Our Teaching Team

Meet Your Santosha Yoga Instructors

Our team of yoga professionals are without a doubt amongst the most experienced and qualified in the world. They boast extremely diverse backgrounds and all share one common passion: helping others achieve balance in their lives by finding inner peace and contentment so that they may see true beauty in the everyday, appreciate all life has to offer, and live life to the fullest.

Sunny Richards

SunnyRichards_SantoshaSunny is the founder and director of Santosha and holds a Yoga Alliance ERYT-500 accreditation. She has devoted her life to Santosha, which was born from a dream to create a sacred place for healing, transformation and to awaken the incredible potential of happiness. Sunny teaches and supports her student’s journey from the heart. She allows students to find their inner-truths and come to an understanding of their own body’s abilities and strengths through their connection to their breath. Sunny believes wholeheartedly in being a guiding light for others so that she may shine the way. She importantly believes that to guide others in yoga, one should live a life that is transparent for all to see. In essence, this is an ideal upheld by Patanjali, reflected in the Sutras and found in the first two paths on the eightfold path of yoga: the Yamas and Niyamas. Sunny states “If we cannot be it, we cannot teach it”. Sunny’s passion is to teach and share her knowledge. She dedicates herself to studying, learning, and practicing. She feels that self-practice is the key which allows the transference of what she learns from others to become her teachings. This combination of practice and study through dedication and devotion has assisted Sunny to gain deeper understanding of the art and science of yoga and to apply this appropriately in Asana, Pranayama, Mantra and Meditation for the different levels of students she has the privilege to share the teachings with. A strong strength of Sunny’s is the ability to present the teachings in an accessible way for her students. Her down-to-earth nature and belief that life should never be taken too seriously means that a sense of play and fun is the foundation of what she encourages in life, so that what we do is done with passion and honesty. As a result, Sunny’s teachings are lively and humorous. Sunny loves what she does, life and all it brings, her family and her friends, and she is so thankful for her teachers and for the opportunities that allowed her to create Santosha. Sunny welcomes you all with an open heart filled with love and smiles. She considers all who walk through Santosha’s doors as family and promises to be available to her students throughout her life, whenever needed.

Words From Students:

“I’ve never known a person’s name to suit them so well! You are the warmest, friendliest, most down to earth person I have possibly met. What you do is remarkable! I can only imagine the energy you give to create such a wonderful Yoga Teacher program. You have so much love bursting out of you, and you give so much to the students. Your honesty, open candor and knowledge is such an incredible quality, and I only hope I can take a leaf out of your book. Thank you for all you do and you give” – Jehan

“Sunny, you are such an amazing woman and a great teacher. You have taught us so much about life and yoga. You inspire so many and through each of us there will be positive change in this world. Thank you Sunny” – Milo

“Sunny, I am so proud to be one of your students and no words can fully express my gratitude for an amazing experience. You are an incredible teacher and woman. Much love” – Saeko

“Sunny I cannot begin to describe how much I appreciate your passion for yoga and guiding others. I learned so much from you and I am now a new person. Everything you have done for us in this course has come straight from your heart. Your smile and bright energy is contagious in the best way possible” – Lily

Thia

Anyone who has joined us on a training over the last few years, will already know about the wonderful Thia! Thia is an integral part of the Santosha team in Bali, supporting our students and leading incredible kirtan sessions for our groups. Thia is an RYT-500 teacher and teaches on our Bali courses as well as offering student support and admin on our trainings.

Through yoga Thia started to understand more about her breath, body, and mind. Feeling calm and good about herself,  she simply wanted to share this to others, to help, to have fun, to be present and just be.

For Thia yoga is a never ending practice, a lifetime practice. It is an evolution. Same as music, to know how and what is yoga, what the meaning of yoga, you need to know it from the first time it was invented, back to the roots. And you learn about it, you get the knowledge so you can apply it in your daily life.

Thia loves the joy of sharing wonderful teachings to students, to be able to work and grow together in this superb yoga institute with amazing teachers and team that love and support each other.

Thia’s words of advice for our students: “Come with intention. Trust your heart. Listen to your intuition that you are in the right time and place.”


Sebastian

Sebastian is a South American certified Yoga Instructor born in the Chilean Patagonia and trained in Northern India.

