VIVAcroyoga Teachers are the face of the festival. We welcome folks who are passionate about sharing, skilled at their practice and committed to the values of our community.
Here are our 2022 teachers!
A teaching team since 1982, this senior married couple connects the dots between mind, body, breath and relationships. It is the sharing of self that touches the student’s heart, and the power of teaching is the ability to share the inner and outer body experience with their students.
Whether on a slackline, on her hands or with other humans, Heidi loves being in a conversation with gravity. A pioneer of the hands-free movement, she loves the acroyoga of ‘staying’, especially when using minimal points of contact between base and flyer. The collaborative, creative and technical possibilities of acroyoga and partner acrobatics are what drew the former architect out of the office, and into the world of movement. Her highly original flows and classes are infused with clever drills that will keep you coming back for more!
Acroyoga shapes Jill’s life, and life shapes her Acroyoga practice. Through her work with AcroYoga Montreal, it has always been apparent to her that the practice belongs to each and every one of us. She loves to share stuff that works for her, and observe and relish in what works for you. Joy and focus are fundamental to her teaching and practice.
Years of martial arts and infinite shenanigans. Then Acroyoga entered Mat’s life. Balance, subtlety, strength – always favorites. Connecting, creating through partnership: that’s why he does this Sharing the practice and what it fosters: is why he teaches.
Mireille first evolved into the world of classical dance and then expanded her field of expertise to the circus arts, especially contortion. Her artistic activities led her to explore singing, rhythmic gymnastics, improvisational theater, hand-to-hand and choreography. Mireille is also a acro-yoga teacher since 2013.
My journey to yoga began in 2007 when l wanted to heal various injuries and increase flexibility while training martial arts. A semi-regular practice became a regular practice after martial arts injuries became too frequent. While looking for a more challenging practice I was introduced to AcroYoga in 2012. After my first flight, I was instantly in love. Since then, I have become passionate about learning techniques to help gain flexibility, strength, and body awareness. In 2014 I completed Level 1 and Level 2 AcroYoga Montreal teacher certification.
Mel’s two feet started dancing at a young age in a small town in the Canadian Maritimes. She completed a 3 year Professional Theater program and danced and acted professionally for 20 years. She is a Certified Movement Analyst (CMA) and currently studying to become a Certified Core Energetics Practitioner.
Mel created Inner Fire Dance from a deep desire to offer a SAFER, BRAVER space. She celebrates embodiment, empowerment, and full self-expression. When we light up our own INNER FIRE we light up THE WORLD.
Joey Stafford-Abbott is a co-founder at AcroYoga Global and a professor at Vanier College. Driven by helping folks to live healthier lives, he takes pride in teaching AcroYoga to beginners. As a professor, he introduced the practice to the college world by creating the first credited course of its kind. That’s right, AcroYoga for college credit. He lives in Montreal and likes dancing, mangos, and jiu-jitsu.
Passionate about the way Acroyoga embodies the best of human qualities, JF has been practicing since 2014. He started teaching to the north and south of Montreal after years of practice and has also taught several session at l’UQAM. After two years of pandemic, Jean-François wants to participate in the renewal and rebirth of his local community and the regrowth of this incredible discipline, this wonderful game of acroyoga.
Glenn Farley became involved in yoga and ballet and Acroyoga nearly ten years ago in Sedona, Arizona, USA. He has studied with various teachers to hone his skills in Acroyoga, Partner Acrobatics, and Dance Lifts. Glenn is a certified Acroyoga Teacher Level 2 through Acroyoga Montreal (2016) and trained with Pitch Catch Circus (2018). Glenn has been co-teaching Acroyoga with Ali Geter for five years in Northern Arizona.
I started practicing acroyoga in San Francisco back in January of 2009. I’m a Level 2 certified teacher with AcroYoga Montreal, and I am also certified through Partner Acrobatics. My main goal is creating a sense of community whose individuals can all support each other in their mutual growth. I co-conspired to create “Awkroyoga” which is what I’d love to teach again at Viva, as a playful way of inspiring the creative process to come alive, and habits of self-judgment to soften and ideally fade away.
