Michelle Cassidy

ideally use this oneMichelle Cassidy is the founder and operator of popular Essence of Living Yoga & Pilates studio and Teacher Training Academy on the Gold Coast. After first discovering Yoga and Pilates at the young age of 16, Michelle knew with every cell of her body this was her calling and she wanted to share both the spiritual and physical benefits of the practice with others.

After completing a Business Degree and an Advanced Diploma in Recreational Fitness, Michelle went on to further her training with an International Advanced ‘Stott Pilates’ Mat course specialising in Stability Ball, Fitness Circle, Flex Band and Foam Roller instruction together with Reformer Apparatus Training. Later she expanded her knowledge and completed the internationally recognised ‘Body Control Pilates’ Mat Course.

She then went on to deepen her understanding of Yoga by completing a ‘Yoga Arts’ 200hr intensive Teacher Training in Ubud, Bali, ‘Brahmani Yoga’ 500hr intensive Ashtanga Teacher Training in Goa India, ‘Jivamukti Yoga’ 300hr intensive Teacher Training, plus a 500hr apprenticeship in New York. Michelle continues to train and study under Dena Kingsberg  certified to teach the Ashtanga system by Sri K.Pattabhi Jois.

After falling in love with Thai Massage and the benefits closely linked with Yoga, Michelle also completed a 3 month intensive ‘International Thai Massage’ Teacher Training in Chiang Mai Thailand. Now facilitating Thai Massage courses making graduates more employable and resourceful to accommodate a wider cross section of the population.

With the constant evolution of the industry Michelle has kept her finger on the pulse with the latest trends and went back to New York for an intensive training program where she studied the Barre from the Lotte Berk lineage. Training at the worlds most exclusive clubs learning new techniques and methods bringing a whole new style of Barre back to Australia. Barre is a fusion of Yoga, Pilates and Ballet.

“I live and breathe my vocation as it resonates with every cell of my body. I truly love what I do and do what I love. I want to share my passion with the world around me and hope to create a happier, healthier world with those willing to change and grow with me.” – Michelle Cassidy

Michelle is the creator of all training programs at Essence of Living, she is also primarily delivers all course work as specified below:

  • Yoga Level 1
  • Yoga Level 2
  • Pilates Level 1
  • Pilates Level 2
  • Thai Massage Level 1 & 2

Assistant Teacher Trainer  – Clare Merrifield

11046938_855285941197835_3233587454333859048_nClare also known as Tinkerbell is an organic yogini, who feels most at home when practicing and studying the deepest facets of yoga. Clare recently did both the Yoga and Pilates teacher training at Essence of Living Academy and has also completed the Radiantly Alive Yoga Teacher Training course in her second home Ubud, Bali.

It was during her studies that Clare went deeper into the philosophy of yoga and realised how much yoga reasonated with her own natural beliefs and ideals.

Clare is a ray of sunshine who lights up the room when she enters and will make each and every student feel loved and connected to
themselves through the breath and the practice. Clare is also a dynamic pilates teacher and enjoys a high energy class filled with laughter and sweat.

  • Yoga Level 1
  • Yoga Level 2

Guest Speaker – Danielle Williams

I have always known that I wanted to work in the health and fitness industry. For me it was an inner calling, it made sense that the quality of ones life depended on their physical health, nutritional status and spiritual and mental growth.

I wanted to learn more about health and went on to study an Advanced Diploma in Natural Therapies and have been working as a Naturopath for the last 10 years for various companies, health retreats and now for myself. This is my true passion helping others to obtain their optimal health.

I met Michelle when I was working at a Women’s Health Spa and finally joined team at Essence of Living as a yoga instructor and a lecturer of Nutrition, Reflexology and Anatomy and Physiology for their Teacher Training Courses.

I feel blessed to be apart of the studio and college which welcomes everyone to experience the journey of health, fitness and the spiritual connection with oneself. Namaste

As a Certified Naturopath and Kinesiologist Danielle delivers Nutrition and Anatomy Modules in the following courses:

  • Yoga Level 1
  • Yoga Level 2
  • Pilates Level 1 

Guest Speaker – Erin Bourne

Erin is a natural teacher who finds the opportunity to share anything of value simply irresistible. As she found grounding, peace and of course physical fitness from her own yoga practice Erin was compelled to complete the yoga and Pilates Level 1 and Level 2 teacher training at Essence of Living. Being an instructor at Essence of Living has added a new dimension to her experience as a teacher.

Erin had been teaching Physical Education and Chemistry in high schools for several years since completing a graduate entry Bachelor of Education (following a Bachelor of Exercise Science). It was this wealth of hands on experience in the classroom which gave Erin the ability to make anatomy and physiology accessible to teacher trainers.

  • Yoga Level 1
  • Pilates Level 1

Guest Speaker –  Sharon Little

sharonAs a yoga practicioner and Group Fitness Instructor with 13 years experience, Sharon was well aware of the wonderful benefits of fitness & yoga for the mind & body. As she continued teaching through both her pregnancies she became even more aware of these benefits during the pre & postnatal months and discovered how yoga can actively prepare you for a natural birth.

It is her passion to share this knowledge with other women and demonstrate how yoga can assist them through this amazing & life changing chapter in their lives.

Sharon teaches regular Prenatal, Mother & baby yoga and general yoga classes on the Gold coast and also co-ordinates teacher trainings.

  • Yoga Level 1

Guest Speaker – Natalie Olsen

natalieNatalie is a nurturing soul and teaching comes naturally. For the past 10 years Natalie has spent her time guiding young children in childcare and preschool settings. At age17 her passion for teaching children started with a School Based Traineeship in Children’s Services. She continued her education studying a Bachelor of Early Childhood studies and finally a completing Bachelor of Teaching (Early Childhood) in 2012. Now most of her energy and knowledge is applied when caring for her young daughter.

She discovered her passion for yoga in 2010 when she started her first yoga teacher training with a Amanda Reid, whose Family Yoga Teacher training focused on how to teach yoga to children, teens, prenatal and postnatal women. It was through her personal transformation during the course that she uncovered the benefits of yoga for herself. Since then she has strived to expand her skills as a yoga teacher completing more training; Radiant Child III, My Health Yoga Level I and Essence of Living Level I and II.

Her metaphor for teaching is ‘Teaching is a garden’. With the guidance, care and nurturing of the gardener flowers will blossom.

  • Yoga Level 1

Guest Speaker –  Dr Rama Prasad

ramaAustralia’s most experienced mind-body specialist, Dr Rama Prasad has spent over 30 years studying and practicing Ayurveda internationally based in Sydney, Australia. Over 22 years of clinical experience and passion to care Dr. Rama Prasad can help you achieve your ultimate health goals with ease, using safe and powerful principles and products.

  • Yoga Level 1
  • Pilates Level 1

Guest Speaker – Andre Melis

Bhakti is the yoga of love and devotion.  The path of bhakti serves to reconnect us with the divine and to reawaken the eternal blissful love that lies within each of our hearts.  Bhakti is the ultimate goal of the yoga system, the perfection of yoga.

  • Yoga Level 1

Guest Speaker – Danny O’Kane

Danny O’Kane joins us from Affordable First Aid, he is passionate about first aid and health and safety making him incredibly qualified in his position.  We have been using Danny as our preferred instructor for years now, we can always appreciate his engaging way of teaching and ensuring everybody is on par with their instruction.

Danny joins us as the First Aid & CPR Instructor and facilitator for the following course:

  • Yoga Level 1
  • Pilates Level 1