Balance is a very special yoga studio, and it is with great pride that we can share the many tools of yoga to enhance and enrich each one of us, both individually, as well as collectively. Balance is also a Wellness Center, providing a multitude of holistic services to support and encourage optimum health and wellness to all people.
Our mission is to continue to serve and provide you with a variety of services, workshops and continuing education to further explore this bountiful quest of self discovery. Offering massage therapy, ayurveda, acupuncture, reiki energy work, yoga therapy, vedic chanting, sound healing and yoga philosophy study.
“ Within the city of Brahman, which is the body, there is the heart,
and within the heart there is a little house. This house has the shape of a lotus,and within it dwells that which is to be sought after, inquired about, and realized. ”— Chandogya Upanishad 8:1:1,2
STACY PLASKE, E-RYT 500
Stacy is the founder and owner of Balance Yoga & Healing Arts Center in Huntington, NY since 2002. She is an E-RYT500 (Registered Yoga Teacher) having graduated from The Long Island Yoga Teacher’s Training Institute as well as the Healing Yoga Foundation, and has been teaching yoga and running Balance Yoga & Healing Arts Center for over a decade. Stacy has and continues to study the science of yoga extensively and she honors many Hatha Yoga traditions, particularly the Ashtanga Yoga Method as taught by the late Sri K. Pattabhi Jois. Stacy received Pattabhi Jois’ blessing to teach the Primary Series of Ashtanga Yoga in 2006 and in 2012 received her Level II Authorization from Sharath Jois to teach both the Primary & Intermediate Series of Ashtanga Yoga.
Stacy continues to study Ashtanga Yoga in Boulder, CO with Richard Freeman, Mary Taylor & staff at The Yoga Workshop. (www.yogaworkshop.com) There she practices daily Mysore Ashtanga Yoga & meditation, takes special intensives and classes with Richard Freeman, and studies Sanskrit & Vedic Chanting with one of their senior teachers. Stacy also continues to study with Sharath Jois in Mysore, India and is planning another visit this 2014 year. www.kpjayi.org
Through her continued studies of Yoga Sutra, Asana, Pranayama, & Vedic Chanting both in India and the U.S., Stacy is extremely dedicated to sharing the powerful and transformative tools of yoga with her students. She makes sure to meet and support each student where they are on their path. Stacy is a truly inspirational teacher whose love and application of yogic principles shines through in all aspects of her being. Stacy is also the co-creator of the Ultimate Energy Cleanse, a 7-day life changing whole body cleansing program.. She is a graduate of the Institute for Integrative Nutrition in New York City.
Ellen Cleary E-RYT is the manager of Balance Yoga and Healing. After a lifetime in the business world using yoga to quiet the mind after a rough day, she retired to take up residence at home base. It didn’t last long until she was asked to take on the management of Balance Yoga allowing the owner to travel and study a bit more. She now has the luxury of bringing together and enjoying both the business and the holistic world of yoga.
Ellen has been practicing yoga for most of her life. Her training and certification as a 200-hour Certified Yoga Teacher/Therapist was done with Jeff Migdow, M.D., one of the founders of the Kripalu Yoga Teacher Training as well as an MD and Holistic Practitioner. She has also trained with Rodney Yee, Gabriel Halpern, Nischala Joy Devi, Mukunda Stiles—Structural Yoga, T.K.V. Desikachar and Erich Schiffman who she continues to study with. She is a Past Board member of the New York Yoga Teachers’ Association.
Ellen specializes in working with beginner students; mature students; those with physical or mental limitations. She has additional certifications for working with women cancer survivors; those with Dystonia and Parkinson’s Disease, MS and myofacial displacement. She is passionate in her love for yoga and other healing modalities and in spreading that love to others knowing yoga is open and available to everyone no matter what. Thank you for the privilege.
In 1997 I completed the Residential Spiritual Lifestyle Program at The Kripalu Yoga Center and later that year worked on staff at the Omega Institute for Holistic Studies. I am a N.Y.S. Licensed Massage Therapist and Registered Yoga Instructor (E-RYT) for the last 15 years. I have teaching certifications in Kripalu, ISHTA and Ashtanga yoga schools and studied under Edward Clark of Tripsichore Yoga Theatre in both the U.S. and London. Having maintained a daily meditation practice for the last 18 years, it is emphasized within my teaching. I was trained by Nateshvar Ken Scott in the art of Contact Yoga/Yogassage and have studied massage/bodywork extensively throughout my travels in Thailand, India and China. I am the creator of Asian Fusion Bodywork® – a natural evolution of my experience.
I began practicing yoga in 1989 at Jivamukti Yoga Center in NYC with Sharon Gannon and David Life. I am forever grateful for their loving, stern guidance. Their teaching taught me the discipline required for the practice. My first training was with Sivananda Yoga lineage. I was then drawn backto thf vinyasa which lies in the Ashtanga Yoga practice taught by Sri K Pattabhi Jois. I am blessed to call Richard Freeman my teacher as his discipline, knowledge and humor has affected my teaching in more ways then I may know. I am grateful to have studied with his teacher Sri K Pattabhi Jois. It is with gratitude that I attempt to pass on what I have learned.
