Heidi believes that each living being holds a unique resonance that expresses individual sound, harmony and rhythm. This resonance is a result of infinite variations in skeletal structure, muscles, and soft tissue as well as a multitude of ranges of motion and patterns of movement. Accompanying this network is a beautiful concerto of life experiences and learning styles. Her teaching experience began more than 25 years ago in piano pedagogy as a classical piano teacher and clinician and she brings this experience to yoga. She has been teaching at Coastal Bliss Yoga since 2016.
Heidi first discovered yoga in the late 80’s as a student attending the University of British Columbia. Meditation was something she grew up with throughout her classical music studies, supported by her Father’s career in theology and philosophy. Although Heidi experienced yoga in the 80’s, she describes her “official” call to yoga 15 years ago when she was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis. She attributes her relationship with RA as the catalyst that unravels the mysteries of life.
Heidi is an E-RYT 500 with the Yoga Alliance and has over 1000 hrs of supplemental training in Yin, Anatomy and Biomechanics, Vinyasa, Meditation, and Philosophy. Some of her formative teachers include Julia McCabe, Natalie Rousseau, Christina Sell and Darren Rhodes. She has studied Restorative Yoga and Pre and Post Natal Yoga with Rebekka Walker supplemented with online studies with Donna Farhi and Judith Lasater. Her trauma-informed studies include Dr. Arielle Schwartz and the Trauma Informed Practice Institute through the University of British Columbia. She co-leads the Coastal Bliss 200 hour teacher training and coordinates the studio’s continuing education offerings.
Additionally, Heidi leads the yoga programs at Pacific Sands Beach Resort and the Wickaninnish Inn. Heidi has taught the 55 or Better Chair Yoga Program with the District of Tofino since 2016 and continues to build the Elder Chair Yoga program with the Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation.
Nicolette fell in love with yoga when she experienced its ability to tame her mind. She believes that the joy of yoga is about how it positively impacts our inner landscape.
From 2010, Nicolette began arriving consistently on her yoga mat. An adventurous athlete she thrived in strong asana classes and, in 2017, graduated as a yoga teacher in South Africa under Jim Harrington. Further studies in Yoga for Sports complemented her active lifestyle of running, mountain-biking, kayaking and anything else human-powered and outside.
Nicolette’s yoga journey has become increasingly internally oriented. She completed her 300-hour certification in the Tantric Hatha Himalayan Tradition under Rod Stryker. Furthermore, she studied Yoga Nidra, Vishoka Meditation and is currently immersed in the 16 mantras of the Sri Sukta. And after struggling to settle into a meditation practice for years, she now finds joy in sitting still.
To complement her yoga, Nicolette is also a jyotish (Vedic astrology) student, and appreciates how this lens on life can encourage self-compassion.
Expect to be taken on an internal journey in Nicolette’s classes using the body, breath and mind.
Nicolette commutes between Tofino and Tasmania.
Jacky (she/her) believes that yoga strengthens the relationship both with oneself and with the natural world. She is passionate about building community and holding space that is inclusive and supportive. Yoga has supported Jacky’s belief in her own innate wholeness. She guides students towards this understanding through compassionate and accessible teaching.
Jacky has been practicing yoga and meditation for over a decade, and began teaching in 2013. Her ongoing studies in Vinyasa, Restorative, Yin, Ayurveda, Prenatal Yoga and Meditation with her primary teachers, Natalie Rousseau & Rebekka Walker, bring a rich spectrum of experience and knowledge to her offerings. Inspired by earth based wisdom and a curiosity for the everyday magic of life, she offers weekly classes, private instruction & retreats through Coastal Bliss Yoga and co-leads the studio’s 200hr YTT. Jacky produced and designed Coastal Bliss Yoga Online in March 2020 alongside her team of teachers, you’ll find her pre-recorded classes there.
When not in the studio teaching, practicing, or running the business, Jacky enjoys spending time outdoors with her family. Nature brings her back to wholeness and belonging. She loves to sit fireside with a journal in quiet moments of reflection, here she connects with her core values that inform the way she balances teaching, personal life and her business.
