Our Teachers

Acenda Yoga was created to serve all. While we offer a full range of traditional classes, our Adaptive classes aim to bridge the mind-body gap for individuals living with disabilities. Adaptive Yoga provides the link to bring the disabled student back to the full experience of being present in their body. Our teachers are committed to helping every student build a meaningful practice and experience yoga as a way of life. We strive to create the experience of satsang, a place of truth, for all who enter into our sacred space.

Arabelle Romeo

Founder of Acenda Yoga, Arabelle dreams of a world where yoga is available to everyone. Having completed her 200 hour certification under the instruction of Mitchel Bleier and Tammy Lyons, she continued her training in Adaptive Yoga with Matthew Sanford in Minnetonka, Minnesota. She created Acenda to bridge the gap between ability and disability while providing affordable yoga to the community. Her own practice is based on her study of the works of BKS Iyengar, for whom she holds the utmost respect. She is dedicated to her daily study and practice of yoga and committed to providing a genuine experience for all of her students. A mother of four beautiful children, her life is an abundance of sources of gratitude.

Kelly Novak

Kelly Novak practices and teaches yoga with and love and devotion. In February 2008, she attended her first asana class as a last resort for stress relief, unsure of what to expect. That morning, she found more than she ever expected – a development of mental and physical strengths and a shift in her own energy. As a non-athlete, she felt relieved to find a way to step into her body in a fun, accepting environment.  Her vinyasa classes incorporate physical and philosophical challenges (as well as laughter) and are truly open to all.  She believes that how we navigate our yoga practice parallels our lives – finding strength, flexibility and balance. Kelly completed her first 200-hour yoga teacher training under Mitchel Bleier, and her second under Marni Task; she has done additional anatomy studies with Gina Schatz. She is eternally grateful to all those who are willing to practice yoga on and off the mat. 

Andrea D'Amore

With a Bachelor’s Degree in Health Sciences and Anatomy, Andrea has always been interested in physical fitness and exercise and like many, she first came to yoga for the physical benefits. However, it was not long after beginning to practice that she realized she had stumbled across something much deeper than a new way to workout. She first arrived on her mat weak in spirit and swimming in negative energy but as her practice grew, her perceptions changed and she experienced the transformational energy that a strong, consistent practice can provide. Before long she was absolutely hooked on what yoga could do for her not only physically but emotionally and spiritually and she has since been using yoga as the single most important tool to help her let go, connect to her higher Self and raise her vibration. She knew at some point the time would come when she would get to share this amazing gift with others and in 2013 she embarked on her first, of probably many, teacher trainings. Recently completing her 200 hour certification through Marni Task’s Jivasara Yoga School, she is very excited to begin her teaching journey and spread the healing energy of yoga to fellow yogis. With her strong background and experience in fitness and rehab her classes are alignment based, energetic and powerful. She encourages you to open your heart to everything that yoga has to offer and hopes to see you on your mat.

Ellen Arbeznik

 

Ellen's first introduction to yoga was at age 11, in the basement of her local synagogue. The practice didn't last, but the seed had been planted. Eleven years later, having moved to New York City, Ellen decided to try yoga out once again. She found the practice invigorating, challenging and refreshing. It was exactly the escape she needed from her hectic life in the city that never sleeps. 

Having moved to Cleveland, Ellen found a practice that really spoke to her in a class taught as a mixture of Jivamukti and Anusara yoga. Ellen completed her 200 hour yoga teacher certification with Marni Task in June of 2009 and has been teaching regularly since then. In addition to Marni, Ellen has studied with renowned teachers like Max Strom, Tiffany Frasier, Rowan Silverberg, Simon Park, and Dechen Thurman.

Ellen teaches a fast-paced, vinyasa flow class, where students are encouraged to challenge themselves and use their breath to realize and attain the unity of body, mind, and spirit. Modifications are offered. Previous experience for beginners is encouraged.

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Sarah Perkins

 

Sarah earned her 200-hour teacher certification in June 2009 through Marni Task’s Jivasara Yoga School.  That same year, she completed an Anusara Immersion with Sianna Sherman.  Her classes are vinyasa-based and are focused on breath, strength, flexibility, balance, motion, and stillness and are set to an eclectic mix of music. She’s inspired by her teachers (Marni Task, Laura Sutphen, Sianna Sherman, Amy Ippoliti, Elena Brower, Max Strom, Seane Corn, and Suzanne Sterling to name a few), family, friends, and loved ones. She continues to study and practice and hopes to share her insights along the way, encouraging others on their paths.  Sarah's purpose and mission statement for being a yoga teacher is to elevate consciousness by creating an environment for students to discover and access their creativity, strength, beauty, and wisdom so they can live to their fullest potential.

Liz Volpe

My introduction to yoga came in my sophomore year of high school as a way to bond with my mother and to deal with anxiety. We went to a class at our community recreation center. I was instantly mesmerized by the calm, thoughtful voice of my first yoga teacher, Mavis. Under her teaching, yoga transported me to a more peaceful place, helping me find some stillness and some hope. I still remember some of her teachings from the Yoga Sutras, one regarding a person having enough patience to happily count all the leaves of the trees in the forest. I also truly enjoyed the physical aspects and challenges of the practice. My relationship with yoga has grown over the years, and I am still very much a student of asana and meditation. Under the instruction of Marni Task, I completed a 200-hour teacher certification with an emphasis on the Juvamukti and Anusara traditions. I am a physical therapist in Cleveland and I strive to incorporate elements of yoga into my work. I am very excited to be sharing my practice at Acenda.

Ginny Walters

 

I feel I am a twenty-something in a mid-fifties body. My dominant feeling in life is delight. "Life is for constant exploration in ourselves, relationships, food, and travel".

I found yoga in 1992 after the birth of my third child. After years of feeling constrained my yoga practice left me feeling released. I cried. With all the early busy years of starting a family I felt lost to myself. Yoga opened the door to feelings that I had suppressed. It started me on a journey to let go and finally I ended on the doorstep of joy!

By 1997 I decided to be part of Teacher Training with Bhumi, a Kripalu-trained instructor who had recently returned home to Cleveland. It was a study of myself in postures on the mat, that moved to a study of myself and my world all the time. The stillness of time became a part of her life. More joy was found in the little moments that before seemed annoying. Life began to flow more smoothly. If I let go... if not forced into doing... all seemed to flow. I found parking spots for one!

Ashtanga became a part of my life in 1998 when I took my first class with the "Grateful Dead" instructor Larry Schultz from San Francisco. In a ballroom on the third floor of a Bexley estate in Columbus, 70 people practiced. I found joy and challenges in the practice. Since then many great teachers have instructed me through this journey. Martha Marcom, co-owner of Yoga on High in Columbus, was my first teacher. Martha started on this path many years earlier and I saw the Ashtanga group in Columbus as healthy and strong because of her. David Swenson and Tim Miller began almost yearly visits for workshops and teacher trainings and I attended all that I could. In Cleveland I photocopied a page of the Primary Series and began a Primary Series Flow class at 5 PM on Saturdays at any studio that was receptive. A small group practiced for years with the "cheat sheets" and the Cleveland Ashtanga community was born. When Pattabhi Jois visited the states for the last time in 2005 I practiced with the Master. Read more and find info about yoga retreats at my home in Costa Rica at http://ashtangacostarica.com/index.htm