Forrest Yoga Guardian

Forrest Yoga Guardians are highly experienced Forrest Yoga Teachers who are carefully hand picked by Ana and Jose. Guardians hold a place of honor and integrity for the Forrest Yoga teachers. Guardians pledge to be the keepers and protectors of the Forrest Yoga legacy. They pledge to do their part in Mending the Hoop of the People, by mentoring the Forrest Yoga teachers. Guardians strive to embody the ethics, principles & teachings of FY. They train intensively with Ana and Jose to stay current and up to date with Forrest Yoga’s evolution. Each Guardian brings their unique experience and insight to the students’ continuing education.
Ann Hyde
My teaching style has developed over 21 years and has been influenced by many outstanding teachers.  Ana Forrest and the Forrest Yoga system have been inspiring me since 2004.

When I took my first class with Ana I knew right away that my yoga practice was going to get up-leveled, rinsed out and re-examined in many ways.

The dedicated focus on the pillars of Forrest Yoga: Breath, Strength, Integrity and Spirit have helped me gain confidence through clarity. Instead of simply believing a concept, Forrest Yoga has taught me to feel, and to trust my own experience as the truth.  In this way, I have grown at my own pace and learned from my mistakes and my gifts. I can feel space and sparkle glowing inside me and I can command a position on my mat and in my life.

I am grateful for all my teachers, including my students and my closest mentor, my breath.

I am currently an honorary Guardian on sabbatical which means I am not running a mentorship program at this time.

I am teaching at Montrose Yoga Co-op in Houston, TX and my classes are all 2 hours long. It’s wonderful to experience all that breath filled time.

Denise Hopkins
Denise began her yoga journey after working for 13 years in the NYC fashion industry.  Yoga became her saving grace to the competitive nature of the business.  In 2005, she decided to take the Forrest Yoga training based on gut instinct. It was life changing.  She completed her training with founder Ana Forrest and has spent over 10 years teaching in NYC and recently the Hudson Valley.

Denise assists Ana nationally at teacher trainings and leads her own workshops for students and yoga teachers. She travels to teach Hands-On Assisting workshops and teaches annually at Omega Institute.

In 2010 Denise partnered up with Kate Lubensky to create Yoga for Breast Cancer, a DVD created to address the needs of breast cancer battlers and survivors.   It was so well received that they recently produced two more DVD’s entitled Gentle Yoga for Cancer and Yoga for Heart Health.

Denise draws from her strong sense of intuition and passion for hands-on healing.  She has a knack for reading the energy of students and responding to what they need.  Denise’s way of instructing is direct, clear, and inspiring.  It is her desire that every student feels seen and understood.  She also incorporates her work with Cranial Sacral Therapy into her hands-on assists and private sessions.

Darin Volwiler
Just a yogi on my journey.  The biggest thing you can learn right now is that our paths are often difficult, never perfect, and always an adventure.

I am a Forrest Yoga Guardian and owner of Dragon’s Breath Yoga in Washington, DC.  I completed my FY Guardian training in March, 2018 and bought DBY in September,2018.

My path to yoga began years ago to help athletic recovery.  After life threw a detour in my path, I began to realize and appreciate the mental and emotional impact regular practice has on a student.  Forrest specifically helped me to find my breath and use that power to begin healing myself.  I believe that we can all be teachers in life if we just take moment to pause, to reflect, and to breathe.
“Bad yogi” is the path that acknowledges we are not perfect, and that’s pretty cool. and

Jambo Truong
Jambo is a multi-disciplinary practitioner who specialises in functional anatomy and psycho-spiritual practices that are related to yoga and bodywork. 

One of the few selected Forrest Yoga Guardians and co-founder of Yoga Bodyworkers, Jambo spends his time studying, researching and teaching in order to demystify a practice that we love to practice. 

Jambo holds a degree in Complementary Medicine with special interests in Muscle Testing and Classical East Asian Medicine. He is a speaker and participates in research around Well-Being & Complexity studies and is associated with University of Northumbria & Cape Town. 

Jambo also shares his passion for psycho-somatic practices he has gleaned from apprenticing with various leaders from a variety of native traditions as well as aspects of psychotherapy.

Sin Hee McCabe
My journey as a FY mentor has been profound in learning to feel and accept my true self. I am pleased with the healing process that I am walking as a person and as a yoga teacher/ healer.

