BRENDAN GIBBONS, CO-FOUNDER/OWNER
Practicing yoga and meditation for close to 20 years, Brendan’s wellness journey has taken him around the globe, having immersed in study in India, Nepal, and Thailand, before completing his 200-hour RYT certification with YogaWorks, NYC. Continuing his studies, Brendan recently completed a Vipassana Meditation intensive in Indonesia, adding another layer of depth to his variety of offerings as an instructor.
Brendan’s warmth, approachable manner, and attention to detail appeal to seekers of all levels—both knowers and growers. His energetic yoga classes combine intelligent sequencing with an upbeat pace that leaves you feeling calm yet invigorated—and with a better understanding of your body. Meditation classes with Brendan utilize a range of modalities, breathing techniques, and mindfulness practices to further cultivate and maintain mind-body balance and deep inner connection.
Brendan’s passion for and dedication to teaching has not only bridged the Hudson, but has spanned two coasts, guiding adults and kids alike—in classroom and teacher training settings—from Hoboken, surrounding suburbs, and New York City to the gold coast of Los Angeles.
As Co-Founder of Urban Souls, Brendan’s uniquely comprehensive background blends diverse teaching experience with studio ownership, operations, and management. His mission is to help you navigate your urban world with clarity, focus and flow—in an inclusive space you’ll call your own.
KAREN FLANNERY, CO-FOUNDER/OWNER
From the moment Karen stepped onto a yoga mat, she knew it was just the beginning of her wellness journey, personal and otherwise. Ever since, Karen has been joyfully diving in, exploring multiple wellness disciplines, all of which cultivate life-work balance both on and off the mat—for herself and others.
As a Yoga Teacher, Karen completed her 200-hour RYT certification, as well as an additional 200-hour immersion in teacher studies. She is presently working toward certification as a teacher of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), enrolled in Jon Kabat-Zinn’s renowned curriculum, developed at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center. While deepening her studies, Karen works to inspire fellow seekers in the corporate world to practice MBSR techniques, with a compassionate approach and down-to-earth exploration of present moment experience.
As a Life Coach, Karen specializes in helping urban dwellers with a myriad of life transitions, from career development and job change to navigating the challenges of new parenthood or an empty nest. Karen also has an advanced diploma in coaching from NYU and has completed foundational studies in NYU’s Master’s of Nutrition program. As Co-Founder of Urban Souls, Karen is a true visionary who has married her wellness expertise and business savvy with integrity, enthusiasm, and an open heart, to provide a welcoming, supportive space where everyone in our mile-square community can dive in together—experiencing the joy of inner and outer connection.
With a long-time love of yoga in tow, Alana found a deeper practice after a few big life events, including moving to NYC and running the NY Marathon. She then earned her 500-hour teaching certification at ISHTA Yoga, where she found the sciences of Hatha, Tantra, and Ayurveda to be fascinating. A forever student, Alana has earned additional certifications in Meditation, Restorative, Yoga Nidra, and Yin Yoga, and is grateful for the opportunity to extend this variety to her students.
Today, Alana lives in Jersey City. Aside from teaching, she works full time in digital program management. This has allowed her to explore her passion: the connection between yoga and work-life balance. She loves sharing an uplifting, calming and grounding practice with others, and she hopes that through yoga, students will discover they already have the tools they need to come back to balance.
Due to her unbridled teenage rebellion, Casey was pushed into practicing yoga at a young age. At first, she hated it! Eventually her daily practice became a way of life as it helped her to overcome clinical depression and bulimia. Now Casey has over 1,000 hours of yoga teacher training, which include an initial 200-hour certification, 2008 Bikram YTT in Acapulco, 2013 advanced YTT at Dharma Yoga in Austin, Texas, 2017 10-day silent Vipassana course, and 2018 Yoga for All YTT with Dianne Bondy and Amber Karnes.
Casey recently developed Bodylove! Yoga workshops, created to spread awareness of eating disorders and the Body Acceptance movement. She teaches from a Body Positive and anti-diet culture perspective and advocates so that her daughters may grow up feeling empowered and in a safer world. Casey is honored to be part of the incredible community that is Urban Souls! www.caseyurban.com.
