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I took my first yoga class over 20 years ago, and felt right at home. I liked how I felt both physically and emotionally. That same day, I bought a 10-class pass for that studio, sure that Yoga would become a big part of my life… and I never set foot in that studio again.  

Why, you may ask? I think I am not alone when I say that we often run from things that are good for us. That may be due to self-doubt or lack of self-esteem (I don’t deserve to feel good; who am I to want more in my life?). Of course, we may not be aware of the reasons, so the excuses work well: too busy, too tired, too much on my plate. I had every excuse and justification in the book.

A couple of years later, I found Kripalu (a Yoga and Wellness center in Lenox, MA). I went for a weekend of Yoga and fell in love again. I remember when I got back, my boyfriend at the time said “you should do yoga all the time, you look so happy”. But it still took me a few more years to commit. I guess I wasn’t quite ready to let go of my old ways and be kinder to myself. I chose to hold on to my old habits for a little longer – the comfort zone that’s not comfortable at all, but it sure was familiar…

I’ve always tried to do some kind of physical activity: jogging, lifting weights, dancing… and at some point, around 2007, I decided to make yoga my sole physical practice, and joined a local yoga studio.

At the time, I was practicing about 4 times a week. The teaching staff at that studio was stellar and I loved many of the classes.

Teresa Dornellas at Studio 108, August of 2017

Needless to say, in no time yoga became a lot more to me than exercise. Slowly, I started getting answers to very old questions. I got more comfortable with my own body and with my feelings. I learned to breathe. The constant need for conflict and distraction slowly dissipated. I created space within myself. A great bonus were the friendships I made at that studio – knowing that I would see friendly faces any time I went to class was an extra incentive for me to take classes regularly.

That was when I realized I could do for others what those lovely teachers were doing for me. I realized I had a story to tell and I wanted to inspire people to be their best selves.

I became a certified yoga teacher in 2008, and started teaching in February of 2009. For about 2 years, I taught as many classes as I could, on top of a full time corporate job and a 2 ½ hour daily commute. There’s something very empowering about teaching yoga: to witness the transformation in people, to see them making an effort to overcome obstacles and to see their lovely faces week after week – all these filled me with energy.

In 2017, after a short hiatus, I started teaching again and was presented with the opportunity to buy a studio. I brushed off that idea, but it kept boomeranging right back. The space was absolutely gorgeous, lots of windows, plenty of light and so much potential. I remember sitting in the room before starting my classes and seeing all the possibilities of how beautiful that space could become with some effort (by “some”, read A LOT! The space required complete renovations: walls, floors, ceiling – nothing was left untouched).

In July of that year, I signed the lease to the space that’s now Studio 108. My goal was to create a community of people who would come together to improve their lives in whatever ways they envisioned. I wanted to share with as many people as possible the gifts I had received.

What Studio 108 looks like now, after renovations

With much effort and dedication from myself and my teachers, our community has been steadily growing ever since. We are proud to welcome people from all walks of life, and offer classes for all levels, all ages.

If you just want to relax and breathe, we have classes for you. If you want to move and break a sweat, we got that covered too. Want something in between? Yep, we got you.

In March of 2020, due to the pandemic, we moved our classes to be 100% virtual, via zoom. That has allowed us to keep offering our services to an even greater number of people, now that we don’t have the location limitations.

In this time of physical distancing, our zoom classes offer our members an opportunity to connect, socialize and stay sane, keeping at least one area of their lives as close to normal as possible. You can join us from wherever you are, as long as you have internet connection and a device to stream from. And no commute needed!

If you want to carve time for yourself and your well-being, we are here for you! We’re offering a Mother’s Day Sale: 9 classes for $90, valid through May 10th. You can purchase this special package for yourself or the moms in your life. All classes must be used within 30 days. Package must be activated by May 11th. Click here to purchase.

Studio 108 will continue to grow and evolve to better serve you and better support the needs of our community.

Practicing at the studio with a group of friends once the renovations were 60 percent done

Theresa Conlon

Theresa is a Yoga Alliance certified instructor (200-hour RYT) who has been teaching since 2013. She is skilled in various yoga styles including Hatha, Ashtanga, Vinyasa Flow, Restorative, and Meditation. Theresa also brings an extensive dance background to her yoga practice, which includes teaching both modern dance and ballet. She has over 40 years of dance/theater performing experience and currently showcases her choreography as part of Bergen Dance Makers, a dance collective in northern New Jersey. Theresa’s yoga classes offer a calming mix of traditional asana postures and creative movement flows, supported by energy-moving breath. Students of all skill levels are invited to find ease and peace in their bodies/minds/spirits through the joyful bliss of yoga movement.

Carrie Parker Gastelu

Carrie Parker Gastelu, E-500 RYT, has been teaching yoga since 1993. Carrie began her journey when Yogi Raj Mani Finger initiated Carrie into the ISHTA Yoga lineage after training with Mani’s son, Yogi Raj Alan Finger. In addition, she has studied many other yoga traditions as well as anatomy, physiology, movement, and awareness practices to create an eclectic style all her own. She is known for her honest, non-dogmatic yet passionate approach.

Carrie is a regular speaker and contributor at conferences, websites, and print publications and has been featured in Fit Magazine, the Yoga Zone Book, and in the Yoga Zone Video, “Flexibility and Stress Release.”

Lisa Podesta-Coombs

When Lisa found yoga in 2008, she started to find herself again and it set her on a path of health and healing. She received her 200HR RYT certification from Raji Thron of Yoga Synthesis, and her 30HR Chakra Yoga Teacher Training certificate with Anodea Judith and holds a Y12SR (Yoga of 12 Step Recovery) certification. She is also a Holistic Health Coach (certified through the Institute for Integrative Nutrition). Lisa believes we’re all on a journey of learning how to trust ourselves; she helps her clients build that trust by supporting them in creating better habits for a better life through various functional movement modalities like yoga, barre, Pilates & strength training, mindset, and whole food nutrition.

Forever a student with a passion for people, holistic health, and self-actualization, Lisa is always embracing opportunities to advance her education to better serve; Ayurveda workshops & immersions have been of particular interest as she continues to deepen her knowledge of and experience with food as medicine and she recently completed Unleash Her Power Within, a transformational program of rediscovering our truest selves, powered by Tony Robbins.  

As she continues to give herself space and grace to nourish her natural self and actualize her potential, Lisa continues to share the gift of movement as medicine to inspire authenticity & health in body, mind, and spirit. You can expect mindful, accessible, dynamic, playful, and uplifting classes from Lisa.

Tanisha Sutton

Tanisha’s yoga journey began when she was an undergraduate student studying at university. Changes in her health coupled with anxiety over grades, relationships, and life in general, forced her to search for healthy lifestyle choices she could implement to help manage the stress that she was experiencing as a new adult. A friend of hers suggested that she attend some community yoga classes to help with the anxiety and increase her daily physical activity. Initially, she was reluctant and filled with all these false ideas about yoga and the people who practiced yoga. Like many others, she was concerned that her body type and lack of flexibility automatically excluded her from being a student. Curiously yet hesitantly, she journeyed on to her first class and began laying the foundation for a home and public practice that has supported her over the years.

On this journey, she has discovered that yoga has nothing to do with appearances nor is there anything, but an open mind needed to begin. She intends to provide you with a gentle yoga session that is safe, inclusive, and accessible. Her classes are an expression of self-love and are a deliberate choice to tend to ALL the parts of our being that are neglected, ignored, or disregarded during the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Through meditation, deep breathing, and gentle movement we will collectively share space to observe, rest and re-set. Tanisha is honored to share her practice with you and looks forward to seeing you on the mat!