T H E T E A M
Yoga + Pilates Teacher
Hi there, my name is Prairie and I own and operate The Body Garage. Although I am a native Los Angelino, I relocated to this gorgeous little town at the bottom edge of the world in 2012. I am a Certified Massage Therapist, Pilates Instructor and 200HR Yoga Alliance Certified Yoga Teacher. I teach Pilates, Yoga and our Blend classes at our studio in Wanaka, NZ.
With the intention of growing my repertoire and being able to offer my clients a perfect complement to bodywork, I gained my Pilates instructor training originally from Uprise Studio in Santa Monica, California and went on to expand my Pilates training through Polestar Pilates in Auckland.
Following my long time passion and personal practice of yoga, I decided to take my 200HR Yoga Teacher Training in 2017 at the Yandara Yoga Institute in Baja California, Mexico. This training inspired me to integrate Yoga into the classes offered at The Body Garage.
I truly believe in our body's innate ability to heal, given the most supportive tools. I have found that Yoga is one of the tools that fosters this healing response. I gained my Yin Yoga and Myofascial Release certification with internationally recognized Yin Yoga Teacher, Jo Phee. Most recently, I went on to study Myofascial Release as it relates to a Vinyasa practice with Tiffany Cruickshank. The combination of Yin and Yang Yoga with Myofascial Release is extraordinarily therapeutic to the body and mind.
My intention, through the practice of Pilates and Yoga, is to support you on the path to complete restoration of your body. I look forward to welcoming you to the studio.
Yoga + Pilates Teacher
Kia ora koutou – my name is Elisa and I originally hail from Austria but have called New Zealand home now for ten years. If I am not out and about skiing, hiking, running, rock climbing, surfing (at least trying to ☺) or exploring, you will find me either on my mat practicing mindful movement or offering nurturing and intentful touch through manual therapy.
Yoga and Pilates have become part of my daily routine after finding out that my lower back pain (at the young age of 19) was coming from mild structural scoliosis. Ever since, my interest in the human body, its movements, functions, mind-body connection, self-healing and self-restoring abilities and capabilities grew and has lead me to undertake a 200HR Hatha Yoga Teacher Training in Nepal (2016), Pre- & Postnatal Yoga Training in Vienna (Austria, 2016), as well as to become a Remedial Massage Therapist, with a big focus and interest in Myofascial Release (MFR), and Infant Massage Instructor - an ancient art that connects parents deeply with their babies by promoting nurturing touch and communication, helping them to understand their baby’s particular nonverbal language and to respond with love and respectful listening.
It is in my nature wanting to nurture. Having experienced and gone through various body (and mind) projects myself, I have no greater wish than to be able to help people with their physical, mental, and emotional projects, struggles or disabilities and to assist them, as a manual and movement therapist, to live and enjoy a physically and mentally stronger, healthier and happier life. I look forward to moving and working with you at The Body Garage. Be well, go well, live well.
Kia Ora, my name is Josie and I was born and raised in the wonderful windy Wellington. I originally shifted to the South Island to study law and commerce at the University of Otago, where I fell in love with the beautiful mountains and equally beautiful people. I became drawn to the gentle nature of yoga to help with stress whilst studying and working in Dunedin. I instantly noticed the healing benefits of the practice, both mentally and physically.
My passion for yoga and the mind-body-breath connection led me to travel to India, the birthplace of yoga. Here I gained my 200-hr RYT Certification from Kranti School of Yoga and studied meditation at Tushita School of Meditation. I met some amazing teachers and learned that there really is a kind of yoga for everybody. Though I trained in Ashtanga, I enjoy all forms of yoga, especially Hatha and Vinyasa. I am fascinated by the healing connection of movement and ability it has to ease tension in the mind and body. I love creating classes with peaceful and rhythmic flows that connect the body and the breath with gentle and flowing movements.
I am passionate about sharing yoga with people who may be intimidated by the practice, and want to make welcoming classes that everyone can enjoy. Since moving to Wanaka, I have been teaching ‘chair yoga’ classes at Aspiring Retirement Village, where I have an intelligent and dedicated group of yogis who teach me as much as I teach them.
It is so gratifying watching students notice improvements in their mental and physical health as they practice. I am really excited to share this love for yoga at TBG!
Hello - I’m Marta and I’m looking forward to meeting you all! I grew up in Sydney and have lived around Australia while serving in the Royal Australian Air Force. This led me to a career in finance, but I realised that this was making my body and mind unhappy and unhealthy. I was lucky to have good pilates studios and teachers around me and noticed that each class was making me smile. A seed was planted that maybe I could turn my back on my career and help others return to health too, and I haven’t looked back.
I have been teaching pilates for the last 5 years, and completed my certification with STOTT Pilates in Matwork and Reformer, and certification with Polestar Pilates in Studio equipment. To say I have seen people change because of pilates is not an understatement. I have taught Ironman athletes, SAS soldiers, professional cyclists, corporate executives, working parents, students, and the general population. Each person comes back because pilates has literally helped them achieve better results, move with less pain, and live life happier.
I love interacting with clients. I love making them work hard and seeing them pant and groan, but always smile! There’s something special about the energy we create when everyone is trying hard but we are still laughing.
I love that I can support clients on their journeys and they are supporting me on mine. I have made great friends through teaching pilates, and love the joy and gratitude that spreads through the community.
