Lucia Van Zyl
Dirk de Waal
Owner and Teacher
Stella is a professionally certified and internationally accredited Yoga teacher who has been practicing yoga for at least 16 years. She’s so wise, she’s lost count. Stella has received her training in India and has 500 hours training as well as eight years teaching experience. As an asthmatic, who suffered from a severe case of burn out, she took Yoga to a deeper level when she suffered from a major lung inflammation. Yoga was the only thing that didn’t over exert or stress out her body while still strengthening and toning. Yoga helped restore balance and peace at a time when her circumstances said otherwise. “My Yoga practice has brought me closer to God. But you don’t have to do Yoga for that reason. You can do Yoga because you’ll feel all the benefits, be they physical, mental, emotional or spiritual. Also, it’s fun!”
Vinyasa and Hatha
Denton Douglas has practiced yoga on and off for 20 years. He was first introduced to Yoga by Jay Pather, his then dance teacher. He Has always been a mover, specializing in movement and dance at the Durban University Of Technology. He went on to dance and act professionally, both locally and abroad. His interest has been rekindled in yoga over the last couple of years, due to his wife and business partner (surprise it's Stella!) and with that new commitment to the practice, he has now completed his Yoga teacher training with Pure Peace Yoga. Denton loves details, not just in Yoga, but in life so it made sense that he should specialise in alignment and techniques.
Preggie and Strong
Lucia has practiced Yoga for several years. As a child, she enjoyed tying herself into knots so when she went to her first Yoga class with Stella, she was hooked. “I would call myself and introverted extrovert, only showing my true colours where I feel safe, loved and supported. This is what Yoga is for me, a space where I get to be in my body going from strength to strength with a community of people who have taught me how to love myself, how to challenge my perceptions and how to connect with God through compassion, for myself first, and rest”. Lucia has felt increasingly drawn towards Prenatal Yoga as a way of fostering a safe environment for expectant mothers to prepare for what lies ahead, be it the challenges of pregnancy, the power of birth and the recovery and adjustment that comes with having a new baby. She is interested in the physical and spiritual connection between mother and child during pregnancy and how yoga can increase and heighten this connection by giving mother and baby the time to feel each other in movement, in stillness and through the breath. She has completed a Prenatal Teacher Training with J’anaki Ra of Yoga Mama and is under the ongoing tutelage of Shasta Goodfellow, an incredibly gifted yoga teacher and doula.
The Translation Matrix
Francis has been playing, composing and working with music his whole life, and with digital audio for over 15 years. He studied music at Wits University, and post-production at the Academy of Sound Engineering. He is a multi-instrumentalist and has worked in several major Johannesburg studios. Over the last few months, he has helped PurePeaceYoga transition online by offering tech advice and all post-production services for their pre-recorded classes.
Sarah is an ecologist by training but her work has always focused on the intersection of social justice and environmental sustainability. After several years in ecology-focused roles and an unexpected three-year stint at a media NGO, Sarah now freelances as a research consultant. She is an unashamed data nerd, a fiery afro-optimist and excitable storyteller who has loved(!) reconnecting with herself through yoga. She offers behind-the-scenes support to the PurePeaceYoga team and has a hand in the studio’s social media marketing.
After spending 16 years in the fashion and reality television industry, Dirk decided to get out of the rat race in search of ease. Yoga happened, not just Yoga asana, but Yoga. It swept him entirely off his feet and before he knew it, he was studying to become a Yoga teacher. After completing his training, his interest and personal practice shifted away from the active forms of Yoga asana towards the more receptive, restorative and therapeutic styles of Yoga. He continued his training and completed Restorative and Yin Yoga teacher trainings with Shasta Jordan, studied Yin Yoga with Josh Summers and did further training in Restorative Yoga with Judith Hanson Lasater, Jillian Pransky and Satya Greenstone. In Restorative Yoga classes Dirk holds space for students to slow down, practicing deliberate stillness and deep relaxation through supported Yoga asana. He teaches the simple art of getting out of your own way, practicing how to pause, relax and restore, allowing for the mind to better adjust to dealing with stress in a more responsive and a less reactive way.
Nelet first encountered yoga in a small basement studio in New Dehli, India - with a non-english speaking instructor in 2014. Poses were shown and she mimicked it. She was on an internship placement and decided to learn about this ancient tradition. She returned and reconnected with yoga in 2016 in SA. After burn-out and an abusive relationship she found yoga a form of healing, connecting and returning to her faith. For Nelet, her yoga is an act of faith, a way to pray and strengthening her body.