Sabrina loves the simple that enrich our daily lives. Well-being, yoga, ahimsa, personal development, and the outdoors are some of the elements that resonate with her. In 2015, on a trip 15000 km away from home, she found acroyoga and her passion was ignited. She is fascinated with the learning possibilities in the practice, including communication, confidence, and especially fun with play. She lives an active life, at the reliable pace of a turtle, and loves to share her knowledge with folks she meets on her path.
I’m a playful mover who loves creative spontaneity and serendipity. When I’m playing acro, I love exploring the uniqueness between each partnership and how that changes what direction a particular flow will go or how it will feel. I like to be rooted in the present moment to be better able to adapt on the fly instead of having a preconceived idea of where I’m trying to go. I’ve been doing acroyoga for eight years, massage therapy for nine years, juggling\prop manipulation for fifteen years, graduated as an osteopath at the end of last year and became a dad at the spring equinox this year.
Sarah is fascinated by the amazing diversity of practices that acroyoga offers. She loves the unique character of each acrobatic encounter, whether it brings a new movement, or underlines the strength and power of women, or inspires a creative flow. Sarah is a 200hr certified yoga teacher through Yandara Yoga in 2017, and has her Acroyoga certification from VanCityAcro in 2019. She loves sharing her passion at festivals in Montreal and around the world.
Hi! I’m Max! I absolutely love living in Montreal and am so happy to have learned from the best in acro. My top interests in no particular order are cooking, acro, rock climbing, cuddling and excel spreadsheets. I’ve been doing acroyoga for about 5 years and just finished my teacher training with AYM in Mexico this March. Super excited to be teaching in my Hometown!!
I am a playful kid who likes to goof around, explore, create and use acroyoga to connect on a way deeper level than words can. I love to geek on body textures (I know I’m weird hehe, and I actually think this is one of my strengths) I love when participants can create something new and bring a part of their fully accomplished weirdness in the practice. Coming from the world of Vinyasa, I LOVE flows and when all the postures that we teach create a dance at the end.
Nathan was educated at the Louisville Youth Performing Arts School, Circus Smirkus, the University of Dance and Circus of Stockholm, and the Ecole de Cirque de Québec. He began creating works in 2014 starting with a three person juggling show that toured the US. In 2019 he worked with Acting for Climate as co-director and artist and in 2020 he returned to Montréal to co create Acting for Climate Montréal and co direct their first production “Branché”. As an artist he has toured with Cirque Eloize, “Paysage Dynamiques” by Erika et Jimmy, and performed his juggling act around the world.
Athena discovered acroyoga ten years ago on the banks of the Ganges, and it was love-at-first-balancing-pose. Upon returning to her home state of New Jersey, she continued training and became certified as both a yoga and acroyoga teacher. In 2015, she moved to Montreal. When she is not upside down, you will find her interpreting and studying French.
Ali is a movement artist based in Flagstaff, Arizona. Her background as a yoga teacher set the foundation for the rest of her movement practice. Ali is most inspired by movement as a connected dance and is especially drawn to adagio partner acrobatics. She was first was introduced to acroyoga in 2011 and it became her favorite way to interact with and build community. She is also an aerialist, specializing in aerial hoop. Ali has been co-teaching acroyoga with Glenn Farley for five years in Northern Arizona.
Lea Debal & Abdul Sattar Ouayda
Abdul and Lea met in an AcroYoga class in their hometown of Beirut, Lebanon. They’ve been passionate about AcroYoga since then. They completed their Level 1 AcroYoga International TTC towards the end of 2019, and they try to get involved/join any AcroYoga related event we can! They recently moved to Montreal and cannot wait to meet the community.
Daniel is a Montréal Acroyoga certified teacher since 2017. Coming from the dangerous world of desk jobs, Daniel decided to take matters into his own hands and get fit! Dabbling first in folk dancing, Daniel’s path become more serious when he studied calisthenics for 2 years, working with Montreal’s Team Tribarta. During his travels, he learned about Acroyoga and realized his hometown was a major hub for the practice. He practiced diligently with different teachers in Montréal for 2 years and completed his teacher training in 2018. Jamming with friends and teaching newbies are his favorite ways to acro!