Who We Are

Sweet Tea Yoga has united some of the most dedicated and talented teachers in the Atlanta area. Every one of our teachers bring something unique to their practice and no two classes will be the same. We are honored to have them as a part of the Sweet Tea Yoga Family! 

 

Samaneh Kazemi

YOGA INSTRUCTOR RYT-200

I started my Yoga journey in 2010 after my second son’s birth. I am a lucky mother of two lovely boys of 11 and 13 years old.

I’ve been fortunate to be taught by some of the greatest yoga teachers.  Being influenced by my teachers and years of practice my passion for yoga increased significantly.

My interest in yoga, along with love of teaching, led me to become an instructor.

I have 200-hour international yoga teacher certificate on Cyclic yoga which is an art of sequencing yoga asanas or pranayama and mudra techniques to maximize its benefits and energize body and mind.

I have also received my 200-hour Satyananda yoga certificate and I have completed several trainings in anatomy, yoga therapy, Yama, Niyama, and I am currently taking advanced classes in yoga and meditation. 

I’m also a personal trainer and design sequences of each class based on anatomical information and the goal of each class.

It is important for me to make sure that my students perform each exercise correctly so they can benefit and enjoy what yoga classes can offer them.

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Dana Muggy

YOGA INSTRUCTOR RYT-200

I started yoga in a mommy and me class 10 years ago. I enjoyed taking classes for many years before starting my journey as an instructor. I received certifications through Yoga Fit and Holy Yoga. I’m also now a personal trainer and specialize in kids yoga and yoga with weights. I love watching my students truly experience yoga through mind body connection. I believe everyone can do yoga and that everyone needs the benefits from yoga!

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YOGA INSTRUCTOR RYT-200

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Jill Elkin

YOGA INSTRUCTOR ERYT-200, YACEP, Relax and Renew® Level 1 Instructor, iRest® Level 2 Teacher, Trauma-Informed

My earliest yoga memories are from around age 8. I remember doing sun salutations with my mom in our sun room. I remember the joy of reaching towards the sky to greet the day and the connection of sharing this with my mom. Yoga and meditation have been a part of my life through childhood and into adulthood. These incredible tools have given me the understanding and support to meet challenges, work through grief and loss, and ultimately find unchanging awareness from which to surf the changing aspects of life.

I completed my 200 hour teacher training in Therapeutic and Meditative Yoga with the Center for Integrative Yoga Studies in 2017, and am continuing my studies of yoga and meditation. I have had the privilege of learning from many wonderful teachers including Judith Hanson Lasater, Richard Miller, Stephanie Lopez, Marlysa Sullivan, Nick Atlas, Holle Black and Tra Kirpatrick. I hold certifications in restorative yoga, yoga nidra, and trauma-informed yoga.

My heartfelt intention is to offer each student the instructional support needed to explore their own physicality and connect with something deeper within themselves.

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Shannon Veres

YOGA INSTRUCTOR RYT-200

I am originally from Cleveland Ohio. My family and I moved south in 2018 for a job opportunity and a new adventure! I have always been a lover of fitness and began my teaching career ten years ago by obtaining certifications to teach various types of group fitness classes. It wasn’t until after I had my children a year later that I began my yoga journey. Having two small children I began to practice at home and eventually became certified to teach kids yoga. In 2016 I went through my 200hr training under Haris Lender in the style of classical Hatha yoga. My training has strong roots in Integral Yoga which tends to incorporate meditation and pranayama as equally as Hatha yoga. In addition to my personal yoga practice and teaching, the other loves of my life are my two wonderful children and my best friend, my husband. I have learned over the years that yoga is so much more than fitness, it has served me tremendously in my journey to self-acceptance. It is a lifelong learning process and I am so grateful to have found it for myself and to be able to share it with others.

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I am a mom, wife, artist and yoga instructor. My husband and I live in Palmetto, GA with our 2 beautiful children.

I found yoga over 20 years ago, when I was in my late twenties. I quickly discovered that yoga was the key to three missing components in my life: peace of mind, a deeper connection to my Self and a sense of balance (physical and mental).

