Mandy Habener (Lead Trainer)
"Mandy is what yoga is all about. Mandy's delivery and equanimity in her teaching is perfect for the course and will definitely have people falling in love with the practice and wanting to follow in her footsteps! I would call Mandy a true "teacher" and have not met anyone before who has been so generous, sharing and forthcoming with their knowledge.
Her combination of passion, seriousness, logic and humour are really special. Nothing but the utmost respect and love for everything Mandy has to offer!"
Mandy is a self-confessed yoga nerd, her passion and love for the practice along with her willingness to share her personal insights and wisdom, shine through during our teacher trainings.
She first came to yoga as a practitioner in 2007 seeking life balance and improved flexibility. She soon found so much more as the practice began to reveal some deeper truths. Significant life changes followed including walking away from her comfortable yet unsatisfying life as a Consulting Engineer.
This created the space she desired to dive deeply into the practice and teachings of the ancient traditions of yoga. Several overseas immersions in Bali and India followed as Mandy begun to satisfy her deep curiosity and desire to discover and learn more.
Over the years Mandy has completed more than 1000hrs of formal training covering a range of different styles including Vinyasa, Hatha, Therapy and Yin. She's taught classes and workshops in several locations across Australia and Asia but now calls the Sunshine Coast in Australia home. Mandy holds E-RYT 500 and YACEP Certifications with Yoga Alliance.
She's been blessed to have many inspirational teachers along the way, each of them having greatly influenced the way she practices and teaches.
Planning and facilitating Yoga Teacher Trainings was a natural, logical progression in Mandy's evolution as a teacher and student. Her love of detail, learning, and sharing her knowledge and passions, all came together in one place. Mandy has a unique talent for making difficult yogic concepts easier to grasp and also makes the principles of yogic philosophy simple to understand and apply in every day life.
Mandy believes there is a yoga practice suitable for everyone. She views our yoga mats as the perfect training ground for life: always inviting the opportunity for self-enquiry, growth and transformation.
Her students are her greatest teachers and she is humbled and honoured for each and every opportunity she has to guide others on this path.
Helen Boniface (Lead Trainer)
Having first discovered a strong love of yoga during a challenging time in her own life, Helen became deeply inspired by both the physical benefits of regular yoga practice as well as the spiritual and emotional discovery that Pranayama, Meditation and Asana practice can deliver. She now passionately enjoys teaching with the aspiration to help others to balance body and mind through yoga, relaxation and meditation practice.
Helen completed her Level One training in Kerala, India and her Level Two Certification here in Australia. She enjoys teaching strong Power Flow classes for all levels, with the belief that yoga is for every-body - and that every 'being' can benefit immensely from this beautiful sacred practice. Whilst enjoying flow and movement, she is also drawn to the healing that restorative and meditation practices can offer.
Helen co-facilitates the Zenko retreats and feels most full up when she connecting with her students during immersions both in Australia and Worldwide. She is also very excited to be co-facilitating the Zenko Teacher Training next year and to be sharing this practice with so many more in the future.
Lauren Verona (Lead Trainer)
Lauren is a passionate business woman, yoga teacher and business mentor who has created and grown three thriving yoga communities across Australia. She is also the creator of The Love Tank - an online community that helps women to embrace self-love, seize opportunities and create the life they truly desire. Lauren’s energy and enthusiasm for life is contagious and she has a unique talent for helping others knock down the barriers that are holding them back.
Her insights, compassion for people of all abilities and a light sense of humour bring a unique blend of instruction and guidance that is refreshing and down to earth.
Lauren discovered yoga whilst she was running a full time PR company in Melbourne and within months of completing her teacher training was teaching full time. As a mother of two, she understands life’s challenges of finding time for ourselves and is passionate about assisting others with finding that balance.
"There is no precise description of what yoga is, for each of us it is ever changing and evolving, such as in life.
Yoga is about accepting yourself, getting to know yourself and learning to love that self.
Despite mental and physical barriers, disabilities and injuries, yoga is about practicing being in the presence of your self, rolling out your mat and accepting what comes. Even if this means resting in child’s pose or laying on your back, the benefits are reaped and the motivation filtrates into all areas of your life.
Yoga is as much to do with the breathing and letting go as it is to do with the stretching and strengthening of muscles."
Dr Sophie Toland (Anatomy)
Sophie brings to each of our Zenko Teacher Trainings her university level knowledge of practical based anatomy, human biomechanics and injuries.
Over six years Sophie studied to become a qualified Osteopath, through a double degree in a Bachelor of Health Science, and a Bachelor of Applied Science. Throughout her study she began to develop not only a deep understanding, but also a deep passion for the human body, the way it moved, and especially the way it could move more optimally to minimise an individuals pain and maximize their bodies potential.
Sophie is the facilitator for all anatomy based teacher training at Zenko Yoga, and has also tutored anatomy at a University level. Sophie is also a Vinyasa Flow teacher at Zenko Yoga and A Live Yogi.
Sophie has found both personally and professionally, yoga to be a gateway to better movement, and better overall health.
Sophie’s passion for teaching safety and applied anatomy to yoga teachers has stemmed from her own injuries through yoga. Additionally, through treating yoga teachers in practice, Sophie found there to be evident gaps in the current teachings and knowledge of asanas and anatomy for already qualified teachers. It is through this that Sophie’s enthusiasm for safe and thorough anatomy teaching has grown from.