Leah is proud to be an employee of the Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation and serves as their Records Officer and provides other administrative duties. She says “yoga defines my mind and ability to tap into my body, mind and spirit. To me, this is a dream come true.”
Leah completed her 200 hr YTT training at Coastal Bliss Yoga in 2022/23 and has supplemented her yoga studies with an Introduction to Yoga Therapy and Pre and Post Natal Yoga Training. Her offerings involve the yoga tradition and its parallels to the culture of the Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation. Some of her ongoing series includes: Yin and Drumming circles, yoga events in Opitsaht, Indigenous Plant Wisdom and Yoga and ʔiisaak Pledge.
Shireen teaches with earth-based intention, grounded in her exploration of her roots, yogic traditions and the earth wisdom of the Tla-o-qui-aht territories. In her learning and teaching, she honours the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual aspects of life.
Shireen started her journey as a student of yoga while attending the University of Victoria. She gravitated towards her practice during her time working alongside a group of Indigenous youth supporting land defense for Wet’suwet’en.
Shireen completed her 200 hr YTT at Coastal Bliss Yoga in 2020/2021 with teachers Jacky Challenger, Heidi MacPherson, Rebekka Walker and Natalie Rousseau. She has continued her studies in Yin Yoga Level 1 & 2 with Jodi Dodd, Nervous System and Mental Health with Julia McCabe and Restorative Yoga with Rebekka Walker.
Shireen is Métis on her mothers side and Persian on her fathers side. She supports the Minister’s Advisory Council on Indigenous Women (MACIW). MACIW provides advice to the provincial government on how to improve the quality of life for Indigenous women by offering guidance and direction that is rooted in Indigenous worldviews.
Shireen is grateful for the grounding gifts of Mother Earth. She enjoys exploring and being on the land – walks along the beach and the soulful experience of surfing support her connection to herself and the natural world. For Shireen, community is the foundation of everything. Community is where we can find beauty in the diversity of our individuality, while developing meaningful connections as we learn from one another.
Steph guides mindful movement with the intention of leading her students to a place where they feel more connected to their body and breath. Steph aims to create a space that we can listen inward and accept ourselves as we are moment to moment. She believes that by raising the awareness and connection we have to our bodies, breath and the present moment, we can better connect to the earth, our community and our truest self. Steph finds inspiration from the natural world, yogic philosophy and the rhythms of daily life.
Steph completed her 200hr YTT at Coastal Bliss Yoga with Jacky Challenger, Heidi Macpherson, Rebekka Walker and Natalie Rousseau. She dove deeper into facilitating meditation with Carolyn Budgell and studied Yin Yoga with Jodi Dodd. With a Bachelor’s degree in Kinesiology, Steph is excited to incorporate anatomy, physiology and biomechanics into her class planning. She plans to continue deepening her knowledge by prioritizing studentship for the rest of her life.
When Steph isn’t practicing at the studio, you’ll find her active in the forest, on the beach or in the ocean.
Amanda teaches from the heart and is most fulfilled by community connection. In 2012 she enrolled as a student in her original 200hr teacher training, never setting out to become a teacher. As her knowledge and love for the teachings grew, and she continued to weave the practice through new phases of life, she was called to share these teachings with others. Amanda believes that wellness is a collective journey. Through her teaching she hopes to promote self love and contentment, and contribute to a positive ripple effect for her community and beyond.
Amanda is a life-long learner and student of yoga. She continuously expands her knowledge through a wide variety of advanced trainings in Pain Care (Neil Pearson), Pre and Post Natal, Restorative Yoga, Vinyasa (Natalie Rousseau), and has recently completed her 300hr RYT Certification (Rebekka Walker). In 2017 she travelled to India with friends and teachers to explore the birthplace of yoga and better understand it’s cultural roots. The ways in which she witnessed the simplicity of ritual and joyous devotion in daily life had a profound impact on her outlook.
