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.

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!

image1_edited.jpg

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.

Jennifer Argo

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.

YOGA INSTRUCTOR RYT-200

I am a mother of five, paramedic and fitness enthusiasts. I began my yoga journey while living over seas on the island of Dominica in 2013 and decided to take my passion to the next level in 2016 completing my 200-RYT at Infinity Yoga in Atlanta. Being a very busy working mom, long distance runner and in a career field full of unpredictability and constant chaos; yoga changed my life. My desire is share the healing benefits of yoga to all my students. While challenging them physically, invite them into an environment that allows them to breathe while discovering and connecting to the best version of themselves.

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.

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.

Sweet-Tea-Yoga-logo.png
Sweet-Tea-Yoga-logo.png

Toni Padgett

YOGA INSTRUCTOR E-RYT YACEP, THAI MASSAGE THERAPIST

I have been practicing yoga for 15 years and have been fortunate to have been taught by many of the great yoga teachers of our time.  With those teachers I have experienced a wide variety of what yoga has to offer. One of the most important lessons is that the best teacher is always a student at heart.  There is always more to learn from a dedicated, and consistent yoga practice.  It’s not just a physical practice but has the ability to dramatically change your life in the most positive way. I invite you to experience the many benefits of yoga. 

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. 

image_6487327_edited.jpg

I have always had an exercise plan but I began to realize what was missing from my plan was stretching, breathing, and relaxing both physically and spiritually. I began to explore yoga and realized that it provided all that. Through continued involvement, my growth and enthusiasm became passion. This led to the natural step of completing a RYT 200 hour class led by Nick Combs of M3 Yoga.
I live in Peachtree City with my husband and three dogs. We have three grown children. I teach 6th grade math at Rising Starr Middle School.

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.

PXL_20210403_213810870_edited.jpg

Marsha Fraker

YOGA INSTRUCTOR RYT-200

IMG_9915.jpg

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.

Karen Luckman

YOGA INSTRUCTOR RYT-200

I was born and raised in the U.K. I have a Sports Science degree, I am certified in Bikram yoga, Yin Yoga and a fully comprehensive BASI Pilates teacher. I am a mother to 2 beautiful children Grace who is 9 and Billy who is 2 and a wife to my amazing husband Mark. Physical movement has always been a part of my life. I was a competitive gymnast growing up, which led me into performing around the world in contemporary circus, live stunt shows and film.

I have always had a love for movement, breath work and mindfulness. My yoga journey began early on, and I have experienced many styles over the years. In 2005 I was introduced to the Bikram method, this practice, being in a heated room, highlighted the importance of mindfulness and breath to find awareness and stillness of ones thoughts and feelings, this resonated strongly with me. In 2008 I completed my teacher training, and went on to co-own a studio on the Gold Coast in Australia, where I was living with my husband Mark. Grace was born in 2011 and shortly after this, Mark, who is a stuntman in the film industry had opportunity to grow his career world wide. We sold the studio and I focused on my family while traveling the world. During this transient time I would evolve my learning when the opportunity arose. I was able to study Yin Yoga and complete my BASI Pilates training during these times.

We have been based in Peachtree City since 2018. Billy was born in 2019, having a baby in my 40’s, I appreciated the benefits both Pilates and Yoga has on the mental, physical, emotional and spiritual self. After dedicating the last 9 years to being a full time mother, I am ready to branch out and re-connect with my love of teaching and share the bliss and peace created through the mind and body connection.

IMG_20200727_162324_562.jpeg
IMG_0502_edited.jpg

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. 

Meredith Webb

YOGA INSTRUCTOR E-RYT500, RCYT, RPYT, OHYA

Meredith has taught over 12,000 hours of yoga, 1,000 hours of meditation and is a nutritionist and wellness expert. She has taught yoga with the best professionals around the world for more than 17 years. Meredith is a yoga mentor for the US Yoga Federation and licensed at the highest level with Yoga Alliance and the Original Hot Yoga Association.

Her formal yoga trainings are in Bikram Yoga as taught by Bikram Choudry, Kundalini Yoga as taught by Yogi Bhajan, Kriya Yoga as initiated by Paramahamsa Prajnanananda, Vinyasa yoga as taught by various Swiss lineage teachers and Kid's Yoga as taught by Jane Bryan. Meredith's yoga homes are in Georgia, Florida, California, New York, Colorado, Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Spain. Her favorite SRF ashrams are in Malibu, CA and Homestead, FL

IMG_0534_edited.jpg
0B753A18-8EF3-4081-8A21-D405B5CE38A1_edi

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. 

20374653_1722377934511995_352474949074194915_n.jpg

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!