Kate's training is in the lineage of Krishnamacharya, T.K.V. Desikachar, Gary Kraftsow and the Viniyoga Tradition. This model is focused on ancient teachings and their application in a therapeutic setting.
Kate was born and raised in New Jersey until 1989 when her family moved to Louisiana. After receiving her BS in Psychology from the University of Georgia, she returned to Baton Rouge and began her study of yoga at Anahata Yoga Center with Nancy Broadhead Clark. After Nancy Clark's retirement, Kate went to the Berkshires in Western Massachusets to study with Priti Robyn Ross and Jairaj Randall Williams at the Kripalu Yoga Institute where she received her 200 hour Yoga Teacher Training Certification. Kate continued her education with Iyengar trained and AVI certified teacher, Becky Gelatt, in 2011, and completed her 500 hour teacher training certification at the Yoga School, LLC. in Covington, LA. She is founder of Yoga Path, LLC, the first locally based registered yoga school, RYS, 200 hour program in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, where she resides with her loving husband, child and dogs.
Becky began practicing yoga because of a back injury. She had been interested in yoga for a long time, but her fear (aka, her holding back) had kept her away. When she reached the point where her pain was greater than her fear she finally ventured out. What a blessing that back injury has turned out to be. Her yoga practice expanded to include meditation, and then her meditation practice expanded to include leading meditation sessions. As Becky says “My mat, my cushion have given me quietness of mind, a broader view of myself and a joy I cannot put into words. I show up with all my imperfections, my aches, my pains and my inability to do this work as I think I should. I show up and because I do I continue to get more comfortable with me.”
Becky's Yoga journey began 11 or so years ago. Because of the wonderful Yoga Teachers who have influenced her life and the quiet spaces she has found in her practice she now hopes to be able to bring that gift to others. She is certified with Yoga Alliance at 200 hours,has a Yoga Nidra Facillitator Certification, and is Certified in the Amrit Method.
olleen’s yoga journey started in 2010 when she turned 40. She’d never been athletic, but always enjoyed daily walks and was health conscious. She started to notice that the body wasn’t as efficient as it had been, meaning, to enjoy the same quality of life, her diet and exercise habits would need more attention. From the beginning, her goal has been to be healthy and to be able to continue to enjoy physical adventures like kayaking and hiking. A balance of cardio, strength training and stretching was recommended and through that regimen, she became committed to her first yoga class. Noticing that yoga alone provided an array of benefits, including cardio, strength, flexibility, balance, and clarity of consciousness, her appreciation grew into a passion. After practicing seven years of fitness styles of yoga (vinyasa, yoga sculpt, and ashtanga), she wanted to explore deeper into historical and philosophical aspects of yoga, and that's when she found Kate Suchanek and Yoga Path.
“The most important focal point in Kate’s 200YTT is that yoga is for everyone. It's about adjusting the pose or bringing in the prop to create the right design for you. We are all built differently and thus have different needs and limitations. Yoga is about awareness. At Yoga Path, we are on a journey together, but it is most definitely an individual practice.”
She currently teaches beginner classes at Yoga Path and Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center and studies Christian contemplative teachings.
Erica Del Mastro
Erica Del Mastro received her 200 hour training at Yoga Path through Kate Suchanek, E-RYT 500. Her training is in the lineage of Krishnamacharya, T.K.V. Deskachar, Leslie Kaminoff, and Amy Matthews. In this lineage, Erica has learned to honor the individual needs of each student within a class setting and use that present knowledge to transform the prepared class as needed. She was able to use those words be here now as a teacher. It was through this training that she gave herself permission to look on the inside with a genuine, open heart.
She found her breakthrough as a student when she first truly opened her eyes to her body after learning about postures through alignment focus rather than flowing through each pose in vinyasa-based classes. She used that new awareness to strengthen her practice that is now rooted through a concrete educational understanding of the anatomy she had learned. One of her many goals and roles as a teacher is to teach from her heart and from her personal experience with yoga. She invites students to take an honest look at their own boundaries and limitations. This, in turn, will allow them to meet themselves where they are in the moment and to accept everything as it is.
Brittany Lynn Kriger
Integrative Nutrition Health Coach, CHHC*, AADP*
Brittany believes that through finding alignment in the physical practice of yoga we invite ourselves to find alignment with how we truly think and feel. This body mind connection is what propelled her to establish The Soul Food Project, which is devoted to the power of a positive relationship with food. Through workshops and one on one coaching, she is passionate about spreading the mantra: “Love the food you eat. Live the life you love. Ditch guilt and regret." After navigating her own complicated relationship with food, Brittany received her certification in Integrative Nutrition Health Coaching from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition in New York City. When not on the yoga mat, you may find her mixing up bags of “Brittany Lynn’s Honey Crumble Cornbread Mix,” a gluten, soy, and dairy free dry mix sold locally in Baton Rouge (check out Red Stick Spice Co). Brittany holds a Bachelors of Interior Design from Louisiana State University and a BFA in Musical Theatre from Southeast Missouri State University. www.thesoulfoodprojectla.com
*Board Certified Holistic Health Coach through the American Association of Drugless Practitioners.
Denise is a Usui Reiki Master and experienced energy healing practitioner. It was through a healing journey of her own that led her to learning more about Reiki and the connection of the mind, body, and spirit. Since that first experience with Reiki she knew that she had found something life changing and has continued her education and training expanding into various other healing modalities. Her intention is to share her gifts with others and help them with their journey to optimal health and balance. Denise holds a Master’s degree in Exercise Physiology and is a Certified Emotion Code Practitioner, Certified Natural Health Professional (CNHP) and is a Nationally Registered EMT.
