Diane Valentine, Director of the Center
Diablo magazine's Best Yoga Instructor 2010, Diane Valentine is the director of The Yoga & Movement Center, where she teaches weekly classes and leads workshops in Iyengar-based yoga, Restorative Yoga and Feldenkrais Awareness Through Movement lessons. She has been studying yoga for more than 35 years and teaching for the past 26. She has studied with and assisted senior Iyengar Yoga teacher Judith Hanson Lasater, PhD., in working with the therapeutic aspects of yoga and restorative practices. Diane has written published articles on Restorative Yoga for Menopause and Yoga and the Feldenkrais Method. She is a certified Feldenkrais practitioner and has an active private practice in hands on Functional Integration and Therapeutic Yoga sessions.
Diane has developed a deep understanding of the body, mind, and emotional connections through her work as a yoga teacher, massage therapist, and Feldenkrais practitioner. Her own life situations have given her deep insight into the way our bodies work. After being diagnosed with a debilitating illness many years ago, she found deep healing in yoga's restorative practices and continues to help and teach students to learn to listen to their body's own natural wisdom.
Today, her methods are aimed at teaching beginning and continuing students to listen to their bodies through the fluid movements of yoga and Feldenkrais, as well as learning to practice "living in the present moment" by becoming aware of themselves. Diane places emphasis on developing and maintaining postural alignment to support the organs and the internal functions of our bodies, allowing us to be fully aware, awake, and alive.
Diane offers individual, private sessions using therapeutic methods she has developed over the years that are designed to release tension as well as alleviate chronic and debilitating conditions and help us live our lives fully. Both yoga and Feldenkrais Awareness through Movement classes are suitable for all body types and ages.
Download Diane's brochure here
Diane teaches - Iyengar Yoga; Back Care Yoga; Private Yoga; Private Feldenkrais Functional Integration, Private Yoga Therapy
Wendy Beckerman has been teaching Mindfulness since 1998, and has a passion for living the practices and revealing fresh insights. She founded East Bay Yoga to bring yoga and meditation to local venues, emphasizing mindfulness in daily life, and promoting a sense of community among participants. Wendy completed the Professional Training Program in Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction with Jon Kabat-Zinn and Saki Santorelli, as well as the Practicum with Bob Stahl, and teaches intensive courses, workshops, and classes in the Bay Area. Her teaching style is often described as clear, calming, and centering, and emphasizes the richness of moment-to-moment awareness. Her students describe her as “intuitive yet grounded,” “compassionate and fully engaged.”
Wendy teaches - Meditation for Stress Reduction
Dennis was certified by Rodney Yee at Piedmont Yoga and teaches with an Iyengar-influenced style, combined with breath awareness of vinyasa and an emphasis on yoga as an energy practice.
Dennis teaches the Advanced Studies/Teacher Training Program
Debbie Gilman M.A., R.Y.T., has been studying yoga for 20 years and has been teaching throughout the Bay Area for over 12 years. She graduated from the Yoga Room's Advanced Studies Program and is a student of Donald Moyer. She is on the faculty of the teacher training programs at The Yoga Room in Berkeley and at Downtown Yoga in Pleasanton. Debbie has a rich experience in yoga therapeutics having taught one-on-one yoga-based rehabilitation at Innate Chriopractic & Wellness Studio in Albany and healing yoga at the Women's Cancer Resource Center in Oakland for many years. She has taught middle, high, and graduate school (and lowland gorillas) and brings a love of teaching to her classes. Debbie has a BA from Stanford and an MA from Harvard.
Debbie teaches - Iyengar Yoga (Level 2-4)
Shana was trained in the US and China in Oriental Medicine Acutherapy Tai Chi Qi Gong and Ayurvedic Medicine and yoga.
Shana teaches - Tai Chi / Qi Gong
Sallie has spent 20 years of her life exploring yoga and considers herself an eternal student. She left the corporate world after 25 years and jumped into her teacher training which she completed at Piedmont Yoga in 2015. She has additional teaching certificates in Yoga for Healthy Aging, Restorative Yoga and Healing Yoga for Cancer Survivorship. She continues her studies with Richard Rosen and Mary Paffard and considers them her most influential teachers. What she hopes to cultivate in her students is an attitude of “live, grow and become older with awareness and curiosity.”
Sallie teaches - Yoga for Healthy Aging
Victoria Nicholsen RYT200
Victoria is a graduate of The Yoga & Movement Center's Advanced Studies/Teacher Training Program, studying under Diane Valentine and Dennis Eagan. She has since completed further training with Judith Lasater in Restorative Yoga. Through her gentle and invitational approach to yoga, she meets each student where they are at, honoring their personal practice. She very much resonates with the quiet and calming poses which are the hallmark of Yin and Restorative yoga. These poses allow for deep relaxation and letting go, both in mind and body. Victoria finds her time on the mat as a precious opportunity to turn inward, notice and listen. She is so grateful to be able to share this practice with others and hopes that her students feel more and more at home on their mat, and in the world.
