Benders teachers are passionate about yoga!  We have all completed a MINIMUM of 200 hours of training at a certified yoga training school but many of us have done much, much more.  So what does all of it mean?  It means that you are getting yoga instruction from people who have studied hard – not just about the yoga poses – but about anatomy, proper breathing techniques, meditation, yoga philosophy, and safe teaching practices. 

We think we are pretty darn good, but we know we can always be better.  That is why Benders teachers are now required to undergo a minimum number of hours of ADDITIONAL training every single year.  By keeping our knowledge and training current, we are able to provide YOU, our clients, with the best yoga experience possible!  


CYT500/RYT500 Teachers:

These teachers have completed a MINIMUM of 500 hours of yoga training.

CELINA MARLATT  (hatha yoga)

Additional Certifications/Training:  

Restorative Yoga, Teaching to Seniors, Advanced Asana, Offering Advanced Assists, Pre/Post Natal, and several Therapeutic courses with Brenda Dowell


Celina first came to yoga on a friend’s invitation in 2003 and has stayed ever since. She fell in love with how it restores her physically and mentally, allowing her to better hear her own inner voice. Yoga is a vital part of her journey of personal growth, cultivating balance, strength, and flexibility.

In the pursuit of these elements and to deepen her practice, Celina completed her 200hr Yoga Teacher Training in 2008. Since then, Celina has also discovered joy in teaching sharing the benefits of yoga with others. Most recently, Celina completed her 500hr Yoga Teaching Certification through Devatree School of Yoga in 2015. Her interests lie in deepening her knowledge of meditation and mindfulness practices as well as anatomy and opportunities to use the therapeutic elements of her training.

Classes Taught: 

Relax & Refresh, Yoga Essentials


E-RYT200 Teachers:

These teachers have completed a MINIMUM of 200 hours of yoga training PLUS have over 1000 hours of teaching experience.

MICHELE BARNES  (hatha yoga)

Additional Certifications/Training:  Michele Barnes pic

YACEP, Certified Restorative & Pre/Postnatal Yoga Teacher, Kripalu YogaDance, Yoga for Seniors, Hons BA-English & Theatre Arts


Since she began teaching in 2003, Michele’s practice and teaching has undergone much transformation. Her inquisitive nature has inspired her to continuously research the history and benefits of yoga. The physical, emotional and mental benefits of yoga have been abundantly documented. While many of the poses that make up the asana practice can have far-reaching benefits, how they are practiced makes a big difference to whether they can be helpful or harmful. The over-abundance of forward-bending poses and hip openers in Western yoga have taken their toll on loyal practitioners, many of whom are women. In Michele’s classes, you will be taught how to practice yoga in ways that acknowledge the biomechanics of the human body and honour the sacred design of the spine…while developing core strength and overall stability and mobility.

In addition to the physical asana practice, Michele also enjoys guiding her students in meditation and breathing practices that encourage loving reconnection with the wisdom of the body and emotions. Michele encourages her students to stay in the present moment, honour their experiences and challenge themselves to step outside of their comfort zones…all while ‘preserving the curves’ of the spine.

You can learn more about Michele and her offerings at http://www.michelebarnes.com

Classes Taught:  

Yoga Essentials, Yoga for Women, Mind-Body Connection, 200HR Yoga Teacher Training


LESLIE HEISZ  (hatha yoga)

Additional Certifications/Training:Packet Pickup Chicago Marathon 2011

Yoga for Longevity (50 hours)


Leslie started her yoga journey at her doctor’s suggestion, to help manage her stress and anxiety.  After experiencing the amazing, transformative effects of yoga for herself, she realized that sharing yoga with others was going to become a major part of her life!  Leslie completed her 200HR yoga teacher training in the summer of 2010 then soon made plans to open her own studio.  In April of 2012 Benders was born. 

Leslie is now (slowly!) pursuing her 500HR training level.  

Classes Taught:  

Workshops, Private Yoga


CYT200/RYT200 Teachers:

These teachers have completed a MINIMUM of 200 hours of yoga training and may or may not be registered with a governing body.  

JESSICA KENNETT   (vinyasa yoga)

Additional Certifications/Training:    

Certified Holistic Nutritionist


Jessica has been practicing yoga for 8 years and has undergone physical and mental transformations through her practice. Jessica’s passion for yoga inspired her to complete her 200hr intensive Vinyasa yoga training in Costa Rica in 2014. She soon after graduated from The Institute of Holistic Nutrition in Toronto, expanding her knowledge in nutrition and wellness. Jessica views yoga as a moving meditation which flows through breath and movement. It is a tool which allows individuals to reconnect with their body, quiet their mind, and to attain balance, strength, and flexibility. Jessica blends dynamic movement with inner stillness, leading students through quickly flowing postures, guided by the breath. Join her for a light-hearted practice – find humor, be playful, sweat, and find balance with your mind, body and spirit. 

Classes Taught: 

Yoga Essentials, BodySculpt, Vinyasa Flow 



Additional Training/Certifications:  

Baptiste Institute’s Art of Assisting


Christin began her yoga journey almost 10 years ago and fell in love with the practice, the breath and meditative sanctuary it provided.  Wishing to share this wonderful practice with others she completed her 200RYT training in the spring of 2014.  She considers herself to be a student as well as a teacher, learning as much from her eager participants as they do from her.

Christin’s favorite style of yoga is Yin, a passive practice that complements other more energetic styles of yoga.   The Yin style is a practice of letting go, of surrender, allowing the fascia or connective tissue in the body to soften and lengthen thereby aiding in the relief of joint discomfort, increasing flexibility and improving range of motion.  It is also a practice that cultivates patience, compassion and non-judgment in the self and others.

Classes Taught: 

Passive Yoga



Additional Certifications/Training:

Registered Massage Therapist, Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapist, Reiki Master Level III


Ginelle has over 20 years of experience working with people’s bodies as a massage therapist and yoga instructor.  Her yoga classes consist of a centering meditation (which intuitively helps to determine the needs of each student in each class) followed by a mix of breathwork, hatha, yin, restorative and phoenix rising yoga to make each class unique and special. 

With hands on assists, each class with Ginelle is a nurturing and joyful yoga experience.  

Classes Taught: 

Yoga Flow



Additional Certifications/Training:


Classes Taught:

Yoga Essentials