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Our Teaching Team

We are a team of dedicated yoga teachers who found our calling in teaching and sharing Gentle Yoga. From gentle, senior, chair and hatha yoga specialities, to somatics and meditation - each of us has gone through advanced training in our area of interest and expertise.

Mary Cavanaugh

Mary taught and practiced Gentle Yoga for over 40 years and studied with Indra Devi, the greatest female yoga master of the twentieth century. Mary had the heart for teaching to her peers - midlifers and then seniors and was a walking, talking testament to how yoga can serve one well - both physically and mentally - for years and years. Mary is the Creator of Chair Yoga and specialized in adapting classical yoga poses to people who have physical challenges, or those who just haven't exercised in awhile. At the age of 82 years old, she recorded two Gentle Yoga for Senior DVDs where she shares her breath of experience to teaching to this special audience.

Sherry Zak Morris

Sherry is a E-RYT Yoga Teacher and owner of the Yoga Vista Studio. Sherry specializes in Gentle, Senior and Chair Yoga and studied under the tutelage of octogenarian yoga teacher, Mary Cavanaugh. She came to yoga afters years of computer-related work stress and thousands of dollars in chiropractic bills and thus has a passion for teaching yoga to midlifers, seniors and anyone with physical limitations. She is the Co-Founder of YogaJP (Yoga Journey Productions) and CEO of, which produces health and wellness videos.

Justine Shelton

Justine Shelton is an E-RYT, Registered Yoga Teacher with the Yoga Alliance. She is a graduate at the 500 hour level of the American Viniyoga Institute (AVI) under the direction of Gary Kraftsow, and holds the distinction of AVI Certified Teacher. AVI ( is a leader in the emerging field of Yoga Therapy. Justine is a former Collegiate Basketball player and specializes in yoga for backs, hips, shoulders and joints and rehabilitation after injuries. Justine is the lead instructor in the Gentle Yoga for Healthy Joint DVD Set which includes the Healthy Low Back DVD and Healthy Hips and Knees DVD.

Paula Montalvo

Paula is a Registered Yoga Teacher and recently retired from a long career as a Family Counselor. She is pursuing her dream and passion for teaching Gentle and Chair Yoga to seniors and office workers in Southern California. In 2005, she completed her 200 hour training with master teacher Lanita Varshell at her Gentle Yoga studio in La Mesa. At the age of 79, Paula recorded two best-selling Gentle Chair Yoga DVDs where she shares her expertise in teaching to seniors of all levels.

James Knight

James is an Integrative Therapist and has practiced in the field of Healing Arts for over twenty years. He maintains a thriving private practice and runs events and workshops out of his office in San Diego, California. He is certified in Core Energetics, Hanna Somatic Education, massage therapy, and yoga/meditation instruction. He is the originator of Gentle Yoga through Somatic Exploration (GYSE) methodology and created the Gentle Yoga through Somatic Exploration DVD which is a comprehensive series of somatic movements for the entire body. For more information on James, visit

Jade Butler

Jade is a Registered Yoga Teacher and the the lead yoga instructor in the Take5Yoga Series. She was introduced to yoga after a back injury (lifting her two year old son into his car seat). Her calming manner and easy-to-follow instructions help make yoga accessible to everyone. "I wish to represent yoga with the greatest of integrity, guiding my students to continue the lineage of this ancient science. It is through this practice, we as a community, can experience unity of mind, body, & spirit."

Garry Alesio

Now 60 yrs old, Garry's life is a story of physical, financial and professional achievements. But as life has a way of changing our focus, the second half of Garry's life is dedicated to the practice of inspiring others to live a healthier, more balanced life. Garry's yoga teaching style is one of playfulness, calmness with a touch of daring. Daring us to challenge ourselves within the safe constraints of a balanced yoga practice - Garry recorded the Get Inspired Yoga - Yoga for Midlife DVD as a practice that we can do for the rest of our lives!

Julia Tanner

Julia holds a wealth of 10 years of Yoga teaching experience at the premier Yoga Retreat destinations around the world. She is a Certified Kripalu Yoga Teacher and Thai Yoga Massage Therapist with additional training in Tibetan Rites, Restorative, Meditation, Ashtanga, Partner, Iyengar, Kundalini, Anusara, Tantra, Wai Lana, Jivamukti, Nidra, Acro and Pre-Natal Yoga.

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