started thinking about attending training about six months into my practice but wasn’t sure how I could make it happen financially and logistically. I finally made the decision to attend the 2011 spring Teacher Training  in L.A. and will never regret it. I cashed in my savings and investments, quit my job, and left my husband for nine of the best weeks of my life.

If you don’t see your yoga instructor here, you can find their bios in one of our other Meet the Instructors articles.

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