The Chicago Yoga Center since 1984


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Chicago Yoga Center Faculty

Suddha Weixler

began studying yoga in 1978 on his first visit to India. He was certified in 1984 and is the Director of the Chicago Yoga Center. A direct disciple of Swami Narayanananda he was educated in classical Yoga by the N•U• Yoga Teachers Association in Denmark, and initiated into Raja Yoga and Meditation by Swamiji. Over the past 30 years he has been exposed to a variety of Hatha techniques from Vinyasa Krama to Yin Yoga, Anusara and Ashtanga in India with K. Pattabhi Jois. He is an Adjunct Associate Professor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He also holds workshops, retreats and an annual Yoga Teachers Training Course.

Suddha Weixler

Heidi Ellison Childress

is a native Chicagoan. From a musical family, she danced with the San Francisco Ballet and Basel Ballet in Switzerland. Returning to Chicago, she taught aerobics briefly while becoming manager and buyer for Giorgio Armani.

She became a once a week student of yoga in 1996, increasingly interested by 2000. At first, a physical form for her, with attention and commitment, she has found yoga to be a many layered system of self-exploration. A source of great inspiration and energy as well as solace, it continually supports all aspects of her life, helping to bring it into balance.

Teaching since 2003, Heidi's classes blend aspects of Hatha, Vinyasa and Yin yoga to create a moving meditation. She believes that through a thoughtful practice, yoga enables us to experience the letting go of tension, to feel the energy we are made of and, ultimately to feel comfortable in our skin.

Heidi practices primarily under the guidance of Suddha Weixler at Chicago Yoga Center. Having taken many teacher trainings and intensives, she considers the most profound to be those of Erich Schiffmann and is influenced by Sarah Powers and Paul Grilley, whom she assisted at the 2009 Midwest Yoga Conference. She teaches privately as well as at Chicago Yoga Center.

Above all, Heidi thanks her husband Marvin for bringing her to her first class, for his constant support and for the often spirited discussions they share on the subject.

Patricia Hyland

My students experience and growth is my sole focus. I believe and encourage the study of our strengths and weaknesses carefully with joy. Through self-practice, great teachers, and motherhood my teaching and adjusting techniquies have matured. My understanding of the benefit of yoga is clear. Yoga is the ultimate healer without a doubt in my heart. My teaching began in college 20 years ago. I have completed teacher trainings with Suddha Weixler, Chicago Yoga Center and Advanced Forrest Training with Anna Forrest and Johnathan Bowry. I have a private labour assisting and lactation consulting practice since 1991. I am the honored mother of Elias (15), Henry (11), and Isaak Altenberg (7).

Mary Klonowski

began practicing yoga with Suddha Weixler at Chicago Yoga Center in 1985. She completed the NU teacher training in 1995 and has since taught Astanga and other styles and therapeutic forms of yoga at various studios throughout Chicago. She is continually developing her teaching skills through educational seminars, workshops and training programs. Mary organized the first annual New Year's Day 2001 yoga benefit to support the yoga program at Gilda's Club, Chicago.

Cathie Bond

began studying yoga in 1996, mostly under the guidance of Suddha Weixler at the Chicago Yoga Center. She has completed teacher training courses with Suddha Weixler and Srivatsa Ramaswami and has taken workshops with Ana Forrest and Manju Pattabhi Jois. Most of her yoga training has focused on a Vinyasa style and Ashtanga Yoga. Yoga has always been very healing and inspiring for her and she always looks forward to learning more and passing on this knowledge.

Tracy Stonaker

Tracy's yoga journey started in the early 90's while seeking out various means to support a healthy mind and lifestyle while training for marathons. This led her to becoming a 500hr Advanced Yoga Teacher and Integrative Ayurvedic Practitioner. She has had the honor of studying with a variety of master teachers in disciplines ranging from Vinyasa Krama to Ashtanga to Yin Yoga and Prenatal Yoga, as well as Tantric and Vedic Sciences, all of which have contributed to her comprehensive style of teaching and openness to being a lifetime student of yoga.

From an objective perspective, she allows her students to be aware of their physical limitations while supporting and gently encouraging them to cultivate confidence through focus and awareness and express their inner radiance through the asana, just one of the 8 limbs of yoga. She believes that by living in the present, practicing patience, enhancing what can be changed and accepting what cannot, are indispensable facets of yoga, on and off the mat. She understands that every person is different on many levels and offers her students the ability to learn from these diversities, acknowledging that yoga is a practice with the self, not against the self or others. Yoga is a connection to everything, within and without. It is integrating awareness of inner presence and alignment to create a lightness and freedom from the boundaries of perception. Through this practice, we realize our connection to totality.


Silvita Diaz Brown

is a certified Yoga instructor, movement teacher, choreographer and dancer. She has a BFA in Dance from UDLA (Puebla Mexico), a MFA in Theatre and a Movement Teaching Diploma from York University, (Toronto, Canada), and a 200 hour Hatha Yoga certification from Chicago Yoga Center. For Silvita, Yoga has been the blessing of her life! Silvita was first blessed by receiving her first yoga teacher training in 2004 at The Yoga Center at Bowling Green, KY. The owner, Beverly Veenker, graciously volunteered to train Silvita for free in Hatha & Ashtanga styles and then gave her an instructor position at the studio. She moved to Toronto in the summer 2005 to start her graduate studies at York University. There she taught yoga and movement fundamentals for the theatre and dance department for 3 years. After moving to Chicago in 2008, Silvita deepened her yoga studies and practice by completing her yoga certification at Chicago Yoga Center. Since then, she has taught yoga and movement at Roosevelt University, UIC, Yoga Now, Self Centered Yoga, Cheetah Gym, the Copernicus Center, Bend Yoga, Pilates Chicago and to private groups and individuals. Silvita's yoga and movement teaching have been enriched by different movement disciplines: Ballet, Modern Dance, Laban and Bartenieff Movement Fundamentals, Alexander technique, Contact Improvisation, Clowning, Butoh dance, Pilates, Tango, and of course Yoga. Silvita's favorite style is Vinyasa yoga because just like in dance you get to be creative in building your sequences. She also likes: Ashtanga, Forest, Anusara, Hatha and Yin yoga. Silvita's devotion to Yoga has extended to her movement practice, art making, teaching, and life. She continues to enrich her life through practicing and teaching yoga. "Yoga is a way of living that brings me closer to happiness; the body expands, straightens and relaxes, the mind settles its noise and the heart enlightens."