My practice took a backseat, after getting married and having two children, as my husband and I focused on raising our family. In 2015, my yoga practice found her way back to me. My passion was quickly reignited and I decided to earn my 200-hour certification through the teachings and guidance of Swami Jaya Devi Bhagavati in Classical (Raja) Yoga at Kashi Atlanta and began instructing in June 2016.

I feel a deeper connection to myself and others when I'm actively pursuing my yoga and I absolutely love being able share those same benefits with others. To me, yoga is more than just a physical practice; it’s just as much, if not more, of the inner work that leads to transformation. In my class, the focus is on the breath as we move through a variety of postures. Yoga is for every BODY! Yoga is the linking of the body, the mind, the heart and the soul via the breath. Finally, yoga should be enjoyable, and I enjoy keeping a sense of humor with my practice, whether I’m alone or instructing a group of yogis. A little fun is always welcome!

My hope is that everyone who comes to my class will leave with an understanding that everything we are seeking outside of ourselves can only be found by looking within. That peace is always with you. Roll out your mat, find that stillness, connect to your breath and you’re practicing your yoga. Namaste.

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Renee Morris

YOGA INSTRUCTOR RYT-200

Renee started her yoga journey at age 40. She never had a regular exercise regime until she found yoga. After one class she was hooked. She started for the physical benefits but  has continued for the calm yoga brings her life. Renee’s current practice is Power Flow, Yin, and Yoga Nidra. She has a light-hearted and playful approach to her teaching so all students will feel comfortable in her classes. She uses an intelligent sequence to create strength, flexibility, and a calm mind. Renee obtained her RYT® 200 certification in 2016 from Grow Yoga School in Memphis, TN. Since then she has completed several trainings in anatomy, yoga philosophy, aerial yoga, yin & restorative yoga. Renee has also completed her Level 1 Yoga Nidra certification with Dr. Nick Atlas. When she is not teaching or practicing yoga, you can find Renee in the woods or on the water with her husband, two boys, and two dogs.

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Kathy Pabst

YOGA INSTRUCTOR TYT 500/THAI MASSAGE THERAPIST

I obtained my 200 hours through YogaFit and completed my 500 hours with Asheville Yoga Center.  I have been teaching yoga since 2008 and have over 1,000 hours of teaching.  I have been helping clients heal with yoga therapy for 3 years. I am also certified in Kids Yoga, Pilates mat work, Thai Bodywork and mindfulness training for kids. I am a wife of 17 years and mom of a 13 year old daughter and 11 year old son.  I love sharing the many gifts and blessings of yoga with others and look forward to doing so with all of the Sweet Tea Yoga Community.

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Tanya Dunne

YOGA INSTRUCTOR RYT-500

I have always loved physical activity, so I came to yoga for the physical challenge and to work through old sports injuries. I took my first yoga class in 2001, and I could tell that there was something worth pursuing, and so I went all in.

I see yoga as an opportunity to combine physical challenge, mindful attention, and spiritual direction. I believe yoga and meditation leads us to understand our power and gives us clarity, confidence, strength, and softens the hard edges. I teach to gift the same to my students.

I teach gentle, vinyasa, and power, with an emphasis on helping students find ease and flow in the movement through creative sequences and unique music selections.

I completed my 200-hour yoga teacher training at Asheville Yoga Center (AYC) in 2019, along with my 300-hour advanced studies at AYC in 2020. I also have a certification in aqua yoga from White Crow Yoga Studio. 

Flo Sheffield

YOGA INSTRUCTOR 200 E-RYT 

I found my way to yoga in 2006. I began like many do…in a gym. Yoga had ignited my fire for healing, personal growth and transformation. I initially started with a practice and teaching style rooted in Vinyasa.

The yoga practice helped me deal with trauma and start my healing journey, but that was just the beginning. I went on to complete my first Yoga training in 2009 and have continued to do training and workshops annually to keep studying and learning. Yoga is a lifestyle for myself and to grow I must always be willing to learn more! Currently my main focus and practice is Ashtanga Yoga. I have maintained a dedicated Ashtanga practice since February 2016 and I am grateful to Taylor Hunt; for encouraging me and supporting my practice. I continue to study & practice with Taylor and I am grateful for his guidance as I work through both my practice and my program of recovery.