Strong practice is another benefit from practicing Forrest Yoga. I love how FY teaches you to be compassionate and skillful when exploring personal limits. Setting intents to help you stay in healing and the practice of changing habitual patterns that no longer supports you. I feel this part of Forrest Yoga is tasty and empowering.

My mission as a Forrest yoga mentor to do my part in “Mending the Hoop of people” by reaching students around the world to offer them the chance to experience Forrest Yoga and learn how to support each other. Also sharing my intention of bringing unity in the Forrest Yoga community even with our different beliefs.

As my healing journey deepens, my gratitude to Ana Forrest deepens for creating this brilliant method for healing. I also thank my fellow FY mentors and the Forrest Yoga community and students for their loving support. Get excited about Forest Yoga and life!!

Brian Campbell
Brian is a Bodyworker, a Forrest Yoga Guardian Teacher, and a hands-on teacher of Anatomy and Myo-Fascial Release Massage. He has 19 years experience doing Pain specific Structural Massage and 17 years teaching Forrest Yoga in Los Angeles. He is sought out as a teacher who knows how to work with yoga related injuries, spinal rotations, and scar-tissue. 

Brian’s magic is built upon a synergy of Forrest Yoga & Myo-Fascial Bodywork. His mission is to teach people worldwide how to use their hands to help relieve pain in others. 

Brian was a Head Teacher at the Shiatsu Massage School of California in Santa Monica from 2006-2014, teaching Anatomy & Physiology, Pain & Orthopedic Evaluation, Deep-Tissue Massage, and Advanced Myo-Fascial Anatomy & Treatment Courses.

In 2007, Ana Forrest asked Brian to become a Level 5 “Guardian Teacher”, the highest level of distinction in the Forrest Yoga system. As a Guardian, he has committed to Mentoring new Teachers and to carry on the Forrest Yoga Legacy of Healing to future generations. 

In 2013, Brian was hospitalized with “Valley Fever” (coccydiomycosis). It took him 12 months to fully recuperate. During this time he learned how to work through his own body with arthritic and degenerative joint conditions. Now his Forrest Yoga & Bodywork classes are specifically informed and geared towards working with pain and injuries. 

Brian’s most current project is the YogaBodyworkers Training. In these 10-Day courses, Brian has teamed up with fellow Forrest Yoga Guardian Jambo Truong to teach Yoga Teachers, Medical Professionals, and people from all backgrounds how to test the Muscle Functioning of the body’s 16 most important Structural Muscles and how to use MyoFascial Bodywork and Forrest Yoga to resolve pain syndromes and bring the body into optimal conditioning. Brian is leading these trainings and other MyoFascial, Hands-on Anatomy & Forrest Yoga courses throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia.

Catherine Allen
Catherine Allen has been teaching yoga for nearly 20 years and is renowned for her skill as a practitioner and teacher trainer. Cat has completed intensive yoga studies in India and studied several forms of yoga, including Ashtanga Yoga, Iyengar Yoga, and Pralaya Yoga. Her style is rooted in the Forrest Yoga system. For years, Cat apprenticed directly with Ana Forrest, the Creatrix of Forrest Yoga. After receiving the honored title of Forrest Yoga Guardian, Cat became one of the first Forrest Yoga Guardians to be authorized by Ana Forrest to teach the 200-hour Forrest Yoga Foundation Teacher Training and 9-day Forrest Yoga Advanced Teacher Training. Cat herself created Poppy Perinatal Yoga, an approach to prenatal and postnatal yoga that promotes more comfort and support in pregnancy, labor, and postpartum recovery. Yoga teachers and birth workers worldwide throughout the United States and Europe have been trained in the Poppy Perinatal Yoga approach. Cat is a Level 5 Certified Forrest Yoga Teacher, Forrest Yoga Guardian, E-RYT 500, RPYT, Spinning Babies® Certified Parent Educator, and Birth, Loss, and Postpartum Doula. When not on the mat, Cat enjoys spending precious time with her husband, daughter, and coterie of canine and feline companions.

