Our Instructors

Brenda Norris

RYT-500 and owner of Uplift Yoga

Brenda believes EVERYONE needs yoga in their lives, and seeks to guide every individual in her class toward building a practice that works for them. A modern dancer in her past life, she immediately felt a connection to the yoga practice the moment she stepped on the mat, pleasantly accompanied by a change in her physical body, and a transformational shift in her thinking. She completed the Charm City Yoga 200-hour yoga teacher training at YogaWorks, and immediately began teaching. Years into her teaching, she completed her 300-hour Advanced Studies yoga teacher training program at the Bhagavata-Sevaya school of yoga. Brenda’s approach to class is lighthearted, positive, and fun, and she welcomes all who step into her class to share in an ever-moving, music-driven, and breath connecting Vinyasa style flow, and begin moving toward discovering their own transformations.

Dana Pupkar


Dana Pupkar has been an avid fitness, equestrian and golf enthusiast for much of her life. When her golf training group started offering weekly Yoga classes she fell in love with the practice after seeing the benefits to her performance mentally and physically. After suffering several injuries in her active lifestyle, Dana was advised to include more Yoga in her rehab program. Seeing the benefits to the body as well as the mind, the practice became a way of life for her. Her passion for Yoga lead her to complete a Yoga Teacher Training Program to become a Registered Yoga Teacher, RYT 200 and continue to dive into other trainings. She strives to help other active (and non-active) individuals discover the amazing mind-body benefits of Yoga to enhance their life as well as elevate their performance. Dana has had training in a variety of Yoga styles but has a special love for teaching empowering, strength based Vinyasa flows, emphasizing mindful alignment.

Wassa Lakkham


A  former office worker who suffered from multiple office syndromes until she discovered yoga over 10 years ago. Yoga changed her life in many aspects and introduced her to the balance of life: body, mind, and spirit. Through a decade of practice, she have met and studied with several experienced yoga teachers from across India. Each of them introduced her to different techniques and principles of yoga, inspiring her to take a yogic path. After years of practice, she travelled to the heart and the world capital of yoga: Rishikesh, India. There, she underwent advanced training that included over 500 hours of intense practice earning expertise in Hatha and Ashtanga Vinyasa, and became a pupil of a famous Hindu monk, Swami Omkaranada, who taught her a yoga philosophy of life. After completion of her practice in India, she was motivated to introduce a change and promote better health in herself and others. Wassa works to inspire students to practice the middle way principle and guide them on the path to the cessation of pain and suffering through yoga. The Vinyasa class is designed to be fun and energetic ,and introduce a various set of asana (yoga postures) for balance and improvement of self-stamina, flexibility, and strength. You will find both sweat and love joining Wassa’s class.

Colleen Long


Colleen started practicing yoga more than twenty years ago! What began as an interesting new activity soon put her on a life long path of self inquiry and discovery.

Her passion for yoga blossomed and while she attended workshops, festivals and practiced various styles of yoga, Colleen still had a deeper desire for more learning.

Recently she spent the winter fully immersed in the study of yoga and philosophy and has completed her RYT-200 hour with Amy Ippoliti at 90 Monkeys Studio in Boulder, CO.

Colleen’s classes are fun and dynamic combining the authentic teachings of yoga with alignment based vinyasa sequences and restorative flows. She invites students onto the mat and into a deeper relationship with themselves and their own potential through awareness, vitality and their connection to breath.

She is a self employed jewelry designer and graduate from the Gemological Institute of America. Her passion for rocks and minerals and anything pertaining to the element earth has kept her amazingly happy, grateful and fulfilled.

Tanya Proffitt


Tanya is a former competitive tri-athlete, and long time Vinyasa Flow yoga, Mat Pilates, and suspension (aerial) yoga instructor who believes passionately in the transformative power of yoga. By combining movement, meditation, and breath work to gain self-knowledge, she supports each student in creating an environment to deepen their connection to the intuition, strength, and love to be found within. Her style of teaching is fun and flowing, and always aims to evenly distribute the body’s energies throughout the body, eliminating mental, physical and emotional blockages. Tanya’s hobbies include cycling, going to the beach, reading, cooking, being with friends, being with her dogs, 2 children and being outside.

Smita Khatri


Smita Khatri is a lover of movement, and enjoys sharing her passion for dance with others. Smita began learning and performing Indian folk dance at the age of 5. Since 2007, she has taught Bollywood dance and Bhangra (Indian folk dance) at a variety of dance studios, fitness centers, holistic retreat centers, non-profit organizations, large festivals and events in California, Hawaii, New York, Colorado, Maryland, Greece, Scotland and India. Smita has also taught NIA — a holistic cardio-dance fitness practice that combines modern dance arts, martial arts, and healing arts — since 2018. Some of the venues where she has taught include the Omega Institute for Holistic Studies, Findhorn Foundation, Honolulu Museum of Art, and Boulder community recreation centers. She also taught dance as a volunteer in India, through an organization connected with the Gandhi Ashram. Smita completed a NIA white belt training in 2017, a 200-hour Hatha Yoga teacher training in 2016, and a 30-hour Yin Yoga training in 2019. She has practiced yoga, Hanna Somatics, and Feldenkrais movement for many years.

Kristin Cook


Kristin began practicing yoga over 15 years ago as a form of exercise and stress relief. After being diagnosed with a chronic pain disorder in 2016, she recommitted herself to a regular yoga practice and discovered that through yoga, she was able to help heal her body, declutter her mind, and nourish her spirit. She received her RYT-200 and then an additional advanced Yin Yoga Certification. Being able to share yoga with others so that they too may discover the healing properties of yoga quickly became her passion. A former teacher with a Master’s degree in Education, Kristin brings clear instruction, inclusivity, warmth, and playfulness to her classes. She believes in providing students with options and encouragement based on what feels best in their bodies.

Kia Blandford

Kia is an RYT200 with over 20 years of teaching experience. She strives to introduce yoga to everyone as an option for a healthy lifestyle and as a tool to help breathe through life’s challenges. She has had the pleasure of teaching athletes on various levels, from high school soccer and football players to division I and NFL athletes. Taking a break from her practice for a few years as a result of the sudden and tragic death of my adult son, she was able to find peace again as she returned to practicing yoga and then began teaching. Kia believes that being of service promotes healing and shows leadership and gratitude which led her to to volunteer teaching yoga at a juvenile detention facility. Relying on her understanding that movement is medicine and breathing feeds the soul, she loves spending time with her kids and dogs, watching sports and being in nature.

William Drew


William leads meditation class with an emphasis in creative visualization (sankalpa), breathing (pranayama), and posture (asana) for those seeking assistance. Feedback and questions are always encouraged to create and sustain a community based meditation group focused on growth, healing, and experimentation.

Experience includes his MA in Health & Wellness Coaching from the Maryland University of Integrative Health (MUIH), being a 200 Hr Registered Yoga Teacher through Yoga Alliance and Certification in Clinical Hypnosis with the National Guild of Hypnotists.

By tailoring services with each client, he aims to establish powerful relationships that support lasting change by emphasizing individual needs. Above anything else, William aims to help his clients move toward their goals in order for them to live comfortable, balanced, and successful lives. Clients may also benefit from knowing that William is a lifelong learner, who continues his education through schooling. Currently, William is pursuing an MS in Yoga Therapy from MUIH in addition to 800 Hrs from the International Association of Yoga Therapists, 300 additional Yoga Teacher Training Hrs, 200 Teaching Hrs with this year’s 200 Hr YTT Class, and a certification in Biofeedback from the Board of Advanced Natural Health Sciences.