Katie Feldman, 500 ERYT, CYKF, RCYP, CYTT, created Spiraling Hearts Yoga Games&Activities to encourage children of all ages to have fun while learning yoga. Katie has an extensive background teaching yoga to children in a playful way, she has many certifications specializing in children’s yoga and is part of a children’s yoga teacher training program. Katie has been studying yoga since 2000 and her personal practice and love is Ashtanga yoga, she has had the opportunity to practice on weekend retreats with some of the great Ashtanga teachers and the great privilege to practice with Guru Sri K.Pattabhi Jois on two of his trips to NYC. Katie has two wonderful daughters that are extremely creative and talented. Katie loves spending time with family and friends and enjoys going back to Michigan where she is from, she is a dedicated teacher and loves teaching from the her heart to all ages.
I have been practicing yoga for over 17 years. My journey began at Yoga Zone with Alan Finger. I was immediately hooked to the connection of movement with the breath. I completed my ISHTA teacher training in 1999 with Alan Finger, Lisa and Charles Matkin at Yoga Zone in NYC. My primary practice is vinyasa- although over the years I have explored most other traditions, including Ashtanga, Iyengar, Kundalini and Yin yoga. I have so many favorites about yoga- but my most favorite is the human connection- the sense of community that comes from practicing in a studio like Balance, with like-minded people on their own parallel journey. Yoga has kept me on a path of self exploration and discovery. Yoga prepared me physically for the pregnancies and births of my two wonderful sons, ages 9 and 12. My devotion to the practice of yoga prepares me everyday for my roles as a wife, mother, sister, daughter and friend. To me, yoga is…breathing, smiling, laughing and loving.
Tom has been practicing yoga since 1998 and began teaching Yoga in 2003. He holds a 500 hour Yoga Teacher Certification and has spent extensive time studying and teaching at the Sivananda Yoga Ashram in Nassau, Bahamas. He has been a Massage Therapy instructor at the New York College of Health Professions in Syosset, NY since 2000, where he teaches Swedish, Thai and Medical Massage. He currently teaches Yoga privately and at various Yoga studios on Long Island.
Tom considers the individual needs of his students and bases his class on what each individual needs for their unique circumstances regarding their body posture, mind, energy, and injury and/or limitations. His class is easy enough for the beginner but also challenging enough for the advanced student. Tom empowers each student with the tools to make dramatic shifts within themselves. Through his clear and skilled instruction, students discover new depths within their hearts and new heights in their asana practices.
As a yoga practioner for over 13 years, Ami decided to share her experience and the great benefits of yoga with others through teaching. In 2012 she completed her 200-hour teacher training through YogaWorks. Ami has explored many types of yoga including Vinyasa Flow, Ashtanga, Iyengar, and Anusara. In addition to her YogaWorks teacher training, she has completed over 100 hours of Anusara training. Ami also holds a Masters degree in Education and a MBA in management.
Maryanne Cannon discovered yoga in search of a kinder, gentler way to care for her mind/body after the birth of her daughter in 2000. She was working as a Physical Therapist Assistant and Personal Trainer when she was introduced to Baron Baptiste Power Yoga. Maryanne began a lifelong study and practice of yoga philosophies implementing them into her life and work. After moving to New York in 2007 to raise her daughter she received her 200-hour certification through Suzanne Cardinal’s Into This World Teacher Training. Maryanne ran a small home studio for a diverse group of students for five years. After a year off to practice and study, Maryanne was invited to teach at Balance Yoga and Healing.
Maryanne creates a fun, safe and nurturing space for her students to explore their experience, play their edge and enjoy the practice. She encourages clients to work at their level of comfort with lots of permission to be true to themselves and their yoga practice. Yoga and Meditation are a passion and Maryanne continues to study her many mentors namely Richard Freeman, Dharma Mittra, Cyndi Lee and Pema Chodron, the lost goes on and on . . . . . .
Maryanne is a lifelong student eternally grateful for the many gifts she has experienced through her practice and teachings. She attends classes, trainings and workshops whenever possible.
Amy J. Cohen, MA E-RYT 200/RYT 500, CYKT, Speech Pathologist
Amy has been a yoga practitioner for over 15 years. As a full-time Pediatric Speech-Pathologist and Special Educator she wanted a way to bring her love of children and yoga together. YogaKids entered her life 8 years ago when she registered for the 4 day Foundations class. Not sure what her expectations were, by the end of the 3rd day she registered for the full YogaKids certification. Over 9 months, Amy worked on the Advanced Training (an intensive study of over 300 hours utilizing the YogaKids principles), and became a certified YogaKids Facilitator/Trainer (CYKT). The intensive study concluded with 8 days of training with YogaKids International Founder, Marsha Wenig in New Buffalo, Indiana.
