Meet My Team

Laura Hand

Alchemy of Yoga University Leader

I went to my first yoga class more than 10 years ago seeking solace from a stressful engineering job.  Many breaths and years later, my focus has shifted to learning, living and loving the practice of yoga.  The more I scratch the surface, the more this practice lays out before me.

Presently, I am a travel enthusiast and student of life currently living in Japan. I teach yoga to a variety of populations from Google employees to expecting mothers. Through creative and thoughtful sequencing, I encourage practitioners to explore their breath and find space in the movement for stillness. My ultimate goal in sharing yoga is to elevate on a cellular level, stirring up creative energy that vibrates long after the asana practice. It is this residual vibration that has kept me coming back to the practice again and again.

I completed my first teacher training with Alchemy of Yoga under the loving guidance of Silvia Mordini and have continued studying on the evolutionary path ever since. While living in Japan, I have had the good fortune of learning from a host of inspiring yogis including Christina Sell, Kino MacGregor, Kathryn Budig, Simon Park, Elizabeth Rossa, Chuck Miller and Gloria Latham. Most recently, I completed a 3 week immersion training with Shiva Rea in Costa Rica. I embrace the abundance that is available in our present day global yoga community and jump at the opportunity to learn through live transmission whenever I can.

Christina Russo

Alchemy Magician, Alchemy Tours

I am a lover of movement. Movement in the body, transformation of the mind, and evolution of the spirit. I aspire to help students listen to Satguru, their inner teacher. My teaching style is building heat from the inside and bringing students out of their head and into their breath. The foundation of my teaching is balance between strength and flexibility on and off the mat.

I seek to share each of yoga’s eight limbs with students to guide them to deeper awareness of the self. When we learn to know and love our complete being, we are more free to embrace the opportunity for change, growth and well being. Through movement of energy in the body I strive to open my students to new possibilities, on and off the mat.

I love to combine my passions for yoga, art, and writing. I graduated from Seattle Central Creative Academy in 2011 with a degree in commercial photography; I love creating portraits, videos, and other media with yoga as my subject. I love all styles of yoga and flowing to loud beats. I practice and teach power vinyasa at a studio and falling on my face daily on my mat at home.

Heather Haws

Alchemy Web Guru

Technical genius who makes everything look and feel great! Without her, none of the work I do would reach you. She is a wizard. Can you tell which one she is here?

Sarah Erter

Alchemy of Yoga RYT200 Program Manager

The physicality of yoga first caught my attention as a graduate student five years ago. Overwhelmed by the stress and pressure that I had mistakenly confused as my baseline state of being, I was desperately seeking a way to disconnect. I distinctly remember the feeling that came over me in my first yoga class when I realized that yoga was not allowing me the opportunity to disconnect, but rather reconnect. In that place, I find stillness and calm. No matter what comes up, yoga allows a process of clarifying, distilling, and cleansing by providing a platform to tune into thoughts, feelings, processes, and patterns. The more I listen, the more I continue to unearth, embrace, and express my true self. Yoga smoothes my hard edges and re-directs me toward an internal still point. In The Secret Power of Yoga, Nischala Joy Devi embodies the essence of yoga in her interpretation of yoga sutras 1.2 and 1.3. She writes, “Yoga is the uniting of consciousness in the heart. United in the heart, consciousness is steadied, then we abide in our true nature — joy.” Although yoga continues as a personal practice, the evolution inspires me to share what I learn in an intentional, creative, and heartfelt way through a softening vinyasa flow rooted in safety and sustainability.

Sarah’s Heartfelt Vision:
I see the eight-limbed yoga path as a journey toward re-kindling the connection to the true self, as many of us have strayed from our intuitive wisdom as a byproduct of our busy lives. For many – myself included – asana is the first step back on the path. Yoga helps us understand how to maintain balance in our lives by increasing awareness of our sensitivities and constantly fine-tuning as we return to our own internal compass. In doing so, we are able to dissolve the patterns, stories, and behaviors that are non-serving so that we may approach life with more vitality and do what we really want to do. As yoga brings you closer to you, it changes not only your relationship to self, but also relationships with the world around you. The practice allows us to re-visit this process continuously – pose by pose, layer by layer. The most exciting part is that the work is never done.

Samara Holliday

Social Media Ninja

I am a free spirited lover of travel, nature, a good book, delicious and healthy food (and lots of it!) and of course an ooey gooey vinyasa flow. I love a good belly laugh and my playful attitude inspires me to incorporate Lila, Divine Play, into my yoga practice and life. I first started practicing yoga with devotion when I moved from Australia to London in an attempt to run away from my problems. Through my yoga practice I realised that the only way to happiness is inwards. The physical practice of yoga opened the rusty gates to my emotional state, guiding me inwards while peeling back layer, after layer of false beliefs, guiding me back to my truth.

Currently I am traveling about the world, finding new places to live, to learn and to grow. Right now I am wandering about the beautiful continent of Central America with all my belongings on my back, sharing yoga wherever and whenever I can. Through sharing yoga and my passion for writing I aspire to guide students within, to discover that happiness, peace and love is their truth and to help them shine their light into the world.