My hope is to share yoga with those who are looking for healing & transformation on and off the mat; specifically recovery from addictions. The Ashtanga yoga method has been paramount in my own recovery process.

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Malinie Feeney

YOGA INSTRUCTOR 200RYT 

I believe Yoga is the relationship that is built between the body, the mind and the breath.

I came to my first yoga class here at Sweet Tea because my body was calling for something more than my regular gym sessions. After my first few classes I found so much more than just moving on your mat.  I found a new way of living.  Yoga inspires me to live each moment more mindfully.

I completed my 200 hour Multi-Style Yoga training with YogaRenew August 2020 and have since completed 50 hour Vinyāsa Yoga Training and 20 hour Mindfulness. I will always be a student of the practice and am deeply grateful for the loving wisdom my teachers have shared with me.

My Vinyāsa style classes combine strength and mobility work, I love to combine creative sequencing, a spirit of playfulness and a dose of inspiration to help you deepen your practice.  Expect to move, breath and sweat!

I live in Peachtree City and when I am not teaching yoga I am spending time with my family.

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Chandra Fowler

YOGA INSTRUCTOR RYT-500

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Chandra’s love for health and wellness is a lifelong passion. She began her yogic journey in 2006. Over time, she realized that yoga was an invaluable tool for dealing with both the physical and emotional stresses of life. As her yoga practice began to occupy a larger place in her life, she decided to become a certified teacher so she could share these tools with others. Chandra completed her 200 RYT certification at Peachtree Yoga Center in early 2018, her 300 YYT certification in December 2020, is a member of Yoga Alliance, Black Yoga Teacher’s Alliance , is a certified children’s yoga teacher and continues to expand her own yogic journey. Through the love of yoga and community, she started the Sanskrit Moon Yoga Center in 2019.
Chandra’s overall style of practice fosters the healing and strengthening of both body and mind through the use of restorative poses & vinyasa, as well as an overall focus on breath work, alignment, and safety. Her main desire is to bring yoga to EVERYBODY and to give her students the tools needed to maintain a healthy practice, all while having fun and honoring the moment.

Karen Martin

YOGA INSTRUCTOR RYT-200, PTA, PWR (Parkinson's Wellness Recovery) Therapist

I was introduced to yoga many years ago when I took it as a P.E. class in college. I had been a competitive athlete in high school and expected yoga to be relaxing but not particularly difficult. Then I met Swami Joan. Swami’s class challenged me physically, spiritually and mentally. Her favorite mantra (usually repeated while we were holding in a difficult pose) was: “It’s a shame to go through life half asleep”.

I have worked as a Physical Therapist Assistant for the last 20 years and raised two wonderful boys with my husband here in Peachtree City. I did not return to yoga until about 14 years ago, but that first class has always stuck with me. My yoga practice has seen me through various small injuries, and has been my drug of choice for rising to meet the inevitable trials and tribulations of life.

I decided to pursue my 200hr yoga certification in 2019 with Kashi Atlanta and have been teaching yoga at a high school and in a gym setting since then. Becoming a teacher has reminded me that growth does not stop at 50 (or at any age) and that we all need to shake ourselves fully awake from time to time.

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Kelly Smith 

YOGA INSTRUCTOR RYT-200

Kelly Smith views yoga as a physical, spiritual, and mental discipline that can heal and unify the self. She found yoga to be a constant among ever-changing environments, and what started as a hobby became a practice. Kelly completed her 200 hour All-levels Vinyasa certification in December 2020 with M3 Yoga, where she gained understanding of anatomy and cueing methodology. Her classes link breath with movement and focus on self-inquiry from beginning to end. Kelly lives in Peachtree City, Georgia with her husband and three kids, and enjoys spending her winters in St. Croix, USVI.

