Meet the Team
Amar has been practising and teaching Yoga in the tradition of BKS Iyengar for the last nine years and lives in Pune, India. Introduced to Yoga while still working as a successful business man, Amar experienced the profound effect of Yoga and gradually made teaching Yoga his full-time occupation.
He completed the Sivananda Yoga Teacher Training under Mani Raman and continued his learning at the Iyengar Institute in Pune under the guidance of BKS Iyengar, Prashant Iyengar, Gita Iyengar and Sunita Parthasarthy.
Amar now runs his own Yoga classes and works as a Yoga teacher at the Iyengar Institute in Pune. He also hosts Yoga retreats and runs workshops in India as well as internationally (Maldives, Thailand, England).
He has developed a speciality in posture alignment and correction, especially for issues associated with the nervous system, organic body, disorders in womens’ menstrual cycle and emotional and psychological ailments.
Arul, coming from a pharmaceutical background, moved to Yoga and completed his Teacher Training and Advanced Teacher Training in the Sivananda tradition. Convinced about the healing effects of Yoga therapy, he joined the Krihnamacharya Yoga Mandiram founded by Desikacharya, the son of legend Krishnamacharya, in Chennai, India.
He now is a senior teacher at KYM in Chennai, India, and conducts regular classes there. With his in-depth knowledge and many years of teaching experience, he travels around the globe to train teachers. Passionate about sustainable living, he still finds time for hiking in the Himalayas.
Dayananda is inspired by Swami Vivekananda’s teachings and has been sharing the ancient knowledge of Yoga for more than 20 years in and outside of India. Born and brought up in South India, Dayananda started practising asanas in school and has been dedicating his life full-time to the practice and teaching of yoga for the last 20 years, studying systematically with some of India’s traditional Yoga schools.
He obtained a diploma in Yoga and Naturopathy and a Bachelor and Master degree in Yoga (Bsc, Msc) from Swami Vivekananda Yoga Anusandana Smsthana (SVYASA) in Bangalore, India. He served as a faculty at the same institute for more than eight years, training thousands of yoga instructors.
Having studied from different Yogic traditions, including Sivananda, Astanga Vinyasa and Iyengar, Dayananda specialises in making Yoga accessible for everyone irrespective of their physical ability and health conditions, teaching classes in different Yoga styles in Bangalore and travelling internationally for workshops and trainings.
Gowshini is inspired by the life and teachings of Swami Chinmayananda and has been studying Vedanta philosophy at Chinmaya Mission Trichy, Tamilnadu/India, for the past 20 years. In 2007 and 2008, she completed her basic and advanced Yoga teacher training in the Sivananda Yoga tradition and has been teaching Yoga asanas and pranayama ever since.
Gowshini holds a degree in Health Care Management and a Master diploma in Naturopathy, Acupressure & Acupuncture and Reflexology.
She lives in Tamilnadu/South India and shares the Yogic teachings in her community. Gowshini specialises in making the Yogic and Vedantic teachings accessible to children, teens and parents in daily life. She teaches classes and workshops on the scriptures, Sanskrit, personality development and holistic living.
Joseph asked the deep questions about life from an early age. Decades ago he left his secure, high-paying job in order to know Life and its mysteries after meeting his master Guru Nitya Chaitanya Yati. The little spark of his seeking became a wild fire.
Walking with his master, he learned the importance of living a life of simplicity and remaining a student of life always. He doesn't believe in formal teachings of any subject. Rather, he gains knowledge and wisdom from communicating with people and nature.
To this date, he continuously travels throughout India from the Himalayas to Kanyakumari without a permanent address or a guaranteed place to spend the night. Wherever he goes, he conquers the hearts of fellow travellers and leaves them inspired and uplifted.
Kerstin was born and raised in Germany, but had a strong connection to India since childhood. She was first introduced to the practice of Yoga in India in 2007 and has been practising in the tradition of Swami Sivananda ever since.
After completing a degree in International Cultural and Business Studies, she left Germany for India in 2011 and completed her Sivananda Yoga teacher training in 2012. She has been teaching in India, Thailand and Germany since then. She specialises in making Yoga accessible for beginners who are looking for relaxation, inspiration and new perspectives in their busy lives.
Kerstin is also a professional certified coach for transformation and a practitioner of Nonviolent Communication (NVC). This way, she supports individuals and organisations in practically applying Yoga in daily-life situations off the mat - in the way they relate to themselves and others.
Mani Raman is a dynamic, inspirational teacher of Yoga and meditation from India. He took to the practice of Yoga at the age of 12 and has devoted himself full-time to yoga since 1996.
For two decades, Mani has been studying and teaching in the tradition of Swami Sivananda and Swami Vishnudevananda, guiding thousands of graduates in international Sivananda Yoga Teacher Training Courses and Advanced Teacher Training Courses in India, while travelling extensively worldwide for courses and workshops in North America and Asia. For more than 12 years, he directed yoga centres in New Delhi, Tokyo/Japan and Bangkok/Thailand.
Mani teaches Hatha Yoga and meditation, and gives inspiring discourses on Vedanta philosophy and the Bhagavad Gita. Holding a M.Sc. in Western Psychology, and having studied many systems of Eastern philosophy, meditation and Ayurveda, Mani responds to each student's individual condition with profound understanding and insight. Mani's unique strength lies in fusing the traditional yogic teachings with practical examples from modern life to allow his students to access the ancient messages with ease and incorporate them into their daily lives.
In 2016, he co-founded Yoga Vana, a growing Yoga and holistic learning community in India, and continues training teachers and guiding seekers in yoga teacher training courses, workshops and retreats in India, Europe, the Middle East and throughout Asia.
Contact Mani Raman at firstname.lastname@example.org. More information at www.maniraman.org.
Milan is a certified Yoga teacher and Ayurvedic massage therapist. Originally from West Bengal, India, Milan has been moving across India for the last 20 years for learning and teaching. He completed his basic Yoga teacher training in 2009 and advanced training in 2016 in the Sivananda tradition. Milan has worked as a massage therapist in the Seychelles and different Ayurveda Institutes and Yoga centres in India.
Speaking multiple Indian languages, Milan supports the Yoga Vana team in teaching, logistical and administrative matters.
Mugdha is a passionate advocate for environmental consciousness, holistic education and sustainable, healthy living. Growing up in Pune, India, she was introduced to the practice of Yoga at the age of six. In 2006, she completed her teacher training in the Sivananda Yoga tradition, and has been teaching since then.
Holding a degree in Visual Communication from NID Ahmedabad, India, she had various projects with Penguin, DK, IIC, IFCPAR, NMBA, Ernst&Young, NDTV and Anokhi as her clients. She now combines her many talents and interests by offering sustainable landscape design and running an art and design studio as well as a Yoga studio while holding a formal teaching assignment in an alternative school's farm school program. She is a mother of two and passionate about gardening and surfing.
Contact Mugdha and find more information at www.barefootstudio.in.
Vijay is a an Ayurvedic massage therapist certified since 2007, and has completed a Yoga certificate training in Thailand in 2008. For more than ten years, Vijay has been working as an Ayurvedic massage therapist in many authentic Ayurveda institutes and yoga centres in different locations in India and Russia.
From Andhra Pradesh, India, Vijay is interested in organic agriculture and permaculture. He supports the Yoga Vana team in teaching, logistical and administrative matters.