Amanda Mays discovered yoga while living in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and it quickly became a part of her life. Leaving academia for family life, Amanda turned to her yoga mat to practice self-care. Her enthusiasm for the practice is borne of her own daily existence with illness. Yoga has helped her practice resilience and experience firsthand the healing effects of yoga.
Amanda received her 200 hour training at Yoga Path under Kate Suchanek, E-RYT500, following the lineage of Krishnamacharya, specifically the teachings of his latter years focusing on the therapeutic side of yoga. Amanda believes in encouraging others, in making yoga accessible for each and every student, their unique body, and limitations. Her ambition is to encourage others living with chronic illness to feel empowered and encouraged on the mat so they too can bring their practice into their daily life.
Mary Singleton, RYT 200, received her training at Yoga Path. Her specific area of study focuses on the therapeutic applications of yoga and providing those new to the practice a supportive environment to discover yoga. She teaches Gentle, Basic and Yin classes regularly.
"Six years ago I suffered a debilitating neck injury. Washing my hair was a painful and daunting experience. I drove out of my way to avoid speed bumps because of the effect the jolt would have on my spine. It affected every aspect of my life. I was going to the chiropractor 4 times a week and on multiple medications. Determined to get my life back, I started out with only 5 minutes of yoga a day. It was a hard road to recovery. Some days, most days, I so badly wanted to give up. I never thought I would have a normal life again. Today, I go to the chiropractor once every 2-3 months for maintenance. I had extreme anxiety about when the next pain flair-up would happen. Today I can't remember when the last spasm ocurred. I credit yoga with positively affecting my physical body: giving my spine stability, increasing strength and improving flexibility.
My personal yoga practice has also alleviated the symptoms of depression and anxiety I experienced daily and from the emotional trauma of my injury. Yoga brings awareness of the mind-body connection present in us all. Not fearing our emotions, but instead learning to witness them and cultivating contentment even in the presence of discomfort. Yoga has changed me."
Noura's yoga journey began with daily meditation & yoga practice that led to a deeper yearning. Trained primarily with Alicia Willamet of the Louisiana Yoga School, After leading yoga classes for almost 18 months before becoming certified, Noura has found her home in the Teacher's Seat at Yoga Path, LLC. Noura Kaye Skakri has been studying the body, movement, & energy for over 30 years. She has been a licensed bodyworker & aesthetician for more than 20 years, specializing in Shiatsu & Acupressure as well as being a Reiki Master/Teacher. Her background in teaching spans many formats from bellydance to group fitness, from bodywork to skin & body care.
"Noura" Kaye Skakri
Licensed Zumba® Instructor, Certified Bokwa® Fitness, Instructor & Trainer, Certified PiYo Strength® Instructor, Certified SilverSneakers® Instructor, AFAA Certified Group Fitness Instructor, AFAA Certified Personal Fitness Trainer, Licensed Massage Therapist (LA#0393), Licensed Aesthetician, Certified Aromatherapist
Alicia Willemet (lead instructor and Director of LYS) is a certified Shambhava Hatha & Swan River Yoga teacher. Since her first teacher training in 2009 at Shambhava Yoga, she has pursued teaching yoga and meditation full-time. She has spent the last eight years sharing the practice and continuing her education with teachers such as Michele Baker, Kelly Haas and most recently Sanskrit scholar Christopher Wallis. Alicia works mostly with private clients providing individual instruction as well as yoga therapy for students with injuries. After mentoring Michele Baker’s teacher trainings in 2011 and 2012, she created her own curriculum and has been offering 200-hour trainings in Baton Rouge since 2013. Seeing the need for a more cohesive yoga community and a way to support local teachers and studios, she created Louisiana Yoga School as a way to support local teachers and studios. Her ultimate goal is for all students and teachers to feel empowered on the mat and to integrate their practice and the wisdom of yoga philosophy into their daily lives.
"I teach from the perspective of evolution. I want to challenge you. I want to challenge you physically, emotionally, spiritually. Why? Because our community, our world, needs the best version of who you are. My role as a teacher is to provide the space to explore how to evolve into your highest self. Yoga provides the context and tools; you bring your courage. I am here to witness, to guide and to champion you on your journey. That’s it. It’s not me, it is all you, baby. And I can’t wait to see the magic that happens on the mat!"
Fitness professional of 25+ years with past and present certifications in many disciplines from senior fitness to kickboxing. My current focuses are holistic fitness training, nutrition coaching, and teaching yoga. I am a 2010 graduate of Swan River Yoga School in New Orleans, La with 350 hours. Since then I have taken many workshops on assists, Thai Yoga, pranayama and more. I am a proud graduate of the 200 hour teacher training with Yoga Path in 2017. I couldn’t be happier to be part of the Yoga Path sangha!
A letter from Kate
The motivation for beginning a yoga teacher training program came from the desire to produce a program that graduated students who could do much more than follow a learned sequence of poses to then apply to the general public. So many yoga practitioners leave a class injured, despite the loving intentions the instructors may have had. I believe it is due to a lack of understanding on the part of the teachers to explore the needs of the students in front of them that day and couple that information with an ability to transform the prepared class as needed.
I have been fortunate to find teachers that have studied yoga extensively and hold very high standard and expectations for their graduates. Through my training at both Kripalu with Priti Robin Ross and Jairaq Randall Williams, and with Iyengar inspired and Viniyoga certified instructor Becky Gelatt of the Yoga School of Covington, I have been trained under their meticulous tutelage to honor the individual needs of each student within the context of a variety of practitioner level and capabilities in a general class setting. It is this gift of studying under their talent and knowledge that I have absorbed an eptitude and appreciation for teaching with compassion, rooted in a solid educational understanding of the material. Passing along what I have learned and continue to learn is my aim. As one of my students, Kay Baucum, said, “Yoga can only grow when you share it.”