Instructors

James Tennant

was exposed to yoga in 1996 through his first spiritual mentor Jeri Lucas, who continues to inspire him today. With a growing love for the practice, James participated in the 2001 Ana Forest teacher training. In 2003 he traveled to Kiev, Ukraine for a four-month intensive training in Universal Freestyle Yoga with Andrey Lappa. After a couple years of teaching and studying in Chicago, he took an 8-month sabbatical to study with the beloved Dharma Mittra in New York, NY. His interest in Ayurveda then took him to Albuquerque, NM. There he studied Ayurvedic Medicine at the Ayurvedic Institute with the renowned Dr. Vasant Lad, M.A. Sc. James is also an ordained reverend through Ron Brown Grayson, PhD in Universal Studies, co-founder of Source Legacy.

Jim Bennitt

a former wrestler, massage therapist and clerk at the Chicago Board of Trade, began his studies in Yoga, Tantra and Ayurveda in 1997. Jim has completed teacher trainings with Daren Friesen of Moksha Yoga Center which draws heavily from the Krishnamacharya lineage, apprenticed with Gabriel Halpern of the Yoga Circle (a studio in the Iyengar tradition), spent two months in Kiev with Ukrainian Yoga master Andre Lappa for an intensive in Universal Yoga, and in 2002 began a close apprenticeship with Rod Stryker, founder of Para Yoga, in the Himalayan tradition which continues to this day. Jim has been featured in such publications as The New York Times, Chicago Magazine, Time Out Chicago, Breathe and Yoga Chicago. He's also a popular presenter at the Yoga Journal Grand Geneva Conference and the Midwest Yoga Conference and teaches workshops nationwide.

Elesa Commerse

is a beloved meditation teacher, known for her ability to demystify the practice and facilitate breakthrough experiences on the journey to authenticity. She has been teaching since 1977 and has been meditating for as long as she can remember (even though she didn't call it that). Her root teacher is the Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh. A graduate of the Temple of Kriya Yoga Meditation Teacher Training Program, Elesa holds two certificates in Advanced Yoga Studies for completing Donna Farhi's yoga teacher training program. Elesa earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology (Phi Beta Kappa, magna cum laude) from Smith College and an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. Visit Elesa's website The Deep Calm.

Zach Zube

Zach Zube roots his teaching in the wisdom of yoga, ayurveda, and tantra to support the growth and healing of students with the practices he has found so beneficial in his own life. He offers drop-in classes, private consultations, workshops and immersions, providing challenging, authentic & transformative experiences that lead to stability, radiance, and clarity. Zach teaches a breath-centered practice, whether gentle or vigorous, and the subtle influence of the Feldenkrais Method and years of training as a modern dancer lend to creative and effective sequencing. His training in ayurveda supplies the tools to craft therapeutic sequences to manage specific imbalances due to lifestyle, season, and age. Thanks to brilliant teachers, over 8 years experience, and extensive training, Zach can meet the unique needs of each student. Among many inspirational mentors and teachers, he focuses his study of yoga under the guidance of Yogarupa Rod Stryker in the ParaYoga tradition. In 2015, Zach earned his Ayurvedic Health Counselor certification with Dr. Rosy Mann and Kathryn Templeton at the Himalayan Institute. When not teaching, Zach is busy concocting handcrafted ayurvedic self- care products for Element Ayurvedic Apothecary.

Dianna Oles

is a lay-monk (oblate) with the community of Shantivanam, an interreligious ashram in South India where she lived in 2004-2005. She began her formal study of yoga and Ayurveda in 2001 and has taught in ashrams & meditation centers in India & Sri Lanka as well as in the United States. She maintains asana, pranayama, chant and meditation as essential elements of her daily sadhana. Having completed her MA in Eastern classics in 2009, she reads Literary Chinese, Sanskrit and Tamil texts and is currently working on a comparison of the Tamil Kamban and Sanskrit Valmiki Ramayana.

Rich Logan

has traveled the world studying and teaching massage therapy and Yoga. He has been on faculty at the Chicago School of Massage therapy and The Pacific College of Oriental Medicine. Rich has also been a guest speaker on Western massage techniques at the Auyurvedic College in Mysore, India. A serious student of Yoga since 1998, teaching since 2001 and a meditation practitioner since 1978, Rich incorporates his knowledge of anatomy and physiology with a unique understanding of spirituality in the modern world. Rich has studied at the prestigious Krishnamacharya Yoga Mandiram in Madras, India with TKV Desikachar among others presiding, The Atma Vikasa in Mysore with Yogacharya V. Venkatesha and wife Acharye Hema, The Himalayan Iyengar Yoga Center near Dharamsala with Sharat Arora. Rich's significant teachers have been, Kim Shwartz, Tias Little, Aadil Palkhivala, Gabriel Halpern and Anna Forrest. Rich has also assisted Tias Little in workshops as well as his Esalen retreat in 08. He continues to study at the Yoga Circle under the tutelage of the enigmatic and brilliant Gabriel Halpern in the Iyengar tradition. Rich has an eclectic teaching style focusing on the seeming basics to allow for a deeper practice by sitting in some poses for extended periods and moving through other postures smoothly with deliberation attention on placing ourselves in the pose as opposed to habitual patterns and gravity running the show. A mindful practice is focused on, bringing us to the edge of ‘experience’ to ‘witness’ the moment unfold and realize it is us who is the unfolding.