Nine years ago, Courtney found her entire mindset and mood transformed after rolling out her mat and linking movement with breath for the very first time. With a fast-paced job in advertising, she discovered yoga as a way to slow down, to respond rather than react, and to live more fully in the present moment. Courtney completed her initial 200-hour teacher training at Devotion Yoga, and earned additional certification in teaching Restorative Yoga with Tam Terry.
Fascinated by the mind-body connection, Courtney is inspired by ways to connect more fully—both to ourselves and to those around us. Her classes encourage exploration of the body, mind, and soul through mindful flow sequences, with the goal of leaving her students feeling reconnected to themselves and the world around them.
Denise is a wellness advocate, fitness enthusiast, and instructor who’s committed to helping people care for their bodies, so they can move with physical integrity and peace of mind. She’s adept at incorporating strengthening modalities that focus on bridging efficient movement pathways, building a strong core, improving stability, rejuvenating connective tissue, and preserving the joints. Denise creatively leverages her training in several disciplines including Barre, Pilates, Anatomy Trains® for Movement Professionals, Schwinn Indoor Cycling, Triggerpoint Myofascial Release Therapy™ and The MELT Method® (Hand & Foot, MELT, MELT Performance) to customize programs for groups and individuals.
Denise’s infectious enthusiasm for self care makes her classes fun, while knowledge and attention to detail make them educational. People who MELT with Denise are amazed at how great their bodies feel right after class. Her techniques help alleviate chronic pain, quiet the nervous system, relieve tension, and improve performance. Denise is a native New Yorker, has a diverse background in not only fitness, but finance and art, and absolutely adores the Hoboken community!
James Calleo is a musician and yogi living in Hoboken. As a teacher, James received his 200-hour certification in 2016 from Jeff Posner’s Twisted Lotus training, a Laughing Lotus-inspired course than blends various styles and teachings. Ever since, James has been teaching 8+ local classes per week. Both his personal practice and teaching are ever changing, as he furthers his education in different aspects of functional movement. Students can look forward to a fun, upbeat vibe as well as learning and trying something new in each class with James.
James is a full-time musician who writes, records and performs his original music in the New Jersey/New York area. A love of travel and nature inspires his songwriting and day-to-day lifestyle.
Jessica has been practicing yoga since 2002 as a way to move, breathe and be present. After fifteen years as a yoga student, Jessica completed her 200-hour yoga certification at Devotion Yoga in 2017. Initially seeking to deepen her personal practice, Jessica discovered the joy of sharing yoga with others and quickly began teaching vinyasa classes that same year. Each of her classes are rooted in a safe, well-rounded practice that flows through thoughtful sequencing and fresh playlists, leaving you calm and at home in your body.
Outside of yoga, Jessica is passionate about working at the intersection of health and education and leads a team at a national non-profit organization with the mission to create healthy school environments. Jessica lives in Jersey City with her husband and enjoys hiking, skiing, vegetarian cooking, cozying up with a good book and a strong coffee, and walking her dog around town.
Julie discovered the life-changing practice of yoga over ten years ago and has been grateful to follow the connection of breath to movement ever since. She is a graduate of Devotion Yoga’s 200-hour yoga teacher training, and having advanced her offerings in energetic healing, holds two additional certifications in Restorative Yoga, and is a Second Degree Reiki practitioner.
Julie’s personal practice has been instrumental in providing emotional and physical healing, as well as providing ongoing community, clarity, and spiritual support. Julie’s wish is to make yoga accessible to everyone, while sharing how a deeper understanding of our true selves can be revealed through practice. She teaches the principles of yoga asana, meditation, and mindfulness—and infuses her classes with compassion and supportive ways to incorporate these tools into a balanced and joyful life. www.julie-waters.com
Kat’s passion for health and fitness started at a young age while playing sports. It continued to grow while earning her B.S in Exercise Science Applied Kinesiology at Rutgers University. Her own exercise happens in the gym, the ocean, at the track, and in the studio, always exploring how the human body moves and functions. Kat’s desire to deepen her exploration and share her knowledge led to her 200-hour teacher training certification at YogaWorks in NYC.
