Founder of 5 Elements Yoga & Pilates and Owner of the Georgetown Studio.
Michelle was raised with an awareness of natural health and awakened her curiousity of yoga concepts at the age of 12, eventually taking her first yoga classes in 1985 while attending the University of Waterloo.
She has the designation of Experienced-Registered Yoga Teacher at the highest level (E-RYT500, Yoga Alliance) and has trained extensively (thousands of hours) with many of the world's best teachers, most notably: Prana Vinyasa Flow Yoga founder Shiva Rea and ParaYoga founder Yogarupa Rod Stryker. Prior to studying with her teachers Shiva Rea and Rod Stryker, she had earned several Yoga Certifications, including East to West Yoga (RYT500) and the Seattle Holistic Center (Pre and Post Natal Yoga). She is also Certified in TheMethod Pilates (Physical Mind Institute, New York, NY) and is Stott Pilates trained in Mat, Reformer and Injuries & Special Populations. She is deeply committed to lifelong learning and continues her studies in the Krishnamacharya lineage of yoga and tantra, as well as ayurveda.
Michelle has often been a guest teacher for Shiva Rea's Pre & Post Natal Yoga Teacher Training at Exhale Center for Sacred Movement in Venice, California. She's regularly travels to California, Colorado and worldwide to study, and has been on pilgrimage 3 times to India, including participating in the 2013 Maha Kumbha Mela in Allahabad.
Michelle also has an extensive background in fitness, initiated with teaching fitness (a.k.a. "aerobics") in 1984 and Personal Training, receiving several fitness Certifications over the years, including: YMCA, Can-Fit-Pro (FIS, PTS, PFS, NWS & MBS), BodyFlow, BodyPump, Group Cycling & CALA (Canadian Aquafitness Leaders' Alliance).
She has provided assistance and education to childbearing women & their families since 1992, receiving certifications as a Childbirth Educator (CCE, ALACE- Association of Labor Assistants and Childbirth Educators), Doula (CD, DONA - Doulas of North America) and Labour Assistant (CLA, ALACE).
Michelle is a Certified Thai Yoga Massage Practitioner (Lotus Palm method), having additionally studied Ayurveda & Thai Yoga Therapy with Kam Thye Chow (Lotus Palm) and Advanced Thai Massage with teachers from Asokonanda's school. She has been a Lotus Palm Teacher, co-teaching & co-authored (with Kam Thye Chow) the Prenatal Thai Yoga Massage course and manual.
She is also a Certified Reflexologist (RAC - Reflexology Association of Canada) and a Reiki Master. Michelle was one of the original PRO Trainers for the Can-Fit-Pro Pre & Post Natal Fitness Specialist Certification Course (PFS) for many years and was a trainer for all of the East to West Yoga & Pilates Teacher Training programs.
She has written/developed her own Prenatal Yoga Teacher Training course and the 5 Elements 200 hour Yoga Teacher Training course, focusing on Vinyasa Flow Yoga, including the accompanying Manuals. She is also a sought after Conference Presenter, presenting on Prenatal Yoga & Pilates and evolved Vinyasa Flow Yoga (i.e. Can-Fit-Pro, Yoga in Toronto, The Yoga Conference www.theyogaconference.com) and has taught at the Kripalu Center in Massachusetts.
Michelle has been studying Ayurveda since 2003 and is a Certified Ayurvedic Yoga Specialist (Himalayan Institute).
Recently Michelle has uncovered a talent for art and has enjoyed blossoming into an oil painter.
Michelle's passion is to share her love of Yoga, Pilates & Wellness with her students and the Teacher Trainees at 5 Elements, and her greatest joy is being is the mother of 5 amazing daughters. She is deeply grateful for the support of her husband and family in fulfilling this calling to teach!!