Victoria teaches - Yin & Restorative Yoga (Midweek Rest)
dorinda nyberg ERYT500, YACEP
Dorinda’s teaching style helps students focus on intention and anatomical alignment through compassionate and clear instruction, skillful sequencing, and perceptive hands-on adjustments. Her purpose is to help students experience this ancient practice in a way that reveals its wisdom, and ease. Dorinda’s love of yoga comes through in her devotion to the intention of her teachers. Her reverence for yoga’s complex lineage is balanced with humor so that students leave class feeling refreshed with clear minds and energized bodies.
Dorinda has been studying Iyengar yoga since 1995 and began teaching in 2010. She is a long-time student of Donald Moyer, Mary Lou Weprin and Debbie Gilman, a graduate of The Yoga Room’s Advanced Studies Program and a Relax and Renew Trainer through Judith Lasater’s accredited program. She is certified at the Experienced 500 hour level (ERYT500) and a Continuing Education Provider (YACEP) with the Yoga Alliance. Dorinda is a member of the core faculty for the Advanced Studies Program at The Yoga Room in Berkeley.
Dorinda teaches - Iyengar Yoga
Monique was first introduced to yoga in her pregnancy with her first child. Since then yoga has been an inseparable part of her life. After practicing yoga for several years, she decided to move into the fitness industry, because she was inspired by how movement and yoga can change people’s health and their overall life. Working as an instructor of LesMills’ BodyBalance, a fitness regime combining parts of yoga, Pilates, and Tai Chi, she realized she wanted to
learn more about the benefits that yoga can bring to the human body.
After graduating from the Advanced Studies Teacher Training at The Yoga & Movement Center, she has been giving small group and private classes for more personal attention, which brought her to a very precise way of teaching alignment in ones structural system in order to get the full benefit of the yoga poses for the individual body.
Monique discovered many students in her classes have Scoliosis. She then studied with Elise Browning Miller to specialize in Yoga for Scoliosis.
Monique teaches - Yoga for Scoliosis
Greg, a graduate of Diablo Yoga Center's advanced Studies Program, combines attention to alignment with awareness of the breath.
He draws from his extensive experience as a world-champion Frisbee competitor and massage therapist/bodyworker to help students optimize their own mental, emotional, and physical potential. Greg seeks to practice yoga from the heart, with an emphasis on re-establishing the free flow of life force through the body resulting in healing and greater capacity to express one's innate splendor.
Greg teaches - Fundamentals of Yoga
Ellen Rutgers, MEd, RYT200, has practiced Hatha Yoga since the mid-eighties. She studied with both Iyengar and Anusara yoga teachers. Ellen recently completed the
200 hour yoga teacher training with Diane Valentine and Dennis Eagan, at The Yoga & Movement Center. She is eager to share with others the joys and immense benefits yoga has brought to her life. Ellen teaches in a Montessori Elementary School. She values spending time with friends and family, and besides her passion for yoga, she loves spending time in nature and writing.
Ellen teaches - Hatha Yoga Flow & Yin & Restorative Yoga (Midweek Rest)
Combining the tradition of Iyengar yoga with a vinyasa flow style, Ashley loves to find new ways to link the breath to movement and yet create beautifully aligned postures throughout this flow practice. Ashley is trained in the tradition of Iyengar yoga, where emphasis is given to precision and alignment in all postures. Her yoga practice style is a blend of vinyasa flow that is strongly influenced by Iyengar's methods.
“I like to teach with an emphasis on students learning correct alignment and developing a practice that restores and strengthens your body and clears your mind,” says Ashley. “I also just simply want have to have fun... and share my passion for the practice of yoga.”
Ashley trained with Diane Valentine and Dennis Eagon at The Yoga & Movement Center and is RYT-200 certified. This training focused greatly on anatomy, physiology and how yoga can be used as a therapeutic practice as well as a way to become strong, disciplined and centered. Through yoga, Ashley’s goal is to bring awareness to how our bodies work, while improving strength, flexibility and stamina.
Ashley teaches - Aligned Yoga Flow
sandi smith-grove, LM, CCE, RYT200
Sandi is a Licensed Midwife and prenatal educator who began her work with mamas-to-be at the same time she began practicing yoga, in 1992. She combines two of her passions, yoga and serving expectant mamas into her Yoga workshops and classes. She believes that the female body is strong and powerful, yet benefits from nurturing and compassion, especially during the season of gestation and change. Helping women connect with their bodies and their growing babies, focusing on the breath and finding balance, discovering the strength within, while learning to let go are interwoven into her classes.