He has been travelling the world studying, teaching and exploring different disciplines that he is really passionate about, like Yoga Philosophy, Meditation and Tantra.

He started Yoga as a complementary practice for Martial Arts and Outdoor Sports and as an attempt to overcome an anxiety disorder that was affecting him in different areas in his life. He finally not only found a path for healing, body awareness and self-understanding, nowadays, he also understand Yoga as a philosophy of life, as a way of living based in love and compassion.

Sebastian has been been teaching classes, workshops and Teacher Trainings in Yoga in India, Nepal, Thailand and South America, his classes are fun and inspiring. He strongly believes that observation is the key that leads to understanding, so creating the space to observe ourselves through meditation, breathing and movement is highly necessary to understand our deeper self and in consequence, to understand everything.


Megan

Megan is a 500-hour certified yoga instructor from eastern Pennsylvania, USA. She has been practicing yoga since her youth, and delved deeply into the study in University, inspired by the teachings of one of her professors, who was an Augustinian priest and yoga instructor. This foundation encouraged her to explore the inter-relatedness of various religions and philosophies and the ways in which they pertain to yoga.

After her asana-based 200-hour training in the states, Megan moved to Japan in 2013 to teach English and yoga, and became deeply interested in zen Buddhism. Seeking to deepen her understanding of all 8 limbs of yoga, Megan traveled to Bali to study yoga more deeply, eventually completing her 500-hour training with Santosha in 2016. Since moving to Bali, Megan has been fascinated by the native spirituality and culture, and has been studying Balinese healing meditation.

Over the years, Megan has taught yoga and meditation to a wide range of abilities and body types, from children and high school students, to Japanese housewives and pregnant mothers, to US Marines stationed overseas, to surfers and martial artists in Bali. Standup paddleboard yoga is still one of her favorites.

Megan is passionate about teaching yoga as a philosophy and lifestyle to people from varied walks of life. Her writing has been featured in numerous yoga lifestyle publications, including the Elephant Journal and the Yogi Times.


Tracey

Tracey began practicing Soloman Yogalates in 2000 and was amazed at the gradual improvement that a regular yoga practice focusing on functional movement patterns made to her overall health. She studied the Soloman Yogalates method in 2007 – 2008, and has been teaching weekly classes since then.

Since beginning to teach, she has also been studying the Tattwas Shuddhi Sadhana (5 Element Purification) under Peter Clifford. Tracey practices and teaches her classes with joy and gratitude.

Our students rave about Tracey’s teaching methods and breadth of knowledge. She feels honoured to be a part of the Santosha team, and to have the opportunity to observe the new paths embarked and ventured upon by others.


Andrea

Andrea is a physiotherapist, yoga therapist and also a dedicated Ashtanga yoga practitioner.

With over 13 years of experience as a physiotherapist, Andrea is an expert in muscular pain treatment, structural realignment and case resolution. She is specialized in therapeutic massage and fascia release.

Andrea has been passionate about yoga since 2007. Through consistency and dedication to the asana and pranayama practice, she experienced the true essence of yoga and how it can heal parts of the body that have been injured or simply ignored.

With deeper understanding, she came to realize that the cure of our body, mind and spiritual ailments lay within ourselves

Andrea began studying Yoga Therapy in India, with Sharat Arora (Iyengar disciple) and continues courses with Ganesh Mohan (Krishnamacharya tradition). Her motivation is to share the physical and spiritual benefits of yoga and integrate the asana and pranayama practice in her therapeutic healing services.  In her Yoga Therapy sessions she teaches what is appropriate for each individual, according to their age, health condition and daily activity. Andrea uses asana practice and breathing techniques to reach a balance state of mind while we improve and heal the functions of the body


Jamie

Jamie is a New Zealand born yogi, with a passion for nutrition, heart-based meditation and authentic living.

He brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to our trainings, and has studied at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and the Padmacahaya Institute of Inner Learning as well as graduating from the Santosha Yoga 200 Hour training in 2010.

Multi-talented Jamie shares his infectious sense of joy and enthusiasm to our trainings – teaching Open Heart meditation and Laughter Yoga on the Level 1 course as well as managing our onsite Nusa Lembongan cafe – Ginger + Jamu. Jamie looks forward welcoming you to our island home, and sharing good times and great food with you on our special little spot in paradise 🙂


Barbara

Barbara has been practising Yoga Nidra herself for many years on a daily bases. She has conducted hundreds of classes and workshops on Yoga Nidra as well as many teacher training courses in Europe. Barbara is the author of a German bestselling book on Yoga Nidra as well as many CDs.