Amanda’s teaching style is authentic and heart based. She is a fixture in the Tofino yoga community, and has been holding space for Sunday morning Vinyasa for many years. Amanda seeks to empower students as she draws from an understanding of both functional anatomy and the age old teachings of yoga. Students can expect a playfulness throughout practice and to leave class feeling connected and at ease.
Amanda enjoys a good adventure, loves making road trip playlists and can often be caught singing along to songs without realizing it. She spends much of her personal time incorporating grounding practices into her daily life. She wears her heart on her sleeve and she loves deeply; particularly her partner Allan, and her home; the pocket of paradise that is Clayoquot Sound.
Tracy Crocker believes that everyone can benefit from meditation. He has been holding space for meditation by donation at Coastal Bliss Yoga since the studio opened in 2010. Tracy came to yoga and meditation later in life. Yoga got him out of his head and into his body. Meditation taught him how to turn his mind into an ally, and he wishes to support others on their meditation journey.
In 2007, Tracy began his journey with a 10 day Vipassana Meditation Course as taught by S.N. Goenka. To date, he has completed 8 courses. In 2015 he became a student of Geshe Yong Dong in the Tibetan Bon Buddhist tradition. Tracy expanded his practice technique in 2020 when he began practicing Deep Meditation as taught by Nathalie Kieler and refined his leading skills with Carolyn Anne Budgell.
Tracy uses experiential knowledge and practical techniques to support students regardless of where they are on their meditation path. Tracy leads meditation at Coastal Bliss Yoga on Sunday mornings and offers several guided meditations on the CBY Online platform.
Also knows as “Yoda of the Dough”, Tracy spreads the good word one loaf at a time at a local bakeshop. He believes that at Coastal Bliss Yoga, we are “Preparing the soil to nurture the blossom in the garden that we call community.”
Dawn teaches yoga because she believes it has the capacity to facilitate healing and transformation on all levels. Building a greater relationship with self cultivates a more authentic relationship with the world and the environment. The practice is a way to hold steady through all of life’s fluctuations and is a starting point for right living.
Dawn began teaching yoga in Tofino in the late 90’s inspired by the ashtanga and power yoga styles. As life unfolded with family life and injuries her practice shifted along with those changes and she began to study meditation, restorative and yin to better suit her changing body and mind. This, and a growing awareness of human suffering led her to study pain science, pain care yoga and trauma informed yoga with the intention to reach a broader community and offer accessible yoga to all. She hosts workshops and retreats within the community and was a co-creator and facilitator for a movement and relaxation pilot project for persistent pain which is now available in local communities for free.
Her teaching style is fun and energetic, mindful and poetic combining creative, intelligent sequencing infused with bits of wisdom. She teaches regular classes at Coastal Bliss Yoga and hosts local retreats annually.
When not in the studio or shuttling her daughter around, she can be found bobbing in the great ocean waiting for her next ride.
Jenny believes that yoga is a curious exploration inwards. As a student and teacher, Jenny’s curiosity guides her towards healing, understanding, and compassion. Through practice, she discovers layers of awareness which open blockages, unravel patterns, and release resistance. Jenny applies these teachings on and off her mat. She believes that yoga gives her the skills to navigate challenges and it is within these moments that she witnesses growth, change, compassion and even more curiosity.
Jenny first discovered yoga in 2010 while living in Australia. She stumbled upon a free weekend workshop that introduced her to meditation, pranayama, asana, and Ayurveda. Jenny experienced the power of yoga and its benefits. As a dedicated practitioner at Coastal Bliss Yoga, it was a natural decision for Jenny to complete her 200 hr Yoga Teacher Training at her home studio. She has also studied Meditation with Carolyn Budgell and delved into Endocrine and Energy Anatomy with Julia McCabe. As a dedicated student Jenny is looking forward to completing Breath as Medicine with Julia McCabe this summer and Yin Yoga Training with Jodi Dodd in the fall.
Jenny’s practice and teachings move through foundational shapes that offer time and space to observe and tune into the inward experience beyond the physical asana. She invites curious attention with a healing intention.