Kat believes, “In a life where everyone is so consumed with what is to come or what has happened, living in the present tends to be neglected.” Yoga has taught Kat to live in the present moment on and off her mat. Through breath and movement she hopes to help others turn their awareness inward, both mentally and physically. As a calm and compassionate human being, Kat hopes to help others explore inner peace and find vitality.
Transplanted from San Francisco to New York City, Kevin works globally in the fashion industry as a Lighting Director for editorial and advertising. Encouragement by a friend to drop in on a beloved teacher’s yoga classes led to an enthusiastic desire to share the profound practice of restorative yoga with others. YogaWorks and Iyengar lineages, especially Iyengar restoratives, are the foundations of his continued practice and teachings today. Kevin is inspired by the quality of Light, artists, dancers, and different cultures. He practices yoga to feel grounded, reconnected to self, and to create space for transformation; and he teaches to share his revelations, inspiring curiosity about “the teacher within.”
Trainings include: 200-hour and 300-hour YTT at YogaWorks, Restorative and Adaptive Yoga Techniques with Jillian Pransky, Mindful Resilience for Trauma Recovery with Veteran’s Yoga Project, The Roll Model Method: The Science of Rolling and Ball Sequencing and Innovation with Laural Beversdorf, and Breathing Project studies with Leslie Kaminoff.
Kira has been practicing yoga since 2005, and teaching since 2010. She initially trained in vinyasa flow at NYC’s Sonic Yoga, and has since completed trainings in Thai Partner Yoga and Reiki energy healing, as well as yoga workshops with Ana Forrest. She has a bachelor's degree in theater with a heavy focus on movement and voice, as well as graduate courses in anatomy, physiology, and psychology. Additionally, Kira has completed 100 hours of shadow work with an occupational therapist in various clinical settings to learn how to teach movement to special populations.
Nothing makes Kira happier than seeing a student's face look a little lighter by the end of her class. She is grateful for the opportunity to pursue her passion by teaching full time—and in class, you can expect a cathartic journey through shapes, music, and imagery that will leave your mind, body, and soul feeling cleansed.
Fueled by her love of the practice and a passion to serve others in experiencing the gifts of it, laurieG has been guiding explorations in Yoga and Meditation since 1999. Her intention-infused, organically flowing sessions encourage a deep dive into compassionate presence, while cultivating a sense of spaciousness in body, mind and heart. She is known for her resonant voice and ability to distill the wisdom of the teachings in a way that is both accessible and profound, serving students on the mat and in their lives.
In 2017, laurieG launched Root & Bloom, an online program providing weekly doses of content for those seeking a home-based practice of meditation, mantra and self study. She is a certified Yoga Alliance Continuing Education Provider (YACEP), and a lead trainer for Giving Tree Yoga’s Golden Bridge University for Well-Being, offering advanced learning, training and certification programs. At the heart of her work is serving individuals in finding their way home, breath by breath, to the still center within—and in moving with greater consciousness in the world.
In-home, in-studio, on retreat and online, laurieG seamlessly weaves insights gleaned from her studies, stumblings and epiphanies into experiences that are grounding, heart-opening, deeply resonant and transformational. As a certified teacher of ISHTA Yoga (500RYT), Yoga Nidra, Prenatal Yoga, and Radiant Child Yoga, laurieG is deeply thankful for the beautiful beings who have informed and guided her in her practice, and continue to inspire her in this earth walk.
Leah is a 200-hour certified yoga instructor and long-time Hoboken resident who has been shining her light in the local wellness scene for years. As a meditation teacher, she has spent over a decade practicing and teaching a wide range of meditation techniques, including those studied at the Himalayan Institute and the Open Center in New York City. She is also trained in the T.M. method, or Transcendental Meditation.