Sita Menon
Sita is the Founder and Owner of Evolve Yoga and Forrest Yoga Guardian and Teacher. Sita found her way to yoga 20 years ago after the birth of her oldest child. What started out as a need to simply find a way to balance a stressful job in telecommunications software and family life with children, quickly deepened into a practice that Sita felt compelled to pursue. After a few years of practicing various styles – Baptiste Power Yoga, Vinyasa, Ashtanga – with various renowned teachers, Sita found her home in Forrest Yoga. She met Ana Forrest, the creatrix of Forrest Yoga, in 2005 and did her first 200-hour teacher training with one of Ana’s early students. She followed that with the 5-day Continuing Education for Teachers in 2010, the Advanced Forrest Training in 2010 and the 200-hour Foundation Training with Ana Forrest in 2012. In Jan 2016, Ana invited her to step into training to become a Guardian. Sita became a Guardian in September 2017 and now runs her own mentorship programs out of Berlin. Sita is currently pursuing a four year professional training in the Mindfuness- based Body Psychotherapy methodology of Hakomi and brings her experiential learning of the body-psyche connection into her teaching.

Sita teaches with a passion for Forrest Yoga that reflects the impact Forrest Yoga has had on her own life. She is enthusiastic about teaching her students how to live free of pain – physical and emotional. She brings in a quality of mindfulness into the way she teaches Forrest Yoga that encourages students to look into their own emotional patterns, accept themselves for who they are and evolve from a place of acceptance and being good enough. Her classes are normally All-levels and she brings exquisite attention to injuries.

Sita also shares her healing touch with her students – with the permissions of her students, she uses her hands-on adjustments as way to hold space for the student while they process and breathe. The sensitivity and depth with which these hands-on adjustments are given, create an incredibly healing and accepting environment where, as human beings, we get to connect to one another on a non-verbal, feeling level. 

Sita is also one of the co-founders of Earthwalking – a platform that organizes the Earthwalking Festival and other Forrest Yoga related events in Berlin and fosters the growth of the local Forrest Yoga community and aspires to promote living in Balance and Beauty.

Erica Mather
Erica Mather is a lifelong teacher who has struggled with emotional overeating, compulsive over-exercising, and body dysmorphia disorder herself. Her book YOUR BODY, YOUR BEST FRIEND: END THE CONFIDENCE-CRUSHING PURSUIT OF UNREALISTIC BEAUTY STANDARDS & EMBRACE YOUR TRUE POWER (New Harbinger, April 2020) is a 7-step spiritual journey helping women befriend their bodies and utilize them as tools and allies on their quest to live their best lives. It’s heavily steeped in Forrest Yoga wisdom, and for any practitioner who has longed for a deeper, off-the-mat exploration into embodiment and improving body image, they will find treasures in Erica’s book.

About it, Ana said: “I’m proud of Erica Mather’s contribution to humanity as a Forrest Yoga Guardian and now as an author. Erica’s book YOUR BODY, YOUR BEST FRIEND holds the keys to freedom from your mental imprisonment. Erica’s deeply intelligent investigation into the nature of entrapment is fascinating. Breathe deeply as you read. Seek out these keys and take action. Good hunting!”

As an embodiment educator, Erica guides people to feel better in, and about their bodies. Her Adore Your Body Transformational Programs helps overcome body image challenges, and The Yoga Clinic of NYC supports students, teachers, and health professionals to learn about empowered care for the body. Mather lives in New York City and Salem, Virginia.

Heidi Sormaz

Heidi Sormaz, Ph.D. E-RYT 500, Forrest Yoga Guardian Teacher, Meditation Coach

Heidi wants to help you feel comfortable even when life isn’t. The path of yoga and meditation was her way out of extreme social anxiety over 20 years ago. Heidi received her Ph.D. and M.S. in Psychology from Yale University and is an expert on the influence of arousal and attention on performance, how anxiety affects thinking, and stress management. Her first love was the study of the mind. As an academic, she experimented with unwinding cognitive habits (habitual thinking) through specific attention and meditation work. Heidi’s current offerings are a unique combination of her expertise in psychology, meditation, and yoga. She encourages students to work with their minds as specifically as they work with their bodies. 

