Teachers

                                                                                  

 

Rebecca Thurmond Trussell, E-RYT 500, YACEP

Rebecca has been naturally drawn to a “yoga” practice all her life, although she’d never heard of moving meditation. As a young adult, she used her morning runs to quiet her mind, to practice being present, and to pray. Her yoga practice began simply—with incorporating sun salutations into her morning routine. After practicing on her own and noting the physical benefits, she wanted to learn more. In 2009 she completed her first 200-hour teacher training. She completed pre-natal yoga teaching certification in 2010, a 300-hour teacher certification in 2013, a 100-hour Body of Light immersion in 2014, and in 2016 completed her second 200-hour training to be a certified Yogahour® instructor. She is currently a student in the Living School at the Center for Action and Contemplation, studying contemplative practices and faith from the Christian mystical tradition.

Taylor Trussell, PhD, E-RYT 200, RYT 500

 

After numerous trips to Asia to study yoga and meditation, Taylor received his first 200-hour teacher training from Himalaya Valley Yoga in India and then taught in Goa, India. After returning to the U.S., Taylor began studying with Noah Mazé, earning his second 200-hour certification in 2015, and his 300-hour certification in 2016. He has also been accepted into Noah’s emissary program. Taylor holds a Ph.D. in philosophy and an M.S. in somatic psychology where his work focuses on the psychotherapeutic benefits of yoga. Taylor’s classes combine a challenging physical practice with alignment principles to foster a deeper awareness and greater focus.

Erica Rascon, RYT 500

 

In a new marriage with a new house, new career venture, and new responsibilities, Erica didn’t have an effective way to manage stress. Her brain refused to shut off at night and her entire body felt tense. Yoga brought a sense of balance, empowerment, and rest. She began teaching others what she learned. Even as a novice teacher, she witnessed how yoga can be therapeutic and regenerative to students of all ages and ability levels. Knowing that she could serve her students even better with formal training, she received her 200-hr and 300-hr certification from Peachtree Yoga Center in Atlanta.

As a yoga teacher, Erica’s goal is to guide students on the journey back to themselves and their divine nature; help students reconnect with their bodies, their breath, and healthy sense of Self; and promote healing and empowerment for students of all ages, ability levels, genders, and ethnicities to foster a diverse and welcoming yoga community in Cumming.

Tiffany Stephens, RYT 200

Tiffany began practicing yoga on her own after a back injury in 2012. Her practice significantly deepened when her husband, Ryan, purchased a package of classes from Yoga Selah as a Christmas gift. “The rest is history,” as they say. Dedication to consistent yoga practice and continuous learning quickly commenced. She completed her 200-hour yoga training at Yoga Selah in 2017. In order to make space for love in each small moment, Tiffany uses her practice to attend to her mind, body, and spirit. She focuses on sequences that keep the body strong, lively, and free of tension. Tiffany is a clinically certified speech-language pathologist and loves spending time in nature with her husband and son.

Jana Rife, E-RYT 200, RYT 500, YACEP

Just like many of her students, Jana began practicing yoga to improve flexibility and relieve stress and anxiety. She combined that practice with her love of paddle boarding to help others experience yoga and stand-up paddleboarding’s incredible mind-body benefits, founding Hanalei SUP Yoga in 2015. She holds a 200-hour certification with Yoga Alliance, a SUP Yoga Certification from Lazy Dog Paddle Yoga in Key West, Florida, and has a World Paddle Association Level 1 Instructor Certification. Jana is also a Certified aromatherapist and often incorporates sensory experiences with essential oils in her mat-based yoga classes. She is currently continuing her education with a 300-hr certification at North Georgia Yoga Center.

Laura Joplin, RYT 200

Laura discovered the healing power of yoga practice in 2013, amidst a particularly difficult struggle with anxiety. She found that yoga helped her to make space around the feelings of tightness that come along with anxiety, opening body, mind, and heart. She started teaching yoga at the University of West Georgia in 2014, eventually branching out to teach sports teams and members of the community. She became a student of Swami Jaya Devi in December 2015, and received her 200-hour classical yoga certification from Kashi Atlanta in September 2016. She’s working to earn her bachelor’s degree in psychology, and will then go on to earn her master’s in social work. She hopes to integrate the healing practices of yoga and meditation into one-on-one therapy. Laura believes that yoga is our natural, blissful state, and that we engage in the practices to find our way back to that state. She has a deep passion for teaching, and her classes are all about making more space, physically and energetically. She believes that yoga is for everyone, and is passionate about the healing, transformative, and soul-igniting power of yoga practice.

Tammy Johnson, RYT 200

Tammy began practicing yoga 7 years ago as a way of finding some space in her life. The movements of asana were challenging yet mindful, and the practice became of place of peace where her mind could settle. Her to-do lists and mental chatter melted away on the mat. Tammy has been a physical therapist for 18 years, working with populations ranging from children to geriatric patients. Her yoga teaching—with its focus on alignment and specificity of muscular engagement—is a natural extension of her professional training.

Sam Giganti

Sam joins Yoga Selah with 15 years of experience in sports/clinical massage and ten years of experience teaching massage therapy in a clinical setting. Sam combines his expertise in massage with a love of anatomy to offer a hands-on, informative approach to teaching the human body. Through easy-to-understand descriptions and a focus on experiential learning, students get a thorough understanding of anatomy and biomechanics.

Pat Quackenbush, RYT 200

Pat began practicing yoga over 15 years ago. In searching for a new workout, she discovered yoga, and quickly found that it was not only transformative for her body, but for her mind and soul as well. Over her years of practice, she has experienced first-hand yoga’s healing effects on her own body and also credits her practice with easing her body’s aging process. Pat completed her 200-hour certification in 2018 and has a passion for helping other baby boomers age gracefully and maintain a high quality of life by increasing their mobility, flexibility, and mindfulness.