Away from the studio, Jenny wanders the beaches and rainforests of the West Coast with her partner and dog. Her daily explorations of the natural world offer a moment of pause, connection, and healing.
Mary believes in the transformative power of movement as medicine. She began practicing yoga in 2008, and immediately felt how this practice allowed her to return to a place of inner calm and stability no matter where she was in the world. Mary has travelled the world, living in many different cities and countries, and the practice of yoga allows her to feel at home and grounded in moments of uncertainty.
Mary received her 200 hour Yoga Teacher Certification in 2016 from the Kula Collective, at the YogaForest in Guatemala. After her training, she went on to teach at several eco-retreat centers in Central America, as well as at yoga studios in Vancouver, B.C. and Seattle, Washington. While living in Vancouver, Mary experienced a traumatic event that affected every area of her life. She became curious as to how yoga could help support her healing process. She studied trauma-informed yoga training with Yoga outreach in 2019, and began teaching yoga to students who have experienced trauma, as a way to allow a safe space for healing to unfold. This experience was profound, and continues to influence how Mary teaches yoga and somatic healing to allow her students to feel safe and at home in their own bodies.
Mary’s classes create a safe container for students to look inwards and deeply listen, allowing them to tap into their inner wisdom and make empowered decisions from that space. You can experience Mary’s classes every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday evening at Coastal Bliss Yoga. When not on the yoga mat, Mary is probably drinking coffee and walking on the beach with her partner Grego, and their 3-legged dog Paty. For Mary, yoga is a space where you can be fully authentic, and every emotion and part of you is always welcomed on the mat.
Sarah Wolton is a passionate and inspirational yoga teacher who believes that yoga is about changing lives. Not only does yoga change and enrich lives, yoga emphatically brings goodness to each and every being around you. Sarah discovered yoga when she needed it the most and her practice continues to be the catalyst of change that invites a brighter, more vibrant, joyful, balanced whole – inside and out.
Sarah is a 500-hour Registered Yoga Teacher with the Yoga Alliance and has over 10 years experience teaching and in the business side of yoga. Sarah’s all level classes flow like water, calming the mind, energizing the body. Her offerings are designed to empower, to live boldly and courageously while finding peace within.
Off the mat, Sarah loves to surf, skateboard, and spend quality time with her family. For Sarah, community means a place where you feel comfortable to be yourself, share your light, and connect with others. She looks forward to welcoming you to the Coastal Bliss Family.
Carolina is a new teacher that believes that yoga traditions and history contain mysteries and resources that can support and guide all aspects of life. She likes to infuse storytelling with embodied and mindful movement to explore these traditions. Carolina’s playful flow encourages curiosity and cultivates an energy that can then be taken off your mat.
Carolina discovered yoga in 2018 after arriving in Tofino from Chile. Coastal Bliss Yoga became her haven of acceptance, community and joy. After months of steady practice, Carolina immersed into the Coastal Bliss Yoga 200 hr YTT. She discovered a fire that she didn’t know existed. Carolina’s passion and courage continued to shine as she was the first student from her graduating class to share and teach the gifts of yoga.
Expect to hear a story from the yoga tradition and experience the wisdom of yoga in your body. Share a held space that is compassionate and welcoming, where you are free to explore, connect to your body, be present and gracious for the land on which we live and practice.
When not in the studio teaching or practicing Caro is busy working in the maintenance department at a local Resort and creating new adventures with her partner.
Shannon encourages a holistic approach to health & wellness. She believes each body is unique and encourages individual expression and awareness in thoughts and physical abilities. Shannon embraces the broad spectrum of gifts that yoga offers and encourages easeful movement not only in the studio but throughout daily routines. Shannon honours the seasons, elemental shifts, and general day to day nuances that feed and fuel passions and dispositions. She inspires rituals to balance and acknowledge these shifts, to cultivate a greater awareness towards how you show up in the world.
Shannon discovered Yoga, specifically Hot Yoga in the early 2000’s and was inspired by its intensity and capacity to drop into her body and step away from the accelerated pace of life. Propelled by curiosity and fire, Shannon looks back and reflects how the fire – tapas , the discipline of practice created space for the meditative and subtle body aspects of practice which is what intrigues her today.