Heidi is the founder and director of Fresh Yoga in New Haven. An original Forrest Yoga Guardian, and lineage holder, she currently teaches the Forrest Yoga 200-HR Foundation Teacher Training, the Forrest Yoga Advanced Teacher Training, teaches and designed the Fresh Yoga 200 and 300-HR Teacher Trainings, and travels nationally to present workshops and trainings. In 2008, Yoga Journal selected Heidi as one of their “Next Generation of Yoga Teachers” and she was selected by The Great Courses to design their first ever course on yoga; Yoga for a Healthy Mind and Body. HDR Press published her book Performing Under Pressure, and Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine published her article “Meditation can Reduce Habitual Responding.” or

Alexandra Sagorz-Zimmerl

Alexandra Sagorz-Zimmerl is the owner of bYOGA with more than ten years of teaching experience based in Vienna, Austria. She is recognized as an International Yoga Alliance E-RYT500 certified yoga teacher and Continuing Education provider. From her first contact with Ana Forrest, Alexandra has been following her calling to spread this unique yoga style and introduced Forrest Yoga in Austria. Since 2011, she has been assisting Ana Forrest throughout the world. In the same year, she helped accurately translate Fierce Medicine into German for which Ana is very grateful for her help in this. Alexandra has studied human energetics and is a certified Somatic Experiencing Practitioner. This method is a body-oriented approach to the resolving of trauma and other stress disorders and matches wonderfully with the Forrest Yoga attempt.

Her intention is to give her students the best possible experience in class, which means finding balance between challenging them and keeping them safe while finding their own potential. Her teaching is a compassionate and grounding experience. You can expect clear and precise directions and hands-on-assists, to feel more aligned and more at home in your body. She shares a positive attitude, optimism, and would name herself a very resourceful person. Besides that, she loves her daily yoga practice, drumming and ceremony, the sun, the stars and the moon, the sea and hiking in the beautiful mountains of Austria.

Rosalind Southward
Charlie Speller

Charlie became a Forrest Yoga teacher in 2011 and has since assisted Ana & Jose 1000+ hours across the globe and online.

Charlie is fascinated by and passionate about all things pelvis-related and this shines through in her teaching of Forrest Yoga. Charlie is also a Poppy Perinatal teacher trainer and pelvic health educator who prioritises the interconnections between body structure, pelvic function (biomechanics), blood health and nervous system regulation (biochemistry) and the deep magick of the pelvis in her teaching.
As well as her tutelage in Forrest Yoga, Charlie has studied with fellow Forrest Yoga Guardians Catherine Allen & Brian Campbell, Dr Kathy Dooley, Christine Kent and is a Scar Tissue Remediation and Management (STREAM) mentored by Dr Ellen Heed.
Charlie’s yoga classes, bodywork & bodycoaching practice, and her Medicine work is dedicated to helping people to feel empowered, to get out of pain and cultivate hope.
Her offerings are always infused with subtle anatomy, her sense of fun, curiosity, compassion, empathy and truth. And, she has real a knack for breaking information down in a way that makes it easy to up-take and take action on.
At the start of 2021, Charlie committed to the role of Forrest Yoga Guardian and has been working on her own understanding and contribution to social justice and planetary health. Charlie is committed to becoming a good ancestor to future generations.
Charlie says that she never really stops teaching, but when she’s not “working”, she loves to learn, be in nature, play in the oceans and lakes and spend quality time with her family and friends.
For more info about Charlie and her journey to teaching visit:
IG: @lumaia_charlie
IG @biomagikal_pelvis

Ricky Saputra

Ricky is a Forrest Yoga Guardian and Teacher, Bodyworker and Aromatherapist based in Indonesia. He is passionate about improving quality of life by reducing physical or emotional pain and getting more energy.

The first time Ricky stepped into Forrest Yoga Class, he knew that this style of yoga was what he was yearning for. There is something magical about Forrest Yoga that helped him to trust his own strength and intuition. He became a Forrest Yoga teacher in 2018 and has been assisting Ana and Jose throughout the world and in cyber space.

His style of teaching encourages his students be in their own body and believe in their true potential using a strong and safe sequence. He also use his bodywork skill and hands on assist to help his students to find free up their breath and ease their pain.

For more info about Ricky visit:

Web :

IG :

Ilias Kousis

Hi everybody, I am Ilias and am based in Oslo, Norway, where I am teaching regular classes for HiYoga. In addition, I offer workshops and teacher training modules, all Forrest Yoga related. My foremost passion and intention is to help spread and further develop the healing medicine of Forrest Yoga.

You can learn more about me by visiting my website:

Moreover, you can practice live online with me once per week. Click here for information:

Chantal Hauser

Chantal Hauser @chantalhauseryoga is the founder of YOGA ATELIER near Zurich, Switzerland and has been teaching full-time ever since leaving university.

