Imagine Yoga Studio Teachers
Kristina Coco-Hackenjos is one of the wonderful teachers at Imagine Yoga Studio. Here is a bit more about her:
“I started practicing yoga as a form of therapy. Different doctors had been telling me to try yoga for many years (before I actually tried it) to combat the increasing severity of my anxiety/panic disorder and PTSD. I remember trying yoga at a huge gym/fitness facility and was so lost and confused. Fast forward a couple of years, I was working a corporate job and was quite unhappy. My mom gave me a gift certificate for this little studio in Tualatin and I started going there on my way home from work. It was absolutely amazing how much relief I experienced after just one class. I was completely in the moment and opening up my body and shutting down my monkey mind. This was huge for me. It is difficult to explain how it feels to live your life day-to-day in a constant state of worry and fear, however irrational. For the duration of those first few yoga classes, I felt free and at peace. The more I practiced, the more I was able to expand that freedom into my life off of the mat. This is still something that I work on. That’s one of the great things about yoga; you’re never done.
I decided to teach yoga for a couple of reasons. One was that I was feeling a deep void in the career/work aspect of my life. I wasn’t doing anything that I felt a deep connection to or found great meaning in. I wanted to do something with my life that meant something. Something that had an impact. This led me to realize the obvious second reason: I was not the only one who struggled with panic attacks…I could bring yoga and focus on helping other people find that peace and freedom that had such a profound impact on me and still does. So now as a teacher I have developed relationships and trust with people and so often hear of their struggles. But I also get to hear about their “big sigh of relief” as they settle into a more peaceful, centered state after practicing yoga. That is the best thing in the world; hearing about how much someone feels better or that they were able to shut their mind off. That is what I want to do forever. I want to create that kind of space for people to have these different experiences that allows them to sift through the crap and find a bit of themselves, a bit of peace, a bit of gratitude, a bit of inspiration. If I can spend my whole life using yoga to help make other people’s lives better, then I will have manifested meaning . . . and that’s a pretty darn good life.
Besides yoga, my life centers around my family. I have been married for almost 15 years and we have a 13-year-old son. I love animals. We have 2 1/2 giant dogs (one is a 10 week old pup but he’ll be big before we know it) Jack the Newfie, Rudy the Shepherd/Mastiff, and Dean the baby Boxer/Retriever. We like to have big and small adventures. We spend the summers playing on the river, SUPing, boating, wakeboarding, kayaking. We spend the rainy months reading, cooking, and surrounding ourselves with our very large extended family. We are also huge superhero geeks . . . attend ComiCon, watch all the shows and love the movies. Our house is often divided between DC and Marvel. Our arguments are so much more fun than politics.” Kristina Coco-Hackenjos
So in a nutshell: I love yoga, I love my family, and I love my life. If you’ve ever been to any of my classes, you know that we always start out with a moment of gratitude. Things aren’t always rainbows and butterflies, but if you’ve got gratitude then you’ve got the ticket to happiness. What you put out there will return to you. So give love and be grateful and it’ll all be good.
Calm on Sunday’s at 5pm
Calm Flow on Tuesday’s at 12pm
Flow on Monday’s at noon, Thursday’s at 9:30am and Saturday’s at 10:30am
Lori Forest is another one of the wonderful teachers at Imagine Yoga Studio. Find out more about her:
“What I love about yoga is its versatility. It meets you where you are at, whether you are in need for an invigorating vinyasa practice or a relaxing gentle or restorative practice. It allows one to access and enjoy the dynamic qualities we have as human beings to be strong, flexible, grounded and peaceful. Yoga helps to remind me of the divine qualities in myself and in others. I find this to be one of its most rewarding aspects. I love teaching yoga because I get to help others remember and access these joyful qualities within themselves. The classes I teach are based on the foundations I learned in my therapeutic yoga teacher training and influenced by the Viniyoga teachings of Gary Kraftsow and Amy Weintraub’s LifeForce yoga. I enjoy weaving energy techniques into my classes and employing various pranayama practices to raise energy and awareness. I am continually amazed at how powerful our breath is to help change our thoughts and feelings.
I have recently started practicing Aerial yoga and I love the freedom and playfulness the silk hammock provides. My favorite poses are aerial inversions because I feel strong but supported and enjoy spending time upside down.