In 2008 Amy continued her yoga studies at Om Sweet Om Yoga in Port Washington, NY and became a 200 Hour Yoga Alliance Teacher. She completed her 500 Hour Yoga Alliance registration in October 2013 with Cora Wen of Yoga Bloom and is working towards becoming a Yoga Therapist with Cora Wen of Yoga Bloom and become certified through the International Association of Yoga Therapists. Amy has done additional training with Erich Schiffman, Leslie Kaminoff, Leslie Howard, Gabriel Halpern and David Swenson and Shelly Washington. If it wasn’t for her local teachers Jeff Logan and Gail Grossman and Lisa Bondy this journey would not have been possible. Amy currently teaches YogaKids classes for children and special needs populations, teens as well as adult classes. She is also a Master Trainer for YogaKids International and offers the 4-Day Foundations Training, ½ day Trainings (Taste of YogaKids, Yogakids Grows Up, Tools for Schools), as well as a mentor for YogaKids Apprentices.
Yoga has changed my life! My mission is to bring yoga to as many people (both young and the young at heart) as possible….Just imagine!! Amy is so happy to be part of the family of teachers at Balance yoga. Her classes focus on the breath and alignment of the body while flowing through poses and guiding her students into what feels right for them at that moment. In addition to yoga Amy enjoys running, gardening, music and her cats.
Erica Settino is a certified, experienced, registered yoga teacher (E-RYT, CYT) with over ten years teaching experience. With her roots deep in Iyengar, Vinyasa, Kundalini and Bhakti yoga traditions, she works to blend the physical with the emotional and spiritual, creating a sacred connection to herself and with all of whom she meets.
She is blessed to count amongst her teachers, Sri Dharma Mittra, Sharon Gannon and David Life, Rodney Yee, Sara Ivanhoe, Cyndi Lee, founder of Om Yoga in NYC with whom Erica was fortunate enough to earn her 500 hour advanced teacher training certification, and most recently, Raghunath, whom she credits for opening her heart and soul to the infinite and divine grace of kirtan and Bhakti.
Also a passionate animal activist and vegan, in 2010 Erica founded the yoga-based, non-profit, humane education organization Karuna For Animals: Compassion In Action, Inc., whose members seek to promote compassion (karuna), peace (shanti) and loving-kindness (maitri) to animals of all species. It is their mission to raise awareness and funds for the rights of all animals. Through a dedicated practice of the science of yoga, community outreach, humane education, the promotion of an ethical vegan lifestyle, and fundraising events, they aim to cultivate the change they hope to see in the world. All funds raised are used to support their outreach and education programs, and events.
In 2011, Erica completed her MFA in Creative Writing and has since published her first children’s book, “I Am Everything and Everything Is Me,” which is part of a yogic, humane education curriculum that is offered at the studio.
For more information, please visit her website: www.karunaforanimals.com.
Ashley Graves & Gerred Tolson
Gerred Tolson and Ashley Graves, Owners of Whole Life 365 LLC., have been searching for a yoga center that has pure intentions for the students to continually learn, grow and develop their practice. WL365 LLC. is a health and wellness consulting company that partner with like minded businesses that offer healthy lifestyle options and utilize a holistic approach. Upon finding Balance yoga and healing arts they felt at home with the energy within the studio. After meeting with Stacey and Ellen they are excited to be part of the community as directors of the vinyasa yoga program.
Ashley Graves, Co-Owner of Whole Life 365 LLC, is a nationally accredited fitness consultant. She studied with Johnny Kest and accomplished his 200 Hour Teacher Training Program. She is a Reiki Master and is currently finishing her holistic health practitioner degree.She embraces change and is passionate about educating herself and her community toward healthier habits and the ability to understand oneself. She embraces everyday and is grateful for family, friends and the little things that we sometimes take for granted. Vinyasa is an expressive form of movement based on breath, movement and dristi. She articulates each movement in her flows by assisting in both her slow flow and powerful vinyasa classes. She incorporates meditative music as well as today’s hits. Within the darkness is light, a little pain or challenge once in a while lets you know you are alive. There must be a yin to every yang. Change in life’s decisions allows us to grow, develop and evolve in order to stay true to ourselves. We must look with in and confront our dark spaces to uncover our wisdom to whom we may become.
Gerred Tolson, Co-Owner of Whole Life 365 LLC, promotes “Lifestyle is a choice!” He believes in incorporating mindfulness throughout daily living in order to find peace amongst chaos. He appreciates yoga for the mind, body integration; and encourages daily progression towards a more empowered and fulfilling life. He lives a passionate and grateful lifestyle by living in the moment. The following mantra is part of his daily practice, “What are we truly capable of? Not only in the physical realm, but mentally, spiritually and emotionally. What he has found is that through commitment, discipline and persistence all things are possible. He leads a powerful vinyasa flow to challenge your current mental and physical limitation and assists through progressive postures to enable growth from within.