Jane Semaan

YOGA INSTRUCTOR RYT-500

Walking into my first LifePower yoga class in Rochester, Michigan back in 2012, I had some preconceived notions based on previous yoga experiences at other gyms and studios. This would be my “down day” from the rigorous weight and cardio classes I loved so much. Astonished, I found myself completely exhausted and fell asleep during savasana after my first class! Within weeks I discovered that this practice offered more physically than any other class or program I had done before, and my body had never felt better. After getting accustomed to the class flow, I began to notice more changes: I felt increasingly focused, calmer, and more centered. I was hooked, committing to more classes and realizing the profound physical and mental benefits I was getting. In 2016 I decided to complete the LifePower 200 yoga teacher training with the intent of taking this amazing practice into my own hands no matter where I lived. I was very fortunate for the opportunity to begin teaching classes at soon after I completed the training. My favorite aspect of this style of yoga is that there is always something new to learn, whether it is a new variation of an asana or discovering something new about myself, you’re never bored! My goal as a teacher is to help guide students into that wonderful little space that exists during a yoga practice, when you are breathing and moving, and the mind becomes clear. Oh, and I love how every inch of your body gets worked!

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Tami Lewis

YOGA INSTRUCTOR RYT-200

Tami Lewis has been teaching Vinyasa Yoga since 2021 and practicing since 2016. Tami was inspired by Jamiee Ratliff.  Tami graduated from 200 YTT in 2020 with M3yoga.  She currently has a certificate in Yin Powerment and is in further study for her 500 YTT.  Tami teaches a class that combines her love of soul music with attention to alignment and compassion. She has learned to find the joy in stillness. 

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Jazmin Bridges

YOGA INSTRUCTOR RYT200

To me Yoga is therapeutic and has helped me thorough out my life to come home to my body. My first teacher was my grandmother as I grew up on the west coast. It sparked my interest in a meditation practice which I continue to this day. 
I came back to the physical practice of yoga in 2018 when I enrolled in an Iyengar based teacher training. During my teacher training I realized I needed further healing which led me to find Ashtanga and recovery. 
During my first Ashtanga class I was challenged in way I hadn’t been on my mat. It became my mirror. My Ashtanga Yoga Teacher, Flo Sheffield paved the way for me to embrace recovery from Substance Abuse as well as find my own voice. 
I chose sobriety on March 7, 2019 and since that date I have committed myself to study Ashtanga yoga as a recovery tool on my path to healing. 
My approach to Ashtanga is from a physical and spiritual standpoint. Being a licensed Massage Therapist for the past 20 years; I tend to bring this knowledge into my teaching. I completed my Ashtanga Yoga Teacher training under Flo Sheffield in December of 2020. I have also traveled to study with Taylor Hunt since 2019.
I am excited to share this practice with all those willing to show up and do the work.

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Sarah Ruiz

YOGA INSTRUCTOR RYT-200, RPYT

Creator and owner of Sweet Tea Yoga, Sarah began her yoga journey in a prenatal yoga class in 2005. She soon fell in love with the practice of yoga, with the connection of breath and movement, and the myriad of benefits a consistent practice had to offer. Prenatal Yoga was the stepping stone to discovering a world of various forms of yoga, from Restorative to Yin and eventually Bikram and Ashtanga yoga. Sarah studied in the UK under Sally Parkes for her 85-hour Prenatal Yoga Certification and under Mila Burgess at Lifetime Fitness in Atlanta for her 200-hour teacher certification. She has also completed an advanced training in postnatal yoga. 

When she is not practicing yoga, she is teaching children's choir and traveling the world with her family. She is thrilled to share the practice of yoga with the South Atlanta community. 

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Our Story

After years of living in the New York City area, owner Sarah Ruiz moved to Peachtree City in 2014. A yoga enthusiast for twelve years, she struggled to find a local studio that offered a variety of classes, at that time specifically, a prenatal yoga class. Since then, it has been her dream to create a space for the community that will foster a sense of mindfulness and wellbeing. Most importantly, to help others find healing of the mind, body and spirit through their practice. Like having a glass of tea on the front porch, we welcome you home to Sweet Tea Yoga!