I began a regular yoga practice in 2014 following the death of my first husband. It was something that helped me process my grief and loss, as well as build physical and emotional strength. I loved the effect yoga had on my outlook and noticed my mood improved, the veil of fog and grief was lifted.
I did my 200 hour YTT with Chantel Gerfen in 2018 to deepen my knowledge and practice. I wanted to share my love of yoga with others and immediately began to teach classes at Transcend yoga studio. I completed my 300 hour YTT with Emily Perry 2021 making 500 YTT certified.
I love what yoga has done for me! It has changed how I approach the unexpected twists and turns life sends my way. I feel peace and contentment as I seek to stay present wherever I am, even through the hard stuff.
I love how strong my body feels as I practice yoga! It keeps getting better. Come practice with me, wherever you are in your journey- it's the perfect place to start.
Chantel Gerfen follows and shares a steady philosophy of how important the mind body connection is. She believes through a regular yoga and meditation practice this connection will deepen and transform your life. Chantel became a certified personal trainer 2005 and studied to achieve E-200 hour YA yoga certification in 2007. She spent her first 7 years of personal training assisting Physical Therapists in strengthening and rehabilitation programs while working at a Wasatch Physical Therapy in Ogden, Utah. Since then she has continued doing personal training and teaching yoga.
Chantel lives between the beautiful Wasatch and Wellsville mountain ranges in northern Utah with her husband Brett of 19 years and two beautiful children Dawsyn and Allee. In her spare time she enjoys spending time with her family, snowboarding, hiking, running, road biking, practicing yoga, healthy cooking and attempting to garden.
Elexis Santa Cruz
Elexis began her yoga journey four years ago in a search to find a physical outlet in her life and instead fell in love with a practice that brought a sense of wholeness to her being. Within a few months of a dedicated daily practice she knew she wanted to complete a yoga teaching certification and in the summer of 2017 accomplished that goal. Three years later in June of 2020, Elexis began an additional 300 hr certification which will conclude in the summer of 2021.
Yoga brings a sense of whole to mind, body, and spirit through a deep connection of movement, breath, and focus, drawing all the senses inward and allowing us to find kindness and gratitude for ourselves and our being. Elexis hopes to help her students find this connection in themselves.
When not on the mat Elexis spends her time finding a connection to nature through hiking and backpacking, taking advantage of the beautiful canyons that surround Cache Valley, or curled up with a book and a cup of tea. She is also a certified dog trainer and keeps a menagerie of critters at home including a German Shepherd, a cat, and a snake.
Follow me on Instagram
I have been practicing yoga for twenty years, beginning with classes taught by Dennise Gackstetter in the Mt. Logan Middle School gym. While the popularity of yoga has grown here in the valley and throughout the world, what drew me to my mat then has not changed from what calls me to practice today: a life lived in the present moment. Yoga doesn’t give us anything that we don’t already have, but it does help us discern the reality by which we want to guide our lives. For me, yoga isn’t just something I do for an hour a day. Yoga is the day, and the night, and every moment in between.
The yoga classes that I offer are steeped in the spiritual aspects of the practice. I have studied in India, taken many courses in yoga history and philosophy, and have earned my 500-hour certification. I teach a variety of classes, running from up-tempo strength classes, to restorative yoga, to traditional Yin Yoga classes, a unique practice that I have studied under Bernie Clark to learn. What I tell myself about all of my teaching is that I, as a teacher, need to get out of the way. This 3,000 year-old practice does the work. We just need to show up and attend.
In addition to teaching at Sol Speak, I help facilitate the Amrita Yoga Satsang with my husband, Michael Sowder. I am also a professor of English at Utah State University where I teach creative writing. My books can be found at jennifersinor.com and much of my most recent work centers on yoga.
I have been an avid yoga practitioner since I found the ashtanga practice on YouTube in 2013. At a time I needed structure and discipline in my life, ashtanga was there. I practiced on my own at home, watching video after video building up my strength and expanding my curiosity about this practice. I fell in love with the practice after taking my very first studio class! The intensity, instruction, heat and energy from this experience was magnetic.
In 2017 I took a 200hr YTT at Transcend Yoga Studio. I owe so much gratitude to all my teachers in person and online who have helped me actualize this reality. I am also a USU student pursuing a degree in Social Work. I hope to combine my passions of yoga, therapy and activism. I currently teach Every Body Vinyasa at Sol Speak Yoga. In this class every body is welcome, worthy and dynamic. This is a class that challenges us physically and mentally. The practice helps us improve how we practice asanas as well as foster a whole connection of mind, body and breath. When I am not practicing yoga I love to dance, bike, run, paint and read. I have 3 lovely cats with a wonderful partner and I would love to have you in class!
Megan has always loved being active, her parents joke she danced before she walked. After dancing through high school, Megan set a goal to stay fit, retain her strength and flexibility and yoga provided that capability. But soon she noticed a positive shift in her mental health due to yoga and now it’s a constant stability in her life. During her sophomore year of college in 2014, she took her first yoga class from Emily Perry and became hooked. After years of practicing, she finally had the opportunity to receive her 200-hour Yoga Alliance YTT certification from Emily in 2019. Megan has been teaching yoga classes for Crossfit Antietam for over a year and is excited to teach at Sol Speak and share her love for yoga and at the same time learn from students and other yoga instructors.
Megan is a native of Cache Valley and attended Utah State University graduating with a Bachelor's Degree in Social Work. Besides vibing on the mat, she is an avid snowboarder (AASI certified), Crossfitter, water sport lover, movie watcher, camper and concert goer.