She earned her 200hr YTT at Coastal Bliss Yoga in 2021 and has continued her advanced training in Yin and Restorative Yoga. Shannon’s classes are a reflection of her personality – lighthearted, playful and welcoming for all. She encourages laughter, curiosity, and engagement as she knows first-hand that lightness will ease the experience of personal growth which often exists within the fringes of comfort.
When not at the studio, find Shannon working with clients as a Realtor, or exploring the Coast and its many beaches & trails with her husband and dog either by foot or on the boat. Her favourite pastime however is enjoying a barefoot yoga class on a sandy beach in a hot climate!
Rachel is a talented and intuitive teacher with a gift for empathy that helps her connect to her community and to meet her students wherever they are at on their yoga journey. Her area of focus is AstroYoga, the practice of skillfully navigating time as an embodied being through the combined techniques of Yoga and Astrology. It’s an ancient practice thousands of years old which can help you learn about your true self, your place in the universe, and navigate your life purpose with clarity.
Rachel primarily teaches the Hatha Yoga path. When she first started teaching in 2016, she taught Power Yoga and Vinyasa, Solar yoga practices that heat and activate the body. Since starting her 300hr yoga teacher training with Yoga Alliance, she has expanded into Yin Yoga, Restorative Yoga, and Yoga Nidra — all considered Lunar-encoded yoga to cool and calm the body. Rachel is also starting to practice and teach pranayama, mantra, and mudra and brings to yoga, her knowledge of breathwork and energy healing.
Rachel first discovered yoga’s value while involved in the sport of synchronized swimming. Her coaches incorporated yoga as cross-training to ease the strains and pains from injuries and increase strength and flexibility. What struck Rachel, however, was the emotional calm and mental clarity yoga brought her, and the fact that she did not feel sore after a yoga practice. Rachel knew that there was something magical about yoga she needed to search out.
In addition to her background as a competitive athlete, Rachel has a multidisciplinary foundation as a CSEP Certified Personal Trainer, Fascial Mobility Therapist, and completed a Diploma in Fitness and Health Promotion from Durham College in Ontario.
When she’s not teaching, Rachel spends time with her family, her husband, Aaron, and her son, Zen on the beaches of Tofino and of Australia.
Ariana (she/her) is a foundational teacher who is dedicated to leading her students through class in a nurturing and tender way. Her approach is rooted in Patañjali’s principle of Ahimsa, non-violence or non-harming. Ariana’s yoga journey began over 10 years ago in a High School yoga course. The physical practice allowed her to return to her body and find contentment, even during difficult and uncertain times. The union of intentional movement, pranayam, and mindfulness have made a lasting impact in Ariana’s life, and she enjoys sharing the benefits of this trifecta with her students in an accessible way.
Coastal Bliss Yoga has been a place of comfort and solace for Ariana since she moved to the Tla-o-qui-aht territories in 2018. She completed CBYs first 200 Hour YTT in 2020 under the wisdom and guidance of Heidi MacPherson, Jacky Challenger, Natalie Rousseau, and Rebekka Walker. Ariana is a certified Holistic Birth & Postpartum Doula who received her certificate from Pacific Rim College in 2021. She has since completed the Pre and Post Natal yoga training with Rebekka Walker.
Ariana approaches her classes from the perspective of a Doula — She leads with compassion, nurturance, and non-judgment. You can expect a thoughtfully planned class with Ariana that is gentle, foundational, and honors the ancient history of Yoga. Ariana is dedicated to using inclusive language and aims to create a safe space for every-BODY. She is part of the LGBTQ+ community and welcomes ALL individuals with a warm and inviting embrace. Ariana would be delighted to see you in one of her community yoga classes in the Coastal Bliss studio.
Off the mat, you can find Ariana working at Cox Bay Beach Resort where she is the Assistant Manager OR on a spontaneous adventure with her best friend and partner, Kelly.