Lily Pad Yoga founder and instructor Natalie Welle believes in the power of yoga to transform, improve and change lives – as she credits it with helping her evolve into who she is. She’s a Bemidji native and has practiced and taught yoga in Alaska, California, Duluth, and the Twin Cities and is now fulfilling her dream of opening a studio in her hometown.
Gabrielle Congrave Baggenstoss holds both her E-RYT200 (experienced registered yoga teacher) and YACEP (Yoga Alliance Continuing Education Provider). She completed her first 200 hour training at Yoga North’s International SomaYoga Institute in Hatha Yoga in the Himalayan Tradition (Swami Rama lineage). In 2015 she completed a 6 month Kundalini Yoga apprenticeship with local KRI certified teacher Kathryn Gonzales, during which time she received her spiritual name Sach Gian Kaur (the sacred lioness whose inner wisdom embodies the exalted divine Truth). In 2017 Gabrielle received her certification in Trauma Sensitive Yoga. In 2018 Gabrielle graduated from the KRI Level One Teacher training (Kundalini Yoga as taught by Yogi Bhajan). She also received her certification in Yin Yoga. Gabrielle holds her BFA in Creative and Professional Writing from Bemidji State University. She is happily married to her soulmate Jake (Sat Gian Singh), and they have 2 beautiful children; Claire (Seva Nam Kaur) and Jorah (Bachan Nam Singh). Gabrielle has been a survivor of heroin addiction and the sex industry for over 11 years, and writes about her experience of trauma and healing in her zine “when the crash meets something solid” and her wordpress blog “Practical Redemption.” She hopes to use yoga and writing to share the same healing she has experienced with other survivors. Other areas of experience and study for Gabrielle include SomaYoga and Ayurveda. She and her husband run a small underground publishing company called Snotter Press that publishes the work of Northwoods writers and artists. Gabrielle also offers freelance Kundalini Yoga as taught by Yogi Bhajan classes in the Bagley area.
Emmy Josefson: I began my yoga journey when I was 16 at Paul Bunyan Kindergarten Center where they had evening yoga classes. From there, I used yoga to get me through college and two years of Peace Corps in Morocco. I used my yoga mat as my home away from home during this time because I traveled a lot and had a hard time staying in one place. My yoga mat always brought me back home. In 2014 I completed my 200 hour yoga certification at Wanderlust Yoga with Maha Yoga in Austin, Texas. Ben and Hilly Flores, my teachers taught me the foundations of Vinyasa Yoga. That summer I moved with my husband Josh to Doha Qatar where I continued to use my yoga mat as my roots and grounding force. After my first son was a year old I traveled to India and did a John Scott training at Purple Valley Yoga. Once I was pregnant with my third son I was determined to further my yoga training and completed my 300 hour yoga training with Yama Yoga where Valerie Jeremijenko taught me the foundations of Ashtanga Yoga. I am now growing roots in New Braunfels, Texas as a yoga teacher and stay at home mom with my three active beautiful boys. I have also been trained in Brahmani Yoga, Kids Yoga, Yoga Tune Up Balls, Yin Yoga and Breath Training with Max Strom. My passion is getting yoga to everyone. We live in a world of chaos and stress. We have the power to feel in control of our lives and I want to help you gain that power. My mantra is loka samastah sukhino bhavantu- may everyone be happy and free. I want to live in a world where we all feel happy and free inside our own bodies. The way I do this is through yoga.
Having taught in Wadena for 9 years Tamara recently moved with her husband and four
children to Bemidji and is delighted to begin teaching at Lily Pad!
Her formation as a teacher began under Mary Beth Nehl at Yoga Loft (200 hours/2009) and continues under Doug Keller (50 hours/2011-2018). While teaching, Tamara focuses on alignment, breath, and fosters awareness of the interior movements of thought and emotion during an asana practice. When we begin to accept what is present within us, we invite the power of love to come and transform our lives.
Anyone who spends time with Tamara knows of her deep love and devotion to God. Tamara is certified and practices as a Spiritual Director (St. John’s School of Theology-2015) and has a Master’s degree in Theology (2005). She integrates prayer within her yoga practice and encourages others to do the same.
Off the mat, Tamara enjoys singing (especially sacred music), meditation on Scriptures, deep conversations with friends, cooking, spending time with her family – preferably at our State Parks, practicing her guitar, and dreaming about travel to Italy – where she was born and lived for 10 years as a Navy dependent.
Angie Clark received her group fitness certification through the American Council on Exercise in 2013. She completed her 235hr yoga certification in April of 2019 through the Devanadi School of Yoga and Wellness. However, she has been a fitness enthusiast for her entire adult life beginning with step aerobics in high school, a time when leotards were still a thing.
Angie continues to loves group fitness and yoga classes. She says, “It is a great way to stay motivated without having to plan workouts on your own. Yoga offers an opportunity to lengthen and tone our bodies. It’s also a time to reconnect with ourselves and calm the mind even when the room is filled with other people.”
Angie is also an avid runner. As a runner, she understands the importance of strength and flexibility to maintain peak performance and injury prevention. She believes that yoga is an excellent source for providing these cross training needs.
During the week, Angie has a full-time job in higher education. Making time to fit in exercise is not always easy, but having a consistent routine helps keep her on track.
She hopes that by role modeling a balanced lifestyle she inspires others and helps them create change to meet their own personal wellness goals.