Meet The Instructors
Michelle has been practicing yoga since 2003 and teaching since 2006. She is an ERYT200 yoga instructor registered through Yoga Alliance and is Yoga 4 Cancer teacher certified. She is the Founder and Director of the Yoga and Cancer Program that offers free and low cost Yoga and Cancer classes on the Seacoast of NH and Southern Maine area. This program is supported by SATYA (Seacoast Area Teachers of Yoga in Action) a 501c(3) non-profit organization with a mission to increase access to therapeutic yoga for at-risk and vulnerable populations. Michelle is an active board member. Whether Michelle is teaching a strong vinyasa style yoga or a Yoga and Cancer class, she teaches with compassion and specific instruction that can lead her students to a feeling of exhilaration, peace and inner awareness.
Meredith completed her 200 hour training at the Yoga Life Institute of NH and the Yoga 4 Cancer Training with Tari Prinster. As an Oncology Social Worker at The Center for Cancer Care at Exeter Hospital, Meredith believes that caring for the whole person is essential to our health and well-being. Meredith has found yoga helpful during the difficult times in her life and believes that yoga has many tools to help support patients and their families as they navigate the world of cancer treatment and beyond. Meredith currently teaches to cancer survivors and their caregivers at YogaLife Institute in Exeter, New Hampshire. In her spare time she enjoys traveling, spending time on the lake with her family and friends, and enjoying the company of her dog, Jack, cat, Agave, and four chickens, Gertrude, Penny, Alex, and Clara.
Meredith teaches Yoga and Cancer on Mondays at 4:30p at YogaLife Institute in Exeter, NH.
Jonna Grenier. is a certified yoga instructor, registered as a 200 RYT through the National Yoga Alliance and is a certified Yoga 4 Cancer instructor.
Jonna first began practicing yoga as way to rehabilitate from breast cancer surgery, but quickly learned just how much more the practice has to offer and it became her passion. She became a yoga teacher in hopes of sharing the therapeutic gifts yoga offers for personal growth, transformation, tranquility and healing. As a cancer survivor, Jonna understands the many benefits yoga offers for cancer patients, survivors, their caregivers and anyone looking to find a sense of ease, well-being and peace. Jonna offers creatively sequenced yoga classes for all levels with an emphasis on body alignment, meditation and breath. Jonna is a compassionate and nurturing soul who is also a Master Reiki practitioner which she shares freely in her classes.
“Be the change you wish to see in the world” – Mahatma Gandhi
Jonna teaches Yoga and Cancer on Mondays at 4:30p at Live Free Yoga in Epping, NH.
Lana Vogestad is a 200 E-RYT and has completed her 500 hours of teacher training with Jimmy Barkan in Fort Lauderdale, FL. She has taught in Atlanta, The Netherlands and Iceland, where she lived for four years and returns to lead an annual workshop and retreat.
Lana's interest to teach yoga began soon after her father was diagnosed with kidney cancer in 2001. Her yoga studio, which had become a home away from home, started a cancer support network, providing yoga to those affected by cancer. Her father attended one of the fundraising events and having witnessed her father tear up from listening to testimonials about how yoga has helped people with cancer, she realized he would consider practicing yoga. She gave him private classes and it recharged him with newfound energy, strength and made him feel empowered. She was also able to pull her mother to the studio for much needed classes, and her mom would give a hug afterwards and be tremendously grateful. When we give ourselves time to focus on the breath and be present, we can find that yoga actually gives time, rather than takes time. It brings us back to our natural state of peace and love and helps to diminish anything that weighs us down.
Lana moved to the seacoast with her husband in 2014 to be closer to family and the sea. She is honored to lead the Yoga and Cancer classes in the sacred space at Yoga East in Kittery and be of service to this community that is very close to her heart.
Lana teaches Yoga and Cancer on Thursdays at 5:00p at Yoga East in Kittery, Maine.
Deana Aulisio Cavan
Deana took her first yoga class with Kimberly Dahlmann in a little cabin in Barrington, NH in 2000. As the years passed, her practice grew roots through consistency, perseverance, and the tried-and-true methods of the Ashtanga lineage. Her teachers would provide her great ability, humility, and the courage to become a teacher herself.
Admittedly, Deana's greatest spiritual teacher came into her life on April 27th, 2014 - her son, Everett Thomas. Over the course of ten months, it became clear the reason why she had practiced so diligently for the last 15 years – to prepare her to take care of a child with cancer and to move through the devastation of losing him. Yoga had taught her how to accept suffering with grace and strength and to let go of being in control. From this harrowing experience, Deana has decided to pursue teaching children and adults with cancer, their caregivers, and grievers the yoga, breathing, and meditation techniques that gratefully kept her heart wide open. She also continues to enjoy teaching the lovely students at Yoga East in Kittery, Maine.
Deana teaches Yoga and Cancer on Tuesdays at 5:00p at Village Yoga of the Kennebunks in Kennebunk, Maine.