Leah was drawn to meditation after studying the significant benefits it provides to the brain as revealed by neuroscience. You will often hear Leah refer to meditation as, “much needed brain rest” as she weaves the science of meditation into each session she leads. Leah teaches guided meditation classes and workshops at a variety of yoga studios and in corporate settings.
Michael Simpson is a yoga teacher and aspiring writer, but primarily considers himself a lifelong student. After years of competitive sports left him with chronic lower back and knee pain, Michael came into his first downdog in November 2012. He then studied Anatomy and Physiology at Penn State University, and went on to become a yoga teacher and regular faculty member of local teacher trainings. Therapeutic by nature, Michael’s classes are known for his non-dogmatic style. He received his first 200-hour certification under the guidance of Heather Sheridan and Julie Gurevich. Since, Michael has enjoyed the privilege of studying with modern-day master teachers such as Jason Crandell, Jillian Pransky, Carrie Parker, and Stacey Bell.
During each class, Michael seamlessly weaves together precise anatomy, meditation techniques, and storytelling into a powerful yoga experience. You'll leave his classes feeling centered, rejuvenated and spacious.
Sarah has been an avid student of health and nutrition most of her adult life, and her formal education includes the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and The Natural Gourmet Cooking School in NYC, Bright Spirit Yoga Teacher Training in Hoboken, Laughing Lotus Teacher Training NYC and a B.A. from Rowan University, Glassboro NJ.
Sarah’s love of travel and wellness, combined with her passion to help others find more balance in their lives, inspired her to become a Co-Founder of One Hundred Skies Yoga Adventures (www.onehundredskies.com) where she enjoys planning, organizing and presenting retreats for teachers and students. After 20 years in a corporate job in NYC, Sarah has been teaching yoga full time since 2008. Sarah is a member of Yoga Alliance, the Slow Food Movement, and the Center for Science in the Public Interest.
Satya is a 500-hour registered yoga instructor and has been teaching yoga since 2006. Known for presenting real-world spirituality and practical concepts, his reflections, meditations, and humor are presented in an edgy “rebel yogi” way that he encourages students to apply to all aspects of their lives—challenging not only the body and conditioning, but also ideas (and on occasion, your patience!).
Initiated into Babaji’s Kriya Yoga, he was given the name Satya, which means truth, in a naming ceremony in the Himalayas. In addition, he is a Reiki Master Teacher, Osho Sannyasin, certified personal trainer, second-degree black belt, and holds a Master’s Degree in Herbology. www.rebelyogi.com
Stephanie's yoga philosophy reflects a renewed, continuous curiosity of the eight limbs of yoga—especially Ayurveda, the sister science to vinyasa flow yoga. She incorporates this sensibility into each class she teaches by observing, and helping students to observe, the drivers that influence achieving and maintaining balance, both on and off the mat.
Stephanie lends her time as a board member for Exhale to Inhale, a non-profit that provides trauma-informed yoga sessions to survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence. Stephanie is a 200-hour certified yoga teacher, and an earlier riser who looks forward to starting the day with you—the Urban Souls Hoboken community—through mindful movement and clear intention setting.
Tam Terry, ERYT-500, YACEP, is a Kripalu certified Advanced Teacher of Yoga Therapy and an International Presenter with over 5000 hours of experience as an instructor. She teaches vinyasa, restorative and therapeutic disciplines as heart centered, mindful movement, in an alignment-based practice that helps students access functional movement using healthy body dynamics. This unique practice extends the duration of joint health, increases access to flexibility and strength, and cultivates a relaxed and focused countenance.
As a 30-year Hoboken resident, Tam’s sense of community is powerful. She’s a 2017 NAACP award recipient who has received Mayoral Recognition for her outreach. Tam created and directs the fundraiser, Veterans Yoga Project Hoboken, and co-founded Yoga for Good, which ensures accessibility to underserved populations, veterans, and those with special needs—including all capabilities, ages, and income levels. Tam’s warm, nourishing presence inspires her loyal students to live full, authentic, and balanced lives. www.tamterry.com