Advice to new clients: Attend class as much as you can! Especially in the beginning. When it feels too easy, it means you’re not doing it right. Have fun and work hard. Be kind to yourself and learn about yourself.
Like Joseph Pilates famously said “Movement Heals”, it’s simple- it heals us physically and mentally. See you on the mat! X
Kia Ora! My name is Shannon, I am an energetic native lass raised on a farm in the small town of Te Puke in the North Island (where all the delicious kiwifruit comes from). You can find me playing in the outdoors most of the time - the best thing for me along with yoga is to get my body amongst trees or under a big open sky. I feel very fortunate to have found yoga around 5 years ago which has helped me immensely to calm my wild nature and settle my overactive brain. This practise has opened up an abundance of things for me, mind and body awareness, body acceptance, better breathing, better sleep, better diet, better everything!
I have been somewhat nomadic the past few years, exploring the mountains of New Zealand and the cultures of Asia. Wanaka is an incredible town with a warm community. Moving here in January I instantly felt right at home.
I completed my teacher training in June last year in Thailand and have been teaching at retreats and also online since then. My own practise has a strong focus on simple yet creative flows, when you shift your body differently you inevitably move your mind differently which is a very cool thing to experience! For me, being able to teach brings me a lot of joy and access to connection and a beautiful community. I love to share knowledge about the wonder that is the human body through a broad mixture of modalities ranging from modern science to Traditional Chinese Medicine and all marvellous things in between.
I look forward to meeting and guiding you through some cool stuff on the mat. For now I leave you with a strong but very true cliché - “when things change inside you, things change around you”. Namastè.
Namaste everyone, I’m Danni. Originally from North Yorkshire, England, I’ve been lucky enough to be able to call Wanaka ‘home’ since 2016.
Living in Wanaka has given me a chance to truly appreciate the number of outdoor activities that are available in this beautiful area. I really enjoy getting out and about into nature for a hike or mountain bike, and in winter you’ll find me skiing or snowboarding at one of our local ski fields. I really believe that there is something so beneficial for the mind; having all this easy access to nature and the outdoors right on our doorstep.
Yoga has been a love of mine for over 10 years, and this love of it led me to Blooming Lotus Yoga in Bali to study for my 200hr YTT, as well as an advanced meditation course. These courses gave me such a broad spectrum of many traditional yoga practices and the more I learnt about it, the more I’ve realised that yoga is not about the flexibility of the body, but more about how your mind responds to your practice. From this, I appreciate how yoga really is for everyone – whether a complete beginner or if you’ve been practising for years. My classes are suitable for all abilities, with options to adapt all postures to make them suitable for each individual. I also believe that there is much more to yoga than the asana (postures) which we practice in class and there are many ways in which we can take yoga from our mats and implement it into our everyday lives.
I love teaching classes and being able to share the great number of benefits that yoga brings to both our bodies and our minds. I look forward to being able to share this love of yoga with you.
Clinical Massage Therapist
I am level 6 MNZ clinical and sports massage therapist. I trained as a physiotherapist in Latvia - my native country - and I hold a Masters degree in Nutrition Science. I am specialised in sports and deep tissue massage and various soft tissue and neuromuscular techniques, but I can also offer relaxing classical massage. I have 10 years work experience in traumatology, orthopaedics and sports physiotherapy.
I love the challenge of chronic injuries / issues and enjoy working with people of different age groups as well as activity levels. I consider the human body to be the best tool we have which means it is important to take good care of it, appreciate it and enjoy it. We are designed to move - exercise and being active in the modern world is more important than ever. If you have injuries, aches and pains, stiff muscles or have just gone and done too much, come and see me and we can work on getting you moving optimally again.
My passion is sport, health and fitness, and I like to share this passion with my clients. In my free time you can find me skiing at Snowfarm or somewhere in the backcountry, running in Sticky forest, climbing on Wanaka rock or enjoying some badminton. By being so active myself I appreciate the benefits of pilates and hands on therapy to keep my body fit and healthy.
I have been enjoying New Zealand since the end of 2017 and still cannot get enough of the beautiful nature and stunning landscape and I am overwhelmed by the amazing warmth and kindness from New Zealanders. I look forward to meeting you soon!
Yoga + Pilates Teacher
Emily is currently away, hanging with her family in Australia until COVID-19 passes and the borders reopen. We look forward to welcoming Mrs. Humphreys back soon
If I was to describe myself in three words, it would be tall, nosy and cheerful. I am a words junkie and yoga teacher with a penchant for wobbly, ceramic tea mugs and a not-so-secret house plant fetish.
I was raised in the bush in regional Australia and have worked as a TV News presenter and writer for a number of glossy magazines. Last year I managed a horse riding safari in Botswana and spent most of the time dodging elephants around my tent. As Dr Seus says, “Things may happen and often do to people as brainy and footsy as you." I decided to move to Wanaka this year for its obscenely fabulous views and great ice cream. I now teach pilates and yoga at The Body Garage, which makes me very happy.
I have been practising yoga for ten-years after finding it eradicated my back pain, caused by mild-scoliosis. I decided to deepen my understanding of the practise and underwent my 200hr yoga teacher training at the beginning of 2018, studying Ashtanga Vinyasa at Sampoorna Yoga School in Goa, India. I found I loved teaching, and have been doing so ever since across Australia, the UK and Southern Africa.