About Big Island Yoga


Though previously certified in other styles of yoga, Amanda now holds a Junior I certification in Iyengar Yoga under the guidance of Senior teacher Chris Saudek. She has studied the Iyengar method since 2003 and is currently working toward taking her Junior 2 assessment.

You can find her teaching around her new home, South Kona on the Big Island of Hawaii, while she continues to operate her traveling yoga studio, Root River Yoga, in rural SE Minnesota where she grew up. Her passion for providing community yoga classes ignited in 2008 after finishing a month in drug and alcohol treatment. It was then that she experienced profound transformation from starting a daily yoga practice. As friends gathered to practice in her living room, Amanda witnessed the infectious enthusiasm that developed in the group and realized her own ability to connect with others through teaching. She became committed to inspiring others to discover the healing power of yoga.

Amanda writes: “Yoga’s light is a safe space to shine in awareness of my inner struggles. The practice gently guides me through tough challenges and gives me tools for positive change. Each day’s yoga practice inspires me to help others with the new energy found through my recovery. The practice has saved my life. Yoga calls me to be more present, more accepting of my body and mind, and more engaged in the pursuit of wellness for all beings. Opening my heart and story to others brings hope. I am dedicated to sharing yoga's healing.”

What lies behind us and what lies before us are small matters compared to what lies within us. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Contact: : 507.459.6700 - amanda@bigislandyoga.com
Call E-Mail Grushenka Wolfgang

Throughout her life Grushenka has been an active person, initially with dance classes, then as a competitive ice skater, ice skating coach, and more recently with yoga practice. As a graduate student in Pharmacology and Toxicology and as a practicing toxicologist for 25+ years Grushenka gained knowledge and appreciation of the body’s ability to function and repair. As a scientist, she has been particularly drawn to the precision-based teaching of traditional alignment-based yoga at Big Island Yoga Center.

Having been introduced to yoga at BIYC and having had the opportunity to attend workshops with well-known Iyengar instructors, Grushenka decided to study Iyengar yoga with Ray Madigan (Intermediate Senior III Iyengar Teacher) and is currently certified at the Introductory I&II level. From her years of coaching ice skating and more recent yoga training, Grushenka discovered that a major part of the learning process is overcoming fear and having someone to challenge you in a safe environment.

She is committed to sharing the many benefits of yoga with her students at BIYC.

Contact: 808.345.4377 - grushenka@bigislandyoga.com
Call E-Mail Grushenka Wolfgang

A native New Yorker, Joanne was drawn to Hawaii through her love of surfing; and her home has been on the Big Island since 1972. She began her Yoga studies in 1993, with certified Iyengar instructor Darina Archer, the founder of BIYC. As she saw her own health, spirit and well-being benefit from her practice, Joanne began attending teacher trainings with Aadil Palkhivala in 1996. She has also graduated from the 200 hour teacher training at BIYC with Jennifer Weinert, in 2010.

Joanne feels privileged to share with her students her dedication and her love for her practice, experiencing the practice itself as a continual process of personal growth. She is particularly interested in Yoga philosophy. Joanne also focuses her talents in agriculture on Hawaii Island, considering as her “earthly dharma” the raising of queen bees for export worldwide.

Contact: 808.315.2933 - joanne@bigislandyoga.com
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I believe that we are powerful beings capable of creating our own state of wholeness and healing.  Yoga has been one of my most passionate and transformational tools. It has brought me deep and meaningful levels of awareness, has afforded me a healthy lifestyle, and provided answers. It has taught me to focus my mind, to be content, how to deal with stress, and how to stay well. My path has been about returning to a sense of wholeness through connection to my own true nature. I have a burning desire is to grow and evolve by assisting others in their own transformation.  

I began doing yoga at age fifteen and have been practicing steadily since 1984 and teaching since 1994. I have studied with many Iyengar certified yoga teachers over the years, most recently with Ray Madigan of Honolulu, Certified Intermediate Senior Level 3 Instructor. Currently I am Iyengar certified at Intro I & II level. Additionally, I am a certified Integrative Life Coach and a professional clairvoyant, venues which have enriched and developed my spiritual foundations and have allowed me to see beyond what meets the eye. It is my honor and privilege to assist others on their path.

Contact: 808.896.8956 - reagan@bigislandyoga.com
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