Deb Genestreti, RYT200, has been practicing yoga since 1995. As a mother of three young children, she came to yoga to supplement her daily workouts in order to keep her body healthy. In addition to the physical benefits yoga provided, she also found her breath, a peaceful energy and a way to stay grounded in the present. 20 years later, in order to deepen her own practice, she joined Dana Lincoln’s Teacher Training program at Prasada Yoga Center in Hampton. Since then, she has been teaching in many different settings, but always with the belief that yoga, at any level, simply makes you feel better.
Deb joined the Yoga and Cancer community as a student when a dear friend was diagnosed with lung cancer. She experienced first hand how yoga helps both the patient and the caregiver with the complex issues that a cancer diagnosis brings with it. She is grateful to have the opportunity to expand her role and as a teacher, give back some of the love and support that she and her friend received during that very difficult time.
Deb lives in Rye with her two dogs, two cats, and favorite Scrabble partner, her husband, Steve.
Deb is available to substitute at various locations in the Yoga and Cancer Program.
Sherry Evans (RYT200) is a certified yoga teacher in the Classical tradition (YogaLife Instituteof NH) and has been teaching gentle, restorative and senior yoga at Gateway Taiji, Qigong and Yoga (Portsmouth, NH) since its inception in 2012. She has also taught at senior centers, nursing homes, recreation departments, for the YogaLife Institute and Ocean Spirit Yoga. In 2017 she became certified as a Yoga for Cancer (Y4C) teacher.
From an early age, Sherry watched untold people in her life suffer and ultimately die from cancer, most poignantly her Dad 15 years ago. In the past year, as several close friends were diagnosed she witnessed their journeys, as a yoga teacher and friend, which did not include death but did include all the other sufferings. Knowing the restorative and healing qualities of yoga, she was certain that a consistent yoga practice could help. As Sherry believes that life is an adventure, she also knows that not all adventures are wanted, including a cancer diagnosis. With humor, compassion and equality Sherry brings her sense of adventure and seven decades of wisdom to each class she teaches.
Advanced yoga studies include Restorative Yoga with Sudha Carolyn Lundeen and Jillian Pransky and Trauma Sensitive Yoga with Dave Emerson. In 2015 she completed the 25 hour ‘Yoga for Seniors Teacher Training’ at the Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health with Carol Krucoff and Kimberly Carson. She is also a certified coach in the ‘Matter of Balance’ program through the Southern Maine Agency on Aging.
Sherry teaches Yoga and Cancer on Mondays at 10:30a at Gateway Taiji, Qigong & Yoga Portsmouth, NH.
Sharon has been involved in the health and wellness industry for over 30 years and sharing yoga since 2005. Sharon started her career in Recreation Therapy working with spinal cord and brain injury patients. This led her to seek alternative therapies for her clients. Sharon is an ERYT-200 and RCYT registered yoga instructor through Yoga Alliance. She is also certified as a Yoga 4 Cancer instructor, a former ChildLight Yoga and Yoga 4 Classrooms Trainer. Based on the belief that the power of yoga helps relax one’s mind, body, and soul, she finds this to be a natural fit with the Yoga and Cancer Program. Sharon is passionate about her work with individuals to help them improve their quality of life and live it to the fullest. She is excited to be a part of the Yoga and Cancer team and enjoys sharing Yoga and Cancer classes with survivors, patients, and caregivers. She will be a Certified Reflexologist in the Fall 2016 . Sharon resides in South Berwick, ME with her husband and two children.
Sharon is available to sub Yoga and Cancer at YOGASMITH Dover, NH.
Yoga has been a mainstay of Kathy's life for a quarter of a century. Of that, teaching for over fifteen years has been her most fulfilling experience and greatest reward as she has compassionately shared the gift of yoga.
Kathy, an ERYT-500 YACEP, has extensive experience in all aspects of wellness modalities. With a reverence to and for the breath, she believes in the power of the breath as a means to anchor her students in their own strength, courage and receptivity to change. Developing a sense of self awareness as a means to offer balance to body, breath and mind is a hallmark of her classes.
The ultimate goal of each of Kathy's classes taught is an enhanced sense of wholeness. She views herself as a guide for her students as they move towards being the best of their own selves in the present moment.
Kathy presently teaches a melding of classical yogic traditions and wisdom at venues in the Seacoast of New Hampshire and Massachusetts. She is affiliated with the YogaLife Institute. In addition, she is certified in Reiki Level ll.
Kathy will be available to sub in the Yoga and Cancer program.
Suzanne is certified yoga instructor, having completed her 200-hour training at Prasada Yoga Center.
Suzanne attended the inaugural Yoga and Cancer class led by Michelle Couture in 2012 as a way to recover and heal from a cancer diagnosis. Through regular class attendance, she found healing on both physical and emotional levels that far exceeded her expectations. Her gratitude for the program led her to sponsor the Yoga and Cancer website and to eventually become a yoga instructor as a way to share the profound healing she experienced in the Yoga and Cancer Program.
Suzanne cultivates a welcoming and accessible environment for her students to experience a practice that she hopes results in a deepened sense of overall well-being.
Suzanne is available to substitute at various locations in the Yoga and Cancer Program.