Sri Dharma Mittra
Sri Dharma Mittra was born in the late 1930's and has been studying and teaching Yoga for over fifty years. After meeting his Guru Sri Swami Kalaishananda he immersed himself in the study and practice of the classical eight limbs of Yoga, and dedicated himself to nine years of Karma Yoga (the yoga of action, selfless service.) After being a celebrated teacher for years at his Guru’s ashram, Sri Dharma founded the Yoga Asana Center, currently known as Dharma Yoga New York Center in 1974. A brief discussion of Sri Dharma Mittra follows, however for more information about the living master, click here.
Sri Dharma has been disseminating the ancient knowledge of how to achieve radiant health and spiritual development before styles of Yoga became popular. He remains truthful to the original classical practice and guides his students and student teachers to do the same. For this reason, as well as his experience and knowledge he is frequently referred to as the "Teacher's Teacher" and for his dedication and fortitude "The Rock of Yoga." In 1984 Dharma completed the Master Yoga Chart of 908 Postures, as an offering to his Guru and for all Yoga aspirants. This original masterpiece was meticulously assembled from over 1,350 photographs of posture variations Dharma took of himself with a tripod camera before the computer age! (You can find the Master Chart in our lobby at DMYLA with copies for sale, as well as just about every yoga school worldwide.) Sri Dharma is a most beloved master, he is known for his humility, humor, joy and kindness in teaching.
SONYA ENCHILL KENDALL
Sonya Enchill Kendall is owner, principal instructor and artistic director at Dharma Yoga LA. With support from the divine, her mom, and an investor, she opened the center in August 2008 seeking to make high-quality yoga and meditation available to underserved communities.
Sonya is a certified Dharma Yoga instructor and completed the 200-hour Life of a Yogi Teacher Training in October 2003 and 500-hour Teacher Training in March 2011. Sonya has had the honor of assisting Sri Dharma Mittra in Teacher Training and various demonstrations in Los Angeles. As a beginner to yoga she earned accreditation in Bikram Yoga, teaching in Los Angeles, San Diego, New York, Bangkok, and Tokyo, and instructing teacher trainings. She also earned certification in Vinyasa Flow from YogaWorks, is a certified Pilates mat work instructor and studied Iyengar Yoga at the Iyengar Institute in Pune, India.
Sonya comes from a dance background, a graduate of the official school of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in New York City. She initially began to practice yoga as a tool to advance her physical mastery, although soon yoga emerged as a powerful healing modality from the rigors of classical dance. This self-involved healing inspired her to study teaching yoga, in order to guide others to do the same.
For Sonya, the physical benefits of yoga have only been outweighed by the contentment she found studying under Sri Dharma Mittra, she says "he guided me to the light, my true self." Sonya aims to guide students to find the same peace within while improving their physical and mental health, and feels honored and blessed to teach Dharma Yoga to such a receptive community.
Joan Sargent is a certified Dharma Yoga instructor who completed 200-hour Life of a Yogi Teacher Training in August 2008. She started practicing Yoga in the early 1990s while working a full-time job in corporate America, and it was in fact Joan that first introduced daughter Sonya Enchill as an adolescent to the practice--something that she feels enhanced and deepened their mother-daughter relationship over the years. In sharing the joy and benefits of Dharma Yoga, Joan's special interest as a teacher is with retired members of the community who want to maintain a healthy and happy lifestyle, as well as with those of any age that are new to Yoga.
Ali Hahm is a certified Dharma Yoga instructor who completed 200-hour Life of a Yogi Teacher Training in August 2008 at the age of sixteen, one of the youngest people ever to do so. Ali is a seasonal teacher at DMYLA, as she spends most of her time as a full time college student at U.C. Santa Cruz double majoring in politics and philosophy. She believes that karma brought her to the practice of Yoga, the Los Angeles native considers DMYLA to be her second home, as "so much of [her] lies in those walls." Observing that her practice continually gives back to her, Ali sees teaching as her way of giving back to Yoga. Her ultimate goal in passing on the traditions of Dharma Yoga is to allow people a moment to pause, reflect, and rejoice. She sees Yoga as revealing the grace that lies within oneself. Ali is currently a visiting teacher at DMYLA.
Nino Mendes is a certified Dharma Yoga instructor who completed 200-hour Life of a Yogi Teacher Training in 2007. He is a seasonal teacher at DMYLA, currently studying advanced acrobatics and contortion in Beijing, China. He is a fervent student of various Yoga styles, and has studied dance, gymnastics, circus acrobatics, and the martial arts practices of Kung Fu and Muay Thai. Arriving in LA via New York and Paris, Nino brings his wife and young son with him. He was originally keen to Yoga because it seemed the perfect blend of all of his interests--body, mind, and spirit--and when he was ready, "Dharma appeared, and that was it." As a teacher, Nino tries to be a guide towards the true Self dwelling in each of us, the same consciousness is shared by all of us... the pure, loving light of divine perfection. Nino is currently a visiting teacher at DMYLA.
Nina Roberts is a certified Dharma Yoga instructor who completed the 200-hour Life of a Yogi training in 2010. She was brought to the practice of Yoga by the joy of dancing, pain from the unexpected death of her beautiful Grandmother, and a yearning to experience a deeper relationship with God. A Registered Nurse and former teacher of Anatomy/Physiology and Medical Terminology, she also completed Synergy Yoga's Ten-Day Intensive in 2001, is a disciple of Paramahansa Yogananda, and has instructed Yoga at a shelter for abused women. Nina teaches Dharma Yoga because she feels it is authentic Yoga that guides one to spiritual advancement. She finds Dharma's asana practices to be invigorating--instilling discipline, patience, love, and compassion. At the forefront of her life's duties, Nina asserts that she is "bound to being truthful."