Follow me on Instagram
Hello! I’m Melissa Burch. People in the fitness world call me Mel. I began practicing yoga here in Cache Valley as I was finishing my bachelors degree in Family, Consumer and Human Development. Soon after receiving my degree, I completed my month long 200 hr. RYT in Jackson Hole. My style of teaching reflects how I practiced and was taught there. I am now certified in Total Barre and enjoy teaching that as well!
I’m incredibly grateful for the students at Sol Speak and the friendships I’ve made there over the years. We have such an amazing community!
When I’m not teaching or filming for various fitness companies I enjoy playing with my two sweet girls and my amazing, supportive husband. I love traveling, the outdoors, gardening, cooking, vintage shopping and rearranging my house.
Can’t wait to practice with you!
Follow me on Instagram
Rachel Quillen Garner attended her first yoga class nearly 8 years ago and instantly fell in love with the calm and peace that came with practicing yoga. She has practiced many forms of yoga and believes that practicing yoga in any form can improve health in all forms, physical, mental and emotional. She believes that by sharing her love for yoga she can spread a lifestyle of gratitude and of love for yourself, others and the world around us.
She and her husband Zack recently started a family and have a beautiful 2 year daughter named Solara. She loves running, hiking drawing and creating music with her husband.
Follow me on Instagram
Saundra is a transplant from Northern California where she began her yogic journey with a pre-natal practice for strength and wellness. Over the course of many years and with more practice, a love for learning and experiencing deeper expressions of self-care, a yogic knowledge blossomed. Joining a wealth of trainings & teachings in the fields of yoga, anatomy, biomechanics & kinesiology, including a 200hr YTT with Pure Joy Yoga, California, the flower opened with the desire to share with others.
Saundra is a member of Yoga Alliance. She currently teaches Vinyasa flow, gentle, and chair yoga in various studios, as well as online. Her technique and style lend to Hatha Yoga with emphasis on breath work, proper alignment, movement and meditation. Her passion lies in the advancement of wellness and healthy lifestyle choices for people of all abilities and age. She encourages growth of the physical and spiritual self, the interconnectedness to each other, and to our universe.
Once off the mat (and feeling renewed and refreshed), time spent with family, gardening, reading, outdoor adventures and cooking up a storm are additional life loves!
Follow Saundra on Instagram
My name is Shaylee Wolford. I have grown up in Cache Valley and love spending time with my sweet husband and pup. I am a florist, yoga instructor, coffee addict, big foodie and love anything outside in the desert & mountains. I have been practicing yoga for about five years, and became a 200hr certified instructor two years ago. Since then I have taught restorative and flow classes at Transcend, as well as beginner yoga classes at USU. My yoga practice has helped me mentally, physically and emotionally & I love teaching/sharing that with others!
Follow me on Instagram
I’m Shayna. I‘m constantly missing the ocean, and hoping for sun. My babies and husband keep me going always. I love bodies and movement and yoga to R& music. I was lucky to have trained under the beautiful Emily Perry for all 500 hours of my teacher training. Yoga is my favorite for so many reasons, but especially because I’m constantly meeting so many inspiring people. Connection is so important to me, and yoga is a practice of that. Thankful to be growing and learning always, especially as a teacher in such a beautiful space.
Sophie Demiris first sought out yoga as a form of exercise, but she soon fell in love with the calm and centered feeling that it brought to every aspect of her life. After casually practicing for several years, she decided to dedicate herself to yoga and sought to become a yoga teacher. She completed her 200 hour certification in the Summer of 2020 and hopes to continue her yoga education soon.
Sophie’s passion is helping others to heal and grow through yoga, bringing them the same clarity that yoga brought her. She believes that a regular practice can improve your physical wellbeing and achieve a more grounded, healthy state of mind—both on and off the mat.
When not practicing yoga, Sophie enjoys photography; painting; playing poker; running; and spending time with her friends, boyfriend, and cat.
Follow me on Instagram
Yoga & Mindfulness found Sam in 1998, a year after she was diagnosed with chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia and Lyme’s disease. Through Restorative yoga, she began to heal and knew that these practices were the key to supporting others in finding their best selves, regardless of the conditions they might be diagnosed with. Sam began to train in yoga, mindfulness and massage therapy, to create a holistic program, eventually called TheraYoga, as a way to prescribe natural modalities from ancient traditions, to support each persons individual needs for their desired growth. She began to feel that there was so much fast paced yoga in Los Angeles and believed there must be a way to bring the gentler, therapeutic and trauma sensitive therapies, to the greater public. Now in her 23rd year of teaching, she specializes in Restorative & Engaged Yin yoga, Slow Flow & Alignment Foundations, Yoga for the Spine, Pelvic Floor health, Yoga for beginners and special conditions, self-massage through Yoga Tune Up ball rolling, trauma sensitive yoga as well as is a Certified Mindfulness teacher and Buddhist Insight instructor. Her passions include bringing deeper educational programs to other yoga teachers, weaving loving kindness practices into every class and private sessions, creating the space for all humans to fall in love with their beauty and perfection that is already present and inviting all yoga practices to meet the individual, not force the individual into the yoga. Her classes are filled with laughter and love, along with the orientation towards the foundations of alignment as our blueprint for optimal health and wellness.
Sam has been offering therapeutic yoga and myofascial release therapy to private clients for over a decade. If you are looking to rehabilitate injury, a diagnosed condition, incorporate yoga and mindfulness into prescriptions for healing pain & trauma, Sam’s loving and kind approach along with her knowledge of alignment foundations, biomechanics and connective tissue issues may just be the right fit for you. "Whether you are a beginner or and advanced yogi, through attention to breath, mindful awareness and love, we can attune to our changing needs, smile at those changes and step into our best selves.”
E-RYT500, C-IAYT, CMT, MFRT.