I love to hike, camp, and backpack with my family and dogs. I enjoy bike rides with my family and watching the antics of my chickens. I can be a compulsive knitter. I have a strong dislike for most television, although I enjoy watching Game of Thrones with my husband, Myron” Lori Forest
Calm Flow on Thursday’s at 6:45pm
She also subs quite often
Ashley Lopez is one of the amazing teachers at Imagine Yoga Studio. Here’s a bit more about her:
How has the practice has impacted your life? Yoga has completely shaped my lifestyle. I enjoy a regular meditation practice, my diet is influenced by my interest in Ayurveda and how what I eat affects the world and environment I live in, I take my physical practice everywhere I go, and I am happy to say that although I dance professionally I’ve never yet been hindered by a serious injury. I feel my awareness and presence of mind has been developed to such an extent that I have healthier relationships, and I have several strategies for dealing with life’s stresses. Most importantly, it has taught me gratitude. I am so grateful for the presence of yoga in my life because it makes me enjoy my physical being, my career, my loved ones, and every day I’m lucky enough to experience simply being.
What do you love about teaching yoga? Teaching is simply one of the most rewarding ways that one can invest their time. Reaching out to others and helping them grow—physically, mentally, emotionally—is an absolute pleasure. I love to see students simply discover new things about their bodies in class and to watch their curiosity and delight grown into their own passion for their practice. I love that, for everyone, yoga has a purpose.
How would you describe your teaching style or the classes you teach? I enjoy two modes of teaching: 1 – I love athleticism and the beauty of the poses. I love the challenge of increasing one’s strength and flexibility. 2 – I love helping people rehabilitate their injuries. I’m an absolute anatomy nerd and I am passionate about helping others feel better and about teaching them about how the body works.
What’s your favorite yoga pose ? Well, visually, I think Natarajasana is one of the prettiest poses a human body can make. In my practice, though, my favorite pose to get into is Halasana. Go figure—one is the opposite of the other!
What else do you like to do besides yoga, hobbies etc? I plant things. I ride a Harley Davidson. I bellydance. I practice contortion. In another life, I was an opera singer!
I initially came to yoga on the recommendation of my voice teacher: because he believed it would help me learn better breath control for singing. I was unaware there were classes that I could take, so I purchased a few books and found myself falling over in my bedroom trying to work out the poses. At the time, I found myself also mildly obsessed with meditation and had books on Zen as well. This was 1998. In my third year of college I became a fitness instructor. I started with Spin and Kickboxing, but quickly found my way into yoga classes. I learned to teach a short sequence after cycling and pursued deeper teacher training. Lucky me, at the time in the Midwest, most teacher trainings were more like apprenticeships—where students were able to learn one-on-one with their teachers over a longer period of time. I developed great relationships with my teacher trainers because I had access to them for years. It was a wonderful way to learn to teach. It was only after I’d been teaching and practicing for several years that I finally did my first 200-hour teacher training program.
Calm Flow on Wednesday’s at 10:30am
Flow on Friday’s at 9:30am
Susana Laborde-Blaj is one of the incredible teachers at Imagine Yoga Studio. Here is a bit more about her:
“I love the way yoga brings people together. With different names, stories, ages, we all come to a place where it is ok to be exactly who we are, where the beauty will be found not in looking like someone else, but in discovering the sometimes hidden, always precious messages of life itself.
I have been passionate about this for a while and love it so much that I cannot help myself from sharing everything I learn with the students that chance or destiny have brought to my classes and workshops.
To watch the way they practice fills me with admiration and humbles me, I learn from them –and my other teachers, of course courage, presence, humor, camaraderie, compassion, humility, perseverance, endurance, simplicity, acceptance, beauty, enthusiasm.
My work is to learn to see them beyond my own insecurities and limitations, and I am lucky enough to work on that every single day.” Susana Laborde-Blaj
Alignment Flow on Monday’s, Wednesday’s & Friday’s at 7am and Thursday’s at 4:15pm
Calm on Monday’s & Wednesday’s at 5pm
Flow on Wednesday’s at 9am
Easter Live Music Flow
with Courtney Moss and Joel Miller
Sunday, March 27
Join us in celebrating Easter and welcoming Spring with a flow designed to help pacify kapha dosha! Expect a rooted class with lots of twisting and balancing. In this vinyasa flow class, we will mindfully move our bodies with the pace of our breath. Experiment with strength, balance and flexibility to inspire increased levels of freedom in your mind and body. Modifications and more advanced options are offered throughout the class. Some previous Yoga experience is suggested.
Joel Miller will provide thoughtful, mindful and relaxing soundscapes on acoustic guitar during the class.
*All other classes are cancelled on Easter Sunday*
with Courtney Moss
6 week Series from Jan 10-Feb 14
$100 for all 6 classes or $20 drop-in
This 6-week series will offer mamas-to-be a supportive and peaceful environment to practice yoga, connect with other mamas, and to prepare for childbirth. We will touch on breathing, meditation, alignment, pelvic floor strength, postpartum exercises, Ayurveda for pregnancy, and more. This is a wonderful way to deepen awareness in your body, share and discuss with other mamas, and to connect with your baby. No prior yoga experience necessary!