Taunton Yoga Instructors | Open Doors Yoga Studios 

Julie Atwood 

Nine years ago, while out in the neighborhood taking a walk, Julie’s neighbor invited her to take a yoga class. At that class, Julie “found” yoga, adding it into her routine of strength training and exercise classes. Having been a fitness instructor for over fifteen years and a triathlete, Julie found that yoga not only improved her flexibility and balance, but it also greatly reduced injury, changed her physique in a positive way and best of all, led to greater peace of mind. As the mom of two children, this pathway to balance and serenity has been invaluable. This past year, Julie earned her RYT 200 hour Yoga Teacher Certification , along with a Personal Trainer Certification. Her goal as a yoga teacher is to make yoga accessible and enjoyable to all those willing to give it a try. For those experienced students, her knowledge of proper alignment and her experience as a fitness instructor combine for a class that will allow those students to explore to their edge. She is thrilled to have the opportunity to teach at Open Doors.

 

Jill Barry

Jill found yoga 5 years ago after a health scare related to stress, and at the recommendation of a cardiologist. After experiencing the overall health benefits and realizing how important a regular yoga practice can be, she decided she wanted to be both a student, and teacher. She completed her 200 hour training with Erica Nunnally of the Bija Institute in Cumberland, Rhode Island and has continued her training in different modalities such as Yin, Yoga Nidra, Yoga for Children, and Yoga for Children with Autism and Special Needs. She is a second level reiki practitioner of the Usui Shiki Ryoho tradition, and often incorporates the soothing sounds of a chakra drum, gong, and singing bowls to her classes. Her goal is to make the practice comfortable and accessible to people just as they are, and is always thrilled to see people walk through the door and take well deserved time for themselves.

Anna Fransoza

As a yoga instructor, Anna does more than explain poses. With more than a decade of experience practicing asana and pranayama combined with lessons learned from a lifetime of chronic health issues caused by Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, she's obsessed with innovating new ways of supporting students of all abilities as they journey through their yoga practice. Anna’s classes are focused on finding balance between body and mind through compassion for one’s self, and celebrating the things our bodies can do, rather than focusing on what is currently out of reach. Anna completed her 200hr CYT through Open Doors Yoga Studios in 2018.

Meg Gilmartin

Meg is extremely energetic, fun, goofy, and kind. As a recent graduate from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, Meg received her BA in Psychology. In coming home she has really tried to focus her attention & drive into finding & doing things that “feed her soul”. In summer of 2014 she was introduced to the study of Reiki which helped her grandfather a great deal who suffered from ALS. Inspired by her grandfather & how much Reiki helped him, she became certified in the first two levels of Usui Reiki Healing with the hopes of eventually becoming a Reiki master in the third level. She’s been coming to Open doors off & on over the past several years, & found yoga as a great way to relieve her stress and anxiety. In coming to classes over the summer of 2014 at the East Bridgewater location, she heard about the upcoming teacher training program & knew it was meant to be. She completed the 200 hour, 3 and a half month intensive program in December 2014. She hopes to bring peace of mind to students in her class through yoga & reiki healing as it has helped her in her own personal experiences!

 

Alex Hammond 

I am a firm believer that Yoga is many things to many people. For me, yoga is physical and spiritual practice that enables me to live a happy and laughter filled life in our fast-paced and chaotic world. I have been practicing for 7 years and completed 200 hr. teacher training in December of 2017.  Yoga changed my life and brought balance and harmony back into my physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being. As a teacher I want to share the joy that yoga has brought to me with others. I like to teach a challenging but purposeful practice that allows you to find that peace within your own mind. Outside of yoga I’m an avid hiker, baker, seamstress and a loving cat mom!

 

Linda Hayden   

Linda began practicing yoga in 2003, as a healthy way to manage stress. She fell in love with how yoga works every part of the body, from the inside out. As she continued to explore the physical, mental and spiritual benefits of yoga, Linda experienced an improvement in her overall health. Her desire to become a better student, and her passion to share the benefits of yoga with others, inspired her to participate in the Open Doors 200 Hour Teacher Training Program. Linda leads a breath-focused, safe alignment-based class. She encourages students to honor where they are in their practice, and to journey on their own individual yogic paths, without expectation. When not instructing yoga, Linda has a dedicated career in protecting and assisting individuals with chronic mental health needs.

 

Kayla Marmaras

Growing up as a dancer, Kayla always found herself drawn to movement. Shortly after graduating high school her dance career came to an end and College while working full time were on the horizon. As years began to pass she grew to miss that movement & the release she found while dancing. In 2015 Kayla found Buti Yoga through her former dance instructor- (talk about full circle!). The practice truly re-lit a fire within her and gave her the movement she was longing for. Later that year, Kayla completed her BUTI yoga certification. Combining yoga with a healthy diet led her to an incredible weightless transformation. It helped her to create new goals while teaching her to never stop reaching for higher heights & bigger dreams. In 2017 Kayla completed her 200HR RYT in Vinyasa yoga amongst several other trainings. She hopes to encourage others to step outside of their comfort zone and explore the growth yoga has to offer!

Donna Melchionno

My love for yoga began over 15 years ago when I took a yoga class at the recommendation of a massage therapist. Nervous and not knowing what to expect I made it through that first class and I was immediately hooked and inspired. I knew yoga would always be a part of my life. Fast forward 15 years, I enrolled in the Open Doors 200-hour YTT program and graduated in 2018. As a Certified Yoga Teacher with Yoga Alliance I am excited for this new chapter. My classes are a moderate traditional Vinyasa/power style flow that is adaptable for all students focusing on breath to movement. As a certified Reiki II practitioner in Usui Reiki Healing I like to bring positive energy through hands on assist and the use of essential oils in my classes. I hope to see you on your mat soon. Namaste.

Nicole Panaggio

Nicole began her journey in yoga 3 years ago when she learned of its health benefits for depression and anxiety. After years of wanting to try yoga but feeling intimidated, she finally gave it a whirl and it has changed her life dramatically. She completed her 200 hour YTT through Open Doors Yoga Studios making her goal in teaching to give people the same benefits she got out of yoga. She believes in the mind-body connection through yoga. She doesn't take herself too seriously and allows herself to be real in her classes. Her classes are fun, enjoyable and she believes that laughter really is the best medicine (next to yoga of course!). So you can expect her to crack a couple jokes throughout the flow.

 

Rebecca Souza

I first tried yoga about 16 years ago, as a way to increase my exercise. I had no idea that yoga would have lead me to where I am today, both on and off my mat. As a way of diving deeper into my practice I decided to take a yoga teacher training through Maya Yoga. I then was blessed with the opportunity to teach Hatha Yoga at a few gyms and I also have taught prenatal community yoga. I have a special love for Yin Yoga and decided to deepen my understanding and become certified in this practice also. I truly believe that life should always be a balance of Yin and Yang practices. When I am not on my mat I enjoy spending time being active and outside with my dogs and family.

 

Marilva Wedge (Taunton and E Bridgewater Franchise Owner)

I can remember my first yoga class like it was yesterday.  My sister invited me to a Power Yoga class at an Open Doors studio and proceeded to place me in front of a heater and the hydrofogger.  I was hot, completely lost in the flow, but when class was over, I couldn't wait to go back.  From that very first yoga class, I knew I had found something I was missing.  I couldn't let go of the sensation of peace that I left with and carried with me. I hope to offer that same sense of peace to my community to both adults and children alike.

 

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