Currently based in Germany, Barbara teaches our Online Yoga Nidra training as well as running Yoga Nidra classes and retreats around the world. We are thrilled to offer our popular 50 Hour Yoga Nidra Immersive in Nusa Lembongan in conjunction with Barbara.

 


Tracy

It was the stretching and strengthening component of a dynamic yoga practice that initially drew Tracy to yoga in 2003, but she soon found that the benefits were far-reaching, spreading into every aspect of life.

Tracy is a level 2 teacher with over 800 hours training in yoga teaching and yoga therapy and has a keen interest in bio-mechanics and its application to postural alignment in asana practice. Inspired by the more dynamic tradition of Ashtanga vinyasa yoga, Tracy’s teaching style is also influenced by her studies with Simon Borg-Olivier of Yoga Synergy and senior teacher Kate Pell. Her classes are dynamic and enthusiastic with attention to detail in alignment, balanced with patience and a sense of humour which are essential to a yoga practice.

Students are encouraged to practise with ahimsa (non-violence and non-harming), listening to their bodies, and gently challenging themselves to enrich their experience. More recently Tracy has been studying yoga therapy with Dr. Ganesh Mohan of Svastha Yoga Therapy to enable her to better assist her students with injuries or medical conditions. Yoga truly is for everyone.


Darla

Darla is a California born physiotherapist who is certified as an instructor in yoga and pilates. Her passion is educating and promoting total wellness. While studying exercise & rehabilitative sciences at the University of Hawaii, Darla attended the required yoga course. It didn’t take long until she became addicted to yoga and the many benefits it provides. In addition to the physical benefits of improved strength and flexibility, she realized practicing yoga helped in other areas as well. Yoga provided her with the ability to focus and dramatically improved her sleep.

After graduation, Darla attended Bond University in Australia and earned a Doctor of Physiotherapy. As a physiotherapist and a pilates instructor she had the ability to help people in many ways, but there was still a component missing. It became apparent that by incorporating the powerful practice of yoga, she could provide total care and cultivate a sense of well-being. So, she was inspired to become a certified yoga instructor and had the opportunity to attend a Santosha RYT-200 session. She was privileged to learn from many amazing teachers there.

Darla is grateful and excited to be join the Santosha Teaching Team. She is looking forward to meeting the new students and sharing her passion for yoga, anatomy, and biomechanics!


Sarah

Sarah completed her first yoga teacher training (RYT-200) with Santosha in 2012 and since that time has experienced a powerful shift in her awareness, perspective and the way she lives her daily life. This experience inspired Sarah to continue her yoga studies and she has since completed a Diploma of Yoga (RYT-500) under Michael De Manicor.

In addition to her yoga studies Sarah is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Physiotherapy at Charles Sturt University in Orange, Australia. Sarah has a strong passion for movement and believes whole heartedly in the powerful effects of yoga as a healing modality for the body, mind & spirit.

Through both her personal practice and her experience working on retreats, one-on-one and in class situations Sarah has observed countless people benefiting from a correctly designed yoga practice. Sarah is available both during training and mid-year in assisting students to design a personal practice to suit their specific physical, mental or spiritual needs.


Jennie

As a Santosha RYT-200 (2011) and RYT-500 (2013) graduate, Jennie is honoured to be joining Santosha in an Administration and Student Support role. Having studied under Sunny and her team of dedicated teachers, Jennie knows first-hand the deeply transformative power of undertaking a teacher training through Santosha… and of being welcomed warmly into the Santosha family.

Jennie is excited to now be sharing this experience with others, and to offer support, strength and smiles along the way. She came to yoga – as many of us initially do – for the physical benefits. It was not until her own struggle with depression and anxiety that she realised the deep strength and stillness that a regular yoga practice brings. Jennie loves working with all the amazing people Santosha attracts – both students and teachers!


 Would you like to know who is teaching on the course you choose ?
If you are wanting to train with a specific teacher please email to attain the teachers for the training you wish to attend.

Teacher Training Options

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Santosha Yoga Institute