She is a published author of a Kids Yoga article and currently
– teaching small group classes @myyogaatelier and
– private clients across the globe
– appearing at various company events
– pursuing studies in Positive Psychology
– leading events for athletic companies
– and passionately teaching yoga to preschoolers, young yogis and Teens!

“As a movement teacher I guide the practitioner to what is and what could be so that the wiser Self can show up. Let’s start this journey together!”

Chantal has brought Forrest Yoga to the Zurich yoga studios in 2014 and has extensively presented the style all over Europe at festivals and through guest-teaching.
She first experienced Forrest Yoga in the late 00’s in NYC and started teaching and integrating the style in 2012.

“The Forrest Yoga practice has taught me how to listen to my body and how I feel within. Listening made me feel and feeling made me vulnerable.
Naturally; I completely rebelled. It took many deep breaths, the guidance of Ana, lots of hours of practicing asana and just as many hours crying on my mat to acquiesce to the process. To be open — to start the work, and to allow space to breathe and be.”

Follow her @chantalhauseryoga or visit her website:

Victoria Kourkaki

Victoria Kourkaki is the founder of Nama Yoga Studio, the Forrest Yoga studio in Athens, Greece and she is the leader of the yoga space, seminars and training programs.

Victoria has been extensively training in Forrest Yoga® by Ana Forrest and the Guardians since 2012. She has been assisting Ana Forrest and Jose Calarco since 2016. Victoria Kourkaki is also Kundalini Yoga teacher (200 hours) and a Certified Poppy Perinatal Integration Teacher – yoga for pregnant and postpartum. She is an International Yoga Alliance E-RYT500 Certified Yoga Teacher.

Victoria’s teaching comes from a very authentic place inside of her. She has a magical voice and a magical, healing touch that can travel someone to depths inside themselves. Her teaching is soothing, focused and uplifting. Her classes are strong, healing and fun. Victoria’s enthusiasm and encouragement is contagious! She is interested in helping people alleviate their pain and get centred in their core so that they move in life pain-free and confident.

My mission, as a Forrest Yoga Mentor, is to offer to students around the world the chance to experience Forrest Yoga. I learnt how to feel and accept my true, authentic self and believe in my true potential. Forrest Yoga builds the curiosity and willingness to explore our inner space, our breath, our wins and limitations. This process brings openness, sweetness and excitement in life. This is what I am passionate about sharing and teaching!


Albina Rippy

Albina grew up in a small village with no running water or electricity in the middle of nowhere in Kazakhstan.  It’s been a fascinating journey of ups and downs to her life now as a serial entrepreneur, success coach, a mom and a wife, as well as a passionate lover of Forrest Yoga.

Albina’s life took a completely new trajectory for the better once her path crossed Ana Forrest. Albina is deeply grateful to Forrest Yoga for teaching her to listen to her inner wisdom, love and heal her body and connect to her Spirit. She is learning joy and playfulness from Jose Calarco every time they see each other. Albina’s business savvy comes from her continuous listening to her intuition, one of her greatest gifts from Ana Forrest.

It’s been Albina’s honor to be of service to Forrest Yoga over the last 20 years through hosting many FY Foundation and Advanced Teacher Trainings, workshops and events in her 7 yoga studios in Houston Texas, Forrest Yoga retreat in her retreat center in Taos, NM and travel the world whenever she can assisting Ana and Jose.

Rahshaana Green

Rahshaana knew Forrest Yoga was a transformational practice when she first encountered its healing powers in 2008. It sparked an awakening in her that helped her see clearly that she was not walking her path in alignment with her purpose. Forrest Yoga became a place of self-exploration and growth, but also a place of accountability in truth-speaking and letting herself shine as brightly as she could. Once she did her teacher training, she could no longer ignore her inner wisdom and aligned her life so she could integrate Forrest Yoga into everything that she does. The time that she has spent assisting Ana and Jose in the past couple years have been the greatest gift as they encouraged her to step fully into her power and entrusted her with the honor of sharing these beautiful teachings with others to help them heal, connect with their inner strength and support the interconnectedness of us all.
It’s Rahshaana’s heartfelt desire to continue mending the hoop by taking these teachings to those who could most benefit from its support in building resilience.
Find out more about Rahshaana here
Find her on Instagram

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