Danielle Gilmore

Originally from Yuma, Arizona, Danielle has been practicing yoga since 2001 when she was first introduced to Bikram yoga. Danielle graduated from the University of Arizona with a BFA in dance performance, studying ballet, modern, jazz and dance injury. Upon moving to Chicago, Danielle has performed and studied with many dance companies.  Developing a love and passion for yoga, Danielle began to exploring all types of yoga. Practicing Ashtanga, Vinyasa, Iyengar, Hatha, Yin and restorative yoga.   Danielle has received her 200-hour teacher training from the Chicago Yoga Center under Suddha Weixler.

Tim Noworyta

has been practicing yoga since 1980 and teaching since 1997. In addition to training with Suddha Weixler, Tim has studied Iyengar, Ashtanga, Anusara and other styles of yoga with teachers like John Friend, Richard Freeman, David Swenson, Erich Schiffmann, Cyndi Lee, Roger Eischens and Kim Schwartz. Besides the Chicago Yoga Center, he has taught at the Evanston Athletic Club, Galter Life Center, Hedwig School of Dance and elsewhere, including Balance Yoga & Wellness in New Orleans.

A professional writer and Chicago native, Tim has contributed articles to Yoga Chicago and been published in Yoga Journal. His dynamic "Shining Heart" teaching style is eclectic, with an emphasis on alignment, awareness and kindness toward oneself and others. He believes that the essence of yoga lies in the heart and that practice should therefore be fun as well as work, so we become not only healthier, but happier and more loving, too.

Beth Berolzheimer

began practicing yoga in 1995 and shortly thereafter started classes with Suddha Weixler at NU Yoga studio. In the year 2000 she completed the NU Hatha Yoga teachers training and went on to complete additional teacher trainings for Ashtanga Primary Series with David Swenson, and Vinyasa Krama by Srivatsa Ramaswami. Additionally she has taught yoga and meditation classes at Yoga Now, Cheetah Gym, and Gilda's Club.

Classes with Beth are accessible to a variety of practitioners regardless of age or ability reflecting the belief that one's own life is the best yoga teacher. She sees herself as a guide, helping students to move energy in the body through asana, meditation and pranayama techniques.

Informed by the many traditions of yoga Beth has also studied Iyengar, Universal, Anusara, Yin, Forrest and Sivananda Vedanta. Continuing her interest in the body as an energy system Beth has participated in anatomy workshops with Tias Little and studied at Thai Bodyworks with Chuck Duff, Jennifer Wright and Chris Ray who have infused her practice with Metta or loving kindness for all beings. Grateful for the many teachers in the Chicago Yoga community, Beth is especially inspired by Patrina Dobish and Patricia Hyland.

Lily Maso

Biography soon.

Amy Becker

is a long time yoga teacher who returns to Chicago from the east coast and Iowa. Teaching an engaging and empowering class, Amy uses breadth awareness and various yoga backgrounds to encourage students to move more deeply into their practice while feeling supported by a community. Through the awareness of mindfulness, freedom of movement and deep peace of meditation she brings students to a deeper level of connection with themselves in order to use yoga more purposefully in their day to day lives.

Mary Beth Johnson

Mary Beth began exploring yoga in 2007, and continues a regular practice in a variety of styles including Vinyasa, Hatha, Yin, Restorative, Ashtanga and Baptiste. She completed her 200-hour Teacher Training with Suddha Weixler at Chicago Yoga Center in 2013, and is influenced by her mentor Alyson Green.

As a former competitive soccer player for more than 20 years, and as a participant in marathons, triathlons, and long-distance cycling, Mary Beth understands the importance of committing to a practice while also tuning into the needs of her body and mind. Yoga has helped Mary Beth find balance and peace on and off the mat, and her practice continues to provide lessons on patience, acceptance, awareness, exploration and gratitude.

As a teacher, Mary Beth guides her students through a well-rounded practice that combines Asana (postures), Pranayama (breath work), and meditation (mindfulness/awareness). She encourages her students to approach yoga with curiosity, listen to their bodies while playfully challenging their edges, build community, and find joy in the practice – after all, it's just yoga on a Thursday evening.



"Evolution and involution is an eternal play in Infinity. There was not time without the phenomenal universe and there will never be a time without it. The universe is with God like light with the sun. Life appears in the universe because of the universal and All-pervading Consciousness. If we take the sun as an example, its light spreads all over the world and every ray of light starting from the sun appears as a separate entity and produces a tiny image of the sun. Though these multifarious rays and images appear as separate entities, they have no separate existence apart from the sun. Likewise, is the relationship between God and this phenomenal universe. The universe can never exist without God, in fact God and God alone exists. One can realize this in the state of Nirvikalpa Samadhi."

--Swami Narayanananda, 12 April, 1968

Swami Narayanananda (1902-1988) is the author
of 36 authoritative books on Yoga and spiritual psychology.

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