Sandi first began studying with Diane Valentine as part of a healing regime after back surgery, and completed her 200 hour certification at the Yoga & Movement Center. She has received teaching certifications in Prenatal Yoga, Yoga for Healthy Aging, and completed the Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction program for Health Care Providers. She integrates yoga and mindfulness principles into her childbirth education classes.
When she is not working or practicing, you can find her in the garden, on the trail, in one of her women’s groups, at the movies or reading a good book. She is married and has 2 adult children.
Sandi teaches - Mom & Baby Yoga, Yin & Restorative Yoga (Midweek Rest), and Prenatal Workshops
Nancy began practicing yoga in 1994. Her background comes from the classical Ashtanga tradition, which is very gentle. Nancy discovered restorative yoga in 2008, and has been practicing ever since. She has had the good fortune to study with many teachers who continue to inspire her. Since completing her 200-hour teaching certification at The Yoga & Movement Center, she welcomes Iyengar-based yoga into her regular practice, and is grateful for its strengthening integrity and mindful attention to alignment.
For 8 years, Nancy has also studied modern dance. It emphasizes a mind-body approach from the “inside out” that releases unnecessary tension. Nancy brings these principles to her teaching of yoga. Her restorative class creates space for relaxation, rest, and naturally balancing the body.
Nancy teaches - Restorative Yoga
Monica discovered yoga in 1997 as a means to bring some balance into her life and has been practicing with a variety of teachers ever since. In 2018 she jumped at the opportunity to study with Diane Valentine and Dennis Eagan and graduated from the 200-Hour Advanced Studies/Teacher Training Program at The Yoga & Movement Center. Monica also studied with Deepak Chopra and is certified in Primordial Sound Meditation and Perfect Health, via The Chopra Center in Carlsbad, CA. Her life and her classes integrate yoga, meditation and an ayurvedic lifestyle.
Prior to her yoga studies, Monica was an engineer at The Boeing Company. She lives with her husband and dogs in Walnut Creek and enjoys fostering dogs, reading, learning, walking in nature and spending time with friends.
Monica teaches - Gentle Yoga
suky thaver meghjee
Born and raised in the UK, Suky was working in the legal professional and moved to the USA with her husband. She found sanctuary and inner peace by being on her yoga mat. Curiosity led Suky to receive her 200 hour yoga training from Avalon Yoga Teacher Training program in 2014.
After her 200hour training, Suky's journey took her to Vancouver, where she studied yin yoga with Bernie Clark followed by yoga for cancer patients and survivors training with Lorien Neargardner and therapeutic yoga training with Cheri Clampett and Arturo Peal. She went and studied with the founder of restorative yoga, Judith Lasater and completed her level 1 Relax and Renew training. Restorative yoga enabled Suky to be present and more open, focused and grounded, both internally and externally.
She went on to receive her Level 1 Prenatal Yoga Teacher training from another Bay Area's renowned teacher, Jane Austin at Yoga Tree in San Francisco. By learning the foundations of prenatal yoga, Suky noticed the benefits of prenatal yoga and how prenatal yoga helped her in her own pregnancy journey, since she was able connect with her inner self by exploring through the layers of her body; how breath work allowed her to move deeper in harmony and more importantly, connect with her baby.
Yoga has bought so much joy and peace to Suky that she is delighted to share this with other mommas. Suky's classes are therapeutic, breath focused, slow flow styles of yoga.
Outside the studio, Suky loves to travel, studying (currently taking photography and ceramics classes), spending time with her husband and daughters, Maya and Aria and drinking a classic British cuppa' tea.
Suky teaches - Restorative Yoga and Prenatal Yoga
Carmen is a graduate of The Yoga & Movement Center's Advanced Studies/Teacher Training Program. She has practiced yoga in the Iyengar tradition for more than 12 years.
Carmen started practicing yoga to gain more flexibility, strength, and to learn breathing exercises. Her background includes more than 25 years of fitness training in the gym. She has a BA in Communication and has worked in the Information Technology environment for over 20 years. She also has Reiki experience. Yoga has provided Carmen tools to start her day energized physically, mentally and being balanced. "Yoga transformed my life. I consider myself a spiritual person and my goal is to inspire students with my passion for yoga, stressing the importance of alignment and breathing at each asana".
Carmen also teaches Iyengar Yoga, Hatha Yoga and Gentle & Restorative Yoga
Carmen teaches - Yin Yoga