Cara Chang Mutert, E-RYT500, is owner/director of The Yoga Lounge, which she founded in 2004.  Cara’s teaching style is Iyengar alignment based, gentle, meditative, flowing and therapeutic in nature. After more than 25 years of study and training, Cara is a senior yoga instructor, leads international yoga retreats and her own Yoga Alliance approved 200-hour teacher training program. Her primary teachers are Gabriel Halpern and Tias Little, and she earned her 500-hour advanced certification in 2010 from Prairie Yoga, with Lori Gaspar, after completing her 200-hr. certification with Kim Schwartz through the Temple of Kriya Yoga, Chicago. She continues to study with her master teachers, who inspire and encourage her continued growth and learning. Cara has also taught yoga at McHenry County College for the past 12 years, creating and instructing the first credited Yoga courses at the college. Cara extends her deepest gratitude to all her teachers, students, family and friends for their love, support and encouragement throughout her journey. Thanks to the strong support of our community and a family of generous, dedicated, talented and skilled instructors, The Yoga Lounge is now celebrating our 15th year.

Leslie Dallas completed her teacher training May of 2009.  She studied with Silvia Mordini from Total Body Yoga, Mundelein. “Stepping onto the mat was like coming home.  Yoga became my own personal time for emotional and physical well-being. I found that through Yoga my body and spirit were transformed helping me to become more dedicated to living my life  fully and in the present. My teaching style is Vinyasa Flow which I mix with the loving, heart based practice of Anusara Yoga, and the strength based practice of Ashtanga Yoga.  My classes tend to be upbeat but serious, fun yet challenging.   My goal is to touch everyone with the freedom, fun, power and sweetness of Yoga.”  Leslie teaches Vinyasa Yoga on Tuesday, Thursday at 9 a.m. and alternates on Saturday mornings at 10:30 a.m. She is also co-leads The Yoga Lounge Retreats with Cara.

jonhalfmoonJon Uidl began his yoga journey in 2006 at The Yoga Lounge and is now a 500-hour yoga instructor. He trained at Moksha Yoga Center, Chicago with Daren Friesen, Kim Wilcox and Rich Logan, and at Prajna Yoga, Santa Fe, NM with Tias Little. He continues to study with master teachers Gabriel Halpern and Tias Little. He teaches Gentle Restovative on Tuesdays at 7 p.m. and Mindful Vinyasa on Sundays at 9:30 a.m. and monthly Yin Yoga on the first Friday of each month. Jon also assists and mentors our 200-hour Teacher Training program.

Nancy Loessl is a 200-hr certified yoga instructor whose love of yoga began when she started taking classes as cross training to running. Nancy was very quickly “addicted” to yoga and wanted to learn more, so she enrolled in the teacher training program at the Himalayan Yoga and Meditation Center, Palatine.  Her training is based on traditional Hatha yoga as founded by Swami Rama in the Himalayas in India.  Nancy completed her 200-hour certification in September 2011. She enjoys teaching all-level classes giving options to make it just right for each student. Nancy teaches All-Level and Slow Flow on Saturday at 9 a.m.

Denise Yager began practicing yoga in 2000, completed her 200-hour training at Kalitrea in 2004 and has been teaching yoga ever since. She is currently pursuing her 500 hour certifcation at Prairie Yoga. Her interest in making yoga accessible has led her to teach classes for everyone from young children to senior citizens. The teachers who continue to have the biggest influence on her teaching style include Jill Thomas, Gabriel Halpern, Paul Grilley, Rolf Gates, and Susi Hately.  She has attended workshops on yoga for seniors, yoga for osteoporosis and yin yoga and has taught anatomy to yoga teachers in training for the past five years. She enjoys developing a warm and friendly class environment that supports brand new students while challenging experienced practitioners. Denise teaches Yoga Basics on Fridays at 8:30 a.m. and leads and teaches the Anatomy portion of our Teacher Training program.

Eileen Filler is a long-time student of The Yoga Lounge and has trained and practiced at the studio for 10 years. Eileen, who is also a Registered Nurse, brings her knowledge of anatomy, yoga, reflexology, reiki and other energy work to her teaching, along with her valuable experience working with seniors struggling with dementia and Alzheimer’s as former Day Program Manager and Intake Coordinator at Family Alliance for the past five years. Eileen’s teaching style reflects her understanding of working with seniors and focuses more on restorative, therapeutic aspects of the practice. She is a certified Laughing Yoga instructor and earned her 200-hour teacher training at The Yoga Lounge. Eileen teaches Chair Yoga on Tuesdays at 11:30 a.m. and All-Level on Tuesdays at 5:30 p.m.

Dorothy Robin is a RYT-200 with Yoga Alliance and earned her 200-hour certification from The Yoga Lounge. Dorothy has been practicing yoga since 2001 and teaches a gentle Hatha yoga style with a focus on alignment, breathing, and mindful awareness. She is currently continuing her education with Judith Hanson Lasater, studying advanced Shavasana and advanced Yoga Anatomy.  In addition to teaching Yoga Basics at The Yoga Lounge on Mondays at 8:30 a.m., she is also currently teaching workplace yoga at Motorola Solutions and at other area businesses.

Jori Toman has been practicing yoga since 2010.  Believing she only wanted and needed the physical benefits of yoga, she practiced quietly and discreetly in her home.  It wasn’t until she attended her first yoga class that she realized there is so much more to gain from yoga. “I didn’t think I was interested in anything spiritual or meditative, but I was so mistaken.  It’s actually exactly what I need.”  For the past 5 years, Jori has built a passion for taking and teaching aerial fitness classes which led to her motivation for practicing yoga.  “Yoga balances me out physically and mentally.” Jori  completed her 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training program at The Yoga Lounge. “Every single one of my instructors has provided me with amazing knowledge that I will use in my yoga journey as a student and as an instructor.  With an open heart and an open mind, there is always more to learn.  I am forever grateful for and humbled by my yoga practice.” Jori teaches the 7 p.m. Strength & Stretch class on Wednesday nights.

Theresa Hay is a 200-hour certified instructor, recently completing her training at The Yoga Lounge. “I began my yoga practice much the way many of us do, I was looking for a gentle day off from running to stretch my body.  It wasn’t until I was a mother of two that I really found that what I needed from my practice was the quiet moments on my mat to learn to center myself against the demands and whirlwind that is motherhood and life itself.  It’s also what draws me to share in this wonderful practice with others. I hope to help those who come to my classes to find their calm and their moments of peace before heading back out to their lives.  When I’m not teaching you can find me knitting or baking treats for friends and family. ” Theresa teaches the Beginning Yoga class on Thursdays at 5:30 p.m.

Robin Grover My passion for yoga has developed out of a desire to experience every type of activity I can.  I worked in the fitness industry at Health Bridge Fitness Center for 11 years and before that taught aerobics at a local club. After many years of pushing my body to its limits it began to push back.  I need an outlet for my mental and physical well being.  Yoga has given me the total package. The need for us all to slow down and breathe is priceless at any age.

Katherine Greenlee  has been practicing at the Yoga Lounge for about 11 years and recently completed the Meditation Teacher Training Program at the Temple of Kriya Yoga in Chicago, IL. “In my guided meditation classes, learn how to reduce stress through the basic technique of Observing the Breath.  This simple method allows you to quiet the mind and tap in to your own inner peace and stillness.  In subsequent classes, experience the healing effects of Visualization, generate more positivity through the Object of Beauty technique and further deepen your meditative experience. I look forward to sharing the benefits of meditation with you!”

Thank you to all The Yoga Lounge teachers past and present, who have contributed to the strength and growth of our yoga community.